GR86 Standard Vs. Premium: A Comprehensive Deep Dive

If you’re in the market for a sports car that’s both affordable and fun, you’ve probably heard of the Toyota GR86. It’s one of those cars that has enthusiasts salivating. But the big question remains – should you go for the Standard or the Premium model? 

Let’s take a deep dive and uncover the pros, cons, and the nitty-gritty details.

A Brief Comparison Table

Feature CategoryGR86 StandardGR86 Premium
Engine & Performance2.4-liter flat-four engineSame engine but with potential suspension and wheel tweaks
InteriorCloth upholstery, basic infotainment, manual A/CUpgraded upholstery, advanced infotainment, automatic A/C
Safety & TechnologyBasic safety features, standard lightsEnhanced safety tech, adaptive lighting
Exterior FeaturesStandard trim, headlights, and wheelsUpgraded trim, possible sunroof, upgraded wheels
PriceMore affordablePricier due to added features and enhancements

GR86 Standard: What’s in the Box?

GR86 Standard
GR86 Standard


  • Cost Effective: 

As the base model, it’s more budget-friendly. Perfect for those who want the GR86 experience without shelling out extra.

  • Essential Features: 

Even though it’s the “Standard”, you’re not really missing out on a lot. It has all the essentials you’d want from a sporty coupe.

  • Performance: 

It’s equipped with a 2.4-liter flat-four engine. So, you’re not compromising on power.


  • Lacks Premium Amenities: 

Misses out on some of the plush features found in the Premium version.

  • Base Audio System: 

For audiophiles, the sound system may be a bit basic.

GR86 Premium: Leveling Up the Experience

GR86 Premium
GR86 Premium


  • Enhanced Features: 

Enjoy added tech features, including a better audio system and advanced safety tech.

  • Better Upholstery: 

The Premium model boasts upgraded materials, making for a more luxurious feel inside.

  • Wider Wheel Options: 

Better handling with wider wheels and enhanced visual appeal.


  • Price: 

As you’d expect, all those luxuries come at an increased price.

  • Fuel Efficiency: 

With added weight from the features, there’s a minor hit to the fuel efficiency.

Also Read: Is Power Stop Z17 Brake Pad Worth It?

The Real User Approach

Imagine cruising down the highway on a sunlit day. In the Standard GR86, you’re loving the drive, feeling the road, and the engine’s purr. But then you think about the Premium – the leather-wrapped steering wheel, the advanced audio system, the adaptive front lighting… Does it feel like you’re missing out?

For some, the answer would be yes. But for others, it’s about the pure driving experience, not the bells and whistles.

GR86 Standard vs Premium: The Key Differences in Detail

Choosing between the GR86 Standard and Premium is no simple task, especially when both models offer such an engaging driving experience. However, the devil is in the details. To help you make an informed decision, let’s delve deep into the significant differences between these two models.

Performance and Handling

Both the Standard and Premium GR86 models are powered by a 2.4-liter flat-four engine, delivering adequate power to satisfy most enthusiasts. The primary difference in the performance department doesn’t come from the engine but rather from the handling and wheel department.

  • Comes equipped with standard alloy wheels suitable for most driving conditions.
  • Basic suspension setup ensures a good balance between comfort and handling.
  • Offers wider alloy wheels, which can improve grip and cornering.
  • Suspension might have minor tweaks to accommodate the wider wheels and offer a slightly more dynamic driving experience.

Interior Features and Comfort

A car’s interior is where you’ll spend most of your time, and differences here can drastically affect your driving experience.

  • Basic cloth upholstery that’s durable and easy to maintain.
  • Standard infotainment system with essential connectivity features.
  • Manual air conditioning and basic audio system.
  • Upgraded leather or suede-like upholstery that offers a more plush and comfortable seating experience.
  • Advanced infotainment system with a larger touchscreen, more connectivity options, and perhaps even integrated navigation.
  • Automatic climate control for more convenient temperature adjustments.
  • Enhanced audio system providing richer sound quality.

Safety and Technology

Safety and tech features are where the Premium model often differentiates itself the most.

  • Essential safety features like airbags, anti-lock brakes, and basic stability control.
  • Standard headlights and taillights.
  • Additional safety tech, which may include blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, and possibly lane departure warnings.
  • Adaptive front lighting which adjusts the headlights based on steering input, improving visibility around corners.
  • LED or upgraded taillights for better visibility and a more modern appearance.

Aesthetics and Exterior Features

Sometimes, it’s the small exterior tweaks that make all the difference in terms of appearance and functionality.

  • Basic exterior trim and finishes.
  • Standard headlights and tail lamps.
  • Chrome or other upscale finishes on the exterior.
  • Possibly a sunroof or moonroof for added luxury.
  • Upgraded, more aggressive looking wheels.
  • Exclusive color options not available on the standard model.

Price Point

Price is always a determining factor when choosing between standard and premium models.

  • More budget-friendly, offering a great balance between performance and cost.
  • With the added features and enhancements comes a steeper price. However, for many, the added luxuries and tweaks are well worth the additional investment.

Also Read: Problems With Morimoto XB LED Headlights.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the difference between the GR86 base and premium?

The key difference lies in the amenities and features. While the base model offers the essential GR86 experience, the Premium offers additional tech, better upholstery, and enhanced aesthetics.

Does the GR86 require premium?

While “Premium” refers to the higher-end model with more features, it doesn’t necessarily indicate the need for premium gasoline. Always refer to the owner’s manual for fuel requirements.

How fast is a Toyota GR86 premium?

The GR86 Premium, like the Standard, is powered by the 2.4-liter flat-four engine. It’s zippy, reaching 0-60 mph in approximately 6.1 seconds. However, always remember to respect speed limits!

What is the most expensive GR86?

The most expensive GR86 would be the Premium trim with all optional features and packages included.

What is the difference between GT86 standard and high?

The GT86, a predecessor of the GR86, had similar trim differences with the “high” being akin to the “premium” in the GR86. The differences were mainly in the features, aesthetics, and tech.

How many GR86 models are there?

As of the last update, the Toyota GR86 primarily comes in two main trims: Standard and Premium. However, always check with the official Toyota website or dealerships for the latest models or special editions.

Wrapping Up

Deciding between the GR86 Standard and Premium ultimately boils down to what you value most. If you’re after a raw driving experience without needing all the extras, the Standard might be your pick. But if you’re looking for that extra touch of luxury and tech, Premium’s the way to go. Whichever you choose, you’re in for a thrilling drive!

Ultimately, both the GR86 Standard and Premium offer exceptional value, but your choice will come down to your preference in features, comfort, and budget. Whether you’re a purist seeking a raw driving experience or someone who enjoys added luxury and tech, the GR86 has something for everyone.

Clayton S. Johnson

Well, I am Clayton who writes, manages, and does overall stuff for this website. I live somewhere in Stone Mountain, Georgia, and used to have a full-time job. But the pandemic taught me to do more do with my life. So, I quit my job and travel a lot! Since I have tons of time now, I write about all the stuff I have done, used, and have first-hand experiences.

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