Subaru BRZ STI Sport: Similar to U.S.’s Performance Package, But Specialer

At the 2017 Tokyo auto show, Subaru is showing off a pair of new special-edition models that, for the most part, center around their shared exclusive paint color, Cool Grey Khaki. One is a Japan-market-only WRX STI, and the other is the BRZ STI Sport Edition covered here. It, too, is only available for the Japan market, along with a new range-topping STI Sport trim level.

Fans of Subaru’s STI performance brand, hold your horses—Subaru certainly has. The STI Sport gets no extra power over regular BRZs. No turbocharger, nothing. What it does get is, essentially, the contents of the U.S.-market BRZ’s Performance package. Sachs dampers, Brembo brakes, and special 18-inch wheels are included (the U.S. package has 17-inchers), plus a tiny STI badge in the grille that we don’t get here in the U.S. Ditto the Bordeaux Red interior color scheme, which wraps the seat bolsters in red leather and their centers in contrasting black faux suede. Stepping up to the STI Sport Cool Grey Khaki Edition simply vaults you into a class of 100—only that many will be built—and nets you the sweet paint.

This is the rare case of a foreign-market car that’s sort of cool that we also don’t have to lament for not being sent to the United States. Essentially, the same car is sold here, although we think the classy Bordeaux Red interior and sweet Cool Grey Khaki paint would be nice additions to the U.S. car’s options list. And if Subaru’s claims are true that the STI Sport uses actual performance tires—18 inches as opposed to the weak 17-inch all-season rubber standard on our car—we’d like to see those as well. Or, you know, just buy the BRZ Performance package and hit up your tire dealer for stickier rubber.