Still no BRZ STI unfortunately...

Subaru has just announced two new special-edition models for the 2018 model year, and both are engineered by the performance-focused STI division. If you were looking to buy a WRX STI or a BRZ in the near future, you can now look into the more capable Type RA and tS models, respectively. Each vehicle is limited to 500 units and carry unique features that improve performance on and off the track.

Exact specifications and pricing are not yet available, but more information will be released closer to their market launch, which is scheduled for early 2018. Updates for each model include exterior modifications, new interior trim, and upgrades to the drivetrain and the chassis. Find out more about both cars below.

Continue reading for the full story.

WRX STI Type RA

2015 - 2016 Subaru WRX STI High Resolution Exterior
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Subaru Unveils Beefed-up WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS for 2018 High Resolution Exterior
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Subaru WRX STI Subaru WRX STI Type RA
Based on the already capable WRX STI, the Type RA joins a long line of "Record Attempt" designated vehicles that go back to 1989.

Based on the already capable WRX STI, the Type RA joins a long line of "Record Attempt" designated vehicles that goes back to 1989, when a competition Subaru Legacy broke the FIA World Speed Endurance Record. A specially developed WRX STI Type RA NBR will attempt a similar record at the Nurburgring this summer, so the Type R is pretty much a tribute car for the road.

Subaru Unveils Beefed-up WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS for 2018 High Resolution Exterior
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The beefed-up WRX STI comes with carbon-fiber roof panels, a spare tire delete, carbon-fiber wing, and lightweight BBS wheels.

The beefed-up WRX STI comes with carbon-fiber roof panels, a spare tire delete, carbon-fiber wing, and lightweight BBS forged alloy wheels wrapped in Yokohama Advan Sports tires. The 2.5-liter boxer engine gained a new cold air intake, high-flow performance exhaust, and a retuned ECU for an estimated output of 310 horsepower. That’s five extra horses compared to the standard, which might not seem like much, but makes a difference when paired with the other updates. There’s also a six-speed transmission with a revised third gear ratio and some "weight reduction."

Other updates include new front struts and Bilstein dampers, Brembo brakes with six-piston front calipers, Recaro front seats, and Ultrasuede steering wheel. Cherry Blossom Red accents highlight the sedan inside and out, with the package rounded off by individually numbered plaques for all 500 units.

BRZ tS

Subaru Unveils Beefed-up WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS for 2018 High Resolution Exterior
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Although it's also tuned by STI, the tS is far from being a full-fledged STI model, which is rather disappointing given the recent rumors.

Although it’s also tuned by STI, the tS is far from being a full-fledged STI model, which is rather disappointing given the recent rumors. Much like all special-edition models up until now, the tS lacks the engine upgrades that BRZ fans have been asking for. Instead, Subaru added bespoke Sachs dampers and coil springs, as well as draw stiffeners for improved steering response. Arguably the biggest news is the 18-inch wheels, the largest ever fitted on a BRZ, shod in Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tires for superior grip. Styling-wise, it sports an exclusive STI rear carbon-fiber spoiler, Cherry Blossom Red accents, "tS" badges, and STI fog light covers. Inside we can find leather and Alcantara upholstery with red stitching, red leather bolsters for the front seats, and unique gauge clusters.

Subaru Unveils Beefed-up WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS for 2018 High Resolution Exterior
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Not exactly the BRZ STI we need and deserve, but I guess it’s better than nothing.

Both cars will be available in WR Blue Pearl, Crystal Black Silica, and Crystal White Pearl exterior colors.

Subaru of America, Inc. has announced two new performance models: the 2018 Subaru WRX STI Type RA and 2018 Subaru BRZ tS. Both are performance focused derivatives engineered by Subaru Tecnica International, Inc. specifically for driving enthusiasts. Each vehicle is limited to 500 units and vehicles will arrive at Subaru retailers in early 2018.

WRX STI Type RA
The RA designation stands for “Record Attempt” and has been applied to various Subaru performance models. The original venture took place in 1989 when a competition version Subaru Legacy broke the FIA World Speed Endurance Record by clocking over 62,000 miles in 18 days and set a top speed record of 138 mph. Furthering this spirit of endeavor, a special race model WRX STI Type RA NBR Special will attempt a Nürburgring speed record this summer.

