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Update: Subaru Australia says this is not a tuned by STI or STI edition of the Forester, it will simply be called S-Edition.

The Subaru Forester is a success story that any car company would love to share. Subaru has been fortunate to have built a strong reputation in Australia that has seen the likes of Forester and Impreza become household names trusted by tens of thousands of families. To add some spice to the current generation Subaru Forester, the Japanese company has today unveiled an exciting new concept at the Sydney motorshow.

According to the company, the Subaru Forester S-Edition concept is a taste of an additional variant that will join the Forester lineup next year. The Forester S-Edition concept is based on the Forester XT but, as you would expect, comes packed with a whole lot more.

It’s a fair guess that this Forester may indeed become a special edition Subaru Forester STI. We say this because the turbocharged 2.5-litre boxer engine outputs 193kW (24 kW more than the XT) and 347Nm of torque (27 Nm more than the XT). There is no 0-100km/h times yet but we do know that it comes with a whole list of additional features.

In concept form the Forester S-Edition is equipped with a paddleshift five-speed automatic gearbox, it gains a modified sports suspension as well as Subaru’s Variable Torque Distribution (VTD) All-Wheel Drive system.

From the outside it tends to look a little more aggressive thanks to STI sourced 17-inch high lustre alloy wheels and from the inside Alcantara seat trim (with S-Edition logos) and luminescent instruments with a unique centre design set it apart. Much like the Impreza WRX and STI, the Forester XT also gets drilled alloy pedals.

Nick Senior, Managing Director, Subaru Australia, said : “(the Subaru Forester S-Edition Concept) points towards an exciting development in our Forester range early next year. There’s no denying Forester’s appeal to Australians in both urban and rural environments, so we think this concept will only add to the huge interest.”

The 2011 Subaru Forester range will also gain the third-generation four cylinder horizontally opposed Boxer engine in 2.5-litre flavour. The new engine marks the biggest change to the Boxer in 21 years. You can read more about that here.

The Subaru Forester S-Edition Concept, or perhaps we should just call it the Subaru Forester STI or Tuned by STI will add to the growing lineup of the Forester range which now also includes a diesel (accounting for 29% of sales). The Subaru Forester has continued to retain its position as Australia’s best-selling compact sports utility vehicle so far this year, despite tough competition.

Read: Subaru Forester Review




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