Steane Klose | Apr 27, 2007

TRD Aurion - Losing its cool...er

As already reported on this site, Toyota and their performance car division TRD have made it clear that it is not their intention to pitch the upcoming TRD Aurion at the heavyweights from HSV and FPV.

Grrrr....when I grow up I want to be a Clubsport

An article in todays Herald Sun further confirms this and provides us with some rather interesting insights into exactly what the Aurion TRD will and won’t be.

It won’t be AWD although this was considered but ruled out as too expensive. There will be no expensive intercooler or modifications to the bonnet to allow for the supercharger conversion. Until relatively recently these were both on the menu.

It seems recent improvements to the Eaton Supercharger used by the TRD Aurion have negated the need for an intercooler. Sounds interesting...

On top of this, the final price could vary by up to $10,000 and hasn’t been bedded down yet.

Mike Breen the spokesman for TRD stated that an AWD Aurion would have been a serious threat to HSV and FPV. What about a FWD Aurion?

“It’s now a more sophisticated performance car, not an all-out speed wagon, but the bottom line is it’s fun to drive. It’s a typically smooth, sure-footed front-drive chassis with the TRD refinements and power boost.” Breen says

So, reading between the lines, TRD have realised that FWD cannot deal with the sort of power required to compete with powerful RWD cars. So they have dropped the intercooler, possibly dropped some power and created a nice safe sporting sedan for bespectacled librarians and budding horticulturalists.

In doing so they now need to pitch it at a more serene market against the likes of Subaru’s Liberty GT and the Golf R32 according to Breen. However both of these cars are AWD and a little more manic than any Aurion is likely to be. Is the TRD Aurion in the midst of an identity crisis before it is even released?

Perhaps the most telling quote from Mike Breen was;

“It will be a step up from the Aurion Sportivo, not a step across from an FPV or HSV car”

If you would rather have a FWD TRD Aurion over an AWD Subaru Liberty GT then race down to your Toyota dealers around the end of July. It will be winter so don't forget the cardigan.

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