Future Models - Subaru 2020 WRX
New engines considered for Subaru WRX
T-WRX: Subaru’s current WRX and STI range are among the most pollutant in the small car performance market, with up to 213 grams per kilometre emitted from the manual WRX sedan.
Tightening emissions forces Subaru to study new powertrains for WRX and STI
12 April 2017
STRICTER emissions standards are forcing Subaru to consider new powertrains for
its next-generation WRX and WRX STI performance heroes, that are likely to come
to market in about 2020.
Speaking to GoAuto at the international first drive of the new XV in Japan,
Subaru general manager of overseas sales and marketing Makoto Inoue revealed
that the company was contemplating new performance engines.
“This is under consideration, under discussion, but definitely I think the
market tendency requires us to… achieve the boost, the power and the
environmental factors,” he said.
“So, in that sense, if we will be able to introduce the next-generation STI, or
WRX, definitely we will have to consider to adapt some new technologies.”
When launched back in 2014, the current-generation Subaru WRX introduced a new
2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder Boxer codenamed FA20F, which featured
direct injection and a twin-scroll turbo, replacing the old 2.5-litre EJ255
Power peaks at 197kW at 5600rpm, while maximum torque of 350Nm is available
from 2400 to 5200rpm and the combined fuel consumption rating with a six-speed
manual is 9.2 litres per 100km and 8.6L/100km in continuously variable
transmission (CVT)-equipped models.
Average carbon dioxide emissions however, ranges from 199 grams per kilometre
in the CVT up to 213g/km for the manual – making the WRX more pollutant than
higher displacement and six-cylinder engined Porsche 911 Turbo (212g/km), BMW
M3 (194g/km) and Alfa Romeo Giulia QV (189g/km), as well as the 2.8-litre
turbo-diesel manual Toyota HiLux SR5 double cab (201g/km).
The current Aussie-spec WRX STI on the other hand, makes use of a carryover
2.5-litre turbo four codenamed EJ257 that produces 221kW at 6000rpm and 407Nm
Fuel economy is rated at 10.4L/100km and CO2 emissions averages to 242g/km,
making the WRX STI more of a polluter than the Mercedes-AMG GT S (219g/km) and
almost as pollutant as the Toyota LandCruiser (250g/km), Ferrari California T
(250g/km) and McLaren 570S (249g/km) – all of which use V8 powertrains.
Japanese domestic market (JDM) WRX STIs are powered by an EJ207 2.0-litre turbo
four boxer derived from the 1998 GC8 WRX.
Mr Inoue indicated that potential new powertrains would have to retain the
similar characteristics and performance figures for the WRX and WRX STI, and
that tightening emissions standards were forcing Subaru to consider new options.
Another potential for Subaru to reduce its overall fleet emissions is to
introduce smaller capacity turbocharged motors across the rest of its passenger
car range, which currently makes use of atmo boxer engines.
“I think actually this kind of engine, the small capacity with the
turbocharger, is the kind the market tends to, right?” he said.
“We are now studying hard which kind of engine will have the potential to
reduce some environment (impact). We are going to develop our new engine
line-ups, this is true.”
Specifications for Subaru’s new range of engines are still being kept a close
secret, but electrification and hybridisation are also expected to factor into
the brand’s future powertrain offerings.
“All over the world, environmental regulations are getting tougher and tougher
and as a manufacturer we have to reduce those kinds of things,” Mr Inoue said.
“In the future we have to consider those kinds of things, definitely we have to
consider, but actually over time we are going to introduce those kinds of
electric vehicles and hybrid vehicles to the market, but we have not yet
decided (when and where).
“We, Subaru, are a very small manufacturer, so in order for us to introduce
those types of electric vehicles we have to study a lot and then, at this
moment, we can only introduce this type of mild hybrid vehicle, but definitely
we have to consider a further enhanced vehicle.
“It’s our only choice.”