Subaru WRX STI returns to the UK.
Blighty-based fans of the Scooby WRX STI – aka the Impreza – can wipe away the tears. Subaru has announced the 4×4 hoon-mobile will be back in the summer after it was killed off less than a year ago. ‘Recent movements’ in the exchange rate means it will cost £4,000 less than its predecessor.
The Impreza WRX STI unveiled at the Detroit motor show is based on the love or hate WRX saloon. It has a 2.5-litre flat-four turbo capable of producing 305bhp and 290lb/ft of torque mated to a six-speed gearbox that has a shorter throw for a ‘slicker, sportier shift’.
Enhancements over its predecessor include new spring and damper rates that have been meticulously retuned to make the ride more compliant but not at the expense of body composure. Subaru has also attached the power steering to a ‘more rigid’ gearbox mount, improving fuel efficiency while giving the steering a more direct feel and response.
An 25mm longer wheelbase means those riding in the back have a tad more room, while pushing the A-pillars forward by 200mm and adding a quarter light to the front window is said to improve visibility. The boot is bigger, too, although by how much is unclear.
Subaru has tried to address the problem of low-quality interiors by giving the new WRX STI soft touch materials, carbon effect and metal trim, a smaller D-shaped steering wheel and new dials.
The new exterior is comprised a bumper with integrated diffuser, twin dual mufflers, 18-inch alloy wheels and LED lighting used in the headlights, tail and brake lights. Those expecting a radical departure from the Subaru formula will be sorely disappointed, then ─ this is still very much the loutish, rally car-esque beast it has always been.
“The new model will only be available in limited numbers,” Subaru explained, before adding that more details will be released in the coming weeks. We’ll keep you posted.
The WRX STI is priced at £28,995.