Subaru Stirs the BRZ STi Pot
A teaser photo on Twitter implies we won’t have to wait long to see what Subaru has up their sleeve.
Last week we showed you a barely disguised Subaru BRZ that Autoblog suspected to be a possible STi variant—one that enthusiasts have been crying for ever since the BRZ's introduction. This afternoon, Subaru tweeted an image of what appears to be a BRZ trunk lid with a spoiler identical to the one in Autoblog's spy shots, saying simply "Stay tuned... 6/8/17. #STI." The distinctive trunk and tail light contours identify the car in the picture as a BRZ. This pours about a gallon of gasoline on the fire of rumors about a potential BRZ STi, and seems to confirm the existence of this car. But what, exactly, will this BRZ STi be, besides a BRZ with a giant rear wing?
In their article about the disguised car they saw, Autoblog speculated that the hypothetical BRZ STi may only be a North American version of the BRZ tS, previously available only in Japan. Road and Track
tested the BRZ tS at Suzuka in 2015, and reported that it had a number of handling, braking, and chassis improvements, as well as 18" Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires. But the BRZ tS was lacking the one thing just about everyone wants - more power. As Autoblog noted, the car they saw did not have the top mount intercooler that Subaru favors, indicating that it does not have forced induction. The BRZ (and its clone, the Toyota 86) has its flat-4 engine mounted extremely low in the car, around knee height (source: my own 2014 BRZ), leaving plenty of room for an intercooler under the BRZ's hood. Though it is possible there may be a front mount intercooler instead, as well as a turbo or supercharger in place of the standard air box, based on the earlier BRZ tS the potentially upcoming STi package may be limited to handling and brakes only - components that the aftermarket already offers, as well as the existing Performance Package.
According to Subaru's tweet, all will be revealed on June 8.