First seen earlier this month in concept form, the Subaru BRZ tS sports several upgrades over the regular BRZ, although none affect the base car's 147kW/205Nm 2.0-litre non-turbo boxer four-cylinder engine. Instead, Subaru describes the tS as an “enhanced” variant.
Available in two model grades, the tS is effectively a BRZ with the STI catalog bolted to it – not unlike Australia’s own BRZ S – and is offered in standard tS guise and a more hardcore tS GT Package.
The BRZ tS adopts Brembo four-pot front, two-pot rear ventilated disc brakes, 18-inch aluminium wheels, and an STI designed front under spoiler. The car also gains several ‘STI’ badges including on its grille, front-fender and speedometer. According to Subaru, these aim to “evoke driver excitement and pleasure of ownership.”
The car also features beefed up suspension components, a retuned stability-control system and a new filter for the car's 'Sound Creator'.
Inside, there are smatterings of carbonfibre and Alcantara trim, as well as red-stitching for the seats and steering wheel, helping to spice things up over the standard car.
The high-grade GT package also adds a prominent carbonfibre rear spoiler, black 18-inch wheels and Recaro front bucket seats.
Despite it’s connection to STI, the tS is not the proper BRZ STI many have been waiting for. Instead, 'tS' is used to indicate STI's tuning involvement, a treatment previously applied to cars such as the Liberty tS, Forester tS and WRX STI tS Type RA.
Limited to 500 units, less than half of which will be fitted with the GT Package, the Subaru BRZ tS is to be sold exclusively in its home market and won’t be sold in Australia.
Let's hope it’s a sign there is more to come from Subaru and STI.