That doesn't mean a BRZ STI isn’t coming.
We’re sorry to interrupt Subaru fans in the middle of celebrating, but some important news has come across our desks in regards to that BRZ STI that’s being released to commemorate Subaru America’s 50th anniversary. Or at least the one that was supposed to be coming, because according to what Subaru has confirmed to Motor1, the STI-badged sports car will instead be a WRX STI Type RA. Perhaps out of wishful thinking or eery spy shots, may sites jumped on the STI bandwagon, ourselves and Motor1 included.
Unfortunately, that’s not the case, which is understandable given that Subaru’s Car Line Planning Manager of America, Todd Hill, told us that there’s absolutely no chance of a turbocharged BRZ. A BRZ modified with an aerodynamic body kit and weight-reducing components was a possibility, but the BRZ tS already fills up that category. Instead, we’ll be seeing the WRX STI Type RA roll around on June 8th in place of the BRZ of our dreams. The RA stands for “Record Attempt,” and its name reminds us of the WRX STI tA Type RA that Subaru released in 2013 as a sendoff to the previous generation WRX. That car was for Japan only, but this WRX is slated to be sold in North America.
To keep us hooked, Subaru gave some accompanying bits of information on the car before its official unveiling. What’s known us that the STI Type RA will be based on the 2018 model year WRX STI. Keeping it a step ahead of the base car will be a carbon fiber roof, that same carbon fiber rear wing we saw on the teaser image, upgraded suspension featuring Bilstein dampers, Recaro seats, and 19-inch BBS wheels, of course painted in the classic shade of gold that Subaru reserves for the wheels of its high performance cars. Subaru was unspecific about the powertrain changes, saying only that this WRX would have “gearing and engine upgrades.”
If anything, we can assume that means more horsepower and new transmission hardware intended to make the WRX accelerate faster around corners. It's not quite BRZ STI exciting, but it's exciting nonetheless provided that it'll have more power (the WRX STI already has 100 horsepower more than a BRZ). At least this news lets us reopen the investigation surrounding a mysterious camouflaged BRZ test mule bearing STI badges that was caught driving around Subaru’s headquarters in Michigan. Yes, that means a BRZ STI could still be coming, just don’t expect a turbocharger. Thanks for the WRX STI Type RA, Subaru, but that BRZ STI is the car we’re still waiting for.