Subaru launches STI-tuned Forester tS in Japan

  • Image Credit: Subaru
Subaru Forester tS Subaru Tecnica International, better known by its initials, STI, has finally unveiled its work at tuning the Forester into a higher performance machine. Unfortunately while tweaks to the suspension and styling are plentiful, it's not clear how much acceleration is going to improve from just a few minor upgrades to the powertrain.

All of the tS models come with a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder and continuously variable transmission. STI fits new software to control the engine and gearbox, plus a cooler for the CVT, but Subaru doesn't say what effect this has on overall performance. The Sport Sharp driving mode has also been also retuned in the SI-Drive system.

However, the Forester tS should definitely be a better handler with a 0.6-inch (15-mm) drop for the suspension and STI parts for the strut tower brace and rear subframe support. The upgrade to forged 19-inch wheels from BBS and commensurately larger tires should help the CUV stick to the road better, too, and Brembo ventilated brake discs front and rear can bring things to a halt.

On the outside, the Forester tS wears some subtle updates with a cherry-red pinstripe running around the front grille and rear bumper. STI also fits a new front and rear spoiler, plus black mirrors provide a little contrast on each side. Inside, there are some new seats up front with a mix of black leather and Ultrasuede with red stitching and matching door panels.

We were hoping Subaru might let STI go wild on the Forester to create a higher-riding take on the WRX STI, but that didn't happen. The tS goes on sale in Japan on November 25 and is limited to just 300 units. Prices ring up at 4,027,778 yen before the country's consumption tax ($34,170). Scroll down for all the details about this hotted-up crossover.
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STI Releases Subaru "Forester tS" in Japan
Nov 25,2014

Tokyo, November 25, 2014 - Subaru Tecnica International Inc. (STI)*1 today announced the release of the Subaru "Forester tS", which goes on sale on November 25 through Subaru dealerships in Japan.

With a development concept focused on creating an on-road vehicle which has a rugged styling, responsive handling performance and quality feel, the Forester tS offers an enhanced version of the driving performance the Forester provides as an SUV, delivering the ultimate in driving enjoyment and pleasure of ownership.

The Forester tS benefits from its own exclusive tuning the "S# (Sport Sharp) mode" for "SI-DRIVE". Driving performance has also been enhanced by the adoption of "brembo" ventilated disc brakes, BBS-designed 19-inch forged aluminum wheels and STI-designed front and rear under spoilers. The exclusively tuned suspension and use of STI's unique flexible parts mean that, under any conditions, the Forester tS delivers the "strong and nimble" driving feel on which STI prides itself.

The new model comes with distinctive specifications: On the exterior these include the "STI" ornament and cherry red pinstripe on the front grille and rear bumper, while the interior features a speedometer with an STI logo and a carbon-toned instrument panel. Features such as these serve to reinforce the model's identity as an STI-tuned car, evoking the pleasure of ownership.

The Forester tS is equipped with Subaru's unique driver assist technology, EyeSight*2, and is exclusively tuned to accommodate its lower ride height and brembo-designed brakes. It was also developed with careful attention to noise reduction, employing floor mats covered in sound insulating material, among other measures.

*1: Subaru Tecnica International Inc. (STI; President Yoshio Hirakawa; located in Mitaka, Tokyo)
The company manages motorsport activities of Subaru.
*2: EyeSight(ver.2) as it is known on the Japanese market.

Special Features of the Subaru Forester tS


245/45 R19 tires (TURANZA ER33)
BBS-designed 19-inch forged aluminum wheels
Brembo front 17-inch opposed 4-pot ventilated disc brake with STI logo
Brembo rear 17-inch opposed 2-pot ventilated disc brake with STI logo
STI-tuned suspension (15 mm-lower, inverted-strut front suspension)
STI-designed flexible tower bar
STI-designed flexible draw stiffener, front and rear
STI-designed flexible support subframe, rear
Exclusively-tuned ECU (Engine Control Unit)
Exclusively-tuned TCU (Transmission Control Unit)
CVT oil cooler


Exclusively-made black front grille (with "STI" ornament and cherry red pin stripe)
STI-designed front spoiler/STI-designed rear under spoiler
Black roof spoiler
Exclusively-made large-diameter muffler cutter
Fog light bezels (metallic silver)
Black door mirrors
Black side window moldings
Exclusively-made side cladding moldings (metallic silver)
Cherry red pin stripe on rear bumper
Exclusively-made "STI" ornament, front and rear
Exclusively-made "tS" ornament, side and rear


Exclusively-made luminescent speedometer (up to 260 km/h) with STI logo
Exclusively-made multifunction display
Exclusively-made leather lapped steering wheel (quality-feel leather with "STI" ornament and red stitching)
STI-designed push button ignition (red) with STI logo
STI-designed leather lapped gear knob with STI logo
Exclusively-made seats (black leather/black punching Ultrasuede® combination seats [red stitching and red accents])
Door trims (black punching Ultrasuede®/black Ultrasuede® with red stitching)
Carbon-toned instrument panel
AC controls comprising silver dials and piano black-toned switches with red bezel
Black interior (trims on pillars, roof, and window sills)
Exclusively-made side sill plate with STI logo

■Safety Equipment

Exclusively-tuned EyeSight
Exclusively-tuned VDC (Vehicle Dynamics Control)

Maximum 300 units (must be preordered by April 5, 2015)

Recommended Retail Price

Model Price (Yen)
Grade Engine Drivetrain Transmission Including
Forester tS 2.0-liter
four-cylinder DOHC
direct injection turbo
"DIT" engine
AWD Lineartronic 4,350,000 4,027,778

Note: Body colors available are WR Blue Mica,*3 Crystal White Pearl,*4 Ice Silver Metallic, and Crystal Black Silica.

*3: Must be preordered by February 8, 2015.
*4: Costs 32,400 yen extra (including consumption tax).


Subaru Forester Information

Subaru Forester

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