The Right Spec: 2022 Subaru BRZ

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy

Yes, I know – we covered the Toyota GR 86, this car’s fraternal twin, just two weeks ago. But with both companies making a play for enthusiast dollars, it’s smart to see if the same conclusions we drew for the Big T also apply to the Exploding Galaxy.

Subaru sets the table at $27,995 with the base trim BRZ, ironically called the Premium. A so-called Limited trim, which is surely limited to exactly the number they can sell, has a sticker price $495 north of 30 grand. The powertrain is the same across both cars, featuring the 2.4L horizontally-opposed four-banger making 228 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. A chief difference in this engine versus the old one is all of that torque is online at just 3,700 rpm, which vastly changes the character of this car around town. All the horses don’t wake for duty until 7,000 rpm, it must be said. This can all be hooked to either a manual or automatic transmission. Our preferred choice of gearbox needs no explanation.

Exterior feature similarities mean it’s not immediately apparent to the casual observer which trim of BRZ you’re rocking, but one can be guaranteed the enthusiasts to which these machines appeal will spot the differences immediately. Limited earns 18-inch wheels and tires, an inch larger than the Premium. Upfront there are LED peepers but the lamps on a Limited are of the steering-responsive type, perfect for peering around the next corner of your favorite stretch of road. Both get a trunk spoiler and color-keyed heated side mirrors. Speaking of, the same color palette is offered on both machines, a sensible decision by Subaru instead of forcing customers to upgrade in order to spec an interesting shade or have the thing wrapped after taking delivery. WR Blue is shown here because I’m a child.

It’s inside with a few creature comforts in which these two trims can be differentiated. Cloth upholstery is swapped for ultrasuede/leather-trimmed chairs as you move up the price ladder, and some extra safety nannies such as blind-spot detection with lane change assist are present as well. Both rides get dual-zone climate control, an 8-inch infotainment screen (one speaker for each inch, apparently, since there are 8 speakers), and the same multi-function gauge display. We should note that opting for the automatic brings the Subaru EyeSight suite of active safety gear – but we’re still sticking with the manual.

Packing more horsepower, and a great amount of accessible torque, the 2022 BRZ is a solid upgrade over the old model. Will there be special editions in which the suspension and other handling bits have been fettled? Almost certainly. But you can trade your BRZ Premium in when the time comes, right?

Please note the prices listed here are in American shekels and are currently accurate for base prices exclusive of any fees, taxes, or rebates. Your dealer may (and should) sell for less, obscene market conditions notwithstanding. Keep your foot down, bone up on available rebates, and bargain hard.

[Images: Subaru]

Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

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3 of 13 comments
  • Norhtwaydriving Norhtwaydriving on Sep 17, 2021

    Great to see that no said it needs a turbo

  • ToolGuy ToolGuy on Sep 18, 2021

    Not a real Subaru: - No Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive - Not Subaru Safe - Not pet friendly - An affront to the Subaru Love Promise All for four sales per dealer per year? (You know it's true, Tom Doll.)

    • PrincipalDan PrincipalDan on Sep 18, 2021

      Real Subaru or not I'd argue that BRZ customers are more sports car enthusiasts than GR 86 customers. Toyota reported a 20% take rate for manual transmissions in the 86 while Subaru's rate for the BRZ was more than double that. Heck there's probably a higher percentage of manual transmission BRZ than WRX. And the dang WRX has a CVT

  • Kars This article was about Ford not Tesla - you are clearly confused.
  • Ollicat Those are individual charging stations vs entire gas stations that have 8 - 16 pumps. And gas stations take 3 minutes to fill vs 30 min to hours for a charging station. And gas pumps are much more likely to be working vs charging statins. Nice try with more propaganda though.
  • Richard Poore Sure, as the article itself notes (hence my ire) California has mandated that all new vehicles sold in state be EV by 2035. They require EV or hybrid by 2026. Since the author admits to this mandate it seems that the article title is clickbait... was really hoping that there was some sort of changes in the CA position since the state is sorely behind on where they need to be with charging stations for this sort of requirement.
  • VoGhost When will Audi eliminate the fake, oversized grills that impede aerodynamics?