Convertible Toyobaru concept to debut in Geneva

One of the best-handling sports coupes on the market could soon spawn a roadster variant.

Toyota

It looks like Toyota's looking to rebuild buzz for one of the hottest cars launched in 2012 by dropping the top on a convertible concept variant of the GT86 coupe at the 2013 International Motor Show in Geneva.

custom Scion FR-S @ SEMA 2012
We've seen open-topped Scion FR-S customs at the SEMA show, but now Toyota's getting in on the drop-top fun. Antuan Goodwin/CNET

The FT-86 Open revives the "FT" concept designation and hints at a possible, future open-air version of the GT86 coupe. The 2.0-liter, RWD coupe (which is sold in the U.S. as the  Scion FR-S  and has been nicknamed the "Toyobaru" thanks to its co-development with  Subaru ) has been compared on many occasions to Mazda's MX-5 Miata , which boasts a similar power-to-weight ratio and emphasis on handling, so a roadster variant does make a bit of sense. We're expecting a power-retractable top, because (unlike the Miata) the GT86 has a back seat to reach over. However, it is unclear if the retractable roof will be a hard or soft type.

According to Toyota, "The show car will help Toyota gauge public reaction to the idea, at the same time as it carries out engineering tests on a prototype." Will the automaker build the FT-86 Open? Do you want a convertible version of the Scion FR-S or Subaru BRZ for the North American market? Sound off in the comments and stay tuned for more details when our coverage of the 2013 Geneva auto show kicks off on March 5.

 

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