295-hp, Luxury-Oriented Subaru WRX S4 Debuts in Japan

The newest generation of the Subaru WRX has already received some criticism for being too soft compared to past models of the car, and this Japanese-market special edition takes this newfound refinement to a new level. The Subaru WRX S4 is a fully loaded version of this rally-inspired compact with a standard CVT, a softened suspension, and all sorts of technology features to further displease WRX traditionalists — but, hopefully, attract certain buyers in Japan.

To create the WRX S4, Subaru takes the standard WRX sedan and performs some modifications including a retuned suspension, revised power steering mounts, along with extra power for the 2.0-liter turbocharged engine for a total of 296 hp. This is all supposed to make for a much more comfortable WRX, and the S4 is also only available with the Lineartronic continuously variable transmission.

If this all seems heretical for a Subaru WRX, then you’ll really be upset about the Subaru WRX S4’s other comfort-oriented changes like additional piano-black trim inside and the addition of Subaru’s EyeSight active safety technology. Since no Subaru Impreza or WRX models in the U.S. currently offer the EyeSight system, the WRX S4 hints that this tech may be heading to our shores in these models sometime soon.

Although it may cause a riot among Subaru WRX faithful, we can rest assured that the more refined Subaru WRX S4 is unlikely to make it to the U.S.; the WRX S4 goes on sale this week at Subaru dealers in Japan.