After a teaser campaign that had Subaru fans salivating, the US arm of the Japanese automaker has finally revealed two new performance models: the Subaru WRX STI Type RA and the Subaru BRZ tS, with each special edition limited to 500 units (but seemingly set to be offered in the US only).
While some were hoping that the latter would finally feature forced induction (and thus more oomph), it turns out that isn’t the case. So, still no STI version of the BRZ, then.
Subaru says the “RA” designation in the limited edition WRX STI model stands for “Record Attempt”, and makes reference to a track model that will attempt a Nürburgring speed record in the near future.
According to Subaru, the WRX STI Type RA – with its Cherry Blossom Red accents around the front mesh grille and new rear bumper cover – delivers “increased performance” through weight reduction, suspension tweaks and engine upgrades. It comes standard with a carbon-fibre roof panel, a carbon-fibre pedestal wing and lightweight BBS 19-inch forged alloy wheels wrapped in 245/35 R19 Yokohama Advan Sports rubber. In addition, the spare wheel has been dumped to save weight.
The vehicle is still powered by a 2,5-litre turbocharged Boxer engine, but peak power has been increased to around 231 kW (four units up) thanks to an STI-specified cold air intake, a high-flow performance exhaust, a retuned ECU and “stronger pistons”. In addition, the six-speed manual transmission features a revised third gear ratio paired with a short throw shifter.
Meanwhile, handling has been upgraded thanks to inverted front struts and rear double wishbone suspension, all with Bilstein dampers. Subaru says a modified multi-mode VDC gives the car “better stability control”, while the Brembo brake system, with monoblock six-piston front calipers and dual-piston rear calipers, comes with a silver finish and is paired with cross-drilled discs.
And the BRZ tS? Well, Subaru says this model delivers “pure handling delight” thanks to STI-tuned front and rear Sachs dampers and coil springs as well as flexible V-braces in the engine compartment. New draw stiffeners are added to the chassis and sub-frame to improve steering response.
Furthermore, the Subaru BRZ tS is equipped with 18-inch lightweight STI wheels shod with 215/40 R18 Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tyres. Brembo brakes round out the package.
As you would no doubt have noticed, the exterior also adds a more aggressive look with an in-your-face (manually adjustable) STI rear carbon-fibre spoiler, as well as STI front, rear and side underspoilers. The BRZ tS adorned with the same Cherry Blossom Red accents as the WRX STI above, while the foglamps have been removed and replaced with STI covers.
And the 2,0-litre Boxer-four under the BRZ’s bonnet? Well, that stays untouched…