It may not be as powerful as the Ford Mustang and the Chevrolet Camaro but the Subaru BRZ performs quite well for its price. At below $26,000, the BRZ can provide a thrilling yet comfortable experience with its precise steering and well-balanced chassis.
NEW FOR THE 2014 BRZ
- standard smartphone integration
- redesigned remote key fob for BRZ Limited
- discontinuation of automatic transmission offering on BRZ Premium
UNDER THE HOOD
The 2014 Subaru BRZ is powered by a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine that generates 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque. A 6-speed manual transmission, which sends power to the rear wheels, is standard. But the BRZ Limited can be equipped with a 6-speed automatic with shift paddles.
Based on the EPA’s estimates, the 2014 BRZ can manage 22 city mpg, 30 highway mpg and 25 combined mpg with the manual gearbox. The optional automatic transmission increases these figures to 25, 34 and 28, respectively.
ON THE ROAD
The Subaru BRZ is described by some reviewers as an “engaging” sports car. But they also noted that it isn’t the performance car for those looking for a powerful machine. The 4-cylinder engine provides the BRZ with just enough power—and nothing more than that.
But this sports vehicle from Subaru can give you a thrilling experience around corners. Add to that the firm feel of the brake pedal, the communicative steering and the car’s impressive control. The manual transmission also provides the pleasurable shifting that matches the driving experience in the BRZ. Going for the available automatic gearbox won’t hurt the experience, though.
The chassis feels composed even if the road surface gets imperfect and bumpy. And the BRZ is rewarding for both daily driving and ordinary long trips. The most common complaint, however, from test drivers is the road noise that could get distracting especially during highway cruises.
INSIDE THE 2014 BRZ
When it comes to the BRZ’s interior, don’t expect a lot. It isn’t as stylish as what its rivals have. But with its price tag, the quality of materials and the technologies equipped are not bad.
The array of standard features is actually impressive. With just the base model, you can already drive with leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter handle, 8-sepaker audio system, smartphone integration, HD radio, navigation system, and satellite radio. Unfortunately, many reviewers are not so happy about the touchscreen interface which they say is difficult to use. The steering wheel does not also have audio controls.
As for the seats, those in front are comfortable and supportive enough. But the backseat has issues. First, it offers tiny legroom. And second, you may find your head pressed against the rear glass for lack of headroom. The trunk is also small at 6.9 cubic feet. Good thing the rear seats can be folded down so this space can be expanded.
The 2014 Subaru BRZ Premium comes with HID headlights, LED taillights and daytime running lights, dual exhaust system, sport seats, fold-down rear seatback, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter handle with red stitching, cloth upholstery, aluminum pedals, automatic headlights, cruise control, tilt/telescoping steering column, 8-speaker audio system (with STARLINK system and Aha service, HD radio, USB port/iPod interface, satellite radio and Bluetooth), voice-activated navigation system with 6.1-inch touchscreen display, and keyless entry system.
The Limited model adds antitheft security system, dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless access and start, Alcantara/leather seats, heated front seats and side mirrors, fog lights, and rear spoiler.
Photo credit: subaru.com