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2015 Subaru WRX STI Debuts

New platform's (mostly) new range topper breaks cover at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show

Text By , Photography by Subaru

2015 Subaru WRX STI Details:

  • 300hp turbo 2.5L boxer motor carried over to next generation WRX platform
  • Features full aerodynamic body package
  • Electronic aides include Subaru Intelligent Drive, Driver Controlled Center Differential and Active Torque Vectoring
  • Special Launch Edition commemorating motorsports heritage limited to 1,000 units

When the third generation Subaru WRX - the era before the current version that debuted at the LA Auto Show late in 2013 - launched all the way back in 2008, the all-wheel-drive sport compact took a shellacking from critics and enthusiasts. A big reason was the uninspired design of the car, both in five-door hatch and four door sedan forms, exceedingly blah when compared to the flared fendered goodness of the model's STI trim.

So how did Subaru fix things? In 2011, they began manufacturing the standard, non-STI WRX with flared fenders. Done and done.

This morning at the 2014 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Mich., Subaru debuted the STI for the 2015 WRX, otherwise known as the fourth generation, and when we heard which engine was in the range-topping rally-inspired machine it gave us pause, taking us back to 2007 and the third-gen. rollout. See, the STI is ostensibly getting the same turbocharged 2.5-liter lump as the outgoing iteration, which seems a little counterintuitive given virtually everything else about the model is brand-spanking new.

This isn't so much a complaint as it is a "Huh?" We're sure engineers are working to find more ponies, whether that's in this mill or another - still, it threw us for a loop. And it shouldn't; 305 horsepower and 290 lb-ft of torque is nothing to sneeze at.

The power plant is mated to a specially reinforced six-speed manual transmission, the only way the STI comes. There is a staggering amount of electronic nannies on this edition of the WRX, which includes the Subaru Intelligent Drive (SI-DRIVE) powertrain management system, a Driver Controlled Center Differential (DCCD) and Active Torque Vectoring. The first allows the driver to tailor the car's driving characteristics by choosing from among three selectable modes, the second governs torque transfer response and the last applies brake pressure to the inside front wheel to facilitate more neutral cornering.

The new STI takes full advantage of the stiffer new WRX chassis, which helped net a quick steering response, 2.5 turns from lock to lock. Handling will also be enhanced with elements like aluminum front lower control arms, STI-tuned suspension and standard 18-inch wheels with 245/40R18 summer soles.

STI gets a lightweight aluminum hood, with the functional hood scoop set more deeply into the hood this time for better forward visibility. The full aerodynamic body kit includes signature rear wing and a rear diffuser.

The cabin is spruced up nicely, and again driver centric, starting with new Alcantara seating surfaces accented by red and black leather bolsters and red stitching. The 2015 STI also sports dual-zone automatic climate control, the All-Weather Package (dual-mode heated front seats, heated exterior mirrors and windshield wiper de-icer) and a pretty stout in-car entertainment system (AM/FM stereo with HD Radio, a single-disc in-dash CD player, 6 speakers, MP3/WMA capability, Radio Data Broadcast System (RDBS), Bluetooth hands-free calling and audio streaming, iPod control capability, iTunes Tagging, SiriusXM Satellite Radio (subscription required), USB port and a 3.5mm auxiliary audio input jack).

Subaru will also be offering a WRX STI "Launch Edition," a version that celebrates the brand's competition heritage and will be limited to just 1,000 units. All will be painted in WR Blue Pearl and floss gold BBS forged alloy wheels, like every proper classic STI. The Launch Edition will also rock a special cabin trim with blue highlights, short-throw shifter and keyless access and start.

Get a healthy dose of a Launch Edition in the image gallery. Look for pricing and availability for the 2015 Subaru WRX STI to emerge in the weeks ahead.

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273 comments
Eddie Münster
Eddie Münster

Although it looks hideous.. Subaru made a smart move in the design since the new EVOs are going 'green'. The new WRX was made to suit both crowds !

Emilio Garduno
Emilio Garduno

well its finally happened...Evo and Sti finally had a baby

Jonathan Dube
Jonathan Dube

I'm so excited about the 2007 Hyundai elantra look alike... not

Bobby Kmitta
Bobby Kmitta

Thank you for a subi that looks like a evo. Thats what all subi guys want...... dumb designer's

Jeremy Keeler
Jeremy Keeler

I bet 2/3 of the fanboys that blow money on these things do nothing more than throw a fart can on it and speed around residential areas. At least that's how the ones in MT are.

Alex Gillespie
Alex Gillespie

Yeh so who's excited about the new sexually transmitted infection?

Filip Dimeski
Filip Dimeski

EVO owners are haha so they can troll WRX owners

Kevin R-S
Kevin R-S

What happened to the fender flares? You try squeezing into a tight underground parking spot with concrete post on both sides with the prototype model and decide to leave it that way?? Duhhhhh previous model way more masculine! !

Dhruv Manani
Dhruv Manani

superior speedy one if I get I really want to drive it

Omar Atah
Omar Atah

It's Mitsubishi copy. The really lost the plot this time again!!

Caleb Smith
Caleb Smith

Not me. I still won't have enough money to get one.

Sean Choi
Sean Choi

they ran out of new ideas?=_= wow lan evo 10 + civic

Chris Greatrix
Chris Greatrix

lol its kinda funny how they put it as just "STI" get it? sexually transmitted infections? bah nvm...

Randy Lipnitzky
Randy Lipnitzky

I'm so excited about the new 2015 STI that I bought a new 2014 WRX Hatchback instead. Take that Subaru. No civic looking WRX for me. No sir.

Ben Dooley
Ben Dooley

I have a new sti, but its kinda painful and its starting to scab over, so no, im not really excited about it.

Michael Fadden
Michael Fadden

I have just recently fallen in love with Subaru cars. I am so impressed with their appearance and comfort. May be one in my future when moving back home.

Nikolay Stoyanov
Nikolay Stoyanov

Very good performance car , ZERO luxury in it. No thanks

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