TOKYO MOTOR SHOW - S207 on Subaru Oz wish-list

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Subaru Australia wants to sell this car Down Under. But it needs to do more homework – and for you to buy more Foresters.

Subaru Tecnica International’s (STI) latest bespoke model, the S 207 is a powered-up and hunkered down WRX STI-based limited edition that is as close as you’re likely to get to a road-going Nurburgring 24-hour racer – at least with a Subaru badge.

The S207 was unveiled to media at Tokyo Motor Show today (October 28). Just 400 will be built, and all are for Japanese domestic consumption. Such is the popularity of STI stand-alone models in Japan, the company expects to have to conduct a ballot to choose the 400 buyers – and it’s this Friday, after only two days on sale.

The S207 features “exclusive [STI] engine and suspension tuning as well as distinctive interior and exterior design”.

Power from the 2.0-litre boxer turbo is 328ps (245kw) but torque is not quoted. STI insiders say it’s in the region of 450Nm. The current-model 2.5-litre Aussie spec STI is pegged at 221kW and 407Nm.

Other S207 specific features include adaptive DampMatic II front suspension and front-rear Active Torque Vectoring. Brakes are Brembos (six-piston front, four-piston rear – monoblocks all around) and the car rolls on “specially designed” 255/35R19 rubber. An aggressive aero kit also sets the car apart, while the interior features Recaro buckets (with integral side airbags) and other styling tweaks.

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In addition, up to 200 NBR Challenge Package upgrade kits will also be offered. These cars will feature raw carbon detailing, commemorative badging and as a further measure of exclusivity, just 100 get Sunrise Yellow paint work.

The future of stand-alone STI models like the S207 Down Under largely hinges on the success or otherwise of the just-announced Forester tS.

“As a follow on from Forester tS, we’ve got more discussions with STI about future models this week,” Subaru Australia boss Nick Senior told motoring.com.au.

“The S207 would be a challenge, but we want to look at opportunities [like this],” he stated.

According to Senior a mismatch of Japanese and Australian emission standards is a key issue – so too the fact that the S207 is based on the 2.0-litre STI, not the Aussie-spec 2.5-litre model.

“There’s no way we could get the 2.0-litre into our planning at this stage – it would be like launching an entirely new model.

“So you need to decide what is the number [of cars you could sell]. Is it 100 or 50 – and then do the economics,” he explained.

The S207 is priced at around 60 million yen in Japan. This compares to 39 million for the standard STI. In terms of relativity, that would place an Aussie ‘S207’ in the region of $90,000.

“That [price-tag] would be a challenge for some of the [sales] numbers you’d need to justify the project,” Senior stated.

By Mike Sinclair
www.carsales.com.au

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