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2015 Subaru BRZ Review

The 2015 Subaru BRZ ranks in the middle of the sports car class. This coupe boasts agile handling and good safety scores, but its below-average reliability rating and cramped back seat keep it from finishing higher.

Pros & Cons

  • Athletic handling
  • Good fuel economy
  • Impressive safety scores
  • Clunky touch screen
  • Cramped rear seats




Critics' Rating: 9.3
Performance: 8.8
Interior: 7.5
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.7
Safety: 9.2
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2015 Subaru BRZ Overview

Is the 2015 Subaru BRZ a Good Used Car?

Yes, the 2015 Subaru BRZ is a fine option among used sports car. The BRZ is a blast to drive, thanks to its surefooted handling and peppy four-cylinder engine. It returns good fuel economy and rates highly for crash safety. The BRZ is among the least expensive used cars to buy in this class as well, which includes other roadsters like the 2015 Mazda Miata and muscle cars, such as the 2015 Ford Mustang and 2015 Chevrolet Camaro.

This Subaru coupe isn’t without its shortcomings, though. The BRZ’s back seat is kid-friendly, but it's not roomy enough for adults. Additionally, this Subaru's infotainment system is unintuitive. Consider alternatives like the 2015 Subaru WRX sedan if you want a sporty car that’s a bit more practical.

Compare the BRZ and WRX »

Why You Can Trust Us

We’ve analyzed 24 Subaru BRZ reviews, as well as hard data points like reliability scores and cost of ownership estimates, to help you make the best car-buying decision possible.

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking and reviewing vehicles since 2007, and our team has decades of experience in the auto industry. Though we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to providing helpful consumer advice. To maintain objectivity, we don’t accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies.

How Much Is the 2015 Subaru BRZ?

Based on listings on our site for the 2015 Subaru BRZ, the average price is $20,100, which is slightly below average for the class. Prices range from $16,900 to $23,000 and vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2015 Subaru BRZ Cost to Own?

The BRZ’s five-year costs for gas, insurance, repairs, and maintenance are projected to be about $28,500, or $5,700 per year. That’s better than average for a sports car.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New BRZ?

The 2019 Subaru BRZ starts at around $25,800. You can save thousands of dollars with a used BRZ, and since there aren’t many mechanical differences between the new and used models, you’ll find similar engine performance and driving dynamics.

If convenience features are a priority, however, you’ll want to opt for a new model. Only the 2018-and-newer models are available with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Read about the new BRZ »

There aren’t many sporty new car options at this price point, but there is one standout. The 2019 Hyundai Veloster hatchback starts at $18,500, and it offers spry handling, user-friendly tech features, and a roomy cargo area.

See the Best New Car Deals »

See the Best New Car Lease Deals »

Which Model Year of the BRZ Is Best?

Subaru launched the BRZ coupe for the 2013 model year, and it debuted alongside its corporate sibling, the 2013 Scion FR-S. There have been few changes to the BRZ over the years, but the most notable updates arrived for 2016 and 2018. The BRZ received a rearview camera for the 2016 model year (previously unavailable), as well as an easier-to-use touch-screen infotainment system. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto became available for 2018.

You can save money by shopping for an earlier 2013, 2014, or 2015 model, but for many buyers, the updates of the 2016-and-newer models will be worth the higher price.

Compare the 2015, 2016, and 2017 BRZ »

How Reliable Is the 2015 Subaru BRZ?

The 2015 BRZ has a below-average reliability rating of 2.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about BRZ reliability »

2015 Subaru BRZ Recalls

There are no recalls for the 2015 BRZ at this time.

See more information on Subaru BRZ safety recalls »

Which Used Subaru BRZ Model Is Right for Me?

The 2015 BRZ is available in three trim levels: Premium, Limited, and Series.Blue. With its long list of standard features, the base BRZ Premium is the best pick for most shoppers. That said, if you want the automatic transmission, you'll need to opt for the Limited trim.

The Subaru BRZ Premium has a 200-horsepower boxer engine, a six-speed manual transmission, and rear-wheel drive. Standard features include a 6.1-inch touch screen, a navigation system, HD Radio, satellite radio, a CD player, eight speakers, Bluetooth, a USB port, air conditioning, cloth seats, remote keyless entry, cruise control, a limited slip differential, and 17-inch alloy wheels.

The BRZ Limited is available with either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. This trim adds leather seats with Alcantara accents, heated front seats, heated side mirrors, dual-zone automatic climate control, proximity keyless entry, push-button start, and fog lights. The BRZ Series.Blue trim adds black wheels, red brake calipers, side skirts, and lower front and rear lip spoilers.

See 2015 Subaru BRZ trims and specs »

What Does Subaru's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Subaru offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 80,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Subaru extends the original new-car powertrain warranty to seven years from the original sale date or 100,000 miles. Subaru provides no additional coverage for CPO vehicles, so buyers receive the remainder of the original three-year/36,000-mile new-car warranty. However, buyers can purchase additional coverage. Every CPO Subaru must pass a 152-point inspection. Additional benefits like owner loyalty discounts, a one-year Starlink Safety Plus trial subscription, towing, and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Subaru warranty page carefully.

