Customers can look forward to sharper handling and more equipment from the updated coupe.

Despite many customers’ dreams of an affordable, rear-wheel-drive sports coupe, the Subaru BRZ and its Toyota-badged cousin face online complaints of not having enough power. For the 2017 model year, both brands want to repair that reputation by slightly increasing output and adding driver amenities. The 2017 BRZ also now has an optional Performance Package, which refines the model’s handling even more.

Subaru offers the 2017 BRZ in two trims: the base Premium and the higher-spec Limited. Both still use a 2.0-liter boxer four-cylinder, and when customers order it with a six-speed manual the engine now makes 205 horsepower and 156 pound-feet of torque. The six-speed automatic retains the previous 200 hp and 151 lb-ft. The BRZ with a clutch pedal also has a lower 4.1:1 final drive ratio versus 4.3:1 before. The extra output and tweaked gearing should slightly improve the coupe’s acceleration, which might silence a few haters.

The 2017 BRZ’s handling should be more responsive, too, because Subaru adds a larger rear stabilizer bar and revises the settings for the springs and dampers. The company also stiffens the chassis by adding reinforcements to the strut tower braces, transmission cross-member plate, and rear wheel housings.

The new Performance Package lets buyers who get the manual gearbox on the Limited trim further improve the BRZ’s handling and braking. The parts include Brembo calipers and larger rotors for the front and rear. It also replaces the shocks with upgraded units from Sachs Performance. The pack’s lone aesthetic upgrade is a set of 17-inch black wheels.

Subaru doesn’t outrageously alter the refreshed BRZ’s styling, but there are a few upgrades drivers should welcome. The new front fascia appears wider and makes the car look more aggressive. Full LED headlights and taillights are standard, and the Limited also has LED foglights. Interior changes mostly amount to upholstery improvements, but the Limited gets a 4.2-in LCD multifunction display, which displays lateral acceleration, fluid temperatures, steering angle, and more.

The 2017 BRZ goes on sale in the United States in early September, and the Performance Package isn’t available until next year. There’s no word on prices yet, but if the numbers are right, these attractive changes could lure more customers towards the sports coupe.

Source: Subaru

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