We're expecting to finally see the production version of the Subaru BRZ sports car at the Tokyo Motor Show in early December, but not before the automaker teases us with one more concept. At this year's Los Angeles Auto Show, Subaru will unveil this, the BRZ Concept – STI (yes, that's its official name), showing what the automaker's in-house tuner can do with the all-new, lightweight, rear-wheel drive sports car.

Curiously, the STI team has chosen to leave the BRZ's 2.0-liter naturally aspirated Boxer four untouched. A shame, since a turbocharged version of the all-new powerplant would certainly make sense for an STI-badged version of the car. Subaru has, however, fitted upgraded suspension bits, new Brembo brakes and larger 18-inch wheels.

The neat thing about the STI Concept is that this is actually the first time we've seen the Subaru's exterior design – we've only seen full models of the Toyota/Scion version of this car. We like what we see so far, though we're not exactly blown away. Then again, we probably shouldn't expect much from an automaker that hasn't exactly been known for aesthetics over the years. Of course, this being the STI version, a large wing has been fitted to the rear deck, and the car is painted in a new evolution of Subaru's classic blue, called WR Blue Pearl II.

We'll see the car in person in just two weeks, but for now, hit the jump for Subaru's press release and see some official renderings of the BRZ STI in our attached high-res image gallery.
Show full PR text
Subaru BRZ Concept – STI to Debut at Los Angeles International Auto Show

-- First look at Subaru BRZ styling

-- STI-tuned chassis and carbon-fiber roof deliver the ultimate in handling and CoG

-- First RWD Subaru sports car

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Subaru of America, Inc. announced today that it will show an all-new concept version of its upcoming BRZ sports car at the 2011 Los Angeles International Auto Show. Dubbed the Subaru BRZ Concept- STI, the concept car represents the next step in lightweight performance sports cars combined with the race-bred tuning of Subaru Technica International (STI).

The first BRZ concept car to be shown with bodywork, the Concept – STI strongly hints at the styling of the production BRZ and features unique STI performance features.

Styling

Sleek, low and tightly coiled bodywork blends with STI performance touches for a sporting profile. A hexagonal front grille, hawk eye headlights and fin-shaped fog lamps are instantly recognizable as Subaru. The exterior colour "WR Blue Pearl II" is a new generation of the iconic WR blue paint scheme that has adorned both racing production STI's.

The body is set-off with aero-tuned lower front spoiler and unique rear fascia, a rear wing for added down-force and a carbon-fiber roof to lower its already record setting center of gravity specification. The rear design features bold rear fender flares and large rear-diffuser giving way to polished stainless-steel quad-tailpipes. Vented rear bumper corners contribute to improved aerodynamics performance.

Engine

The concept car employs the totally new Subaru "FA" Boxer engine exclusively designed for the RWD BRZ sports car. In order to achieve properties best-suited for the BRZ sports car, the overall structure of this 2.0-liter naturally-aspirated four-cylinder boxer engine has been designed with a square bore and stroke of 86 X 86 mm. The inherent qualities of the Subaru Boxer engine were mated to a direct injection fuel system, which further improves combustion efficiency, running smoothness up to high rpm and high environmental standards.

Chassis

The lightened Concept – STI features an STI-tuned suspension, Brembo brakes and unique 18-inch wheels and tires. The Subaru-engineered and built chassis boasts a rigid frame housing a two-plus-two interior and front engine/rear-wheel drive layout. With the engine mounted low and rearward in the engine compartment to allow for near-perfect balance and one of lowest CoG's of any car on the market.

The BRZ Concept – STI is designed to combine lightweight, a low polar moment and razor-sharp reflexes for the ultimate handling machine. The low engine placement also allows for a very low and blade-like hood design. Short front and rear overhangs reduce the yaw moment of inertia.

Compared with other Subaru models, which already feature a low centre of gravity and optimal weight distribution, the engine in the Subaru BRZ - STI - sits even lower, 4.7 inches lower in fact and is positioned 9.4 inches closer to the centre of the chassis.

The first RWD Subaru, the production Subaru BRZ will begin production in spring 2012 as the only mass-produced front-engine, Boxer engine rear-wheel drive sports car in the world.

