At long last, Motor Image has officially launched the facelifted Subaru BRZ in Malaysia, with enthusiasts around the country jumping for joy. Why? Unlike the previous BRZ that was offered with a six-speed automatic transmission, the new one can now be had with a six-speed manual as well (previously available on a special order basis).

Both transmissions are mated to the familiar 2.0 litre D-4S direct-injected, naturally-aspirated boxer-four petrol engine (200 PS and 205 Nm), with drive going to the rear wheels. Subaru quotes a higher fuel consumption for the manual (7.8 l/100 km) compared to the automatic (7.1 l/100 km), following the ECE cycle.

Aside from the introduction of a manual option, the BRZ’s suspension has been revised with updated springs and dampers, as well as a larger rear anti-roll bar for improved responsiveness, stability and comfort. Rigidity also gets bumped up thanks to strengthened strut tower braces, transmission crossmember plate and rear wheel housings.

The facelift brings with it a new front fascia that features a more angular U-shaped spoiler, full-LED headlights that incorporate C-shaped LED daytime running lights and LED indicators, plus the fog lights are now LED-type units.

Down the sides, sharp-eyed fans will spot the redesigned side slits on the front fender as well as the new 17-inch machined-finish 10-spoke wheels. The latter, along with the new LED taillights, can also be found on the BRZ’s brother-from-another-mother, the Toyota 86.

Inside, you’ll find a new multifunction steering wheel, redesigned instrument cluster with a wrapped visor, updated controls for the dual-zone automatic climate control and a new 4.2-inch colour multifunction display. The last item is now able to display vehicle performance data and a lap timer should you enjoy track days often. For further reminder that this is a sports car, red stitching has been applied throughout the cabin, and there’s a new BRZ logo embroidered into the seat backs.

Standard kit includes keyless entry, push-button start, cruise control, dual-zone auto climate control, leather and Alcantara upholstery and a 2-DIN radio/CD player with six speakers. Safety-wise, there are seven airbags, ABS with EBD and brake assist, new Hill Start Assist and revised Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) with a more lenient Track mode.

On to the most important part then, the price, where the manual is the most affordable option at RM224,389 on-the-road without insurance, followed by the automatic at RM230,749 (now RM10,000 less than the pre-facelift model). Both variants are significantly less expensive than their Toyota siblings by up to RM33,000.

GALLERY: Subaru BRZ facelift in Malaysia (the enthusiast’s choice)