Subaru Trademarks BRZ tS For The U.S.
Is Subaru readying a special-edition sports car?by Ciprian Florea, on
Japanese automaker Subaru filed a trademark application for the "BRZ tS" name for use here in the United States back in January 2016, and now a new report claims that the moniker was recently registered to the company’s U.S. division.
According to AutoGuide, the trademark was applied for use on “Vehicles; apparatus for locomotion by land, air or water.” And while these kind of trademarks are generally applied for companies to protect their property, Subaru might have other intentions for this one. Specifically, the automaker may be preparing an U.S. version of the BRZ tS that it launched in Japan in 2015.
Why do I think this is not another case of keeping intellectual property safety policies? Well, the timing of the trademark is rather unusual. Given that the BRZ tS was launched a year ago, Subaru would have filed such a trademark back in 2015. Not to mention that a new version of the coupe would be more than welcome on the U.S .market, despite not having the highly anticipated drivetrain updates.
As a brief reminder, the BRZ tS is basically a standard model enhanced with STI parts inside and out. While the upgrade is pretty much about new badges and upholstery options, the chassis employs a sportier suspension system, while the unique 18-inch wheels benefit from 17-inch Brembo brake disks at all four corners. The drivetrain remains unchanged, but since it will be released after Subaru update for the 2017 model year, the 2.0-liter boxer engine should get five extra horses and five additional pound-feet with the six-speed manual transmission. Specifically, drivers who prefer to row their own will get 205 horsepower and 156 pound-feet, while those who favor automatics get the standard 200 ponies and 151 pound-feet.
There’s no word as to when the BRZ tS will hit U.S. dealerships, but if Subaru really wants to offer it here, it could break cover by the end of 2016.
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Why it matters
Granted, this trademark doesn’t mean that Subaru will indeed bring the BRZ tS STI to North America, but boy it would be great to get this limited-edition sports car here. Sure, it’s not that much given it comes with a standard drivetrain, but it’s been a very long time since Subaru has offered something special. In fact, apart from versions like the Series.Yellow, which usually have unique paint jobs and custom upholstery, there isn’t much to talk about in the BRZ lineup since its original introduction. Maybe this will finally come to an end and customers will get something fresh. A BRZ with STI badges would definitely be a good start.
Read our full review of the Subaru BRZ tS STI here.