If you've ever been critical of the Subaru BRZ's relatively low power and torque outputs, pay attention.
Making its debut at the New York Motor Show today, the Subaru BRZ STI Performance Concept addresses that concern (plus a few others), and comprehensively turns up the wick on the company's compact RWD sports car.
The concept takes the 225kW turbocharged EJ20 boxer four from Subaru's GT300 race car (which competes in Japan's Super GT series) and drops it into a standard BRZ bodyshell that's been treated to some extra bracing to aid chassis rigidity.
A set of Bilstein dampers and STI lowering springs sit in each wheel well while the standard 17-inch wheels have been traded out for a quartet of 19-inch BBS alloys wearing Dunlop rubber.
Bodywork has been enhanced with an aggressive new front fascia design, wider fenders, flush doorhandles, a huge rear wing, a centre-exit exhaust and a prominent rear diffuser.
Inside, much of the production car's interior remains.
There are plenty of enhancements though, like the leather/Alcantara Recaro seats, racecar-style toggle switches on the centre stack.
Witness also the lashings of carbon fibre on the dash, a data-logging computer that displays lap times and G forces, and the carbon-rimmed steering wheel which carries the engine start button and an array of LED shift lights.
Headlamp and tail lamp clusters are also substantially different from the production model, but all of the changes aren't too extreme - there's no outlandish roof chop or anything like that. A production car based on this concept could very well become reality.
Could the BRZ STI Performance Concept herald the arrival of a more muscular BRZ? It's entirely possible, but nothing has been confirmed as yet. Watch this space.
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