According to our analysis, Subaru’s CPO program isn’t particularly robust. Among affordable automakers, Toyota, Mazda, Honda, and many others have better programs.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the BRZ?

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the Subaru BRZ a 2015 Top Safety Pick. The BRZ received the second-highest rating of Acceptable in the small overlap front test and a top score of Good in all other areas tested.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2015 BRZ an overall rating of five out of five stars, with five stars in the side crash and rollover tests. The BRZ received four stars in the frontal crash test.

The BRZ isn't available with any driver assistance features, such as a rearview camera or parking sensors.

See BRZ safety scores »

2015 Subaru BRZ Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2015 Subaru BRZ or 2015 Mazda MX-5 Miata?

The 2015 Mazda Miata is a great sports car. Like the BRZ, the Miata rewards drivers with razor-sharp handling, a zippy four-cylinder engine, and refined transmission options. Both cars yield similar fuel economy as well. The BRZ is a more practical option for everyday driving. It has four seats compared to the Miata’s two, and it has a larger trunk. On the other hand, the Miata has a lower average price and lower projected ownership costs. Test-drive both cars to see which one you prefer.

Which Is Better: 2015 Subaru BRZ or 2015 Nissan 370Z?

The 2015 Nissan 370Z provides a slightly different take on the sports car recipe. The two-seat 370Z is athletic and fun to drive, but it packs a big V6 engine with over 300 horsepower. As a result, this Nissan accelerates very quickly, and its power doesn’t subside until well beyond legal speed limits. If having a sports car with breathtaking acceleration is a must, opt for the 370Z. Otherwise, the BRZ is the better buy. It has the added practicality of four seats, is typically cheaper to buy, and costs much less to own.

Compare the BRZ, MX-5 Miata, and 370Z »

2015 BRZ Performance

How Does the 2015 Subaru BRZ Drive?

The Subaru BRZ has a 2.0-liter flat four-cylinder engine with 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission comes standard, and a six-speed automatic is available.

This flat-four isn’t the punchiest engine in the segment, but it does zip the BRZ around town and up to speed assertively. Throttle response is immediate, and the engine revs willingly, making for a fun driving experience. The manual transmission is crisp and enjoyable to shift. The automatic transmission changes gears quickly; drivers can also change gears on their own using the steering wheel-mounted shift paddles.

The BRZ’s well-tuned handling only adds to the fun. This rear-wheel-drive coupe remains very stable through turns. The steering feels sharp and responsive, and the brakes slow the car down confidently. The BRZ’s ride is a bit firm, so you do feel the bumps and dips of rough pavement, but most of these jolts are cushioned nicely.

Does the 2015 Subaru BRZ Get Good Gas Mileage?

When paired with its manual transmission, the BRZ gets good fuel economy for a sports car: 21 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway. The automatic transmission improves the BRZ's gas mileage to 24 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway.

Read more about BRZ performance »

2015 BRZ Interior

How Many People Does the 2015 BRZ Seat?

The Subaru BRZ is a two-door coupe with four seats. The front seats are comfortable and quite supportive, and they offer ample head- and legroom for taller occupants. The driving position is relaxing as well, and the large windows provide good front and side visibility (rear visibility is just OK).

The back seats don’t have enough head- and legroom for adults, though there is enough space for kids to sit comfortably on shorter trips. Cloth upholstery is standard; leather upholstery and heated front seats are available.

The BRZ’s cabin looks sporty, and its materials – a mix of hard plastics with a few soft upholstered surfaces – are on par with others in this segment. The interior muffles most wind noise, but road noise is prevalent on the highway.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2015 Subaru BRZ?

The BRZ has two full sets of LATCH connectors for securing child car seats.

2015 Subaru BRZ Features

The BRZ comes standard with a 6.1-inch touch screen, a navigation system, HD Radio, satellite radio, a CD player, Bluetooth, and a USB port. That’s a generous array of standard features for a sports car. Unfortunately, some of these features aren’t that user friendly. The touch screen has a confusing menu structure and small virtual buttons, which can be tough to operate while driving. There aren’t any secondary controls on the steering wheel.

See 2015 Subaru BRZ specs »

Read more about BRZ interior »

2015 Subaru BRZ Dimensions

Subaru BRZ Cargo Space

The BRZ has just 6.9 cubic feet of trunk space. That’s not much room, though it is typical for a sports car. The rear seats can fold to accommodate longer items.

2015 BRZ Length and Weight

The Subaru BRZ is about 13.9 feet long. The BRZ weighs between 2,764 and 2,824 pounds, depending on its configuration.

Where Was the 2015 Subaru BRZ Built?

Subaru built the 2015 BRZ in Japan.

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