Subaru Drops More Powerful WRX STI Type RA and Special Edition BRZ tS
Sorry—no extra power for the BRZ.
Subaru is adding new special edition models of its rear-wheel-drive BRZ coupe and the big-winged, all-wheel-drive sports sedan, the WRX STI, to its performance car lineup, the automaker announced Thursday in a press release.
The new WRX STI Type RA, short for "record attempt," represents Subaru's goal of setting a record lap at the Nurburgring Nordschleife with the Type RA NBR race car. Compared from the current production WRX STI, the new special edition is lighter, has an additional splash of power, carries some sporty-looking cosmetic changes, and will only a limited number of them will be built.
The Type RA appears to use the same 2.5-liter, turbocharged, horizontally opposed, four-cylinder, EJ25 engine that the STI has been sporting for years. Only now, it comes with a new cold air intake, a "high-flow performance exhaust," a re-mapped ECU, and new pistons. All of that combined allows for an output of 310 horsepower—a mere five more than what the normal STI is currently rated for. Additionally, the Type RA comes with a six-speed manual, like the normal STI, but this time with a different third gear ratio and a short shifter; the STI's handling has also been adjusted thanks to Bilstein dampers all around and a modified stability control system.
The extra power, new gearing, and the reduced weight "contribute to faster acceleration," Subaru said in the press release, but the automaker didn't give specific numbers on how much quicker the Type RA might be.
As for the cosmetic changes, the Type RA gets a new carbon-fiber roof, a carbon-fiber spoiler, and new lightweight 19-inch BBS wheels. There's also red pinstriping around the car, a new front splitter, a steering wheel wrapped in Ultrasuede, and Type RA badging.
The BRZ tS receives its own set of changes to differentiate it from the normal model. The special edition has new "STI-tuned" SACHS dampers all around the car, and draw stiffeners mounted to the subframe and chassis, which Subaru claims helps steering response. The tS also has 18-inch STI wheels that are wrapped with 215/40 Michelin Pilot Sport 4 rubber and Brembo provides stopping power for each wheel. Also, check out the new adjustable carbon-fiber spoiler on the rear lid and new lower diffusers on the front and rear of the car.
Like the STI, the tS has a bit of red pinstriping around the exterior. Both cars can only be ordered in Subaru's dark blue, black, or white paints.
Only 500 examples of each special edition model will be built. According to Subaru, those cars will start showing up at dealers in early 2018. Pricing has not yet been announced.