2014 Subaru BRZ: A nimble, rear-wheel-drive sports coupe

Sep 06, 2013, 15:03 ET from Subaru Canada Inc.

  • Subaru BRZ focuses on low centre of gravity, light weight and precision handling
  • High-performance 200-horsepower SUBARU BOXER engine
  • Choice of 6-speed manual or automatic transmission
  • Standard navigation and HID headlights

MISSISSAUGA, ON, Sept. 6, 2013 /CNW/ - Subaru Canada, Inc. (SCI) today announced the release of the 2014 Subaru BRZ. The Subaru BRZ delivers superior steering response, pinpoint handling precision and an unmatched level of driving pleasure for sports car enthusiasts of all skill levels. Subaru developed the rear-wheel-drive BRZ with the fundamentals of sports car design in mind: light vehicle weight, an ultra-low centre of gravity and precision steering. Utilizing Subaru's new naturally aspirated 200-horsepower horizontally opposed SUBARU BOXER engine design, the BRZ is a true sports car that does not sacrifice everyday comfort and practicality, including up to manufacturer-estimated 5.9 L/100 KM highway fuel economy (with 6-speed automatic transmission). With 2+2 seating and a flat-folding rear seat, there is an unexpected level of utility too. Combined with Subaru renowned safety and quality, the BRZ is a sports car with practicality as well as performance.

Key to Sports Car Handling: Light Weight and Ultra-low Centre of Gravity
The recent sports car trend has been to focus on ultimate power, luxury and performance. As a result, many sports cars have grown heavier and more expensive. Instead, Subaru adopted a purist approach in developing a true sports car.

Using a large proportion of high-tensile steel, with aluminum for the hood, the 2014 Subaru BRZ weighs 1, 255 kilograms. Critical to its agile handling, the Subaru BRZ has one of the lowest centres of gravity of any production car in the world at just 460 millimetres. The SUBARU BOXER engine design, with its inherently low height and its mass concentrated low in the package, contributes to a low centre of gravity in all Subaru models. For the BRZ, Subaru took maximum advantage of this characteristic.

A rear-wheel-drive configuration allows placement of the engine lower and farther back in the BRZ than in any other Subaru model in order to attain the best possible centre of gravity and polar moment of inertia. Moving the engine closer to the centre of the chassis also helped make the Subaru BRZ itself quite compact, at just 4,235 millimetres long on a 2,570-millimetre wheelbase.

To achieve its ultra-low centre of gravity, the engine as a whole has been made more compact by such means as adopting a shorter intake manifold, shorter exhaust manifold and a shallower oil pan. In addition, under-hood components were located to optimize the car's balance, including tilting forward the radiator 17 degrees and moving the battery to the back of the engine compartment.

Fundamental to its true sports car character, the BRZ's 2.0-litre engine combines low weight with high strength, high compression and high-revving responsiveness. The engine delivers 200 horsepower at 7,000 rpm and 151 lb.-ft. of peak torque at 6,400 rpm, with a high specific output of 100 hp/litre. The Subaru Dual Active Valve Control System (DAVCS) is instrumental in helping the engine produce a broad torque curve to help make the BRZ feel responsive in daily driving. In contrast, some previous high-revving sports cars have been lacking in low-end and mid-range torque.

The BRZ's SUBARU BOXER engine fuel injection system uniquely combines direct injection and port injection technology. A direct-type fuel-injection system, which sprays fuel directly into the combustion chambers rather than upstream into the ports, provides a cooling effect in the cylinders. This enables use of a very high 12.5:1 compression ratio to extract maximum energy from the fuel. In light- and medium-load conditions, the port fuel injectors help produce precise combustion, increasing performance and efficiency.

A sports car for the times, the 2014 Subaru BRZ also delivers impressive fuel economy with manufacturer-estimated ratings of 9.6 L/100 KM city / 6.6 L/100 KM highway / 8.3 L/100 KM combined with the 6-speed manual transmission, and 8.3 L/100 KM city / 5.9 L/100 KM highway / 7.2 L/100 KM combined with the 6-speed automatic transmission.

Choice of Six-speed Transmission
Driving enthusiasts can choose between a six-speed manual and an optional six-speed automatic transmission in the 2014 Subaru BRZ. Both transmissions have been engineered and tuned to maximize performance and sporty driving feel. The six-speed manual features a short-throw shift lever. The optional six-speed automatic transmission offers no-compromise performance in the Subaru BRZ. The driver can select Sport mode from a switch on the centre console for sportier shifting response. For driver-controlled shifting, the driver can select "M" mode to shift manually using the shifter handle or steering-wheel paddle shifters. Downshift blipping control enhances the more direct sports car experience.

All-new Subaru Platform
The Subaru BRZ is built on its own platform and shares just a few parts with other Subaru models, including rear suspension architecture from the Subaru WRX STI. Effective use of high-tensile steel in the car's upper structure contributes to its low centre of gravity, while the front hood employs aluminum for lightness. Chassis tuning takes maximum advantage of the BRZ's ultra-low centre of gravity and high-strength body structure, offering excellent manoeuvrability and stability as well as sharp steering response to enhance the driver's connection to the car.

