Subaru WRX Factory Rally Car Will Make You Want a New STI Even More
It has the power, the widebody, and—most importantly—the wing.
Subaru's rich rallying history goes back to the early 1990s, informing every performance car it has ever made, really. And although a hardcore STI version of its venerable WRX sedan has yet to be revealed—if it ever will be—the company is staying true to its racing tradition. Subaru unveiled its latest WRX-based rally car for us to see on Wednesday, and while it's partially limited by regulations, it still looks like a beast.
Formally known as the Subaru Motorsports WRX Rally car, it's set to debut this year at the Ojibwe Forests Rally in late August. It will be driven by Brandon Semenuk with co-driver Keaton Williams. Later in the 2024 season, Travis Pastrana will also be driving in a second car for the team.
The car itself is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder boxer engine, which has been custom-built for the application. It's restricted by class regulations to 22 pounds of boost, and it has to run a 33-millimeter restrictor plate as well. As a result, the engine produces a modest 320 horsepower and 380 pound-feet of torque.
This is no stock WRX, though. Built by Subaru's technical partner Vermont SportsCar, it has a fully seam-welded body along with custom suspension and other modifications to make it a monster on the dirt. The stripped-out interior likewise features an FIA-spec roll cage along with plenty of top-tier safety features, like Sparco ADV Prime competition seats, to keep everyone inside unharmed and in the right place.
The cherry on top is a custom carbon fiber widebody, which not only looks the part but is functional as well. Its huge rear wing produces the downforce necessary to keep the car pressed onto the rally stage at high speeds.
You can't buy the Subaru Motorsports WRX Rally, but it's as close as we've gotten to a hotter WRX. It's currently unclear if Subaru has any plans to put an STI version of the high-performance sedan into production, but in the meantime, the automaker will post a video series about the rally car's development on its YouTube channel starting on Wednesday, Aug. 9. That will either be enough to keep your mind off it or drive you to make an angry Facebook post lamenting about what could have been.
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