Subaru WRX and WRX STI Confirmed for Debut at the LA Auto Show

Posted by Stephen On Saturday, August 31st, 2013

New Subaru WRX front

Earlier this week we heard some very interesting tidbits of automotive gossip from the folks over at Automotive News concerning Subaru’s plans for future vehicles. Among the various confirmations and possibilities put on the table, the most relevant by far is that the new Subaru WRX and Subaru WRX STI will make their debut at the 2013 LA Auto Show in November.

Looking Back to the Subaru WRX Concept

Regular readers will recall the Subaru WRX Concept that was shown in March of this year at the 2013 New York Auto Show. For the first time ever, we got a glimpse of a WRX without “Impreza” at the front of its name, and it was a very sweet glimpse indeed.

While Subaru specifically stated that the WRX Concept shown in New York was NOT close to production, the car looked undeniably appealing. Here’s an image of the WRX Concept, for those of you who either missed it the first time around, or otherwise want a reminder of what we’re dealing with:

Subaru WRX Concept

As you can see, the Japanese brand’s concept WRX sedan looks great. Flashy, aggressive, and sleek; clearly a car that was meant to burn rubber.

Sedan-Only WRX and WRX STI Coming in 2014

Unfortunately, while the WRX Concept sedan looked spectacular, we now know that the sedan is the only class of WRX we’ll be seeing from here on out. So, all our readers craving a new Japanese hot-hatch will just have to look elsewhere. The old Impreza WRX hatchback just didn’t get enough attention. After all, the “classic” WRXs are all sedans.

Fortunately, if the production WRX / STI is anything close to the concept, very few people will be crying over the lack of a hatchback option. As far as we know, the next-gen WRX/STI should feature goodies such as a lightweight carbon fiber roof, an integrated rear spoiler, the iconic WRX hood scoop, a slightly wider wheelbase complete with a lower and larger front fascia to increase engine cooling and decrease aerodynamic lift.

In addition, we can be fairly certain that the new Subaru WRX / STI is coming sometime in the first half of 2014 as a 2015MY. The production model will feature Subaru’s favorite 2.0L four-cylinder boxer engine (same as what’s in the BRZ), tuned up with direct-injection and turbocharging. The Japanese automaker has confirmed the WRX will output at least 265 horsepower, if not more. And that’s just in the standard version… The higher-performance WRX STI will get a high-performance engine capable of at least 305 hp.

Note that’s “at least”. The Golf R’s going to have 296HP and get to 60 in 4.9 seconds. Subaru will want to at least match that, for sure.

Subaru BRZ STI Still a Ways Off…

I confess, when I first read about the LA debut of Subaru’s WRX STI, for a split-second my heart jumped for joy because my mind read “WRX” as “BRZ”. As you may or may not know, Subaru fans have long been waiting for a BRZ STI. Earlier this month we thought we had it, thanks to a misleading teaser for the debut of Subaru’s BRZ tS. Which explains why the “BRZ STI” was so fresh in my mind.

Nonetheless, after that teaser I think it’s safe to say we were all hoping to see a BRZ STI by the end of 2013. But alas, it’s not meant to be. In fact, Automotive News’ reports only leads us in the opposite direction… Subaru is apparently not planning to “freshen up” the BRZ line until late 2015. That’s 2 more years!

Even if we’re not getting a BRZ STI anytime soon, though, the Subaru WRX and WRX STI definitely have the potential to steal a lot of press attention at the LA Auto Show. Of course, there are still several months between now and then, and Subaru could end up watering-down the WRX Concept more than they ought, but on the whole this is excellent news for Japanese car fans everywhere.

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