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STYLING | 8 out of 10
Only the front fascia, badges, and maybe wheels separate the BRZ from its Toyota—and Scion—sibling.
Car and Driver
Not only is the graceful coupe a surprise from bland Toyota, it also is a knockout on the street, yanking heads around in double-takes the whole test period.
The 2013 Subaru BRZ is an all-new sports-car, and it combines some classic 2+2 sports-car proportions with modern styling details. On the inside, it's the same; the instrument panel follows a simplified cockpit, with rather basic materials, but special details and textures keep it interesting.
With its relatively long hood; long, arched roofline; and sculpted flanks, with fender lines that flow around to the rear trunklid and spoiler, the BRZ has classic sports-car proportions from the side, and showy five-spoke wheels complete the look.
From the front you'll probably find its hood exceptionally low—punctuating its very low engine mounting and low center of mass—with the low grille only below the bumper and headlights that spread wide into the fenders. Those headlights are about the only styling element that the BRZ has in common with Subaru's other cars. In back the look is more complex, with some of the headlight design echoed in the taillights but with carved-out sheetmetal in the middle, along with a blacked out rear valance, with twin pipes plus lights in the middle. The only things that are a little harder to warm up to are the side fender vents just ahead of the doors; even from ten feet away, they look like a Pep Boys add-on, and badging (like what the nearly identical Scion FR-S gets) could have avoided that eyesore.
Inside, we like the basic, down-to-business cockpit look, and how a few of the controls follow industrial inspiration—with the nut-and-bolt design of the climate-control knobs, for instance, or the textured material that looks like corrugated metal surrounding them. Some of the materials used could have been more exciting, though; in front of the passenger seat is a large, continuous slab of light-silvery-colored plastic (more of the soft grained material would have been better), which doesn't quite match the more metallic trim alongside the center stack.
The 2013 Subaru BRZ has classic head-turning sports-car proportions on the outside, along with some inspiring details inside.