If you follow any of CAR magazine’s various social media channels, you may well have spotted the Subaru WRX STi Diamond Edition taking part in Performance Shootout 2019. And now the local arm of the Japanese automaker has revealed official details about this special-edition model.

Conceived to celebrate thirty years of STi, the Diamond Edition was developed locally by the technical team at Subaru Southern Africa, with just 30 examples up for grabs (priced at R799 000 apiece, or some R28 900 more than the model on which it is based). Deliveries are due to start in January 2019.

Subaru SA says it took 18 months to develop the car, with the process including “substantial durability and wear testing, oil testing and dyno tuning”.

The result is an increase in power (thanks to an ECU remap and the fitment of a performance exhaust) for the 2,5-litre turbocharged boxer engine, which in this guise makes 260 kW (up from 221 kW) at 4 500 r/min and 464 N.m (up from 407 N.m) at 4 000 r/min. That renders this the most powerful WRX STi ever offered by Subaru in South Africa.

Top speed remains 255 km/h, but Subaru says its testing shows the zero to 100 km/h dash has been cut to 5,03 seconds (or seven-tenths quicker than the standard model “under the same conditions”).

The Diamond Edition – which like the standard model employs a six-speed manual gearbox – furthermore gains an engine brace and a Brembo braking system that includes six-pot callipers up front and two-pot callipers at the rear.

The special edition also features spacers on all four wheels, adding some 20 mm of width, while the body kit boasts splashes of “High Viz” yellow (a hue repeated on the brake callipers) and gloss-black 30 “Diamond Edition” badging. Subaru says the body kit effectively lowers the car – which runs on 19-inch Y-design alloys wrapped in 245/35 R19 rubber – by 10 mm at the front.

Inside, you’ll find a numbered plaque as well as a seven-speaker Harman Kardon sound system linked to a 7,0-inch touchscreen infotainment system incorporating Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Subaru SA says each of the 30 examples will be delivered to its owner with a special “owner’s certificate certifying the limited-edition validity of the car”. Look out for the January 2019 issue of CAR magazine (plus a video or two before that) to see what we thought of the Diamond Edition...
Subaru WRX STi Diamond Edition