The 197 HP Scion FR-S is the new Mazda Miata

Illustration for article titled The 197 HP Scion FR-S is the new Mazda Miata

The Scion FR-S / Toyota FT-86 gets talked about as a Mustang Killer and competition for the Hyundai Genesis and other muscle cars. It really isn't, although maybe the Subaru BRZ will be. But new specs from FT86club make it clear this car will actually compete directly with the Mazda Miata/MX-5, even if it's never marketed that way.

The first FR-S spec drop gave us the weight (2,662 pounds) and power (197 hp/151 lb-ft), as well as the displacement (2.0 liters) and letting us know it'll have an LSD in all but the base automatic model.


A look at the specs shows the FR-S has identical displacement to the MX-5, and, although it weighs approximately 200 pounds more, an extra 30 horsepower in its pancaked boxer engine.

And then came today's pages from the JDM manual. The FR-S/FT-86 has a lower center of gravity than the Porsche Cayman, Nissan GT-R and Mitsubishi Lancer Evo. The F/R weight distribution is 53/47 and the cD of 0.27 is better than a Honda CR-Z and almost as good as a Toyota Prius.

Illustration for article titled The 197 HP Scion FR-S is the new Mazda Miata

The suspension graphics show a Macpherson strut up front and a double-wishbone setup out back. If you're thinking that this sounds like the makings of a great track day car, then guess what — you're not alone.

Buried in the pages from the web's JDM Deep Throat is a graphic showing how you can fold the seats down to fit an extra four tires for "track days."


Buyers may not think to cross-shop a Scion FR-S and a Miata, nor will Toyota necessarily make that the first point of comparison.

Illustration for article titled The 197 HP Scion FR-S is the new Mazda Miata

But if you're looking for the best slow-car-fast option Toyota's clearly built a car with slightly more weight, a lot more power, and more room for track-day essentials than the Mazda.

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So far on the spec sheet front this thing looks awesome. However I do have several concerns

1. Last time I checked there aren't any Subarus in recent memory that had decent steering feel (guess its the awd) and Toyota, outside of the LFA seems to be chasing buick for on that end.

2. Subaru motors....I know they have there fan boys but I dont see a lot of high mileage Subarus putting around. Seems everyone, turbo or not has some sort of issue before it reaches 100K. Am I misinformed or going off too small a sample size to be suspicious of current Subbi boxters?

3. Doochebags. They destroyed all the CRX's. They destroyed all the Nissan 240sx. They obliterated the Supras. Will I be able to buy this thing and not have to deal with hordes of "hey brah"'s?

4. Miata's rock because you can get any generation (well maybe not the 90-91 models with that crank business) and have a blast in em if the road has a couple of curves and no one else is around. If you get REALLY bored with it you can stuff all sorts of engine in the engine bay.