2016 Subaru BRZ Review

Pros & Cons

  • A light and well-balanced chassis makes for phenomenal handling
  • excellent steering feel and response
  • automatic transmission's high fuel economy
  • comfortable and supportive front seats
  • standard features list is great for the price.
  • Backseat and trunk are small
  • relatively modest acceleration, especially with the automatic transmission.
Other years
List Price Estimate
$17,373 - $21,291

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Edmunds' Expert Review

There can be a lot more to driving than just getting from point A to point B. Take a spin in the 2016 Subaru BRZ and you'll love how this sporty coupe gets your blood flowing. Ready to learn more about how this affordable sports car earns such high praise?

Vehicle overview

The small sport coupe is a small niche in the U.S. car market, but for shoppers who want nimble handling, peppy performance and good looks in a small package -- and can't abide the thought of four doors -- the 2016 Subaru BRZ is one of the best choices available. It's a back-to-basics, lightweight sports car with rear-wheel drive, excellent balance and an affordable price.

Roads like this are the 2016 Subaru BRZ's natural habitat.

Tasked with propelling about 2,800 pounds, the 200 horses unleashed by the BRZ's flat-4 "boxer" engine provide decent gallop. But this car is much more about straightening out curvy roads than clocking records for straight-line acceleration. The BRZ's low center of gravity, ideal front/rear weight balance and wonderfully communicative steering make it an all-star athlete by any standard. As we discovered in our BRZ long-term road test a few years ago, it's hard to beat this Subaru for the money if you're looking for maximum driving enjoyment.

There's not much in the market that competes directly with the BRZ. The Scion FR-S offers a different nameplate and slightly different feature availability but is mechanically the same (Subaru and Toyota developed the cars together). Ford's Focus ST and Volkswagen's Golf GTI offer quicker acceleration and more practicality, but neither can match the BRZ for handling precision. Alternately, the redesigned Mazda Miata roadster boasts lovely handling and steering but loses out on practicality. If you move up in regards to price, the new Chevrolet Camaro and Ford Mustang will certainly be appealing. Or, if you're a Subaru fan, you might also check out the BRZ's stablemate, the four-door, all-wheel-drive 2016 Subaru WRX. Really, you won't go wrong with any of these choices. But for an affordable and truly fun-to-drive sport coupe, the 2016 Subaru BRZ is the way to go.

We Recommend

We like the 2016 Subaru BRZ Limited, as it adds a lot of nice features for a modest price increase over the base Premium.

2016 Subaru BRZ models

The 2016 Subaru BRZ is a four-seat compact coupe available in two primary trim levels: Premium and Limited. There's also a limited-production HyperBlue edition for 2016.

The Premium comes standard with 17-inch alloy wheels, summer tires, a limited-slip rear differential, automatic bi-xenon headlights, LED running lights, keyless entry, cruise control, air-conditioning, full power accessories, a tilt-and-telescoping leather-wrapped steering wheel, a height-adjustable driver seat, a fold-down rear seatback and a rearview camera. Electronic features include Subaru's Starlink infotainment system with a 6.2-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, a navigation system, voice controls, smartphone app integration (including Aha Radio, Pandora, iHeartRadio and Stitcher, plus news, weather and calendar features), and an eight-speaker sound system with a CD player, HD radio, satellite radio, an auxiliary audio jack and a USB port.

Every 2016 BRZ comes equipped with a crisp-looking 6.2-inch touchscreen.

Stepping up to the Limited adds foglamps, a rear spoiler, keyless ignition and entry, dual-zone automatic climate control, simulated suede and leather upholstery, upgraded interior trim and an All-Weather package that includes heated mirrors and heated front seats.

The limited-production (only 500 will be made) HyperBlue edition includes the Limited features and adds special light blue paint, aero body styling tweaks, black wheels and exterior badges, a frameless rearview mirror, blue interior accent stitching and a black-and-blue interior scheme with the BRZ logo embroidered on the front seats.

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2016 Highlights

For 2016, the Subaru BRZ gets an updated touchscreen infotainment system and a standard rearview camera. This year also sees the debut of a limited-edition HyperBlue version with some distinctive exterior and interior styling flourishes.

Performance & mpg

The 2016 BRZ is rear-wheel drive and features a 2.0-liter horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine that produces 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, and a six-speed automatic with shift paddles and rev-matched downshifts is optional.

The BRZ with a manual transmission is more than a second quicker to 60 mph than one with the optional automatic.

