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The 2017 Toyota 86 has been revealed ahead of its official launch at next week's New York motor show.The mid-life update to Australia's most popular sports car carries a host of exterior changes, minor interior revisions and a small increase in power and torque. From the outside there is a revised front bumper that houses a larger grille, which Toyota says emphasises the 86's low and wide stance. Meanwhile, the rear bumper is all new, incorporating restyled LED tail-lights. Revised LED headlights, with a new indicator design, now sits above a modified fog-light bezel, while the factory alloy wheel design has also been updated. Toyota designers have shifted the rear-wheel-drive sports car's fender-vent logo to lower on the front guard in the form of its own stand-alone badge. Further logos have also been added to inside the front headlights.
On the engineering side, Toyota has revised the 86's suspension, focusing on improved shock absorber and spring rates, while adding hill-start assist to manuals models. Automatic models remain unchanged in terms of power output at 147kW and 205Nm, however, manual variants have had an increase of roughly 4kW and 9Nm as well as changes to the gear ratio, bringing their new output to 151kW and 214Nm. Toyota Australia says these new power figures from the naturally aspirated 2.0-litre 'Boxer' engine are yet to be confirmed for local models. The interior of the base Toyota 86 GT remains unchanged, however, buyers of the top-spec GTS will see changes to the steering wheel - now finally incorporating audio controls - as well as new seating material with silver stitching. The instrument panel also gains a new soft-feel 'Grandlux' material, embossed with the 86 logo, with the material also flowing onto the door trims. Since the Toyota 86 went on sale in Australia in June 2012, the Japanese company has sold a staggering 16,456 units in Australia, making the model the consistent front runner in the local sports car segment. Toyota Australia sales and marketing executive director Tony Cramb said the sales performance of the 86 has made it a phenomenal success, adding, This 86 update is sure to add further fuel to that fire. "The new 2017 Toyota 86 will go on sale in the fourth quarter of this year, though, Toyota Australia has yet to confirm whether the model's current pricing structure will remain in place when the new car arrives.
Nissan Middle East has set a new Guinness World Record for the worlds fastest drift at an event in the United Arab Emirates. Behind the wheel of a heavily-modified Nissan GT-R Nismo, Japanese drifter, Masato Kawabata sent the GT-R into a drift at an incredible 304.96km/h. The drift was completed at Fujairah International Airport in the UAE and used every inch of the three kilometre runway in order to reach the 300km/h benchmark the team had set itself. As per strict guidelines, the Nissan Middle East team had only three attempts and had to fulfil specific angle and drift duration requirements in order the complete the record-breaking feat.
The team managed to tick all the boxes to become the new record holders. Kawabata, the current Japanese drifting series title holder, smashed the previous record of 256km/h set in Poland using a modified Toyota GT86. The record was achieved, in part, thanks to the immense work that went into tuning the GT-R. Japan-based GReddy Trust, managed to take the GT-Rs standard 3.8-litre twin-turbo V6, which normally produces 404kW, up to a staggering 1029kW.
While all that extra power was crucial to the record attempt, other mods like ultra-lightweight wheels and specially designed Toyo tyres had to be fitted to the car into order to make sure all that power wasnt just turned into smoke and molten rubber.
Subaru Technica International (STI) has teamed up with UK-based Prodrive to create a special new WRX STI racer to tackle the legendary Isle of Man TT course. More famous for its success on rally stages around the world, the Subaru WRX STI of late has been the weapon of choice to chase the lap record around the Isle of Man time trial circuit. Behind the wheel of the new WRX racer will be British rally champion Mark Higgins, who already holds the current lap record for a car, which he set in 2014 with a US-market WRX STI, in 19 minutes and 15 seconds.
Higgins set the current record in a largely stock 2015 model-year WRX STI, with the only modifications limited to safety features such as an FIA-spec roll cage and a harness-equipped racing seat, along with modified springs and dampers. The 2014 record bettered Higgins previous record of 19 minutes and 56 seconds that he set in 2011 with a 2010-model WRX STI. Now in 2016, the new Prodrive WRX STI is a rekindling of Subarus relationship with British motorsport company Prodrive, who collaborated with the Japanese manufacturer for nearly 20 years in the World Rally Championship (WRC), winning three drivers and manufacturers titles.
The 2016 WRX STI racer has had a few nips and tucks over the base car, with a significant aero package, stripped out interior and a roll cage, clearly stating its go-fast intentions. It is unknown whether any tweaks have been made to the engine that, in standard Australian spec, produces 221kW of power and 407Nm of torque (UK models list the same outputs). The Isle of Man time-trial event takes place on a 59.54km (37 mile) course, almost three times longer than the Nurburgring race track. The demanding course is a public road for most of the year, and with no official speed limits enforced on the Isle of Man outside built-up areas, practicing for the event is exercised all year round.