Subaru BRZ and Toyota GT86 saw off rivals to secure the prestigious ‘Car of the Year’ award in the 2012 Vehicle Dynamics International Awards
Besides this remarkable victory, the dynamics team and senior dymanicists behind the sibling coupes also picked up major awards.
Graham Heeps, editor of Vehicle Dynamics International said, “For some time now we’ve been beating the drum for simplicity. Cars from major manufacturers that take a less-is-more approach and offer fun at legal speeds have been thin on the ground. That’s why we believe the Subaru BRZ and its twin sister, the Toyota GT86, are deserved recipients of the 2012 VDI Car of the Year Award.”
So impressed were the judges with the two Japanese coupes, that they have justifiably crowned the two lead Dynamicists on the project as joint winners of the ‘Dynamicist of the Year’ award. Toshio Masuda of Subaru and Tetsuya Tada from Toyota were praised for creating “the new generation of affordable rear-wheel-drive coupes,” by jury member and noted performance car dynamicist, Peter Cambridge.
“The Subaru BRZ’s development was not only a challenge, but served as a motivational boost for Subaru’s engineers,” said co-winner Masuda. “I would like to thank the jury and share the honor with all the engineers involved in the project,” while Tetsuya Tada added: “I have greatly enjoyed working with Masuda-san on this project.”
In addition, the award for the ‘Dynamics Team of the Year’ went to Toyota’s dynamics team, not only for its work on the GT86 but also because of the new emphasis on driving performance that is filtering down through products such as the latest Lexus GS.
“Some time ago our president, Akio Toyoda, challenged us to make ‘even better’ cars,” explains Bruno Reinke, Toyota’s European executive responsible for Chassis & Dynamics. “This award shows that we are heading in the right direction, and we will continue to make cars with a more dynamic character right across our range – from small city cars, through to sports cars and luxury vehicles.”
Other award winners include Continental in the closely fought ‘Supplier of the Year’ category, which secured the title on the back of its portfolio of innovation in everything from tires to ESC. The ‘Innovation of the Year’ award was this year presented to Tenneco for its new and potentially production-feasible active suspension technology, ACOCAR. And finally, the ‘Development Tool of the Year’ award went VI-Grade its innovative new simulator, the VI-DriveSim Dynamic.