SUBARU BRZ Concept – STI Specifications
Body size (Overall: Length x Width x Height): 166.7 X 70.9 X 50.4 inches
Wheelbase: 101.2 inch
Engine: Subaru Boxer "FA" engine - 2.0-liter naturally-aspirated four-cylinder Horizontally-Opposed Boxer engine
Tire size: 215/45R18 (Front), 225/45R18 (Rear)


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  • 115 Comments
      kaneda
      • 3 Years Ago
      This country has become so obsessed with Horsepower that we've lose touch with the pure thrill of driving light-weight, agile cars. I know, because I bought a 2010 Mustang GT500. Sure I love the 540bhp, but around every turn, it's a brick. No matter what suspension tweaks are made to the Boss or the SVT Cobra, weight is weight. This car was designed to handle and feel like a pure sports car...to be alive in the drivers hands. Not to drop the clutch and drag race your friends. My favorite car ever was my 2004 STi. With 300bhp, I used to stay clued to the rear bumper of 500bhp M5's and E55's. Why? Cause it handled like a dream and I had full confidence in what the car was doing. From the sound of it, the BRZ and FT8C will bring back the magic of light weight, perfectly balanced sports cars. When I see this car, I can't help but think this is that the 40K+ Nissan 370z should be...What a great time to be a car enthusiasts.
      ACSRHS
      • 3 Years Ago
      I think I'm getting more irked by the fact that everyone is complaining about something... Not enough horsepower? It's 2600(!) pounds! No AWD? So what! At least the focus was balance and handling. It looks boring and/or overdone... That's why you can either mod it or keep it stock! Come on... It's a simple RWD 4 seat coupe that weighs under 3000 lbs, comes with a manual AND limited slip for under 30K. And it handles the curves, evidenced by the C&D prototype drive. It's what most of us have been asking for from these automakers.
        Turbine_junkie
        • 3 Years Ago
        @ACSRHS
        Thank you...seems like people here have tunnel vision about sports car....if they knew that the inspiration of this platform was the AE86..they would know...then again that would be asking too much from them to be educated before posting their comments..
      snap_understeer_ftw
      • 3 Years Ago
      so...no turbo? although it's a shame, I see no sufficient reason to not love the car for what it is. A lightweight RWD coupe meant to be fun to drive fast in the twisties since this is meant to be a fun car, I wonder how the oiling system for the engine will support lateral loads. I know of 2 different friends that lunched EJ207 engines in their GC subies at the same track on summer tires (not even track rubber)....the EJ series is notorious for oiling deficiencies under high cornering loads
      Lada F1 team
      • 3 Years Ago
      Red window tint? This looks like Need For Speed Underground.
      Zeer
      • 3 Years Ago
      Subaru has also released a photo of the actual concept... http://image.itmedia.co.jp/style/articles/1111/01/l_do_suba111101_01.jpg Minus the spoiler, the BRZ STI looks great.
      AP1_S2K
      • 3 Years Ago
      more cowbell
      wfaddah
      • 3 Years Ago
      finaly a subaru that looks decent
      Agent55
      • 3 Years Ago
      The boys and girls over at Car & Driver just drove the prototype, check it out.
        NipponEngine
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Agent55
        yep. the article quotes the project manager as saying this was "more of a handling than horsepower" car. they also have the toyota hp specs listed, tho...
        Agent55
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Agent55
        ... They're also estimating $28,000 & 2,800 lbs. for the base model. That's getting dangerously close to a lot of other interesting choices for the money.
      joe shmoe
      • 3 Years Ago
      i like the sube rear end. i like the toyo front end.
      sysadm1n
      • 3 Years Ago
      http://www.carmagazine.co.uk/upload/27170/images/1SubaruBRZConceptSTIfirstofficialpictures.jpg
      EverythingBagel
      • 3 Years Ago
      Hot. This looks slightly edgier than the Scion/Toyota, which looks more smoothed out. The windowline is also different since that 2000GT is reserved for the Scion/Toyota I suppose.
        Nzo
        • 3 Years Ago
        @EverythingBagel
        Rear looks much better on this version I think. Better lights and bumper
      Zarkoff500
      • 3 Years Ago
      The background and rendering looks like it could have been done by Polyphony Digital. And 2800 lbs and close to 200 HP should be loads of fun to drive. I own an Integra GSR that weighs about the same but with 30 HP less and it is a fun car to drive. Power and weight wise, this is very similar to a RSX Type S or Civic Si, but with RWD. That sounds like a recipe for success as those cars have received positive reviews but these will have the crucial sports car dynamic of rear wheel power.
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