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The 2023 Toyota GR86 is a phenomenal sports car with a price tag well within the grasp of your average folks. The cherry on top is that it’s not just affordable; it’s downright fun to take one through some properly windy roads. That being said, if you spend a little time behind the wheel of one, you’ll start to notice a few things. Here are some Toyota GR86 pros and cons that might not be obvious without driving one.

Pro: The bottom-end torque makes for easy acceleration

Toyota GR86 subaru boxer engine under hood
Toyota GR86 Engine | Toyota

Coming from turbocharged cars, the low-end grunt of the GR86’s flat-four engine was a pleasant experience. It’s not just pleasant coming out of corners, either. Having power on tap from the get-go makes for worry-free entries to roadways and freeways.

Sure, it’s a bit of a deep cut. But it’s something I really appreciated during my week with the GR86.

Con: The turn signal stock

Forward facing view of interior 2023 Toyota GR86 sports car with black interior
Toyota GR86 Interior | Toyota

You’re probably well aware of the long-standing meme that BMW drivers don’t use turn signals. There is, however, a reason that some may not. Unfortunately, the GR86 might fall victim to this trope, too.

Why? Because the turn signal stock re-centers immediately after use. So, while a standard car’s signal stock would stay up or down until you complete the corner, the GR86’s recenters immediately. It does still cancel after turns, but it’s super easy to leave the signal on if you are just changing lanes or don’t turn sharp enough to deactivate the turn signal. Furthermore, it’s extremely easy to bump the signal stock and activate the opposite turn signal when you’re trying to turn it off.

Yes, I got used to it, but it’s still a bit of an annoyance.

Pro: It sounds awesome

This one is a bit of a hot take, but I love the sound of the GR86. The factory exhaust system is surprisingly loud. Though it’s a bit drony, it certainly adds to the sports car feel. On downshifts, the car occasionally coughs out a backfire or two.

This take is about to get hotter, too. Within a few minutes of driving the GR86, I immediately equated it to the sound of the four-cylinder-equipped Porsche 718 models. It doesn’t have as much of the low-end rumble Subaru drivers would be familiar with. Instead, it’s got a bit more of a symmetrical sound, and it absolutely screams at higher RPMs

Con: Interior tech isn’t quite there

Black interior 2023 Toyota GR86 with manual transmission showing infotainment system
GR86 Shifter and infotainment system | Toyota

If you’re familiar with Toyota’s interior tech history, you might not be surprised to hear that it’s lagging behind just a bit. After all, Toyota didn’t offer Android Auto or Apple CarPlay until 2020 model year vehicles. While the GR86 does indeed have both of those at the ready, it’s a bit underwhelming elsewhere.

For one, there’s not a single USB-C port. There are two standard USB-A ports, and that’s all well and good, but USB-C is borderline universal across all brands of devices. Adding at least one USB-C port would be a phenomenal modernization.

In addition, I found the touchscreen to be laggy and, at times, entirely unresponsive when using Android Auto. Otherwise, the sound system is functional and fine, the digital gauge cluster is awesome, and the overall interior experience is what I would call “acceptable.”

Pro: It’s a cheap sports car

Front 3/4 of a 2023 Toyota GR86 sports car sitting in a California desert sunset
2023 Toyota GR86 | Braden Carlson, MotorBiscuit

Toyota GR86 Alternatives Are Difficult to Come By

To round things off, I’d like to say that complaining about these things feels like a bit of a stretch to me. I more than intentionally left out the standard tropes of its limited space and ride quality. It’s a sports car. What do you expect? You’re meant to enjoy driving it, not just riding in it. 

It’s affordable, it looks fantastic, and it handles like it’s on rails. There’s not much more that you could ask for. These Toyota GR86 pros and cons definitely shouldn’t sway you away from buying one if you’re considering it!