In Edmunds performance testing, a manual-equipped BRZ went from zero to 60 mph in 6.8 seconds. An automatic BRZ did it in 7.9 seconds. These times are certainly on the slow side for a dedicated sports car, though at least the manual BRZ is within a half-second of the new MX-5 Miata.

EPA-estimated fuel economy is 25 mpg combined (22 city/30 highway) with the manual and an excellent 28 mpg combined (25/34) with the automatic.


Standard safety equipment on the 2016 Subaru BRZ includes antilock brakes, traction and stability control (with selectable levels of calibration), front side airbags and side curtain airbags.

In Edmunds brake testing, the BRZ came to a stop from 60 mph in 114 feet, a respectable result that's nonetheless a few feet longer than the 2016 MX-5 Miata's best stop.

In government crash tests, the BRZ earned a safety rating of five stars overall (out of a possible five), including four stars for total frontal impact safety and five stars for total side impact safety. In crash testing by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the BRZ received the highest possible rating of "Good" in the moderate-overlap frontal-offset, side-impact and roof-strength tests. The BRZ's seat/head restraint design was also rated "Good" for whiplash protection in rear impacts. In that agency's small-overlap frontal offset test, the BRZ received a second-best "Acceptable" rating.


If you're the sort of driver who must be able to hammer down freeway on-ramps with tires ablaze, the 2016 Subaru BRZ is not for you. Its power is sufficient but not thrilling, and there's not much torque to launch you off the line. Instead, the BRZ is for those who get a kick out of going around corners with phenomenal communication and control. For that purpose, few cars can match it, even at twice the price.

The 2016 BRZ delivers a pure sports-car experience on a winding road.

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. We'd go for the manual gearbox, which is a pleasure to shift, but even the available automatic transmission is programmed for enthusiastic driving, upshifting very rapidly and matching revs enthusiastically on downshifts.

Used for more mundane duties like the daily commute or a long road trip, this little Subaru is still rewarding. It's surprisingly easy to drive, and the ride is sufficiently supple over broken pavement. The one demerit is that there's a fair amount of road noise, which can detract from an otherwise reasonably refined experience.


The BRZ has a simple, pleasantly styled cabin that features a blend of Toyota and Subaru switchgear and materials. It's a bit bland compared with some other sporty cars in its price range, but then this is supposed to be a back-to-basics driver's car. There's no shortage of features, as even the base model is loaded with high-tech items like navigation, a rearview camera, HD radio and Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity. The standard touchscreen interface is updated for 2016 with an incrementally larger screen and new software.

The BRZ's firm, well-shaped front seats are supportive enough for hard driving on curvy roads, yet remain comfortable on long-distance trips. People of just about any size should find the driving position quite agreeable, and thanks to the low-profile hood, there's an expansive view of the road ahead.

Yes, there's a backseat, but no adult would want to sit back there. Legroom is next to nil, your head will be either very close to or pressed against the rear window and the center tunnel impedes hiproom. Trunk space is also rather small at 6.9 cubic feet, but folding down the rear seatback expands cargo capacity considerably.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2016 Subaru BRZ.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

