For one thing, we're dealing with a fully-functional vehicle that already has some "evaluation" miles on it. The wheelbase is identical to that of the coupe, while the same can be said about the front section and even the doors.
While the commonalities might keep costs under control, increasing the chances of such a vehicle entering production, they also mean the rear legroom is extremely limited - last time we checked, the 86 was the world's smallest production four-seater coupe and such a title doesn't come without its cabin space drawbacks.
Even so, the added rear-seat headroom and the unconventional design could be strong assets. The changes have only seen the vehicle gaining 86 lbs (39 kg). This means the boxer engine under the hood, which finds itself at the limit of delivering an underpowered experience (for a sportscar, at least) wouldn't have to be upgraded for such family version.
Since we learned about Toyota engineers spending their time on a shooting brake derivative of the 86 as early as 2013, we have to admit the concept we see now doesn't exactly come as a surprise.
Still, given the limited sales of the sportscar, a more practical version could help, so here's to hoping the Shooting Brake doesn't have the same fate as the 2013 open-top derivative, which never moved past the concept car status.
Now that Toyota has unveiled the 2017 mid-cycle revamp for the 86 (the GT part of the car's name is gone), the timing seems just right for new body types.