Toyota is making its first official name change in the old Scion lineup. You’ll remember, the automaker recently announced it was axing the whole brand aimed at the younger market because it had done its job (though Scion’s sales have definitely been slipping.)
The former Scion FR-S will now make its debut as the 2017 Toyota 86 at the New York International Auto Show this month. It’s the global badge it wears in other markets like Australia and in Toyota’s home market Japan.
Along with the name change it’s getting a bump in power and suspension upgrades. The car’s 2.0-liter now delivers 205 horses (up from 200hp) and 156 pound-feet of torque (up from 151). Hill Start Assist Control helps prevent the car from rolling back on steep hills.
In terms of looks, Toyota’s made it more aggressive under its brand. It has a larger center intake that shows off the car’s low, wide stance. The front also has re-configured LED front headlamps and turn signals and a freshened bumper. In the back, new LED tail lights and bumper, as well. The alloy wheels sport a twisted spoke design complete with 86 logos.
Inside, more 86 logos. Toyota also used what it calls a “Grandlux” material on the instrument panel surround. There is new seat material and a sporty steering wheel integrates audio controls.
Toyota says at the beginning, when it announced it would transition the Scion models to the Toyota brand it hadn’t planned on changing names, but the fact it did is kind of a no brainer. Toyota says 86 is a global name people like. It refers to the old “hachi-roku” rear-wheel drive AE86 Toyota Corolla from the 1980s.
“When we announced the transition of the Scion models to Toyota we hadn’t planned on changing the names of our cars, but by popular demand, for our sports car, we decided to adopt the global name of 86,” said Toyota Division Group Vice President, Bill Fay. “Enthusiasts have a strong association with the front-engine, rear-drive heritage of the ‘hachi-roku’ and the dynamic performance it offers.”
In addition to the Toyota 86 name change, two other Scion vehicles will have new badges for 2017. The Toyota Corolla iM and Toyota Yaris iA will join Toyota’s small car line-up.
The Toyota 86 goes on sale this fall.