Have wing, will travel

While we’re just a few short days away from the official sheet pull at the 2018 Tokyo Auto Salon, Subaru is teasing us with a few shots of its upcoming Viziv Performance STI, giving us a sneak peek at what the six-star brand might have planned for the upcoming WRX STI. Boy racers and vape enthusiasts, take note – this is your new icon.

Continue reading for the full story.

The Full Story

Subaru Promises New Viziv Performance STI For 2018 Tokyo Auto Salon!
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It should be said right off the bat that Subaru has a history of releasing some seriously desirable concepts that never actually make to the production stage, so temper your lust accordingly.

For those of you who may be unaware, the Tokyo Auto Salon is an annual car show centered on the latest and greatest performance parts, aesthetic enhancement pieces, and tech bits from the Land of the Rising Sun, bringing together tuners and aftermarket suppliers to show off their various wares to eager crowds of enthusiasts. The big makes also take advantage of the show to bring their customization and sport-oriented products directly to their target audience, hence the be-winged concept you see here.

Subaru frames this new Viziv concept as the embodiment of its “vision for the future of making cars that deliver enjoyment and peace of mind to its customers.”

For now, we’re limited to a pair of shadowy teaser image and no specs, but so far, we like what we see.
Of course, it should be said right off the bat that Subaru has a history of releasing some seriously desirable concepts that never actually make to the production stage, so temper your lust accordingly.

Now that you’ve been properly warned, this concept looks to be a sneak peek of the next-generation Subaru WRX STI. It’s a continuation of the Viziv Performance Concept that showed at the Tokyo Auto Show in October of last year, which appropriately previewed the base model WRX, and thus this latest appears to be upgraded for additional go-faster duties courtesy of the Subaru Tecnica International, Suby’s official in-house motorsport-focused skunk works division.

Subaru Promises New Viziv Performance STI For 2018 Tokyo Auto Salon!
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The first image shows a chunky, geometric front end with plenty of pink undertones (STI's go-to color).

The first image shows a chunky, geometric front end with plenty of pink undertones (STI’s go-to color). There are mean-looking C-shaped headlights, a centrally divided six-sided front intake, an extended front splitter, pronounced side skirts, and hugely flared fenders front and back, as well as small ancillary wings just above the front rims. The fascia also throws in a pink grid for the lower intakes, and we’re pretty sure there’s a sizable hood scoop lurking under that shadow.

Large wheels fill the fenders, while the side-view mirrors are pretty much non-existent, looking more like canards than actual usable mirrors. That means they are most likely used for rear-facing cameras to enhance the car’s aero. Of course, the WRX has never really been known as the most aero-friendly model, offering the same efficiency as a thrown brick, but every little bit helps.

The model should also keep its traditional four-door body style, and even though there are no actual door handles, there’s a very subtle line drawn down the rear fender, suggesting this concept is indeed still a sedan. Pop the door, and part of the fender will open with it.

Subaru Promises New Viziv Performance STI For 2018 Tokyo Auto Salon!
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Moving back to the topic of aero, the second image shows the STI's requisite boy racer rear wing, more pink trim, and the STI logo in big stylized letters. Because of course it does.

Moving back to the topic of aero, the second image shows the STI’s requisite boy racer rear wing, more pink trim, and the STI logo splayed out in big stylized letters on the end cap. There’s also interconnected taillights that will undoubtedly offer additional visual width to the vehicle, set with a black mesh overlay that’s reminiscent of the insert you get in the nose. We’re also likely to see a quad-tipped exhaust system in back.

Compared to the old Viziv concept, the newer STI version is definitely bigger, bolder, and more aggressive, most likely arriving with a wider stance and extra details throughout. Look for more in-your-face aero, deeper intakes, more logos, and the like.

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Note: previous Viziv Performance Concept pictured on the left, latest Viziv Performance STI concept pictured on the right.

So far, the interior of the concept is a mystery, but if we do get something, we wouldn’t be surprised to see a large touchscreen and heavily bolstered sport seats. However, it’s quite likely Subaru will keep the design study relegated to just the exterior styling.

There’s no details on the oily bits either, but hopefully that will change when the model debuts in Tokyo. Of course, we can assume symmetrical AWD for grip and a turbocharged flat-four engine for motivation.

All told, fans are chomping at the bit for more info on the next-gen WRX and WRX STI. Rumors continue to swirl, with some of the latest contending Subaru could add a hybrid powertrain to the mix. We’d also expect the new WRX and WRX STI to use the latest Global Platform underpinnings from the updated fifth-generation Impreza that dropped cover at the 2016 New York Auto Show.

In the power department, we expect the new STI to offer well over 300 ponies, with 350 feeling about right for a next-generation model. Rumors point to the 2020 model year as the most likely release date for the updated performance machine.

As a reference, the Subaru WRX STI will take on competitors like the Civic Type R, Ford Focus RS, and Volkswagen Golf R.

Look for complete details on the fresh Viziv Performance STI concept when it drops at the Tokyo Auto Saloon later this week.

References

Subaru WRX

2018 Subaru WRX STI High Resolution Exterior AutoShow
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Read our full review on the 2018 Subaru WRX STI.

2018 Subaru WRX STI – Driven Exterior High Resolution
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Read our full driven review on the 2018 Subaru WRX STI.

2018 Subaru WRX High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2018 Subaru WRX.

Subaru Viziv Performance Concept
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2017 Subaru Viziv Performance Concept

Read our full review on the 2017 Subaru Viziv Performance Concept.

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