The weekly test-drive car was not like the usual pickup, SUV, or sedan. It was a beautiful blue sports car. I looked at it closer and discovered it was actually a Subaru. Yes, that is correct. It was a Subaru, which has those television ads touting their ‘love’ by the owners and their families. How did a sports car fit into that scenario? Easy. It was a Series Blue BRZ which offers a lot of fun at a lower price than I had anticipated.
This beautiful little sports car is actually a combination of Subaru and Toyota building something together. The drive-train is mostly Subaru’s input and the design is mostly provided by Toyota. The unique combination by these two Japanese auto manufacturers provide a very affordable sports car for the ‘average’ car enthusiast. In fact, the BRZ sits on the same platform as the popular Scion FR-S. The BRZ is only a few years in the making, but the Series Blue is new for 2015 and only 1,000 of these will be available on the U.S. Market. Five hundred will be a Blue Pearl color and the other five hundred will be a Crystal White Pearl color. The test model was the Crystal White Pearl.
My test model was the standard BRZ but it included the Option Package 2 at an additional cost of $2545. Actually, the sticker showed a $750 discount, so the added cost was only $1,795. That added STI front, side, & rear under spoilers, 17-inch STI black finished alloy wheels, leather-trimmed interior, blue highlighting and contrast stitching, red-painted brake calipers, carbon-fiber patterned trim, and an undercover insulator. Supposedly, those spoilers allow this baby to slide more easily down the road and hug the road surface better. This is commonly referred to as being more aerodynamically enhanced.
The test-drive model was rear-wheel drive and powered by a 2.0-liter engine. The boxer engine is four-cylinder and naturally aspirated, producing 200 horsepower. The engine is paired with a six-speed manual transmission. For better performance, the BRZ offers Sport-Tuned suspension. The engine is set a little further back on the chassis, so this provides a lower center of gravity. That all adds together for better handling. During the week, there were a few times when I wished for a little more power, so maybe a turbo engine enhancement might be a good thing. But using the manual transmission as it is intended will generally provide the get-up-and-go under most situations, especially for the daily commuter.
The Series Blue designation gives a lot of extra in the good-looks area, but I think I would have preferred a turbocharged engine. Although it says STI in a lot of places, it really is not an STI model, which has caused many automotive followers to think that maybe Subaru will come out with a BRZ-STI performance vehicle.
The BRZ’s sport-tuned suspension is for ‘sporty’ driving, but produced a lot more bounce along the back roads, dirt roads, and rough highways. The BRZ, however, as all Subaru vehicles, is loaded with safety features, which is a very positive aspect of this fun sports car. There is Vehicle Stability Control, advanced front airbag systems, brake assist, anti-lock braking, Safety Pedal System, Tire Pressure Monitoring, Anti-theft Alarm & Immobilizer system, and daytime running lights.
The MSRP price for the test-drive model was shown as $37,695. With the added Series Blue Package 2 for an extra $1795 and $795 destination charges, the bottom sticker price came to $30,285. The car was EPA rated at 25 mpg average, although I came out at 28.9 mpg for my week’s average.
Bottom line for my weekly test drive is that the 2015 Subaru BRZ Series Blue is fun to drive, looks good, and is low priced for a sports car. For me, it was a little difficult to climb in and out, although it performed very well on the road once I was behind the wheel. Check it out yourself at a Subaru dealership and see if this is the sports car you have been waiting to drive.