$15,465 - $16,547

2014 Subaru BRZ Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2014 Subaru BRZ was new.


Performance: 8.5

Critics say that although the 2014 Subaru BRZ may not be as powerful as rivals like the Nissan 370Z and Ford Mustang, it still has adequate power for everyday use. Additionally, reviewers agree that the BRZ's light weight, nimble handling and responsive steering make it one of the most fun-to-drive cars in the class.

  • "With its superb chassis, communicative steering and light weight, the 2014 Subaru BRZ is proof that you don't need a lot of power to have a lot of fun." -- Edmunds
  • "The Subaru BRZ is a lightweight, rear-wheel-drive sports car that provides nimble handling and spirited performance at an affordable price." -- Left Lane News
  • "If the Chevy Camaro and Ford Mustang are oversized power lifters, think of the Subaru BRZ as a lean but equally capable distance runner." -- Kelley Blue Book

Acceleration and Power

The 2014 Subaru BRZ comes with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that puts out 200 horsepower and is mated to a six-speed manual transmission. A six-speed automatic transmission is optional. The base Subaru BRZ gets an estimated 22/30 mpg city/highway, which is good for the class. When equipped with the optional automatic transmission, the BRZ earns even better fuel economy estimates of 25/34 mpg city/highway.

Though some reviewers comment that the Subaru BRZ isn’t the quickest car in the class, most critics agree that its four-cylinder engine and well-matched transmissions make the BRZ a blast to drive. Most test drivers are particularly pleased with the BRZ's manual transmission, which they say is a pleasure to shift, though some also like the optional automatic transmission, which features paddle shifters and a manual mode.

  • "… the Subaru BRZ doesn't boast the same sort of neck-snapping power as similarly priced sporty cars, including its WRX sibling. We learned this during our 12-month BRZ long-term test. Most near rivals, such as the 2014 Ford Mustang, Hyundai Genesis Coupe and the Nissan 370Z, are much quicker." -- Edmunds
  • "The 2.0-liter engine isn't a power dynamo, but the car's lightweight body allows the engine's 200 horsepower to do their job without disappointment." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "At risk of sounding heretical here, you can have just as much fun with the automatic. Paddle shifters are standard, and when you shift the mode from D to M for manual, the mapping tightens up. Nice rev-popping to match downshifts and, again, the torque minimizes the amount of shifting you'll be doing." -- Road and Track (2013)
  • "We bemoan the lack of manuals in high-end sports cars, but this price segment is wonderfully thick with them and many are delightfully good. The BRZ is no exception." -- Autoblog (2013)
  • "Shifter position and feel is excellent, lighter yet tighter, and far less rubbery than the WRX STI's hand-built gearbox (the two share the shift knob and lever arm)." -- Motor Trend (2013)

Handling and Braking

Automotive journalists are impressed with the 2014 Subaru BRZ's athletic handling and firm brakes. They say that the steering is accurate and responsive, and that the BRZ navigates winding roads with ease and minimal body roll.

  • "Its brilliantly balanced suspension and limited-slip differential allow the 2014 Subaru BRZ to slice through twisting pavement like a seamstress' shears through silk. The BRZ doesn't just go where you point it, it reacts instantly to every blip of the throttle, every modest adjustment to the steering wheel." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The BRZ's limits are approachable and easily controlled, which makes it a wonderfully engaging sports car. The steering practically telegraphs the front tires' grip status right to the driver's hands. What's more, the brake pedal is firm and consistent in feel, and the chassis remains composed even when the road surface doesn't." -- Edmunds
  • "The BRZ turns in eeee-mediately with minimal, very well-controlled body roll." -- Automobile Magazine  (2013)
  • "It is not as precise or direct as one of the handling targets (Porsche Cayman), but it's close enough to its boxer brethren to be mentioned in the same breath. The same cannot be said of everything else in what Subaru claims is the BRZ's competitive set: Mini Cooper S, Civic Si, Hyundai Genesis Coupe, Miata MX-5, and of course Scion FR-S." -- Motor Trend (2013)

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