And it looks like a genuinely good racecar for the road.
The Subaru WRX has become a symbol of sadness and retrospective resentment towards one of the finest manufacturers to have ever graced a rally stage. The WRX of today is overstyled and underpowered (not really, but there's no STI model anymore), and it now falls to other companies to keep the Subaru name cool. One company that has been willing to take on that challenge is Prodrive, which last month teased a Subaru 22B-inspired recreation. We have been getting small details over the following weeks, and now it's been revealed with subtle restyling by Peter Stevens, who styled the original Impreza WRC in 1997. At a cost of around $700,000 including taxes, it's extremely pricey. Is it worth that ludicrous sum? Let's see.
Unfortunately, Prodrive has only released three photos at this point, but we're sure more will follow. For now, the company has informed us that each of the 25 examples to be made will have "an original two-door Impreza WRX chassis at its core."
Thanks to the extensive use of carbon composites, the car weighs "less than 1,200 kilograms," or somewhere below 2,645 pounds. The 2.5-liter flat-four is based on Subaru's latest cylinder block but has been re-engineered with bespoke internal components, including new cylinder liners, pistons, connecting rods, and a valvetrain with variable cam timing. Garrett has supplied the turbocharger, while a high-performance intercooler, airbox, and Akrapovic titanium and stainless steel exhaust complete the turbo sundries. The headline figures are 400 horsepower, 442 lb-ft of torque, and 0-62 mph in under 3.5 seconds.
Power goes to all four wheels via a six-speed sequential with helical cut gears and semi-automatic shifting, providing gearchanges in as little as 80 milliseconds. A WRC-style launch control system can automatically take the car through first, second and third gear without any driver intervention. An active center differential is complemented by limited-slip differentials at each end of the car. This is a proper rally car for the road, then.
Elsewhere, the McPherson strut suspension carries over, "but with machined uprights which can be tuned for camber and geometry optimized for the wider 1,770-millimeter track." Bilstein adjustable dampers and new springs and anti-roll bars complete the suspension upgrades, while AP Racing supplies the 380 mm vented front discs with their six-piston calipers, and the 350 mm rears with four-piston calipers with floating bells and multiple pad options. A set of 19-inch Prodrive wheels with Bridgestone Potenza rubber complete the look.
Inside, "the driver dashboard is a full-width high-definition multi-page display including a data logger," and various levels of performance can be accessed, as can anti-lag adjustment. We are also told to expect a recreation of an authentic late 1990s Impreza interior using a combination of leather, Alcantara, and carbon trim, with a lightweight seat and safety cage optional, but no interior images have been provided.
The car will make its public debut at the 2022 Goodwood Festival of Speed this Thursday, 23 June.