The front suspension uses struts and coil springs, and the front struts were mounted low and optimized for a low hood line while retaining a long stroke for ideal handling and comfortable ride quality. A standard front strut brace enhances rigidity.

The double-wishbone rear suspension system provides outstanding bump absorption to enhance tire grip over varied surfaces. Electric power steering, which reduces weight and load on the engine as compared to hydraulic power steering, has been tuned for excellent feedback. The quick 13:1 steering ratio and 366-millimetre diameter 3-spoke steering wheel endow the Subaru BRZ with very quick steering response.

The BRZ, like all current Subaru models, employs the brand's proven ring-shaped reinforcement frame body structure as a foundation for occupant safety. Giving the BRZ a stiff body structure and ultra-low centre of gravity allowed Subaru to tune the suspension for both agility and compliant ride quality.

A standard Torsen limited-slip differential helps the inside wheel maintain traction during hard cornering. The standard Vehicle Stability Control and traction control system (TCS) offers the driver five different settings, including a Sport mode and a TCS Off switch.

An Unexpected Level of Utility
The Subaru BRZ offers a flat-folding rear seatback to expand the space offered in the trunk. With the seats up, the trunk offers 196 litres of space but with the seatback folded down, the cargo area can hold two standard golf bags, giving the Subaru BRZ an unexpected amount of utility for a vehicle in its class. With the seatback in its upright position, the rear seats can accommodate front-facing child seats for versatility that fits its driver's lifestyle.

Two Levels of Equipment, Plenty of Options
The Subaru tradition of outstanding value is evident in the entry BRZ model's long list of standard amenities. Key among these is a comprehensive assortment of user-friendly technologies anchored by an in-dash GPS navigation system that includes a 6.1-inch LCD touchscreen, AM/FM stereo, single-disc in-dash CD player, MP3/WMA capability, USB port, 3.5 mm auxiliary audio input jack, Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity and audio streaming. New for the 2014 model year, the BRZ's navigation system is now voice-activated and also includes XM Satellite Radio (free 3-month trial subscription included) and XM NavTraffic (subscription required).

The Subaru BRZ Sport-tech Package offers additional comfort and amenities while still keeping vehicle weight low. Externally, the BRZ Sport-tech Package is distinguished in front with fog lights and in the rear by a body-colour trunk spoiler. Inside, the seats are upholstered with Alcantara inserts and leather bolsters.

The BRZ Sport-tech Package substitutes a dual-zone automatic climate control for the entry level BRZ's manual HVAC system. In the BRZ Sport-tech Package, heated front seats as well as keyless access and start with illuminated engine start/stop button add to the convenience and sporty attitude of the car. Also, the dual visor vanity mirrors are illuminated, while front door courtesy lights illuminate when the doors are opened.

Comprehensive Subaru Safety
Like all Subaru models, the BRZ has achieved the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's (IIHS) TOP SAFEFY PICK for 2013. In fact, all Subaru models have been recognized as IIHS TOP SAFETY PICKS for four consecutive years.

Subaru's ring-shaped reinforcement frame safety structure, proven over a decade in all Subaru models, forms the foundation for crash protection and occupant safety in the 2014 Subaru BRZ.

High-strength front seat frames provide enhanced protection against whiplash injury in a rear-end collision. The LATCH system (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) enables specially equipped child seats to be secured in the rear seat.

The Subaru Advanced Frontal Airbag System employs dual-stage-deployment driver and front passenger air bags. Deployment strength depends on how close the driver is to the steering wheel as well as the size of adult sitting in the passenger seat. Front seat side pelvis/torso air bags and side curtain air bags offer additional head protection for front and rear occupants.

The five-mode driver-selectable Vehicle Stability Control system and traction control system allow the driver to tailor the system to respond to outdoor conditions as well as their performance needs.

The standard 4-channel / 4-sensor Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) incorporates Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist and Brake Override. The EBD system enhances braking performance and stability by actively optimizing braking force between the front and rear wheels according to how the vehicle is loaded with passengers and cargo.

Brake Assist detects how quickly the driver has pressed the pedal in emergency or panic braking. If pedal velocity exceeds a certain threshold, Brake Assist immediately applies pressure up to the ABS limit to help increase braking effectiveness. The Brake Override system ensures that the engine power will be cut when the brake pedal and accelerator are pressed simultaneously.

About Subaru Canada, Inc.
Subaru Canada, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan. Headquartered in Mississauga, Ontario, the company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of over 85 authorized dealers across Canada. For additional information, please visit www.pr.subaru.ca or www.subaru.ca.

SOURCE Subaru Canada Inc.

Image with caption: "2014 Subaru BRZ (CNW Group/Subaru Canada Inc.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130906_C5048_PHOTO_EN_30485.jpg

Image with caption: "2014 Subaru BRZ (CNW Group/Subaru Canada Inc.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130906_C5048_PHOTO_EN_30487.jpg

Image with caption: "2014 Subaru BRZ (CNW Group/Subaru Canada Inc.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130906_C5048_PHOTO_EN_30489.jpg