Badge engineering is the ironic label for when a company replaces the badge or branding of a product with that of another and considers it something new. Domestic automakers like Ford, General Motors and Chrysler have been vilified for their overuse of this practice. Then again, they weren't often badge engineering rear-wheel-drive sports cars (though they've done that, too).

This week, Toyota and Subaru both revealed their own versions of a RWD sports car jointly developed between the two companies: the GT 86 and BRZ. You'd be hard-pressed to tell them apart from a distance of 30 yards, but we got up close and personal with each at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show this week and discovered that there are, in fact, subtle differences.

Since we'll be getting the also-slightly different Scion FR-S in the U.S., this exercise is really aimed at our European readers who will be offered the GT 86, but everyone's free to participate.

We've got videos of each model in the metal after the jump, and after you watch, let us know which one you prefer in the poll below.






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  • 263 Comments
      Autothoughts
      • 3 Years Ago
      Funny, my gut would tell me Subaru, but viewing them I prefer the Toyota. They are both great cars and cannot wait to try them and see them in person. It is hard to tell which is better without seeing them (or driving!) in person.
      jirM
      • 3 Years Ago
      IMHO, non-enthusiasts will likely not know which one is which if you ripped the badges out. I think it just boils down to brand loyalty.
      DyanRucar
      • 3 Years Ago
      I'll take the BRZ, sans the alleged standard nav system. I'm just absolutely thrilled by the aspect of a decontented driver's car for the new age, but I'll hold off for the mid-cycle refresh :)
      Racer
      • 3 Years Ago
      I will go with cheaper one... L O L It's really hard as it was for Corolla Levin and Srinter Trueno. Both were same yet slightly different. Ok... Toyota :)
      Burabus
      • 3 Years Ago
      The more I look at the two, the more the Subaru grows on me and the less appealing the 86 is, mainly due to the strangely shaped fog lights on the 86.
      Autothoughts
      • 3 Years Ago
      The more I look the more I like the Subaru. It may also have to do with being in my thirties and not wanting to, nor ever see myself buying a Scion. Also, the interior on the Subie, specifically the steering wheel, looks much better not being two tone. I think Toyota is trying to add superfluous sizzle.
      Teko
      • 3 Years Ago
      For anyone in the market for this car --- the ONLY deciding factor is, "Which front bumper do I like the most?".
      Andrew
      • 3 Years Ago
      I prefer the BRZ's front clip, but I like the 86's more discreet fender vents and lack of rear spoiler. (Although I'm sure many tacky spoiler options will be available from Scion.) Overall, it's kind of a wash. Realistically, I'll probably want a BRZ for its more sedate interior, and because I'm a grown up and don't want to drive a Scion.
      ICantDrive88
      • 3 Years Ago
      Are we 100% sure Subaru will not offer the BRZ here? I'm not so sure, I have a feeling it's coming here...
        HustlinFlip
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ICantDrive88
        " The U.S. model will be unveiled at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show." Straight form Subaru's North american website... http://www.subaru.com/brz/2013/index.html Personally, I'd prefer the Toyota badge over the Scion Badge. But the Subie is looking better :/
      Dennis Baskov
      • 3 Years Ago
      Well if I had to pick from both of two concepts, I like the front fascia between the two of Toyota and the rest especially the interior of the Subaru. Sabaru always made the better interior. Still for the most part it's really hard to tell the difference exterior-wise, especially if you don't have both actual cars right in front of your face.
      ctsmith1066
      • 3 Years Ago
      They both look great.
      Nick Nordberg
      • 3 Years Ago
      The cheaper one!
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