2013 Scion FR-S marks Toyota's return to performance in U.S.

2013 Scion FR-S
2013 Scion FR-S
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With the introduction tonight of the 2013 Scion FR-S, the triumvirate of oh-so-similar sport coupes born of the joint venture between Toyota and Subaru is complete. The FR-S is what we Americans will get from the Scion brand, as opposed to the Toyota GT 86 that Europeans get and the Subaru-branded BRZ.

Believe it or not, but the FR-S will make Scion a five-car brand when it joins the xD, xB, tC and iQ next year. It is by far the most performance-oriented, thanks to its rear-wheel-drive architecture, relatively light weight and low center of gravity, the latter thanks to its Subaru-derived four-cylinder 2.0-liter boxer engine with Toyota's D4-S direct injection system. As with the GT 86 and BRZ, the FR-S will also produce 200 horsepower at 7,000 rpm and 151 lb-ft at 6,600 rpm. Transmission choices are also the same with a six-speed manual or automatic with paddle shifters.

With its introduction, the FR-S also marks the return of some excitement to Toyota's lineup of products in the U.S., even if it is branded as a Scion. The Japanese automaker hasn't offered a true performance machine in the U.S. since the MR2 Spyder ended production in 2007. The more hardcore Supra disappeared from American soil almost a decade earlier in 1998. (UPDATE: The Lexus LFA also deserves mention, though its exclusivity and price put it out of reach for most mere mortals.)

We're busy grabbing the first live shots of the FR-S at its unveiling in LA, so go ahead and hop past the jump to read the official word from Toyota, which is the same as it was for the GT 86 and BRZ, while we keep shooting.
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2013 Scion FR-S Brings the SPORT Back to the CAR

- Low center of gravity and lightweight design achieves a "Pure Balance"
- Compact rear-wheel drive sports car makes world debut
- World's first boxer engine to utilize Toyota's D4-S direct and port injection system

Los Angeles – November 30, 2011 – Scion tonight unveiled its 2013 FR-S compact rear-wheel drive sports car to a crowd of eager car enthusiasts. The high-performance coupe is the fifth model to join the Scion family and will go on sale in the spring of 2012.

The FR-S, which stands for Front-engine, Rear-wheel drive, Sport; is Scion's definition of an authentic rear-wheel-drive sports car with exceptionally balanced performance and handling, compelling style, flexible utility and surprising MPG.

"Serving as a laboratory for Toyota, Scion is always experimenting with new things," said Jack Hollis, Scion vice president. "The brand is iconic with the xB, adrenalized by the tC, and groundbreaking with the iQ. The FR-S will no doubt serve as the halo car, expanding Scion into a new dimension of driving performance."

The FR-S is a true "scion," born into a lengthy history of Toyota performance cars and motorsports. The sports car is most inspired by the AE86 generation of the Corolla, better known as the Hachi-Roku, meaning "8-6" in Japanese. The front-engine, rear-wheel-drive coupe was lightweight and well balanced, making it a solid choice for driving enthusiasts.

Inspired by the AE86, the FR-S is designed around the core goal of achieving, "Pure Balance." The balance begins with the strategic use of the world's only flat boxer engine in a front-engine, rear-wheel drive configuration. The engine's compact size and flat shape allow it to be mounted mid-ship and extremely low, giving the car a dynamically favorable front-to-rear weight ratio of 53:47 and a low center of gravity comparable to some exotic supercars.

The FR-S's 2.0-liter, naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine is the result of a joint development between Toyota and Subaru. The partnership begins by combining Subaru's newly developed horizontally opposed engine and Toyota's cutting edge D-4S injection system that incorporates both direct and port injection. The D-4S system, partnered with a high 12.5:1 compression ratio, results in an impressive 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque.

"We all know that it's not hard to make horsepower and torque, but it is hard to do all that and still achieve impressive fuel economy," Hollis said. "The FR-S accomplishes all three."

The flat-four mates with either a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission. The manual offers quick, precise shifts with a short-throw; while the automatic transmission features aggressive up shifts and sporty rev-matched down shifts that are initiated by steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Power is transferred to the pavement via a limited-slip differential.

The idea of "Pure Balance" is further realized by the FR-S's lightweight design and compact size. The combination allows the car to be quick and nimble into and out of corners, with dynamic maneuverability and confident handling. The coupe's weight is kept to a minimum by utilizing an aluminum hood, a solid roof, and by featuring a trunk design instead of a hatchback.

The FR-S's low weight is matched with a dynamically tuned suspension setup consisting of MacPherson struts up front and a double wishbone system in the rear. Lightweight 17-inch alloy wheels and ventilated disc brakes are on all four corners.

The fierce exterior of the FR-S is a solid reflection of its inner power. The profile, inspired by the Toyota 2000GT, reveals a hood and roof-line that is remarkably sleek and low, giving it an aerodynamic shape that channels air cleanly over to the top. The low stance continues to exaggerate the coupe's menacing face, which is made up of sharp lines, a wide mouth and angular headlights. The aggressive front fenders protrude upward and boast the iconic '86' piston emblem, which highlights the car's AE86 heritage as well as its unique new boxer engine. The rear fascia sits low and wide, with aerodynamic lower treatments that surround the sporty dual exhaust system. LEDs illuminate the edgy taillights, while center-mounted backup lights finish the muscular design.

The FR-S's interior features a 2+2 seating configuration that is designed with both form and function in mind. The front seats are mounted extremely low and are comfortable yet assertive, while the rear seat folds down flat, creating flexible space. The large center-mounted tachometer is the focus of the three-gauge cluster, keeping the driver informed of the engine's vitals. Speed is monitored by both digital and analog gauges.

Scion FR-S Preliminary Specifications
Length: 166.7 in.
Width: 69.9 in.
Height: 51.2 in. (not including antenna base)
Wheelbase: 101.2 in.
- Front: 59.8 in.
- Rear: 60.6 in.
Seating capacity: 4
Total displacement: 1,998 cc
Type: Horizontally opposed four-cylinder, D-4S injection, DOHC
Bore × stroke: 86 × 86 mm.
Maximum output: 200hp @ 7,000 rpm
Maximum torque: 151 lb.-ft. @ 6,600 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed manual or 6-speed automatic with paddle shifters
Driveline: Rear-wheel drive
- Front: MacPherson struts
- Rear: Double wishbone
- Front: Ventilated Disc
- Rear: Ventilated Disc
- Front: 215/45R17
- Rear: 215/45R17
Fuel tank: 13.2 gallons
Fuel: Premium Unleaded

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