With every passing auto show, the production version of the Subaru BRZ rear-wheel-drive sports coupe draws closer. Here in Los Angeles, the Japanese automaker has debuted its BRZ Concept STI – a look at what could happen if the new coupe is left in the hands of Subie's in-house performance tuning division.

Curiously, the Concept STI does without a turbocharged engine – something that's become a Subaru tradition with its performance cars. Instead, the direct-injected 2.0-liter Boxer four has been left unchanged. Never fear, though – STI has added a full smattering of performance bits to the BRZ, including a more aggressively tuned suspension setup, Brembo brakes, and lightweight materials (a carbon fiber roof and wheels, specifically) to reduce overall weight.

Other modifications include a new front fascia with a revised splitter, and while Subaru hasn't really been known to build pretty cars, the appearance of this BRZ concept is really growing on us. Check it out for yourself in the attached high-res image gallery.
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"SUBARU BRZ CONCEPT - STI -" to Debut at Los Angeles Auto Show

Tokyo, November 16, 2011 – Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. (FHI), the maker of Subaru automobiles, today unveiled the world premiere of "SUBARU BRZ CONCEPT - STI -" at the 2011 Los Angeles International Auto Show. (Press days on November 16 and 17. Open to public from November 18 to 27 in US)

The "SUBARU BRZ CONCEPT - STI -" is a concept car based on the "SUBARU BRZ", an all-new rear-wheel drive (RWD) compact sports car developed from an ongoing joint-project between Subaru and Toyota Motor Corporation. By making full use of the Horizontally-Opposed Boxer, Subaru's core technology, this concept car further pursued a "Pure Handling Delight" driving experience that can be realized by the Boxer engine's low center of gravity. Combined with motifs of Subaru's iconic performance brand "STI", the concept car embodies an ultimate handling performance and symbolizes the possibilities the SUBARU BRZ holds for the future.

Styling
• By installing the Boxer engine as low as possible, the low hood and sleek roofline together compose a sophisticated form. This is also blended with STI performance touches for a Subaru sporting profile.
• A hexagonal lower front grille, hawk eye headlights and fin-shaped fog lamps make the front face instantly recognizable as Subaru.
• STI-made lower front spoiler and rear wing magnify down-force and aerodynamics performance. They allow stable straight driving and excellent handling at high speeds.
• The rear design with bold rear fender flares, large rear-diffuser, and twin dual tailpipes intensifies the STI performance feel.
• A carbon-fiber roof, already installed in a WRX STI model and highly acclaimed, has been employed by the concept car. With it, extra weight reduction and an even lower center of gravity were achieved, contributing considerably to the ultimate handling performance this concept model aims to offer.
• The lively exterior color "WR Blue Pearl II" is a new generation of the iconic WR blue paint scheme that emphasizes the racing image.

Engine
• The Boxer engine has inherent qualities of light weight, compactness, low center of gravity, and high rigidity – all pointing toward its great potential as a sports car engine. Taking full advantage of these features, a 2.0-liter horizontally-opposed four-cylinder direct fuel-injection gasoline engine has been developed exclusively for BRZ.
• The engine has been designed with a square bore and stroke of 86 X 86 mm. Combined with Toyota's D-4S direct injection technology (fuel injection system), high output and high environmental standards were both attained, both expected of a new generation sports car.

Chassis and Body
• Compared with other Subaru models, the engine in SUBARU BRZ CONCEPT - STI - sits an impressive 120 mm lower and is positioned 240 mm closer to the center of the chassis. As a result, this car has achieved one of the lowest possible center of gravity in cars on the market today.
• By incorporating lightweight parts such as a carbon-fiber roof, the overall weight has been reduced. Subaru has also succeeded in attaining a body structure that is both lightweight and highly rigid in a striking balance. The concept car is the embodiment of pure driving enjoyment only obtainable with a "Boxer sports car".
• Its unique handling performance has been remarkably refined by adopting STI's lightweight 18-inch alloy wheels with performance tires and STI tuned suspension with excellent lateral stiffness.
• Brembo brakes enhance braking performance.

