2018 Toyota 86 Interior Review

Scorecard

Interior: 7.4

The 2018 Toyota 86 features some quality materials, but it's designed as a driver-centric car, and the setup prioritizes function over form. The front seats are comfortable and well-bolstered, while the rear seats are virtually unusable (as is the case in many sports cars). The 86's trunk is among the smallest in the class. The features list lacks many high-end tech and driver assistance options, but the features you can get are controlled by a user-friendly touch screen.

  • "Remaining refreshingly analog, the Toyota 86 doesn't receive the big package of standard semi-autonomous safety systems some other 2017 Toyota models get as standard equipment. It does get upgraded materials, including a new faux suede material on the dashboard and door panels. Toyota calls this material Granlux, and it is both upscale to look at and provides much-appreciated padding for bracing one's knees in the turns." -- New York Daily News (2017)
  • "Inside, Toyota has also added new Granlux faux suede inserts to the seats, dash and the top of the doors. If you want to lower the windows and hang an elbow out, the material is very comfortable to rest your arm on. I actually preferred it to leather." -- Cars.com (2017)
  • "Toyota did away with the red stitching inside the FR-S, choosing a silvery shade instead for the 86. There's a suede-like textile atop the door panels and the passenger side of the dash that looks and feels better than the plastic of previous models. The fabric also cuts down on interior glare." -- Autoblog (2017)

Seating

The 86 seats four. Cloth upholstery, a tilting-and-telescoping steering wheel, a height-adjustable driver’s seat, and sport front bucket seats are standard. Heated front seats and leather upholstery are available.

The front seats have plenty of side bolstering that hold you in place even when you take corners aggressively. The seats are comfortable overall, but the encroaching bolsters might cause discomfort for people with wide shoulders. The rear seats are small and difficult to get in and out of, but that's a common complaint about sports cars, particularly coupes.

There are two complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors in the back seat. The lower anchors are buried in the cushion, though, and it can be difficult to attach a car seat.

  • Aggressively bolstered front seats are firm and provide good lateral support in corners. Broad-shouldered drivers might find them confining and uncomfortable for long trips. Front seat height and backrest angle are adjustable, but there is no lumbar adjustment." -- Consumer Reports
  • "The comfortable front seats are covered with fabric that helps to grip occupants and the seatback wings deliver great lateral support." -- New York Daily News (2017)
  • "The FR-S's front seats are comfortable for long-distance trips while providing firm support for hard driving. Drivers of just about any size can find a suitable driving position, and the low-profile hood allows an expansive view of the road ahead." -- Edmunds (2016)

Interior Features

Standard features in the 86 include an eight-speaker audio system with a 7-inch touch screen, a USB port, voice recognition, Bluetooth, HD Radio, and a rearview camera. Available features include dual-zone automatic climate control, push-button start, and an upgraded audio system that also features navigation.

At the center of the gauge cluster, the 86 features a large, easy-to-see tachometer that drivers who head to the track will especially appreciate. The touch screen and physical controls on the center stack are easy to reach, and the touch screen's interface is easy to figure out. The only downside is that the sun can wash out the screen, making it hard to see.

See 2018 Toyota 86 specs »

  • "A large tachometer sits front and center in the gauge cluster, proof of the 86's sporting intent. It contains a digital speedometer; most drivers relied on that readout instead of trying to read the small and low-contrast analog speedometer to its left. Most controls and switches are simple and straightforward, with three large knobs for the climate control." -- Consumer Reports
  • For cabin electronics, the 86 gets a 7-inch touchscreen head unit, standard, for stereo and Bluetooth hands-free phone calls. I was disappointed to see that this unit is a carryover from the FR-S, and doesn't support navigation. Toyota's latest Corolla gets a similarly sized touchscreen that includes integration with a free, third-party navigation app. Now that the 86 is under the Toyota brand in the US, its electronics should line up with its siblings." -- CNET (2017)
  • The steering wheel is three millimeters smaller in diameter than before, but Toyota still found room to add buttons for the audio system. As before, that audio system is controlled through a seven-inch touchscreen LCD that suffers from irritating glare in uneven lighting and washes out in direct sunlight. Toyota has no plans to offer Apple CarPlay or Android Auto in the 86." -- Autoblog (2017)

Cargo

The 86 has one of the smallest trunks in the class, with just 6.9 cubic feet of space. The rear seats fold down to provide room for larger items. With the rear seats folded, you have room for an entire set of tires, giving you the option to drive your 86 to the track and then run your car on track tires. There's some small-item storage throughout the cabin, but it's hardly plentiful.

  • Interior storage is modest, with a moderately sized glove box. There's no enclosed console compartment -- only an open bin. Trunk space is small but adequate for two. Weekend racers will find sufficient room for another set of wheels and tires inside the car. You'll have to fold the one-piece rear seatback to do that, an operation that requires leaning into the trunk and pulling straps on either side." -- Consumer Reports
  • Trunk space is minuscule at 6.9 cubic feet, although folding down the mostly useless rear seat expands cargo-carrying abilities considerably." -- Edmunds (2016)
  • And with the admittedly marginal rear seats folded, you have enough trunk and stowage area for the set of racing rubber you want to use on track days." -- Autotrader (2014)

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