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  • This episode of Up to Speed is brought to you by Squarespace

  • Have I got a story for you.

  • I was driving home from a late night on the mountain,

  • flying down the Touge, drifting the turns like the Drift King that I am, when suddenly,

  • I spoted some headlights in my rearview, and they're coming fast.

  • I clutch kicked my car around the bend to shake the little challenger off but I just

  • couldn't lose it, it's sliding right behind me.

  • Is that an 8-6?

  • I'm the number two driver of the Akigi Red Suns God Damn it!

  • I slow for a turn but the punchy Corolla...

  • passes me?

  • Doesn't the driver even know this road?

  • After this slow right is a sharp left.

  • There's a ravine on the other side, he's gotta hit the brakes!

  • To my amazement the 8-6 flicks its tail from one side of the road to the other with ease.

  • The pulsing Eurobeat ends, and I am left with is the sight of a white hatchback leaving

  • me behind.

  • You know what the fu** this is!

  • This is everything you need to know to get Up to Speed on the Toyota AE86!

  • Hachi-Roku MOTHERFU****!

  • What makes the AE86 so cool is that for a long time, it wasn't.

  • While everyone in the world was drooling over the big dogs: The Skyline GT-R, The RX-7,

  • The NSX, and The Supra , the Carolla was riding it's own wave.

  • Other cars have more power, other cars are better looking,

  • Even in Toyota's own line up the Corolla was a under dog.

  • The Celica Supra was at the top, the MR2 was this weird spaceship little brother,

  • and the AE86 was just happy to be there,

  • knowing it would blow people's minds if given the chance.

  • Back in the 70s You either bought American or maybe german or british, because A.

  • there wasn't anything else and B.

  • It was basically your duty as an American.

  • But all of a sudden there were Japanese brands: Datsun, Honda and Toyota.

  • And their cars were good.

  • The Japanese saw the weak points in other brands and designed their cars to avoid them.

  • It might have been scary at the time but if you bought something Japanese, like a Toyota,

  • you could expect it to be reliable, well-engineered, and most importantly, affordable.

  • The Carolla had been all those things for nearly 17 years.

  • When first introduced, the Carolla was the smallest car in 'Yota's US lineup, and

  • maintained a rear wheel drive layout until the early 80s.

  • But Toyota couldn't ignore the benefits front wheel drive any longer.

  • It was more efficient, freed up interior space and was cheaper to build.

  • So in 1984, Toyota released a front wheel drive Carolla.

  • That's what the Corolla is, until this day.

  • So there you have it, everything you need to know to get up to speed on the- wait,sorry.

  • Oh yeah, I forgot.

  • Even though there was a front wheel drive version, Toyota also kept building

  • a rear wheel wheel drive version.

  • Using totally different layouts and platforms under the same name.

  • On top of that, the rear wheel drive version also had two versions, a two door coupe and

  • a three door lift back.

  • And then, There were two styles of each: The Levin, which had fixed headlights, and the

  • Trueno...Turino? Truno? Treno? No that was Trueno...

  • And the Trueno, which had pop up fu**ing headlights.

  • So, this rear wheel drive Corolla would be it's swan song, the ultimate culmination

  • of everything great about the Corolla.

  • So what do we call it?

  • Well, it'll be powered by a 4A engine, I's an E code chassis, and E80 to be exact, and

  • And it'll be the 6 variant.

  • I've got it, the AE86!

  • Corolla, Ultimate form!

  • "Wait! It's over 9..."

  • Toyota restyled the Corolla's Coupe and liftback bodies, and dropped one of their

  • best engines EVER, one of THE BEST engines ever under the hood: The 4A-GE.

  • This fun size four banger was designed with two things in mind: powering small cars like

  • the 86, and RACIN'.

  • It had a cast iron block for strength, an aluminum head to add lightness, and a redline

  • of 7 and a half grand.

  • Do you know what that sounds like?

  • Do you?

  • Imagine your neighbor's a beekeeper, making honey in his backyard.

  • One afternoon you sneak back there, you want a taste, just a little bit o' taste that sweet sweet nasty goop

  • You open up a hive to grab some of that sweet honeycomb but it turns out he's not raising bees...

  • They're chainsaws, and they're pissed!

  • It sounds like that.

  • The 4A-GE only made 128 horsepower BUT the 86 had a curb weight of around about 2300 lbs.

  • The car had superb balance too, meaning the weight was evenly distributed between each wheel.

  • The result was super predictable and agile handling.

  • To get the power to the ground, the 86 didn't use fancy independent rear suspension,

  • this things gotta be affordable, 'member?