Subaru Unveils Beefed-up WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS for 2018 High Resolution Exterior
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In keeping with this tradition, the 2018 WRX STI Type RA delivers increased performance through weight reduction, suspension and engine upgrades. The new, numbered limited edition model comes standard with a carbon fiber roof panel, the removal of the spare tire, a carbon fiber pedestal wing and lightweight BBS® 19-in. forged alloy wheels shod with 245/35R19 Yokohama Advan Sports tires.

Powered by a 2.5-liter turbocharged BOXER engine, the limited edition WRX STI Type RA increases horsepower to an estimated 310hp with the help of an STI-specified new cold air intake and high flow performance exhaust. A retuned ECU and stronger pistons also contribute to the increased engine performance. The six-speed transmission features a revised 3rd gear ratio paired with a short throw shifter. The weight reduction, additional horsepower and revised gearing all contribute to faster acceleration.

Subaru Unveils Beefed-up WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS for 2018 High Resolution Exterior
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Handling has been upgraded with inverted front struts and rear double wishbone suspension all with Bilstein® dampers. A modified multi-mode VDC gives the car better stability control to keep it on its intended path. The Brembo® brake system, with monoblock 6-piston front calipers and dual-piston rear calipers, features an exclusive silver finish and is paired with cross-drilled rotors for better heat dissipation.

The WRX STI Type RA is immediately identified by an exclusive Cherry Blossom Red accent around both the front mesh grille and new rear bumper cover. An STI front underspoiler has also been added for better stability at high speeds. The exterior mirrors with integrated turn signals, a roof-mounted shark fin antenna and STI fender badges now come in a black finish. The rear deck lid displays the WRX STI Type RA badge.

In addition to the eye-catching exterior, the WRX STI Type RA cabin features Recaro® performance design front seats with red bolsters and stitching as well as an embossed STI logo on the head restraints. The signature red stitching and accent trim is visible throughout the cabin. The steering wheel is wrapped in Ultrasuede® for better grip and has a black gloss-finish center spoke insert with STI logo. Push-button start with Keyless Access is also standard equipment. Each of the 500 WRX STI Type RA produced for retail sale has been individually numbered with a plaque mounted on the center console.

BRZ tS
The 2018 BRZ tS (tuned by STI) delivers the highest level of “fun to drive” and “pure handling delight” through greater flexibility, better control and stability.

BRZ is renowned for its ultra-low center of gravity and precision handling, and the new BRZ tS adds STI-tuned front and rear SACHS® dampers and coil springs as well as flexible V-braces in the engine compartment. New draw stiffeners are added to the chassis and sub-frame to improve steering response. The BRZ tS is also equipped with 18-in. lightweight STI wheels (the first time that a BRZ has been offered with 18-inch wheels) mounted with 215/40 R 18 Michelin Pilot® Sport 4 tires for superior grip and quicker turn-in. Brembo® brakes at all four corners round-out the package.

The exterior also adds a more aggressive look with an exclusive STI rear carbon fiber spoiler. The spoiler is manually adjustable to fine-tune rear downforce. The addition of STI front, rear and side underspoilers helps control airflow for better traction and stability.

Subaru Unveils Beefed-up WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS for 2018 High Resolution Exterior
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The BRZ tS is also adorned with an exclusive Cherry Blossom Red accent around the front grille and unique rear bumper cover. The rear hatch displays the official BRZ tS badge. The exterior foldable mirrors, roof-mounted shark fin antenna, BRZ and SUBARU badging all have a black finish. Also, the fog lights have been removed and replaced with STI fog light covers.

The cabin features black leather and Alcantara® upholstery with contrasting red stitching and accents throughout the interior, including steering wheel, door and dash panels, knee pads, shifter and emergency brake boots. front seats have red leather bolsters and the seatbacks are embroidered with the tS logo. The visor over the gauge cluster is unique to this model, as is the interior door trim. The center console has been updated to a cast black finish. The BRZ tS also comes standard with red front seat belts and a frameless interior rear view mirror.

Subaru Unveils Beefed-up WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS for 2018 High Resolution Exterior
- image 719480

Both the 2018 WRX STI Type RA and BRZ tS will be available in WR Blue Pearl, Crystal Black Silica and Crystal White Pearl. Both models will be distributed throughout Subaru’s retailer network beginning in the first quarter of 2018.

Exact specifications and pricing will be announced later this year.

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