The Subaru BRZ is one of the best driver's cars you can buy today. It shares a lot of components with the Toyota GT 86 and goes head-to-head with coupes such as the Volkswagen Scirocco, Audi TT and Nissan 370Z. Convertible sports cars such as the Mazda MX-5 and Lotus Elise can also match the Subaru's pure driving experience.
Subaru hasn’t gone in for sophisticated looks or a swish interior with the BRZ – the types of things you get with the Audi and Volkswagen. Instead, it has focused on delivering the best driving experience possible and poured its efforts into razor-sharp steering, a sporty six-speed manual gearbox and a beautifully balanced rear-wheel-drive set-up that
This all makes the car tremendous fun to drive – so much so that it's hard to find another model on sale today in this price range that's capable of putting as big a smile on your face on a twisty back road.
There's only one engine available: a 197bhp 2.0-litre petrol. It doesn’t make the BRZ a tremendously fast car, but that isn’t the point. The engine is just quick enough to be interesting and the power is at the top end of the rev range, so the car comes alive when you drive it harder, which complements the brilliant handling.
The BRZ's trim levels are almost as simple, as you’re limited to just two: SE and SE Lux. Every model comes with automatic climate control, electric windows and cruise control, while SE Lux adds the likes of suede seats.
A six-speed automatic gearbox is also available and although it improves the Subaru's fuel economy and CO2 emissions, it takes the edge off the purity of the driving experience. Plus it's more expensive than the manual, so there isn’t much of a case for it. Stick with the manual and the BRZ remains one of the most fun-to-drive cars on the market – and a very affordable one at that.