Evo, STI Going Diesel?
Europe’s Euro 5 emissions standard has already killed off Mazda’s RX-8; is it any wonder that the Impreza STI is running scared? Autocar reports that the next-gen STI, due sometime in 2012 will not offer another version of the 2.0 turbocharged gas engines that have powered the car since it got a reputation for bargain thrills. Instead, a two-liter turbodiesel is likely to be the main engine on offer, as Subaru strives to keep the STI grunty without blowing its emissions limits.
Though a downsized turbocharged gas engine (likely 1.5 liter displacement) may still be on the table, the switch to diesel heralds a sea change in the STI’s orientation: rather than staying in its rally-focused mode, the STI will concentrate instead on circuit racing. Meanwhile, the Mitsubishi Evo XI is said to be going to a diesel-hybrid system, as it follows the STI from the gravel stage to the track. America was late to the Evo/STI party in the first place… will a move towards diesel performance once again doom the US to do without these AWD budget-blasters?
What do you mean, "the next-gen STI, due sometime in 2012 will not offer another version of the 2.0 turbocharged gas engines..." The STi has a 2.5 liter engine. In Japan, it might be 2.0, but I'm not sure. The Evo is 2.0, if memory serves. Boy, I'd miss winding this engine all the way up to 6.5k. The shorter rev range of the turbodiesel is blah. At least, I thought so with regard to the current Golf TDI.
The words "Boxer Diesel" are practically automotive porn to me. Then again, I thought my Peugeot 505 SW was sexy...
Makes sense to go diesel, if they want their cars to enter the competitive touring car circles. A 2 liter turbodiesel with a good tune can give nearly 200 bhp and a hundred foot-pounds more torque than a comparable gasser. 0-60 mph times won't suffer too much... make it a 2.5 and performance should be the same as the current 2.0 (Japan still uses the 2.0 boxer-turbo)... at least in terms of 0-60... high speed acceleration may suffer a bit... but then who (besides Jack Baruth) actually gets to go over 130 mph on the road nowadays?
If this is an emissions play then I doubt it is coming to the US this way. Subaru has shown a willingness to develop a discrete powerplant for the USDM STI as they did in 2004. Sounds like commenters here are salivating over a diesel STI but I am not convinced yet. It would certainly be interesting but I am not sure the overlap between diesel fans and rally-style car fans is enough to support such a product here in the US. There is already a diesel sport Impreza in Europe which is close to the normal WRX other than powerplant. That one might be an easier sell in America, though Subaru has revealed no plans to bring a diesel Impreza or Legacy to the US AFAIK. I predict the next gen USDM STI continues on with a version of the 2.5 gas turbo engine in 2012.