2018 BRZ Photos

2018 Subaru BRZ

I had a 2018 Subaru BRZ Limited with a six-speed manual and half a day to play on wet, windy roads hemmed by pine trees in the foothills of a massive mountain range. But Michigan was on my mind. Some cars work everywhere. Michigan's the perfect place to find those that do: The roads are flat and pockmarked, and the seasonal extremes are brutal. It's easy to love a car on one of those bucket-list Alpine passes, but on Michigan roads the car has to work hard to win you over. For example, the MX-5 Miata works in Michigan just fine. It's fun in all conditions in which you can get the rear tires to hook up, and some that you can't. It cheerfully entertains in traffic, on city streets, undulating but uninteresting country roads. Some grand tourers work perfectly well there, too, soaking up enough punishment from the atrocious roadways without battering the occupants. The more voluptuous Aston Martins are particularly good at this trick, and they're plenty entertaining to cruise around in — or mash it flat after a scan of a country intersection shows nothing doing for at least 50 miles in every direction. These cars have more than just compliance — they have a subjective, elusive charm in suboptimal conditions. And the 86 twins, well, aren't Miatas. The car isn't lacking in dynamic ability, of course, but there's a flatness, a one-dimensionality to it. It's simply suffocated, starving for a little bit more. It doesn't have to be this way. Put the 86 in a better situation and its foibles recede but don't disappear. Straight, pock-marked slabs are the death of the thing. So I grabbed one out West, in Washington state where I now live, and fed it revs and curves until I was satisfied that the BRZ works as intended when you keep it happy. And when it's happy, you're happy. The BRZ was on high-performance summer tires, and some of the best roads in Washington are up in the hills currently blanketed by slush and ice, so that was a nonstarter. But there's a windy, weedy little farm road bending through a river valley just 20 minutes from my house. It's got lots of sudden, blind bends — not to mention working farms — so it's not the place to exercise a Corvette Z06. But there are enough turns you can see all the way through to make it fun, and three unbelievable uphill hairpins right at the end. We're talking 15 mph posted speed limit turns, and those signs aren't far off. The rest of it feels like a warmup lap before an Olympic sprint, since the tightest section only lasts for maybe 60 seconds before spitting you out on the top of a ridge with a view of the Cascade Mountains. There was no question the BRZ would be fun on the best part of this road, but what about the freeway portion? The arterials that this little road branches off …
Full Review
I had a 2018 Subaru BRZ Limited with a six-speed manual and half a day to play on wet, windy roads hemmed by pine trees in the foothills of a massive mountain range. But Michigan was on my mind. Some cars work everywhere. Michigan's the perfect place to find those that do: The roads are flat and pockmarked, and the seasonal extremes are brutal. It's easy to love a car on one of those bucket-list Alpine passes, but on Michigan roads the car has to work hard to win you over. For example, the MX-5 Miata works in Michigan just fine. It's fun in all conditions in which you can get the rear tires to hook up, and some that you can't. It cheerfully entertains in traffic, on city streets, undulating but uninteresting country roads. Some grand tourers work perfectly well there, too, soaking up enough punishment from the atrocious roadways without battering the occupants. The more voluptuous Aston Martins are particularly good at this trick, and they're plenty entertaining to cruise around in — or mash it flat after a scan of a country intersection shows nothing doing for at least 50 miles in every direction. These cars have more than just compliance — they have a subjective, elusive charm in suboptimal conditions. And the 86 twins, well, aren't Miatas. The car isn't lacking in dynamic ability, of course, but there's a flatness, a one-dimensionality to it. It's simply suffocated, starving for a little bit more. It doesn't have to be this way. Put the 86 in a better situation and its foibles recede but don't disappear. Straight, pock-marked slabs are the death of the thing. So I grabbed one out West, in Washington state where I now live, and fed it revs and curves until I was satisfied that the BRZ works as intended when you keep it happy. And when it's happy, you're happy. The BRZ was on high-performance summer tires, and some of the best roads in Washington are up in the hills currently blanketed by slush and ice, so that was a nonstarter. But there's a windy, weedy little farm road bending through a river valley just 20 minutes from my house. It's got lots of sudden, blind bends — not to mention working farms — so it's not the place to exercise a Corvette Z06. But there are enough turns you can see all the way through to make it fun, and three unbelievable uphill hairpins right at the end. We're talking 15 mph posted speed limit turns, and those signs aren't far off. The rest of it feels like a warmup lap before an Olympic sprint, since the tightest section only lasts for maybe 60 seconds before spitting you out on the top of a ridge with a view of the Cascade Mountains. There was no question the BRZ would be fun on the best part of this road, but what about the freeway portion? The arterials that this little road branches off …
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Retail Price

$25,595 - $33,495
MSRP / Window Sticker Price

Smart Buy Price

$1,351
Avg. savings off MSRP
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