The AE86 series of the Toyota Corolla Levin and Toyota Sprinter Trueno are small, front-engine/rear-drive models within the fifth generation Corolla range — marketed by Toyota from 1983 to 1987 in coupe and hatchback configurations.
Lending themselves to racing, the cars were light, affordable, easily modifiable and combined a five-speed manual transmission, optional limited slip differential, MacPherson strut front suspension, high revving (7800 rpm), twin-cam engine with oil cooler (e.g., in the US), near 50/50 front/rear weight balance, and importantly, a front-engine/rear-drive layout — at a time when this configuration was waning industry-wide.
While widely popular for Showroom Stock, Group A, and Group N, Rally and Club racing, the cars' inherent qualities earned the AE86 an early and enduring international prominence in the motorsport discipline of drifting. The AE86 featured centrally in the popular, long-running Japanese manga and anime series titled Initial D (1995-2013) — as the main character's drift and tofu delivery car. In 2015, Road & Track called the AE86 "a cult icon, inextricably interwoven with the earliest days of drifting."
The AE86 would go on to inspire the Toyota 86 (2012–present), a 2+2 sports car jointly developed by Toyota and Subaru, manufactured by Subaru — and marketed also as the Toyota GT86, Toyota FT86, Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ.