With the next-generation Subaru WRX still an expected two years away, suggestions abound that the new all-paw steed is likely to return to its more aggressive rally-bred roots.

Subaru WRX STI - 2011

Talking to CarAdvice at last week’s 2012 Sydney motor show, Subaru Australia national corporate affairs manager David Rowley, assured us the next Subaru WRX would be a “fairly aggressive” car, but couldn’t share further details.

Subaru Australia managing director Nick Senior also made it clear to CarAdvice that he would love to see Subaru return to some level of competitive motorsport, if the right category presented itself – and financial considerations deemed it possible.

Subaru BRZ STI Sports Kit Concept - 2

With the launch of the rear-wheel drive Subaru BRZ (pictured above) and the Japanese manufacturer’s stand at the Sydney show being highlighted by two Subaru BRZ-based models – one a purpose built track car – a drift back towards a stronger interest in motorsport seems to be more apparent.

A recent report from industry journal Automotive News suggests a newly developed 2.0-litre turbocharged engine could find its way into a more powerful version of Subaru’s latest sports car, the BRZ.

Subaru Impreza WRX STI EJ20 - 2003

But that engine could also potentially see the return of a 2.0-litre powerplant between the strut towers of the next Subaru WRX, as was the case from the car’s Australian launch in 1994 to 2005, before being replaced by the larger capacity 2.5-litre engine from 2006 onwards.

Whatever ends up powering the new WRX, and its STI variants, die-hard fans of the marque will surely be motivated towards showrooms if the end result is yet another genuine performance rally weapon.

Subaru Impreza WRX STI Version V

The Subaru WRX’s cult status grew substantially between 1995 and 1997, with Subaru claiming three consecutive constructors titles in the World Rally Championship (WRC) before the team exited the sport at the end of 2008.