A few years ago, Subaru came out with the S207 limited edition in Japan, and it was marketed as the more powerful version of the WRX STI. This year, the Japanese automaker decided to do the same thing, but gave the performance sedan even more power this time, and they are calling it the WRX STI S208. Similar to the last one, this will only be exclusive to Japan, only 450 examples of the special version will roll off the assembly line too. Do not be fooled as it is not just the exterior and the interior that got some enhancements, but significant changes have also been made.
To improve the overall driving experience, the WRX STI is now made with a carbon fiber roof to lower the center of gravity, while also cutting down some of its weight. For even better agility and control over cornering, Subaru and STI worked together and gave the sporty sedan’s suspension some tweaks.
Though the Japanese automaker did not specify, they mentioned that the S208 will have an improved output compared to the S207. Though my guess is that it would have just a little less than 400 horsepower. Just for some reference, the previous model had a 323 horsepower turbocharged 2.0 liter engine with 318 lb-ft (431 Nm) of torque - that is a little more than the newly released 2018 WRX STI Type RA, which is actually available in the United States. The said model also has a carbon roof, and under its hood, a 2.5 liter unit producing 310 horsepower and 290 lb-ft (393 Newton metres) of torque.
This October 25 at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show, expect to see the new S208. It might even be displayed alongside its successor, the next WRX STI - if it does make an appearance. There is also the Viziv Performance Concept that might make it to the auto show, along with the Japan-only BRZ STI Sport.
Both these road-going JDMs are said to be special edition models. In fact, they’re so hard to come by that you can only get a chance to purchase them when you get chosen during the lottery. You heard that right. Interested buyers will have to first sign up in Subaru dealerships, to get a chance to be part on the list of people who can buy one. This marketing scheme gives the car more exclusivity, doesn’t it? And money is not the only thing you need to get your hands on these. Will you be one of the lucky winners?
A lot of Subaru enthusiasts must be excited to hear this news. The only downside is that the WRX STI S208 will not be available outside of Japan. Stay tuned for more information regarding the model’s engine specifications.