The best car of 2012
The Toyota GT86 is Jeremy Clarkson’s car of the year. “You thought he would immediately pick the most expensive or most powerful car, didn’t you?” says Top Gear magazine. Well, he didn’t – the Toyota is actually one of the cheapest and least powerful of the cars Top Gear considered for its awards.
But the Toyota “is a new way of looking at an old problem: how to have fun in a reasonably priced car” and a “reeducation in the joys of rear-wheel drive”. “I like the GT86 because it’s come barrelling into the bottom end of the marketplace with a big dirty smile on its face… It’s a car designed for one thing only: fun,” says Clarkson.
Pretty much all the other car magazines and motoring journalists loved it too. Autocar “adores” it, Evo thought it “ticks every box” as a dynamic sports car, Car found it “very fine indeed”, AutoExpress liked this “great driver’s car”.
True, it’s not very good looking, and is impractical and loud and the interior is dull and utilitarian, as Clarkson pointed out in The Sunday Times earlier in the year. But none of that matters: driving it will “unleash your hero gene and you will never want to drive any other sort of car ever again”.
Top speed: 143mph (est)
0-62mph: 7.0 secs (est)
Engine: 1,998cc, petrol
Power: 197bhp at 7,000rpm