The second-generation Subaru BRZ is here! When the original was revealed for the 2013 model year it became an instant classic, demonstrating how much fun a sports car can be even without massive power. Instead, the BRZ is all about handling, relying on its agility and low center of gravity to thrill its driver.
The new 2022 BRZ retains a compact coupe form and promises to improve on its predecessor with even sharper handling—plus a useful increase in engine output.
Subaru faced a challenge with the new 2022 BRZ: How could it improve on something already so much fun to drive?
Hot rodding might help. Although the new BRZ doesn't get a turbocharger like many had hoped, it does get a larger naturally aspirated flat-four that makes more horsepower and torque. A six-speed manual is standard and a six-speed automatic is available, both driving the rear wheels through a limited-slip differential.
Even with the added muscle, the new BRZ continues to be all about handling. Subaru made the chassis stiffer and more rigid than before, and lowered the center of gravity. Tires remain the same skinny size as on the first-gen car. In our First Drive, we said the car "had us grinning like idiots; we came away from the 2022 BRZ wearing a more sober countenance that reflected our respect for its high-speed stability." That said, we wished for a little more power.
Inside, the BRZ remains purposeful but gains some enhancements. A reconfigurable gauge cluster display shows different readouts and a digital tachometer that changes depending on the drive mode. Subaru's EyeSight suite of driver-assist and active-safety tech is included with the automatic transmission, which could help make the BRZ more livable.
The 2022 Subaru BRZ is a fun driver's car that makes every corner a special occasion—perfect for those who don't want the slightly more affordable Ford Mustang's heavier feel.
Those who were holding out hope that the BRZ would finally go turbo will be disappointed—the 2022 BRZ remains naturally-aspirated. Don't be too sad, though. The BRZ's new engine is a 2.4-liter flat-four, producing 228 hp at its 7,000-rpm redline, along with 184 lb-ft of torque at 3,700 rpm. Those are increases of 23 hp and 28 lb-ft respectively over the outgoing model. Power is sent exclusively to the rear wheels, with a limited-slip differential aiding traction. Expect a 0-60 mph time of around 6.0 seconds.
Will the BRZ ever get a turbo? For the second-gen model at least not at first, but anything could happen over its model run. The Ascent SUV's turbocharged 2.4-liter flat-four seems like a good candidate.
The BRZ has never been about raw power or acceleration, instead providing thrills through its nimble handling. To that end, the new BRZ rolls on a square tire setup, meaning the rubber is the same size on every wheel. Wheel and tire sizes are the same as on the first-gen model. On the Premium trim 17-inch wheels are fitted, shod in 215/45 R17 87W tires. The Limited trim gets 18-inch rollers, wrapped in 215/40 R18 85Y rubber. With either wheel size, the 2022 BRZ should continue to impress with its grip and agility.
The Subaru BRZ is quite small, but Subaru tries to make it practical. It actually has four seats, set up in a 2+2 configuration. Those rear seats are extremely small, primarily meant for children or squeezing adults in for a short drive.
If the rear seats aren't in use, they can be folded flat. That creates a pass-through to the trunk, which allows larger items to be stored inside. Subaru says that when the rear seats are folded the BRZ has space to fit a bicycle, golf clubs, or a set of track tires.
The standard 8.0-inch infotainment touchscreen includes Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, SiriusXM satellite radio, and Bluetooth streaming. The new BRZ features a 7.0-inch digital gauge cluster display, which can be reconfigured to show different data. At the center is a tachometer, which switches from a conventional round readout to a linear graph when track mode is switched on. The display can also show performance data like engine coolant temperature or a g-meter.
BRZ models equipped with an automatic transmission come with Subaru's EyeSight suite of driver-assist and active safety features. Expect adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, and automatic emergency braking to be part of the BRZ's EyeSight setup.
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