My name is Gianni and this is my 2013 Subaru BRZ Premium in Satin White Pearl with a 6-speed manual transmission.
When I first heard about the new Toyobaru sports car I was so involved with AWD Subarus that I didn't really care for a RWD sports car, but continued to follow the development of the car and was curious to see where it would finish.
After reading Road&Track impressions of a prototype, I was completely sold on every aspect of the project and couldn't wait to see and read more. Then the official name of the Subaru model was announced and I started BRZ-Club.com in November 2011.
I attended the L.A. Auto Show and saw the BRZ STI Concept, I was literally in awe over the car and couldn't believe my eyes. I could only hope that the production BRZ would retain some of the key features of the STI concept. The Detroit Motor Show was just around the corner and I got an email from Subaru saying the BRZ would also be at CES in Las Vegas. Did someone say "road trip"? Went to Vegas and saw the production car for the first time. I was impressed and I liked the production model, but was a little disappointed after seeing the STI Concept. The STI Concept was the perfect amount of extreme. The production model just seemed to miss the mark for me, but it was a preproduction model and I had yet to drive the car, so I was optimistic. Next was the Chicago Auto Show, I was invited to media days directly from Subaru of America and I met some great people who were as enthusiastic about the car as the rest of the community on the internet, which was nice to see. Interesting enough, I showed them pictures of the car and accessories that they had not even seen!
March 1st came around and pre-order day for the BRZ arrived. I ordered first thing in the morning, just to lock myself in the opportunity of getting one.
May 29th was the tentative delivery date, but my dealer called me on the 26th and said it arrived early! Delivery was… difficult. I almost didn't purchase the car. I was told I would pay MSRP on pre-order day, but when the car got there they said there was a $2,000 mark up. I couldn't believe it and started making phone calls, but not luck. They called me back and said the best they could do was $1,000 over MSRP, but I was still pissed. At this point I weighed the pros and cons, and $1,000 was the only con vs. a long list of cons if I did not get the car. I hope that these mark ups don't hurt the car from selling and the BRZ ends up like other specialty cars dealerships have killed. Anyways, I picked it up that night with 9 miles and i'm sure glad I did.
First Impressions (at this time it has around 100 miles, mostly city and HWY, no canyons or backroads just yet):
Satin White Pearl is a fantastic color for this car! Every line and cut shows off very well in any kind of light. The look of the car is out of this world! So clean and refreshing compared to other cars on the market, including other Subarus. My favorite part of the car is the wingless rear end, "baby's got BACK!" The HID headlights and LED DRL are really cool too, this definitely sets the BRZ apart from the FR-S. The roof bulges are subtle and functional. Instead of a boring flat roof, there is almost a Gurney bubble on both drivers side and passenger, which can also be seeing inside on the headliner, very nice touch. The side mirrors are BIG, but odd, I would have preferred them to be longer instead of taller, but this is just a personal preference. The front end features two bulges just over each wheel, when sitting inside you see each bulge and know exactly where each front wheel is at anytime, just another subtle, but excellent feature.
Stepping into the car reminds me of getting into a modern Porsche with the window rolling down slightly as you pull the handle. Getting in and out of this car is easy, no big deal for me.
I love the cloth seats and the lack of brushed aluminum looking plastic trim that the Premium model comes with. The seats are definitely my favorite interior feature! The best seats I have ever sat in from factory, even better then the coveted EVO IX Recaros! The bolstering is perfect and the amount of lumbar forms to my back nicely, they are very enjoyable for extended periods of time.
The driving position is so natural, at one moment I forgot that I was driving a completely new car. The steering wheel is a great size, just small enough, but large enough to get a great grip.
The dash is a soft rubber grip feel and doesn't feel like cheap plastic.
Moving to the navigation system, this thing is awesome! I love the Nav/Sat/HDRadio/Bluetooth infotainment system. The touch screen is responsive and clear, glare is not an issue, like I recently experienced in a Toyota Prius. I have never had Satalite Radio and it is pretty sweet, plenty of stations and a very clear signal. The sound system is actually really good and bumps really loudly for those who like that. I did chang the fader to use more of the rear speakers, because there was too much noise being blasted from the front speakers. The coolest thing is having the Audio and Nav. map split screen, very cool feature. I used the Nav. for the first time today, it kept saying it lost GPS signal, but finally connected after a few moments and worked like a charm. It announces traffic jams, but there wasn't a traffic jam on the HWY, so that could get annoying. The best part is when switching HWY's, the map changes to tell you what lanes merge to the new HWY, I have never seen that before and love it. It makes predicting your route much easier with less of a chance of making a last minute lane change. I don't know yet if there is a setting for it, but when the Nav. announces directions it does not fade the music down, which I would like to change.
The E-brake and shifter is farther forward then what I am used to, but it is not an issue and might be better than what I had before.
Left of the steering wheel features a light adjustment for all interior light read outs, highly adjustable HID headlight control and trunk release. The adjustable HIDs actually can use adjustment, unlike other Subaru models when they were at their top height, they almost felt to low. The lights have an Auto feature, which is nice, I have never had that in a car before and is nice not to think about turning on the lights. It also looks cool when you walk about from the car with the lights still on, knowing they will shut off in a few moments.
I am 6'1"ish, if there is a person sitting behind me, they probably don't have legs. That might be a slight problem for a family. Overall the interior is simple, but luxurious and has everything I need for a car at this price point.
The vehicle gauges are interesting and simple. The left is a huge speedometer, meaning it seems it should reach a million MPH by the time it gets to the top. The tach is in the right spot, the center, along with a trip computer, avg. MPG, outside temp., shift light and beep options, and a readout of a digital speedometer in MPH or KPH. I find myself not even looking at the left speedometer because of the digital read out, this allows eyes to only have to look down to one place. And the right gauge has engine temp and fuel. I feel the gauges are grown up, while other Subarus feature a Need For Speed or Fast and Furious racer look, which might not appeal to most people.
The AC works great and I like the manual controls, but would have liked the toggle look that the Limited model features. It is awesome that the traction control and the VSC are so accessible and turn off with one push, no holding down necessary.
Everything we have read and heard is true, although I don't really feel it is underpowered. I like knowing that I need to maintain my speed in order to be fast! I am thoroughly impressed with the low end torque, which is all I have been able to experience since I am breaking it in properly.
The transmission/gearbox has short crisp throws (feels better than an STI transmission). 6th gear is functional, on the HWY going 75 there is enough torque in 6th to accelerate, it doesn't feel sluggish at all.
The engine and exhaust sounds could be louder, but sound growly, you can definitely hear the car working if you have the radio off.
The handling is flat and precise. Definitely the most impressive part about the car! The suspension reminds me of the '04 STi, very raw and precise, but livable on a day to day basis.
The steering feels surprisingly heavy, which I like, it seems like the power steering is more in your arms then in a electronic system. I didn't even notice the electric steering, feels normal and like every other car I have driven.
The tires squeal easily, which is fun because you don't have that much power and it lets you know what is happening on different road surfaces.
Throttle response is crisp, no lag (obviously because there is no turbo). The brakes are great and it stops on a dime!
If you have any questions or want to see particular pics and video, please let me know.
Thanks everyone for creating a great site!