Detroit 2014: 2015 Subaru WRX STI Continues Its Go-Fast Legacy

It's been 20 years since the gearheads at Subaru Tecnica International first launched an STI version of the Subaru WRX, and today the Japanese automaker introduced the newest iteration of that idea, the 2015 Subaru WRX STI.

"For two decades, Subaru STI has been the byword for performance cars," said Subaru president and COO Tom Doll. "It will drive like nothing else, I promise you."

Based on the 268-hp 2015 Subaru WRX that we have already driven, the new WRX STI has a 2.5-liter turbocharged Boxer-four engine good for 305 hp. A six-speed manual transmission and Subaru's signature symmetrical all-wheel drive direct power to the road. As was the case with the normal WRX, Subaru declined to build a five-door version of the new STI, instead focusing all its attention on the sedan.

The Subaru WRX STI has a long history in rallying, and to help sate enthusiasts, the new car will be offered in a special Launch Edition that's styled to recall the classic Subaru rally cars of yore -- including the "555" car driven to victory by the late Colin McRae. In addition to some pieces of additional equipment, the 2015 Subaru WRX STI Launch Edition wears gold 18-inch BBS wheels that contrast with a WR Blue Pearl paint job.

With that focus on rallying, Subaru also used today's press conference to announce that Travis Pastrana will return to the Subaru rally team, alongside current driver David Higgins. Pastrana previously competed in Subaru rally cars from 2004 through 2010.

The 2015 Subaru WRX STI goes on sale in April. Although official pricing hasn't been announced, Doll said to expect a sticker "in line with the current model." The 2014 STI sedan starts at $35,290, including destination.

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