The Perfect Sports Car - For the Price
Series.HyperBlue 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M)
Keeping in mind that you can get the BRZ for less than $30,000 it is, in my opinion, the best sports car of the modern era. The driving position, steering feel, and ability for an amateur driver to push the BRZ to the limit is the reason that it makes every driver smile. The point of the BRZ (or the FR-S, or GT 86 since they are all essentially the same car) is to make a grown-up feel like a child again. The car makes me giggle, and flatters my abilities to the point where I never feel unsafe. I was in a unique situation where I was able to purchase one of the 500 Hyper Blue BRZ's and as long as I never wreck it, I expect it to be a future classic. So whenever I get the chance, I take it for a blast through the hills, or if I can leave a little early, I take the long way to work and arrive with a smile plastered across my face. In a world where most of us drive grayscale people carrying boxes, the BRZ feels extra special. It's a reminder of how much fun driving can be, and without putting in too much money, it has the comforts, look and finish of a far more expensive car. The interior has Hyper Blue stitching to match the paint, and with black accents, the BRZ feels just right. The controls are where you expect them to be, and the large, centrally mounted tachometer runs happily up above 7000rpm before a light flashes at you to shift up before you ping it off the limiter. As driving experiences go, it is hard to get more smiles per gallon for my money. UPDATE: after 10,0000 miles the BRZ has become an extension of me and I am happy to say I still love it. UPDATE 2: after 16,000 miles it’s still perfect for me.
A fun daily driver - but with a cost
Limited 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M)
The big thing to know about this car is that Subaru/Toyota wanted a cheap performance car that would make drivers smile. They succeeded, but the cheapness can come back to bite long-term owners. I have daily-driven the car for a year and 14,000 miles, so I have had the proper seat time to write a review. The two companies decided to put the whole budget into the drivetrain. My car in this respect has been solid. I replaced the transmission, differential, and engine oils myself, and the engineers really put a lot of thought into how to do that easily. On the flip side, most nuts and bolts on this car are made out of very weak metal, leading to all the wheel studs being stripped in just a few changes. The interior rattles like crazy, the speakers buzz at higher volumes, which are needed because of loud road noise. I had two sets of tail lights leak, and my headlight ballasts went out and needed replacement. The list goes on. The car will continue to drive and handle beautifully, but the non-essentials will entropy around you. The maintenance bill won't be in the thousands, but I have constantly had $100 here and there to replace the cheap parts. I am 6'2" and 190 pounds and am triangle-shaped. Think broad shoulders and small waist. This car's seats are the most comfortable I have ever sat in. I want these for my office, house, and every car afterward. That being said, if I was an inch taller or 20 pounds heavier, I would hate them. All of my 'larger' friends hate riding in the car. My wife is tall and thin, and she hates hunching over to get in/out of the passenger side. Holding on to the steering wheel makes the driver's side easy. People like to say this car is slow. For muscle-car owners who love straight line speed, this car is not for you. I don't want any more power out of it, because I get to floor it during daily driving, and I don't get speeding tickets. It's exhilarating without being too dangerous. Countless journalists have raved about the balance and steering - all I know is that the car feels super secure going 30+ mph over suggested speed limits on turns. If I was looking at a BRZ and similar cars today, I personally would just save my money and buy a Mazda Miata RF. That being said, I still roll the windows down on a warm day and just go for a drive to relax. This car does this at a great price, and I would recommend it to a friend - if they are willing to deal with the mentioned issues.
Not suffering the Hyper Blues with this car
Series.HyperBlue 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M)
If you are 50 plus and carrying a few pounds, it may be harder to get in and out of this car, but once you are in seat, WOW, the fun begins. If I were prone to drifting, this car could do that. My 16 year old daughter said that starting from a stop light and going through the first four gears reminds her of the push back in seat feeling of jet take off. Great color, only 500 made for USA for 2016. Gets lots of looks. After decades of driving SUV's and minivans, I owed this car to myself and haven't looked back since driving off the lot. Hugs the road really well with quick responsive steering and braking. Ditch to ditch low beam headlights that allow for up and down switch adjustment is great for avoiding deer. Recommended accessories are WeatherTech floor liners, Trunk Liner and the NEW 3M™ Scotchgard Paint Protection Film Pro Series. Invisible and 7 year coverage to protect against rock chips and dings as this is a low riding car. Saved on the cost by half by going to Tint shop for Protection Film instead of dealer. Have had the car for two and a half weeks at 348 miles now so still breaking in engine. Premium fuel only. Did buy the extended warranty to 7 year which added to initial cost. Tax in our Washington State County 8.8% My driving experience 27 years in police cars. Bought as commuter.
2016 limited brz
Premium 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M)


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    Overall4 / 5
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    Overall5 / 5
  • Side Barrier Rating
    Overall5 / 5
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front Seat4 / 5
    Back Seat5 / 5
  • Rollover
    Rollover5 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of Rollover7.1%
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
  • Roof Strength Test
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 2016 Subaru BRZ

Used 2016 Subaru BRZ Overview

The Used 2016 Subaru BRZ is offered in the following submodels: BRZ Coupe. Available styles include Series.HyperBlue 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M), Premium 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M), Limited 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6A), and Limited 2dr Coupe (2.0L 4cyl 6M). Pre-owned Subaru BRZ models are available with a 2.0 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 200 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2016 Subaru BRZ comes with rear wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 6-speed manual, 6-speed shiftable automatic. The Used 2016 Subaru BRZ comes with a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. basic warranty, a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2016 Subaru BRZ?

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2016 Subaru BRZES are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2016 Subaru BRZ for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2016 Subaru BRZ.

Can't find a used 2016 Subaru BRZs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Subaru BRZ for sale - 11 great deals out of 23 listings starting at $14,151.

Find a used Subaru for sale - 9 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $22,178.

Find a used certified pre-owned Subaru BRZ for sale - 7 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $16,584.

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Should I lease or buy a 2016 Subaru BRZ?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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