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The Toyota GR86 is now available…in ‘Gran Turismo Sport’

See if you like the car’s in-game version enough to buy the real one

The game will allow you to experience the GR86 more extensively than a dealership test drive. SCREENSHOT FROM GRAN TURISMO SPORT

Racing video games seem to be an ideal platform for automakers to introduce their latest models to millions of people around the world. Whether it’s an ultra-exclusive, one-off concept or the latest mainstream performance car, many gearheads anticipate getting behind the wheel of these vehicles virtually.

As with the Toyota GR Yaris that was unleashed to the gaming world before buyers could get their hands on it, gamers will now be able to try out the highly anticipated GR86 in Version 1.66 of Gran Turismo Sport before the actual car hits showrooms.

The GR86 update will likely be among the last ones for 'Gran Turismo Sport'. SCREENSHOTS FROM GRAN TURISMO SPORT

As a refresher, aside from the obvious cosmetic changes, the car has a stiffened chassis for better handling. The larger 2.4-liter naturally aspirated boxer powerplant can push out 232hp and 250Nm, and is mated to either a six-speed manual or automatic gearbox.

The car’s in-game arrival also coincides with the last round of the 2021 Toyota Gazoo Racing GT Cup’s qualifying races. Players will go head-to-head around Mount Panorama in the new GR86 on August 22.

The game is also a good tool for making an informed decision about purchasing the car. SCREENSHOTS FROM GRAN TURISMO SPORT

On a side note, you may be wondering about what happened to GT Sport’s previous track record of having a handful of new cars and circuits seeded per update. Well, developer Polyphony Digital has shifted its focus to the title’s latest iteration, which is poised to come out next year.

So, if you can’t wait for the GR86, take the virtual car for a spin first. Maybe it will amuse you until the real one shows up on our shores later this year.

Sam Surla

Sam is the youngest member of our editorial team. And he is our managing editor (believe it or not). He specializes in photography and videography, but he also happens to like writing about cars a lot.