Cars Coming Soon->Turbo Suzuki Kizashi, Scion FR-S

Scion FR-S concept

First order of business: The incredibly hot machine pictured directly above these words.

To the people visiting this week’s New York Auto Show, that gloriously sculpted red automobile is the Scion FR-S. To regular readers of this blog and fans of economical sports cars everywhere, it’s the latest concept incarnation of the infamous Toyota FT-86.

Why infamous? Because the frustratingly slow tease of this thing seems to come in a string of never-ending concepts, with no firm date for a production version. While this one looks closer to a showroom version, there are a few elements that just don’t have a chance at making it.

Power for the concept, and most likely for the production car, comes from a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter Subaru Boxer engine mated to either a 6-speed manual or automatic transmission. Not likely to make production are the 20-inch wheels that are attached to a set of 18-inch carbon ceramic brake rotors.

The great thing about this car is that it looks nothing like a Scion, which should give the brand an extra shot at success. Assuming the FR-S ever gets out of concept form.

Like Scion, Suzuki could use some extra sales to help justify its existence in the U.S. market. The company makes some terrific cars, including the SX4 and the Kizashi, but the problem is no one seems to know about them.

The company is using the New York Auto Show to showcase two new concepts based on the fantastic Kizashi sedan. Truthfully, though, I only care about one of them. The first is a hybrid that looks far better than any other hybrid sedan and should get close to 40 mpg on the highway.

But, assuming you know my stance on hybrids, that’s not the car I like.

The Kizashi Apex concept, on the other hand, is far more exciting thanks to a turbocharger, air-to-liquid intercooler, electronic boost control and a recalibrated ECU giving this mad little Kizashi an estimated 275 to 300 horsepower. That power will be managed by a proper six-speed manual transmission.

Build it, Suzuki! But leave the hybrid version on the concept stand.

You know the next question: Are you parking the Scion FR-S coupe in your garage or the Kizashi Apex sedan?

-tgriffith

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4 Comments

  1. Love the concept FT-86! If they do not produce the FT-86 look and water it down to like a 18 inch wheel and 12″ brake rotors; sales will be down a lot since most expect the FT-86. I hope they have an DCT or an automatic because I personally am stick of the manuals now; especially now that the highways and now some of the streets are stop and go traffic.

  2. Toyota has gotten there by creating conservatively-styled vehicles that are reliable and reasonably priced, while letting the little guys make those krazymobiles that the hip hop hamsters like to drive. The very fact that Toyota’s aren’t “hip” should be a clue that the vast majority of folks like them.

  3. Toyota marketing has never exactly been on the cutting edge. I wonder how such an enormous company can have such an amateur marketing plan. It’s common with large manufacturers, though, I suppose. “Someone who desires a car to take him where he wants to go.” Seriously… that describes every car company on the planet.

  4. They ought to rush that FR-S into production quick because Scion is definitely sagging. It does look great, but don’t get your hopes up. The company’s marketing people said this about the ideal owner (quoted in the NY Times piece): he’s “someone who knows exactly what he wants…where he wants to go…and desires a car to take him there.” Brilliant, guys. Do you know where you want to go with this car?

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