Major Specifications
Overall Length × Width × Height (mm): 4,230 × 1,800 × 1,280 Wheelbase (mm): 2,570
Engine Type: 2.0-liter direct fuel injection naturally-aspirated 4-cylinder
Horizontally-Opposed Boxer engine Tires: 215/45R18 (Front), 225/45R18 (Rear)


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  • 164 Comments
      dude
      • 3 Years Ago
      please subaru if there is anything to keep on this car its the tail lights....KEEP THEM!
      Commentotron2
      • 3 Years Ago
      Looks nice. Nothing to really draw away from the Totyota. Flip a coin. Add AWD and boost. In other words: make it a real Subie...
        magicjnkie
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Commentotron2
        AWD is not an option. The engine is mounted too far back for Subaru's standard AWD setup.
      brgtlm
      • 3 Years Ago
      Key to this car is the price. Hopefully it starts somewhere around $20K. If it starts near $30K, you start to compete with some much more powerful cars.
      Brian_E
      • 3 Years Ago
      Loving the looks - can't get enough of those tail lights (similar to the one on the Impreza concept). Now if Subaru can only deliver on these looks and not butcher it like the Impreza..... Keeping fingers crossed.
        DyanRucar
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Brian_E
        see MY2012 impreza for an idea of how this concepts lights will transition over to production spec.
        r.k
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Brian_E
        Here's hoping for twin-scroll on that 2.0 someday. I can understand leaving AWD out for the weight savings.
      WindsWilling
      • 3 Years Ago
      They will sell every one of these and the Toyota variant on looks alone. It's the best looking sub-30k car out there. That said, many of the people they're targeting this car at won't bat an eye to it. It weighs more than expected and/or doesn't have anywhere near close to the power needed to make this car truly "fun". And it's price is going to be way too high, putting it against competition that will walk this car day or night in the straights or the turns. The "miata" guys are going to buy miatas still as well. Awaiting the next-gen WRX...
      Zack TST
      • 3 Years Ago
      This will have a turbo engine or my name is mud. It just doesn't right now. Why would subaru keep the engine so weak if most of their production cars have turbos? I'll bet the farm on this.
        Brian
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Zack TST
        Toyota and subaru have an agreement, and, why would you offer both turbo'd and n/a versions at launch? The formula is pretty simple, offer N/A, Everyone whos been waiting will buy one, boom, then offer FI, then everyone who bought an N/A will sell it and buy a FI version
          You guy
          • 3 Years Ago
          @Brian
          Since we don't know the details of said agreement, we don't have any idea what Subaru is "allowed" to do. What they're going to do is check the reaction from the public (i.e. "I'd buy it if it were faster...") and decide whether or not to add a turbo. I still want to think that Subaru has something up their sleeve with this car, and at Tokyo we find out.
        AcidTonic
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Zack TST
        What if Toyota decided to pay for dibs on the first Turbo car in the form of the next Supra. I look at this car and it *screams* future Supra. I bet this is why.
      flyingtiger1966
      • 3 Years Ago
      Please grant me a beautiful, simple and analog interior.
      kewals10
      • 3 Years Ago
      The front looks like someone with a mouthguard, like a boxer ready to rumble.
      Gary Corde
      • 3 Years Ago
      The rear quarter panels seem a little "slab-sided". It really doesn't flow well at all.
      Suleiman Abdul
      • 3 Years Ago
      Not good with Toyota... Are you fuckin kiddin me
      Dean The Machine
      • 3 Years Ago
      Maybe it's just me... but I feel like Subaru got the short end of the stick in this deal with Toyota. This car is just not a Subaru! I don't know what else to say! It's like the Saab 9-2x that was a rebadged Subaru WRX.... it wasn't a Saab, just the same as this isn't a Subaru.
        DyanRucar
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Dean The Machine
        really? subaru engineered it, toyota designed it....what would that makes this, then?
      bsetrader1
      • 3 Years Ago
      The BRZ is the automotive world's vaporware. I think Subaru will regret this venture and the hit to their reputation and sales on this car. The sins are deviating from AWD, no turbo, and a power to weight ratio that is more in the Honda-Acura range. The wing on the back shouts "riced and ridiculous" not fast and furious. The Mustang shelby GT500 has 650 HP and doesn't need a ridiculous wing from Boeing to keep the car on the road. So Subaru, lose the ricer wing, put a VF52 IHI turbocharger on and tune the car to 305 or more HP. Also look at what Hyundai is doing with the Sonata. This car has already lost on specs!
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