Toyota Developing GT-86 Roadster


GT-86 convertible is in the works, but not a Scion FR-S, so don't look for it in American showrooms.

We've got good news, and we've got bad news. The good news is that Toyota is reportedly making a convertible version of the GT-86. The bad news is that it reportedly won't be available in the United States. The GT-86, as you are probably aware, is the name which Toyota gave to the overseas version of the coupe it co-developed with Subaru. In North America it's sold as the Scion FR-S. So while the a GT-86 roadster is reportedly under development, an FR-S roadster isn't said to be in the cards.

The reason is that the Scion division is working hard to keep pricing low on the FR-S to make it affordable to its generally younger client base. The FR-S carries a $25,000 starting price in the United States, and the feeling is that the convertible option would make it more expensive than Scion could justify. That, however, only raises more questions in our minds than it does answers. If Toyota is already prepared to absorb the cost of the convertible's development based on how many it would sell in overseas markets, how much more would it really need to charge for the roadster in North America?

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Meanwhile the jury's still out on whether Subaru will participate in the conversion as well. If it does, a Subaru BRZ roadster stands an equal chance of making it to American showrooms - especially if it doesn't have to compete with a cheaper Scion version. The convertible GT-86/BRZ would be prime competition for the Mazda MX-5 Miata, a model which has an unfortunate chic-car reputation despite its standing as one of the best-handling roadsters on the market. The Toyobaru roadster, however, could emerge as the image-conscious enthusiast's choice. We just hope we get the chance to get our hands on it, too.