2019 Toyota 86 Comparison Review

Looks Amazing.


Handles like a Dream.


New TRD Trim.


Comfortable for Driver.


Spacious Trunk.




You’ve always wanted a sports car, right? Ever since you were a kid, you’ve dreamed about driving a car with speed and handling that a minivan or sedan just can’t provide. You want that fun car that people will see and envy you for. Luckily, that’s what we have here. Welcome to the 2019 Toyota 86.

First arriving in 2017, the Toyota 86 is Toyota’s sports car for you. The very first thing that you will notice when you see an 86 is its sleek design. Motor1, in their review of the 2019 86, said, “The proportions of the 86 are fantastic. With its arching roofline, low hood, and blistered fenders, the 86 looks like a proper sports coupe.” With an 86, you will stand out in the office parking lot.

Once you step inside the 86, you will notice something very quickly. This car handles like a dream. As Globe and Mail says, “The longer you spend behind the wheel, the more likeable the 86 becomes.” Similarly, Edmunds says, “With precise steering and playful handling, the 86 always engages, especially with the standard six-speed manual transmission.”

Now, some have pointed out that the 2019 Toyota 86 lacks in horsepower compared to some of its competitors. They ask, “With only 205 hp on the standard manual shift, how can this car still be fun to drive?” For starters, let’s point out that the primary competitor of the 86, the Mazda Miata, comes standard with 181 hp. Beyond that, the horsepower isn’t entirely the point. Driving isn’t only about 0-60. It’s also about hitting that curve just right, easing into it before bursting out with as little lost speed as possible. That’s what the 86 specializes in.

In a MotorTrend comparison of performance cars, the 2017 Toyota 86 beat out the 2016 Ford Focus RS, the 2017 Chevrolet Camaro (2LT) 1LE V-6, and the 2016 BMW M2. In their summary of the results, MotorTrend had this to say: “With its balance of performance and tire, the 86 allows you to get the most out of the driving experience.” Additionally, their professional driver, Randy Pobst, is quoted as saying, “I didn't want to quit driving it. Total pure driver's car.” They finish their summary of the 86 with the line, “If you can find a better driving experience for even double the money, buy it.”

With the 2019 version of the Toyota 86, there is now a limited TRD version. TRD stands for Toyota Racing Development, and that is exactly what you’re getting. The TRD version comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, special Michelin Pilot 4 Sport summer tires, a performance-oriented exhaust, new brakes, new dampers, a special TRD decal on the side, and red/black leather seats. With all of this under your belt, the 2019 86 becomes an even better drive. If you want this model, you may have to jump on it. Only 1418 cars will be made in the 86 TRD trim.

If you’re looking for a less limited upgrade, you can also buy the GT version of the 2019 Toyota 86. Though one step down from the TRD, the GT version creates a more luxurious interior with heated front seats, a leather-wrapped shifter, and dual-zone climate control. On the outside, the GT model adds a rear wing to cut down on drag and LED fog lights for rough conditions.

Regardless of if you get the TRD, GT, or standard trim, you will be impressed with this Toyota’s comfort and space. Car and Driver, in their review, said, “In contrast to its convertible Mazda and Fiat competitors, the 86 is a comfortable fit for the driver and front-seat passenger.” They continued, “The driving position is nearly perfect, placing the driver square to the steering wheel with the pedals a perfect distance away from the well-bolstered, supportive seat.”

While you enjoy your front seat, you will also have plenty of space for luggage. Imagine this: you’re going to the race track. You have a big day planned, and you even bought special tires for the occasion. If you drove a Miata or a Fiat 124 Spider, you might not have enough room to take those tires with you. In the 2019 Toyota 86, the back row can fold down, giving you plenty of trunk space to fit your tires. Speaking of the back seat, the 2019 Fiat 124 Spider and the 2019 Mazda Miata don’t have backseats. The beauty of the 2019 Toyota 86 is that you may not need the backseat. If you don’t, you can fold it down. If you do need it, then it is there to use. Having a choice between two options is always better than being locked into a single option.

If you’re interested in modifying cars, the 2019 Toyota 86 is also for you. Edmunds says in their review, “Toyota left enough room to personalize it with power, handling and styling aftermarket upgrades, making it a great canvas for enthusiast owners.” If you would like to see an example of what can be done by an enthusiast, check out the second Motor1 article below. Rocket Bunny creates a truly unique version of the 86.

For every car they review, Kelley Blue Book has a section called “You Will Like This Car If.” In their 2019 86 review, this section says, “You’ll like this car if: You get it. You understand the fun that can be had from driving a less well-endowed car at its limits rather than having a powerful machine whose potential can never be realized on public roads.” The 2019 Toyota may not blow you away with horsepower, but as MotorTrend says in the aforementioned comparison, “Ask anyone: Driving a slow car fast is always more fun than driving a fast car slow.”

While we would disagree with calling the 2019 Toyota 86 a “slow” car, we agree with the point. This is the fun sports car you have dreamed of for years. If you’re interested in a 2019 86, you can contact us at (260) 541-6487. You can also come in and visit us at 515 W Coliseum Blvd, Fort Wayne, IN 46808. We hope to see you soon.

Websites/Articles Mentioned (in order mentioned):

Motor1 2019 Toyota 86 GT Pros and Cons: https://www.motor1.com/reviews/313234/2019-toyota-86-gt-pros-cons/

Globe and Mail 2019 Mazda MX-5 RF vs 2019 Toyota 86: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/drive/reviews/new-cars/article-faceoff-mazda-mx-5-rf-vs-toyota-86/

Edmunds 2019 Toyota 86 Review: https://www.edmunds.com/toyota/86/

MotorTrend Performance Cars Comparison 2017: https://www.motortrend.com/cars/fiat/124-spider/2017/chevrolet-camaro-1le-bmw-m2-ford-focus-rs-fiat-124-spider-abarth-porsche-718-boxster-s-toyota-86/

Car and Driver 2019 Toyota 86 Review: https://www.caranddriver.com/toyota/86

Motor1 Toyota 86 Rocket Bunny Mod: https://www.motor1.com/news/276039/toyota-86-rocket-bunny/

Kelley Blue Book 2019 Toyota 86 Review: https://www.kbb.com/toyota/86/2019/