Video Review: What Does The Former Stig Think Of The New 2022 Toyota GR 86?

Is the new GR 86 the best one yet?

2022 Toyota GR 86
The second-generation Toyota GR 86 brings new styling, a new engine and new tech — but is it still an honest-to-the-roots sports car? (Images: Toyota)

Just how good is the 2022 Toyota GR 86?

While Kase took a closer look around the 2022 Toyota GR 86, today is our chance to see exactly what this new generation’s like to drive. In this video, pro racing driver and former Top Gear USA Stig Paul Gerrard gives the car a shakedown at the Monticello Raceway in New York to see if Toyota still hits the spot as an affordable sports coupe.

2022 Toyota GR 86

The biggest change to the new GR 86 from the 86 that came before is under the hood. Instead of a 2.0-liter boxer engine, this time around Subaru provides a bored out (but still naturally-aspirated) 2.4-liter mill. That provides a modest power bump to 228 horsepower, as well as 184 lb-ft of torque. That’s not a huge boost from the old engine’s 205 horsepower and 156 lb-ft of torque, but those numbers don’t tell the whole story. The torque is also more usable here, meaning you don’t have to rev the engine to within an inch of its life (6,400 RPM) to feel any oomph. Instead, the larger unit makes peak torque at 3,700 RPM.

Getting that power down to the ground is the same as before. The 2022 Toyota GR 86 remains rear-wheel drive, with the option of either a 6-speed manual transmission or a paddle-motivated 6-speed automatic. Both have gotten some updates to handle the extra torque, like additional clutch plates and an updated torque converter. Should you choose the automatic, you’ll also be able to get an array of safety tech via Subaru’s EyeSight system, like adaptive cruise control and lane departure warning.

Find deals on new and used vehicles through (in collaboration with Detroit Trading™) here!

Interior updates

Inside, Toyota finally, finally brought in an 8.0-inch infotainment system that doesn’t resemble a terrible aftermarket head unit. You also get updated switchgear for the climate controls and major driving functions, as well as a digital instrument cluster. It’s not a radical change from what you got in the old car, but the new GR 86’s updates are tasteful and well thought out.

All in all, the chassis set up, engine and transmission changes are incremental, rather than revolutionary. Everything here is a substantial update, however, and it’s a great package when you consider the price. Exact trim walk across the Base and Premium trim levels with all the options and accessories isn’t available just yet. Toyota says the car will start under $30,000 though, and that’s more or less where the old car left off.

It’s still affordable, it’s still taut and it’s still a fun sports car — now the 2022 Toyota GR 86 just gets some extra refinement to make all the enthusiasts out there happy. And if this car still doesn’t have enough power, at least there’s now the Supra.