  • It had a live rear axle like a fu**ing muscle car.

  • This made doing fat skids super easy and pretty unavoidable.

  • The AE86 had no business being as good as it was.

  • It's a holy union of driving excellence.

  • The 86 was driven in pretty much every kind of racing you can imagine.

  • There were 86 racing leagues, it raced in the British Touring Car Championship and won

  • that whole series, twice!

  • And despite being two wheel drive the 86 was also a killer rally car.

  • But above the rest, there is one sport the AE86 is most famous for:

  • Ever heard of..."drifting"?

  • The Corolla's small size and snappy handling made it perfect for charging down the mountains of Japan

  • A young man named Keiichi Tsuchiya would drive these roads everyday in his own AE86.

  • He didn't have the money to race professionally, so Keiichi honed his skills on the mountain.

  • And the kid was a natural.

  • Keiichi's sweet drift moves made him unbeatable on the mountain, and he gained a huge underground following.

  • Just like me.

  • Spending all your time drifting on snowy mountain roads without killing yourself makes you a

  • pretty darn good driver.

  • But would sloshing around on a mountain make you that much better on a track?

  • Fu** yeah!

  • Keiichi was so good, he got sponsored to race professionally immediately.

  • He started winning so much, that he was like "if I keep winning by this much,

  • people are gonna get bored.

  • And if people get bored, they're not gonna watch me race."

  • So, he started drifting turns.

  • He gave 'em the ol' razzle dazzle.

  • And the fans frickin' loved it.

  • It's like he took a 5 minute phone call in the middle of a 4 Runner video.

  • Even while he was racing, he spent his free time on the mountain.

  • Keiichi was enough of a star that he convinced some sponsors to give him some money to make

  • a little short film of his oversteering exploits.

  • That film is called 'Pluspy'. 'Plus pee' 'Plusssspeee"

  • And it's like a legit art film.

  • Like, it's not just a drift tape, it's art.

  • The video took the car world by storm.

  • Just like me.

  • People were all like 'Whaaat?

  • "The fu** is going on?"

  • It was basically the Velvet Underground of drift tapes.

  • Without Pluspy there would be no Gymkhana, no Fast and Furious, no Donut!

  • No me!

  • Toyota ended production of the AE86 in 1987, with almost no changes over the course of its life.

  • In 2009 Toyota revealed the FT-86 concept, developed in partnership with Subaru.

  • It was a two-door, four cylinder, rear wheel drive coupe inspired by the 86.

  • Hail to the King, baby.

  • In the states it was released under two names: The Subaru BRZ and the Scion FR-S,

  • but in Japan it was just called the Toyota 86.

  • Just like the AE86, it didn't have a ton of power, but it was light, and it liked to drift like it's daddy.

  • Just like me.

  • It's ironic that the sport the AE86 helped create, is the reason you can't afford one anymore.

  • The drift tax is a real thing.

  • The new 86 is a love letter to the age when the old 86 flourished.

  • A time when people wanted a no frills daily driver that was also fun to drive.

  • Just like Jessica.

  • Maybe that time is gone.

  • But if the revived interest in the AE86 is anything to go by, people will want a simple,

  • reliable, tofu-delivering underdog for a long, long time.

  • This episode of Up to speed is brought to you by Squarespace.

  • Whether you need a domain, website or online store, make it with Squarespace.

  • Do it!

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  • That's everything you need to know to get Up to Speed on the Toyota AE86.

  • What's your favorite?

  • Are you a Levin fan or a Trueno fan?

  • Do you like Initial D?

  • Would you ever swap an SR20 into an AE86?

  • I wouldn't. I would do like ITBs...make it real loud.

  • We've got merch up again: shop.donut.media

  • That is: shop.donut.media

  • Get yourself a shirt.

  • Monday, we've got Wheelhouse, hosted by my protege Nolan Sykes.

  • Tuesday, we've got Matt Field's Drift Corvette build. It's insane!

  • Friday, we have The Bestest, it's ranking and listing all cool shit. It's the best.

  • Send me a dollar for a Lambo. 2238 Purdue Ave, Los Angeles CA 90064

  • Follow me on Instagram, @JamesPumphrey.

  • If I get to 25,000 followers, I will pick one of you at random and send you something weird...

  • Something friggin' weird...

  • We've had haters for the first time in comments and I really appreciate you guys.

  • I love you guys, you're all car boys, you're all car girls, I love you!

This episode of Up to Speed is brought to you by Squarespace

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Toyota AE86 - Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed

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    Mike.J.Tsai   に公開 2018 年 03 月 26 日
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