Feature Flick: Mustang V-6 and Subaru BRZ Go Head to Head at Streets of Willow

The long-anticipated Toyobaru twins hit showrooms soon and many want to know if these sports cars are worth buying over the similarly priced and more powerful Mustang V-6. In this Feature Flick, Motor Trend’s Angus MacKenzie takes to the canyon roads to get a better impression of the Subaru BRZ and Mustang V-6 with the Track Pack.

Matching the 200-hp four-cylinder BRZ against the 305-hp V-6 Mustang may not seem to be a fair fight with the Ford one second faster to 60 mph and through the quarter mile at the drag strip. But plenty of enthusiasts looking to spend about $28,000 for a sporty rear-drive coupe want to know which is the better driver’s car.


Out on winding roads, Mackenzie is impressed with the Mustang’s steering, saying it may be the best of any American car ever made and that he is only reminded of the pony car’s live rear axle when hitting a mid-corner bump. The BRZ impresses with its low center of gravity and lighter weight, which contribute to a nimble feel. The smaller, less powerful engine must be kept higher in the rev band to carry speed through the curves.

Both cars are entertaining on canyon roads, but MacKenzie wants to know how much of a difference horsepower makes on a race track. To find out, he hands the keys over to Randy Pobst for some hot laps around Streets of Willow. Pobst likes the BRZ’s balance and linear power delivery. On the other hand the Mustang’s powerful V-6 requires less shifting.

Does a balanced chassis or 105 horsepower have the advantage around the race track? To find out watch the video below.

Click here for video

FYI Wednesday (5/2) at an east coast dealership BRZ show & tell, Subie rep said to expect 12 week delivery .
The BRZ has a niche, I think it's a bit pricey for what is actually being delivered, while a 200 HP 2.0 NA engine is nothing to sneeze at, I prefer a turbo four or V-6 that has the low end grunt. Consider the Focus ST has a 250 HP / 270 torque turbo four and weighs about the same as the BRZ. While the BRZ owner can probably live with Mustangs leaving them in the dust, it'll be less fun when a Focus is doing the same.
RX8 has a longer wheelbase, so will be more stable and have room for the rare couple without gymnastics involved. The BRZ is more flamenco dancer, Mustang is all tap hoofing yet both on top of their game.
Throw in the 2013 Hyundai Genesis coupe in the mix
Agree, besides the obvious BRZ or FR-S question, why not buy a 3 year old RX8 for half the price?? I.E. for pure driving bliss is it equal to the Subayota????
Love my STi
Can you please comment on the driving characterics of the BRZ vs. the Mazda RX-8. They seem to elicit quite similar comments from the reviews I've read. Are there any major differences in driving feel or precision? Thank you
leave detroit
Brz for me please! Too many mustangs out there.

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