Subaru introduced a significantly upgraded WRX STI model line for 2018, spearheaded by the WRX® STI® Type RA, a limited-production model inspired by a specially prepared WRX STI’s July 2017 record-setting lap of Germany’s famed Nürburgring racetrack. Engineered by Subaru Tecnica International, Inc. for driving enthusiasts seeking higher performance, the 2018 WRX STI Type RA is limited to 500 units and will arrive at Subaru retailers in early 2018.

The RA designation stands for “Record Attempt,” a designation given to special Subaru models over the years. The newest is the Subaru WRX STI Type RA NBR Special, which in July 2017 set a new lap record for a four-door sedan at Germany’s famed 12.8-mile Nürburgring Nordschleife race track, achieving a time of 6:57.5. The Prodrive-built time attack car is equipped with a rally spec 2.0-liter SUBARU BOXER® engine and Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive.

The first Subaru RA model was a competition version of the 1989 Subaru Legacy that broke the FIA World Speed Endurance Record by clocking over 62,000 miles in 18 days and setting a top speed record of 138 mph.

The 2018 WRX STI Type RA delivers increased performance through weight reduction, plus suspension and engine upgrades. The numbered, limited edition model comes standard with a carbon fiber roof panel, deleted spare tire, a carbon fiber pedestal wing and lightweight BBS® 19-in. forged alloy wheels shod with 245/35R19 Yokohama ADVAN Sport® tires.

The limited edition WRX STI Type RA increases horsepower of the STI’s 2.5-liter turbocharged BOXER engine to an estimated 310 horsepower (compared to 305 hp standard) with the help of an STI-specified new cold air intake, high flow performance exhaust, retuned ECU and stronger pistons. (Full specifications will be announced later this year.)

The 6-speed manual transmission features a revised 3rd gear ratio and a short-throw shifter. The weight reduction, additional horsepower and revised gearing all contribute to faster acceleration. Handling for the WRX STI Type RA is upgraded with Bilstein® STI Sport Suspension featuring special Bilstein dampers for the inverted-strut front suspension and double wishbone rear suspension. A modified Multi-Mode Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC) system gives the WRX STI Type RA enhanced stability control to keep it on its intended path.

The WRX STI Type RA shares Active Torque Vectoring with the other WRX STI models, and all WRX STI models gain a major brake system upgrade for 2018. The Brembo Performance Brake System now features stronger monoblock 6-piston calipers in front, monoblock 2-piston calipers in the rear and larger, cross-drilled rotors all around for better heat dissipation. New brake pads provide greater surface area for improved braking feel and fade resistance. The calipers feature an exclusive silver finish on the Type RA and are yellow-painted on the STI and STI Limited.

All 2018 WRX STI feature a revised v...
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Starting at $36,595
310 hp