Toyota AE86: An Automotive Cultural Icon

Toyota AE86: An Automotive Cultural Icon

Postby 86MOD » Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:04 am

Few industries have experienced the wild competition and production level changes that have influenced the field of automobiles. Even more intensive are the innovations that spawned from Japanese car design teams and engineers.

The Toyota AE86 is a popular car that’s gained recognition in the JDM (Japanese Domestic Market) community as well as the racing community. From its portrayal in popular culture to its performance in racing circuits and drift competitions, the AE86 has earned its rightful place as an automotive legend.

History of the Car

Even though the AE86 may technically be a Toyota Corolla, it is much more than that. This car is an icon of the Japanese automotive industry for more reasons than would be evident at first. While the Corolla has mostly drifted into a position where it is regularly regarded as the definitive mainstream vehicle, the AE86 encompasses brilliant engineering.

To understand why the AE86 is such an impressive vehicle, it’s essential to examine the current state of cars in comparison to the ones which were being sold at the time when it was developed. During the early 80s, cars like the AE86 were not as prevalent, and this was (surprisingly) due to their drivetrain layout and the implications it presented.

A Unique Layout

The AE86 is an FR (front-engined, rear-wheel drive) vehicle, even though this was not the most popular setup for cars in Japan at the time. The entire Japanese automotive industry was moving away from rear-wheel drive configuration at the time, opting instead for a front-wheel-drive layout that emphasized control.

While front-wheel drive may be looked down upon when compared to other layouts in the present, you will find that it fills a niche which is attractive to the average buyer. Car lovers, on the other hand, may not consider a front-wheel drive layout as appealing since it will not be as explosive in its performance. Full article
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