On the surface, there's very little that the Ford Fiesta ST and Toyota GT86 (or the Scion FR-S that is sold in the US, or the largely similar Subaru BRZ) share in common. One is a hatchback with power coming from a turbocharged engine routed to the front wheels. The other is a coupe with power coming from a naturally aspirated four-cylinder boxer engine routed to the rear wheels.

Thing is, both of them are reasonably priced performance cars aimed at a similar segment of the automotive marketplace, so a comparison isn't out of the question. It is with all of this in mind that we direct you to the video below, in which the blokes from Evo pit the two manic little machines against one another on a race track. The result? Well, it can be summed up this way: Fast versus fun.

See how the track battle goes down in the video below.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 204 Comments
      Master Austin
      • 2 Years Ago
      What I did come away with is being impressed that for a normal car like the Fiesta was given the ST treatment and turn it into a pretty capable and amazing sporty car. I'm not a fan of FWD but I do give credit where it's due. As for the 86, like the fact it's RWD and more fun to drive, but it was BUILT to do just that, so I'm not as impressed by it as I am with the Fiesta.
      Ross
      • 2 Years Ago
      Was this the same magazine that when they did their first review of the gt86 said all sorts of things like how unbalanced the car was, it was scary to drive, the transmission and steering sucked, etc? Pretty sure it was. I'm also pretty sure they claimed the car was so unbalanced that it wouldn't stop under steering.
      Pat
      • 2 Years Ago
      I find it cheap and superficial to hear some of the comments about rear wheel drive and "real" drivers ... These are the same folks who judge a person by the label on their clothes. The important is not what you drive, how fast it is, which wheels are driven ... it's how you feel when you drive it! I'm sure a fair amount of these chaps can't even come close to affording either one of these cars and that many have never even driven a RWD car. Their experience is limited to GT5 or Forza4! The best car that I've ever owned was a 1998 Toyota Tercel! At the time ... that's what I could afford. And, unlike today, 15 years ago, I was willing and able to push it to the limit! I had loads of fun driving it even though the only thing that I could really beat was an Aries K Car! In the 15 years that have followed I've had FWD, RWD, and AWD, all of which were faster than my Tercel and some of which were faster than the Fiesta or Scion ... and I can say that what really matters is how it makes me feel! And that's up to me ... not up to a spec sheet!
        al4gg10
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Pat
        Yes big fun in small cars can be had. I will NEVER forget my 1997 Acura Integra GSR by far the best, most fun car I've driven. So I do see your point Pat. I have driven cars with much more horsepower than that Integra but the Acura had handling that is hard to match, plus the 5 speed manual / clutch was so much fun ! Redline at 8000 rpms some people just don't understand its not just stepping on the gas pedal ! Overall feel of the car while extracting every little bit of performance out of the car .... "Fun to drive Factor" is what that is called. Both the Ford Fiesta & the FRS / BRZ have got that going for them looking at that video clip !
      Hazdaz
      • 2 Years Ago
      Its a shame that at least one of the twins didn't get turned into a hatchback. Would have really helped differentiate them and increase practicality by quite a bit.
      domingorobusto
      • 2 Years Ago
      So the car with a better power to weight ratio, better tires, and very capable handling was faster than a car with better handling but a worse power to weight ratio and tires. Surprise...? But an enjoyable comparo none the less. I really like both of these cars, but they're obviously targeted for different purposes. The Fiesta is significantly cheaper, more practical, and faster (stock for stock), simply because it is a highly modified people pusher. The 86 is by design far and away the more inherently capable vehicle and it's ultimate limits are a ton higher after light mods, but it's more expensive and less practical because of that inherent (read: expensive) capability. So things played out as everyone expected. Choose which suits your specific needs and sensibilities and have fun, because either is an awesome little rocket.
      Termin8
      • 2 Years Ago
      Seems to me that better tires would pretty much make the Toyota perfect. Everybody whines about more power regardless of whether it's really needed or not. It's kind of a reaction that almost every bench-racer just can't help.
