Toyota has made a comeback of sorts in the fast cars segment with its Lexus FA after remaining dormant for about a decade or so. Even though priced prohibitively high, the limited edition of the model has already been sold out completely. There is yet another sports car in the making in the Toyota stable codenamed FT-86. This was supposed to be Toyota’s offering in the affordable sports car segment which they were jointly making with Subaru. This project has been rumored to be stuck up due to some technical problems even though reports state it is yet on schedule.
With Toyota US President Jim Lentz having confirmed that the FT-86 is surely coming to the market has given added belief to its running on schedule. There are reports that indicate Subaru is also pressing ahead with the project irrespective of what Toyota might be up to. But in spite of all this, rumors about the project missing the deadline continued to clang on to it.
7Tune has reported the scheduled date of release of the FT86 is still being held on to the November 2011 timeline. They have received and confirmed this bit of information from the manager and group manager of Toyota’s Sports Vehicle division. The car is reported to be about half complete which is much behind what the spy shots of the car that has made to the public domain and the concept car that was displayed at the Tokyo show held last year would otherwise suggest. The pictures of the sister Subaru project too wasn’t much confidence inspiring either.
Here is a recap of what the FT-86 is all about: The car is a rear drive model and weighs approximately 3,000 pounds. It’s a flat four powered coupe with its power house developing 200 hp. There is also a turbocharged “STI” version of the car that Subaru is supposedly working on. No word though on this from Toyota.
The price of the car in Japanese market is expected to be 2.5 million yen, or around $29,000. This is surely a bit more than what the American FT-86 was likely to cost though given the exchange rates prevailing at the time of the real launch the price however could be low-to-mid $20,000-range.
However, it is still a ‘wait and watch’ game that we’ll have to play to see if Toyota really is able to create sports cars for the mainstream retail market. Toyota had given us the AE86, rear-drive Celica and Supra, so there is still hoping that they make a comeback to the sporting arena once again.