The new 2022 Subaru BRZ is here, and it’s …. not all that different.
Retaining its overall shape, the car gets updated looks, what Subaru claims is better handling (as always, have to wait until we drive it to verify), new interior duds, a 50-percent increase in torsional stiffness, and more powah.
Power is bumped to 228 horsepower with a 15-percent increase in torque, thanks to an increase in engine displacement up to 2.4 liters. The “boxer” engine remains naturally aspirated. Subaru claims that by situating the engine low in the chassis, it has achieved a lower center of gravity than what the previous BRZ offered.
Two trims and two transmissions will be available — and one of those gearboxes will, of course, be a manual. The trim choices are Premium and Limited, both transmissions have six speeds, and the automatic will offer up a Sport mode that can hold gears in corners while also being able to downshift more quickly.
If you want to wring this car out, there’s a 7,000-rpm redline.
Subaru wanted to keep the BRZ svelte, and it achieves what it estimates is an under-3,000 pound curb weight (about 2,900 pounds, to be more precise) by using aluminum for the roof, hood, and front fenders. The layout remains 2+2, and Subaru claims the cargo area can swallow a mountain bike, golf clubs, or a set of race tires and tools for a track weekend.
The car gains an inch of length and drops half an inch, the roof has a double-bubble look, and there are functional front side vents that reduce drag and add downforce. Fins at the back of each rear-wheel arch helped improve stability at higher speeds. There’s also a rear spoiler.
To our eye, the changes are noticeable but relatively subtle, although the differences in the rear are more pronounced. Still, the overall silhouette is similar enough to the outgoing car that it will be easy to tell it’s a BRZ at a glance.
A 7-inch digital screen for the gauge cluster has a prominent tachometer, and there is an 8-inch infotainment screen. Available features include Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth, satellite radio, and if you opt for the slushbox, Subaru’s EyeSight tech.
The front suspension is MacPherson strut and coil spring, while out rear its double-wishbone. Subaru claims the car’s weight distribution is “near perfect.” Front-lateral bending is increased by 6o percent, which is meant to improve turn-in, and the chassis is stiffened.
Subaru gives the driver five levels of traction control and stability control, including all the way off.
The next BRZ will be built in Gunma, Japan, and go on sale early in the fall of next year.