New Subaru WRX STI to Deploy Hybrid Technology?

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
new subaru wrx sti to deploy hybrid technology

In an effort to reduce emissions, Subaru is putting everything on the table in terms of its performance-focused WRX STI.

Keeping in mind your humble author is directly translating an interview given to a Dutch website (an activity which requires all of his brainpower), it seems there’s more than a passing chance that the next WRX STI will deploy some sort of hybrid technology in a bid to maintain its performance creds.

In a statement first appearing on AutoRAI, David Dello Stritto, who is listed on LinkedIn and other sources as General Manager of Sales, Marketing, & PR for Subaru Europe, is quoted as saying:

“CO2 emissions are becoming increasingly important and the current 2.5-liter four-cylinder turbo boxer engine simply can not continue to be used in the future. We do not say goodbye to the WRX STI, the car belongs to Subaru, but there will be a period where we will temporarily not run WRX STI.”

Okay, then. This could mean one of many things, not the least of which is the Subaru faithful may have to do without their halo car for an undetermined amount of time while the Exploding Galaxy figures out how to make enough power to placate their fans without harming any polar bears.

With the words “the 2.5-liter four-cylinder turbo boxer engine simply can not continue to be used in the future” ringing in one’s ears, it is more than plausible to imagine a downsized and boosted gasoline-powered engine powering the front wheels of the next WRX STI, while an electric motor (or two) fills in the blanks at the rear wheels.

The current STI Rexy (I’m using that term because Corey Lewis loves it so much) is powered by a 2.5-liter turbocharged boxer four, good for 305 horsepower funnelled through all four wheels. Don’t forget that Subaru displayed the Viziv Concept at this year’s Tokyo Auto Show, showing what may be the styling direction for the next WRX.

Subaru does not currently have a plug-in hybrid in its lineup but one is rumoured to be slated for production by the 2020 calendar year. It will surely debut as a mainstream car. If the gearheads in the STI program are permitted to get their hands on it and fettle the powertrain, it could prove to be just the ticket for the next WRX STI. After all, it’s not as if hybrid powertrains and gonzo levels of performance are mutually exclusive concepts.

[Image: Subaru]

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  • Conundrum Conundrum on Nov 15, 2017

    Having spent 30 seconds inputting that web page URL into Google Translate, I can say that a lot of what appears in this post is a glorious flight of the imagination on the hybrid front, not dissimilar from the guess about outside component supplier problems at Tesla, when it is outside suppliers of production line systems that are the main problem there. So, if one can speak out of one's left ear with impunity, I predict that the next STI will have a souped-up version of the 2.4 turbo being prepared for the Subaru Schoolbus and Dog Kennel Transporter Ascent, due out next Spring. "However, this does not mean that the WRX STI comes with an alternative powertrain, but Subaru emphasizes that everything is being investigated. David adds: "There will be a new WRX STI, but that takes time."

  • Publius Publius on Nov 15, 2017

    Hear, hear. Subaru has been c**k-teasing hybrids for years and years. Aside from the mild hybrid Crosstrek, it's been all talk, no action.

  • ToolGuy CXXVIII comments?!?
  • ToolGuy I did truck things with my truck this past week, twenty-odd miles from home (farther than usual). Recall that the interior bed space of my (modified) truck is 98" x 74". On the ride home yesterday the bed carried a 20 foot extension ladder (10 feet long, flagged 14 inches past the rear bumper), two other ladders, a smallish air compressor, a largish shop vac, three large bins, some materials, some scrap, and a slew of tool cases/bags. It was pretty full, is what I'm saying.The range of the Cybertruck would have been just fine. Nothing I carried had any substantial weight to it, in truck terms. The frunk would have been extremely useful (lock the tool cases there, out of the way of the Bed Stuff, away from prying eyes and grasping fingers -- you say I can charge my cordless tools there? bonus). Stainless steel plus no paint is a plus.Apparently the Cybertruck bed will be 78" long (but over 96" with the tailgate folded down) and 60-65" wide. And then Tesla promises "100 cubic feet of exterior, lockable storage — including the under-bed, frunk and sail pillars." Underbed storage requires the bed to be clear of other stuff, but bottom line everything would have fit, especially when we consider the second row of seats (tools and some materials out of the weather).Some days I was hauling mostly air on one leg of the trip. There were several store runs involved, some for 8-foot stock. One day I bummed a ride in a Roush Mustang. Three separate times other drivers tried to run into my truck (stainless steel panels, yes please). The fuel savings would be large enough for me to notice and to care.TL;DR: This truck would work for me, as a truck. Sample size = 1.
  • Art Vandelay Dodge should bring this back. They could sell it as the classic classic classic model
  • Surferjoe Still have a 2013 RDX, naturally aspirated V6, just can't get behind a 4 banger turbo.Also gloriously absent, ESS, lane departure warnings, etc.
  • ToolGuy Is it a genuine Top Hand? Oh, I forgot, I don't care. 🙂