The Top Gear magazine Car of the Year
My lords, ladies and gentlemen, please be upstanding and raise your glasses to the Toyota GT86
Posted: 17 Jan 2013
I'll be honest. I struggle to put a name to most of the cars I see on the road today. Gone are the days when you could spot a MkI Cortina even though you had only caught a glimpse of its rear tail-lights. Now, many cars are just tools, as individual as washing machines. They come. They get reviewed in What Car? They go.
Of course, there are still a great many expensive cars to keep the world's car designers and enthusiasts happy. But ordinary cars, cars that cost less than £150 million? Cars that people other than Sir Elton John can buy? No. Mostly, they are front-wheel-drive two-litre diesels with cruise control to help out after you nod off.
That's why I like the GT86 so much. Because it's come barrelling into the bottom end of the marketplace with a big, dirty smile on its face and a suggestion in the way it stands that it would like to have fun with your middle parts. It's a car designed for one thing only: fun.
First and foremost, it has rear-wheel drive. This is very important. Of course, you can propel a car by the front wheels in the same way that you can make a sauce using cornflour. But if you want to do it properly, you need a roux. And that means turning the engine around and fitting a propshaft.