2011 Subaru WRX STI sedan at the Nürburgring – Click above for high-res image gallery

Quick: What's the fastest production sedan in the world? Does it wear a Mercedes-Benz, Audi or BMW badge? What about the Porsche Panamera Turbo or the Cadillac CTS-V? There's no doubt that each of these vehicular behemoths is capable of ripping off some fast times on a race track near you, but Subaru is out to prove that its new 2011 WRX STI sedan has the chops to keep pace with the best from the rest of the world.

To prove its point, Subaru recently sent test driver and four-time World Rally Champion Tommi Mäkinen out to the famed Nürburgring Nordschleife course in Germany with a 2011 STI test car. According to reports, the vehicle used in this testing was equipped with a few significant upgrades including a larger turbocharger that normally sees duty in the Japanese R205 model and some lightweight aluminum bits, but one thing is for certain: the 7:55 lap time is a mighty impressive result.

For those keeping track of such things, the previous best lap set by a Subaru WRX STI was in 2004 at 7:59.41 and the new mark set by Subaru – albeit with a prototype, not a production car – is quicker than any of the aforementioned competition. Best of all, there's a video of one entire lap around the 'Ring and you can find the in-car footage after the break.


Related Gallery2011 Subaru WRX STI at the Nurburgring

[Source: Subaru]



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Subaru Releases Test Footage of Advanced Subaru WRX STI Research and Development from Nurburgring, Germany

CHERRY HILL, N.J., June 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Subaru today released footage covering advanced research and development carried out at the Nurburgring's racetrack in Germany, using a 2011MY Subaru WRX STI 4-door (sedan) test vehicle. Subaru has been using the famous Nordschleife course since 1992 for advanced R&D as well as tests of the WRX and WRX STI models. The video uploaded on the Subaru Global Site www.subaru-global.com features this year's development work. It is presented as a highlight of Subaru's persistent effort to stretch vehicle performance to unprecedented levels.

The concept of the 2011MY WRX STI is "The Fastest WRX STI Ever." At Subaru, the phrase "Fastest" refers to more than just top speed or maximum engine output. It implies driving with confidence. The WRX STI can be taken to its "fastest ever" performance by providing the driver with total driving control with confidence. Major upgrades to the 2011MY WRX STI focused on the chassis and suspension set-up, and tests at the Nurburgring demonstrated the supreme overall dynamics and linear behavior of the new STI. Tommi Makinen, the legendary four-time World Rally Champion, piloted the test vehicle for the development. He commented, "The car was controllable with precise and faithful handling even on tricky corners. I could easily predict the car's behavior. That is exactly what Subaru is offering, confidence. As a result, the 2011MY WRX STI test vehicle recorded 7'55''00, Subaru's fastest lap time ever, which is 4 seconds faster than the previous fastest time recorded in 2004."

The 2011MY WRX STI 4-door will go on sale world-wide this summer. Upgrades to the 4-door version will be carried over to the 5-door model.

About Subaru of America, Inc.

Subaru of America, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan. Headquartered in Cherry Hill, N.J., the company markets and distributes Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of more than 600 dealers across the United States. All Subaru products are manufactured in zero-landfill production plants and Subaru of Indiana Automotive Inc. is the only U.S. automobile production plant to be designated a backyard wildlife habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. For additional information visit www.subaru.com.