2020 Toyota 86 Hankone Edition

model. 2020 Toyota 86 Hankone Edition

price. $28,015 (incl $955 destination)

as tested. $30,825 (incl dest) Hankone Edition

top trim. As tested

seating/style. 4-passenger/2-door coupe

powertrain. 200- or 205-hp 2.0-liter 4-cyl Boxer

transmission. 6-speed manual or 6-speed auto 

driveline. RWD

fuel economy. 21/28/24 city/highway/combined

available. now

also shop: Mazda Miata MX-5, Hyundai Veloster, Subaru BRZ

The Toyota 86 Hankone Edition is a driver’s car, honoring Japan’s “Nürburgring Nordschleife,” the Hankone Turnpike. The dash sports a stripped-down feel with a 7-inch touchscreen, an aging infotainment system, and a miniscule backup camera in the rearview mirror, a relic of another time. But all is forgiven by an engaging, deliciously buttery six-speed manual transmission with hill-start, dark green exterior and curvy, butterscotch suede-like seats.

 

There is a fundamental wholesomeness of heart about the 86, formerly known as the Scion FR-S. Its simplicity coupled with amenities like heated seats and Android Auto/Apple CarPlay speaks to a purity of purpose: driving and driving well. It’s the kind of car you can throw into a camber, haul ass on the highway, or just meander along the Pacific Coast Highway, windows down and 8-speaker Clari-Fi stereo blasting.

 

A host of modes (track, sport, snow) requires upgrading to the six-speed automatic. It’s a tough call as chucking around the real-wheel-drive with standard tranny is just good fun, but additional modes are sometimes useful.

 

The lack of sunroof is a disappointment and there’s really only room for two, but overall, it’s a fully appealing experience for around $30,000.

© 2023 by Urban Artist.