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Toyota sweats on $40k price point for 86

On the money: Toyota Australia is still holding hopes that it can sell the 86 coupe for under $40k.

Sub-$40k price not yet locked in for Toyota’s in-demand 86 sports coupe

15 Mar 2012

TOYOTA Australia is awaiting vehicle costings from Japan to see if it can pull the price of the most anticipated new Toyota car in a generation, the 86 sports coupe, under $40,000 when it lands in showrooms in June.

Company executives say they would love to see the entry-level version of the boxer-engine 2+2 sports car priced in the $30k-$40k range, but they are fearful it might edge above that once the pricing data lands on their desk.

Australian car fans are already approaching dealers with orders for the car without knowing the final price, drawn by glowing reports of the rear-drive coupe’s pure driving intent.

The 147kW coupe has been developed jointly by Toyota and Subaru, with the latter’s own version, the BRZ, also due in Australia around June or July.

Toyota Australia executive director sales and marketing Matthew Callachor told GoAuto that this week’s Camry Hybrid media launch in Tasmania that the company could not be certain of achieving a sub $40,000 price for 86.

“We haven’t even discussing pricing with TMC (Toyota Motor Corporation),” he said.

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“My problem is that I would love to have it under $40,000, but I don’t know if it’s feasibly realistic to get it under that.” “We have no information on costing for the vehicle, and so on that basis I could not even start to speculate.” Mr Callachor said global orders for the new car had been phenomenal, adding further pressures on the new model.

He said Australian buyers were already arriving in dealerships and asking to be placed in the queue for 86, sight unseen.

“They are coming into dealerships and saying ‘if it (86) is under $60,000, we want one’,” he said.

Speculation of a sub-$35,000 starting price for the 86 has been rife since speculation surfaced at the 2011 Geneva motor show that Toyota’s Australian target price for 86 would be “early $30,000s”.

Toyota is expected to sell the 86 in two grades, with the premium version getting leather trim, dual-zone air-conditioning, high-intensity discharge (HID) headlights, sat-nav, larger 17-inch wheels, auto entry and start and other niceties.

The standard car is expected to get manual air-conditioning, 16-inch alloys, seven airbags, cloth-trimmed sports seats and a 6.1-inch audio LCD screen.

Both models will share the same normally aspirated 2.0-litre flat-four engine that is based on a Subaru unit but with Toyota-developed cylinder heads with direct injection.

The DOHC engine has square (86x86mm) cylinder dimensions and develops 147kW of power at 7000rpm and a modest 205Nm of torque at some 6600rpm.

Toyota-sourced six-speed manual and six-speed automatic transmissions will be offered.

Subaru has confirmed it will import a single well-specified BRZ variant that is expected to land in Australia about the same time as the Toyota 86.

Mr Callachor said he did not know what pricing Subaru was targeting for BRZ, and did not want to know, for anti-competitive reasons.

Toyota is counting on the 86 to help lift its dour image with big dose of fun factor, while bringing young, cashed-up male buyers into its showrooms.

The sales target for this year is reportedly 1200 units, rising to 1800 units next year.

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