The rumors about the Toyota FT-86 Concept’s production name are as numerous as the theories, with reports pointing in all sorts of different directions. According to the folks at the U.K.’s AutoCar, the car is likely to be called the Celica. The name is apparently being considered because it has a long history and resonates with consumers. However, most younger buyers (at which the car is aimed) are more likely to remember the Celica as the front-drive model that never quite lived up to the Acura Integra/RSX competition. And if Toyota truly wants this car to represent a new direction for the company, it would be best to go with something original.
Another source, The Detroit Bureau, proposes the theory that the FT-86 will become the next Scion tC. The tC is desperately in need of a replacement and the target audience is right. And considering the FT’s resemblance to the new Lexus LFA supercar, it would create a continuity between Totyota’s brands. The problem with that theory is that the FT would be priced much higher and be more performance oriented than the current tC, meaning the brand would still need a mainstream, front-drive volume seller to compete against sporty rivals like the Honda Civic.
Still, we have to think it will remain a Toyota model and don’t have much faith (or love for) the Celica name.