3 Reasons Why You Will Never See an AWD Subaru BRZ
The question many Subaru BRZ fans ask, is why does’t Subaru turn the sports car into an all-wheel-drive vehicle? It’s a great question. Subaru’s entire lineup is all-wheel-drive except for the rear-drive BRZ. Why not have BRZ send power to all four wheels?
There’s three good reasons it won’t happen
It’s already a great sports car. The Subaru BRZ and Toyota 86 developed by both companies was designed to be an affordable rear-drive sports car. Subaru’s boxer engine sits low in the chassis giving BRZ/86 one of the lowest centers of gravity of any production car in the world at just 18.1 inches. Subaru’s Boxer engine design has an inherently low height and its mass is concentrated low in the chassis. It contributes to all Subaru’s having this important characteristic, but BRZ takes maximum advantage of this.
Short, compact design
BRZ/86’s front engine rear-drive configuration also allows placement of the engine lower and farther back in the BRZ than in any other Subaru model in the lineup. This helps BRZ to attain the best possible center of gravity and “polar moment of inertia.” The BRZ Boxer engine is moved closer to the center of the chassis and this helped make the Subaru BRZ very compact, at just 167 inches long on a 101 inch wheelbase. This is another factor that contributes to BRZ's great handling characteristics. AWD would change everything.
Subaru engineers can’t fit an all-wheel-drive unit in the sports coupe and have it all work. There’s a synergy with its shorter intake manifold, shorter exhaust manifold and shallow oil pan. Other factors would throw everything off like the already under hood components located perfectly to optimize the car's balance, including tilting forward the radiator 17 degrees and moving the battery to the back of the engine compartment.
Why you will never see an AWD Subaru BRZ
The 2017 Subaru BRZ is lightweight, has an ultra low center of gravity and it has a compact design that makes it a great drivers car. It has the driving dynamics of much more expensive sports cars. All-wheel-drive would mess up the dynamics in a big way.
In a recent interview with CarBuzz, Subaru’s Car Line Planning Manager of America, Todd Hill summed it up perfectly, He says, "No way can you make BRZ AWD. Right now it has almost supercar center of gravity height and an AWD system would ruin that. We’re happy with it.”
READ: 3 Reasons Why You Will Never See a Turbo Subaru BRZ / Toyota 86
Photo credit: Subaru