      NamorF-Pro
      • 2 Years Ago
      The GT86 is meant for fun ONLY. It's not a geek's car but an enthusiast's one! It's not about the numbers. Numbers aren't fun unless you're some kind of a nerd. The Fiesta is a great little car but I would never take it over the Toyota, ever.
      regytra
      • 2 Years Ago
      Interesting, here is a video comparison: Ford Focus ST vs Subaru BRZ. Ford Focus 1:29.27 Subaru BRZ 1:30.32 http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=3oapP8qzehI#t=497s
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        m_2012
        • 2 Years Ago
        You got voted down by every FWD kid in here. I gave ya a big RWD thumbs up. FWD is for new drivers, once you master a RWD car you will never go back.
          Dean Hammond
          • 2 Years Ago
          @m_2012
          Ive had numerous of both, yes they drive differently, but BOTH can be an absolute blast....so, should we throw SEGWAYS and Motorcycles into the mix?....
        • 2 Years Ago
        [blocked]
      tailofdragon
      • 2 Years Ago
      Anyone that picks the Fiesta over the Toyota based on this idiotic comparison needs to have their head examined.
        rem
        • 2 Years Ago
        @tailofdragon
        Can I pick the Fiesta over the Toyota because it has a bigger, more accessible back seat, more cargo room, much better fuel economy (compared to the manual Toyotbaru), costs less, is usable in winter climates and is still a ton of fun to drive?
          A_Guy
          • 2 Years Ago
          @rem
          @zoomzoomzoom: Mini-vans don't "get much better fuel economy" or cost less.
          rem
          • 2 Years Ago
          @rem
          Eh, if I want a fun RWD car, I'm not all that interested in fuel economy, reliability or depreciation. I'd probably get an S2000, RX8, E36 M3, Boxster S, etc... If I want something as practical and compromised as a BRZ, I think adding slightly more compromise and getting a much more practical Fiesta ST makes a lot more sense. It's much more justifiable as a DD, and the weekend cars will always be less compromised than the Toyobaru anyway.
      Frisky_Dingo
      • 2 Years Ago
      FWD hot hatch vs RWD sports car?? I got no problem with it. It was an entertaining watch, and while I can't speak for the Fiesta, the Focus ST is wildly fun to drive. As is the FR-S. They go about it in separate ways, but the end result is the same- a huge smile you can't wipe off your face. People need to stop hating and be open-minded. Not every car is built with *you* in mind. All the cars that contend in this general segment are solid, and you can't really go wrong with any of them.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        m_2012
        • 2 Years Ago
        See the name, vote down, move on. As usual, nothing coherent or even close to a meaningful thought. Professional reviewers love both cars. You are obviously stuck in the crowd that cant get past "its only got 200HP". As soon as you say that, your comments are meaningless.
        Scooter
        • 2 Years Ago
        I have to agree that the BRZ/FRS is mostly hype for a chunky price tag of nearly $30,000 and more after financing. You could get a Honda Accord V6 coupe that will leave most cars in the dust (5 second-ish car) and give you tons more features for the money.
          m_2012
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Scooter
          Until fun needs to come into play. What is so fun about being able to go into a corner faster, especially if the car cant handle it. Mash the pedal for 7 seconds in an Accord, and now the car is useless for anything but straight line - it cant turn at that speed, the brakes would turn to dust soon, etc. Some people just miss the point of a drivers car and need to continue to buy minivans.
          72CJ5driver
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Scooter
          ^ totally misses the point.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Scooter
          [blocked]
          kcroc10077
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Scooter
          Then that's what you should buy. If this doesn't float your boat there's no reason to cast aspersions. Choice is good and I'm sure you'll find something suitable.
        Bryant Keith
        • 2 Years Ago
        So they made a bad car by putting fun tires on it? I'm sorry but if track precision is all your looking for I'm pretty sure you can just change the tires. I've drove both these cars and I can guarantee without the shadow of a doubt that the Subaru BRZ is so much more fun to drive.
        • 2 Years Ago
        [blocked]
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