We farewell a legend as a new era of performance exhilaration looms on the horizon

The ultimate in turbocharged performance, the Subaru WRX STI has been delivering adrenaline pumping thrills to driving enthusiasts and racing professionals alike for over 25 years.

Powered by the legendary turbo EJ sports Boxer engine, the Subaru WRX STI is a car for drivers who live for the road and is engineered to make every single moment an unforgettable experience.
With production of the EJ25 engine ending in 2020, we have unfortunately had to stop accepting orders for the current generation Subaru WRX STI.

As we await the next thrilling chapter in the Subaru WRX STI story, let’s take a journey through the past to revisit the development of a legend while celebrating our fantastic Subaru WRX STI owner family.

A storied history that’s only just the beginning

The Subaru WRX STI derives its variant name from Subaru Tecnica International – STI – the performance division of Subaru Corporation in Japan. Founded in 1988, Subaru Tecnica International’s mission is to deliver the world’s most enjoyable driving experience, by fine tuning the synergy between man and machine.

STI quickly made a bold statement by breaking the 100,000km world speed record, driving a Legacy (Liberty) at a blistering average speed of 223km/h for 447 hours, 44 minutes and 9.9 seconds, continuously (this record stood until Apr 2005).

It is credited with a golden era of Australian and world rallying success that contributed to the ‘Rex family’s loyal fan base, which has seen both WRX and WRX STI achieve remarkable sales success in Australia.
Following the enormous appeal of the first generation Impreza WRX, which went on sale in Australia in February 1994, the STI variant took the turbocharged fun factor to an even greater level.

Performance car enthusiast appetites went into overdrive in October 1998, when the Impreza WRX 22B STI was displayed at Sydney Motor Show. With only 425 available worldwide, just five were imported to Australia - and one of those remains in Subaru Australia’s Museum collection to this day.

The era of the large bonnet scoop and rear wing had arrived.

Subaru WRX STI Australian Rally Championship titles

1996 - Possum Bourne and Craig Vincent
2002 - Possum Bourne and Mark Stacey
1997 - Possum Bourne and Craig Vincent
2003 - Cody Crocker and Greg Foletta
1998 - Possum Bourne and Craig Vincent
2004 - Cody Crocker and Greg Foletta
1999 - Possum Bourne and Craig Vincent
2005 - Cody Crocker and Greg Foletta
2000 - Possum Bourne and Mark Stacey
2016 - Molly Taylor and Bill Hayes
2001 - Possum Bourne and Craig Vincent


Generations of Subaru WRX STI

The sheer level of interest in Impreza WRX STI justified a one-off production run of 400 limited edition two-door coupes for Australia in January 1999, which was virtually an instant sell-out. Producing 206 Kilowatts of power, it was only available in the signature WR blue, or white, with gold 16-inch five-spoke alloy wheels and STI performance upgrades.

That prompted the decision to follow-up with 400 four-door Impreza WRX STI sedans in October 1999 – with an equally hungry response from buyers. It also produced 206kW, was available in blue steel mica or white, with gold 16-inch six-spoke alloys, suede seat inserts and STI performance upgrades.

Convinced that there was a place for the STI variant to become an ongoing part of the Impreza WRX range, Subaru Australia committed to the second generation and it launched as an ongoing variant in December 2001.

Third generation Subaru WRX STI, which launched in February, 2008, offered a second choice in the range, with both entry-level and spec.R variants.

Most recently in its fourth generation, which launched in April 2014, Subaru WRX STI for the first time offered the eye-catching rear spoiler as a delete option, combined with its highest power output of 221 kilowatts. On launch, it was also subtly distinguished from predecessors by not carrying the Impreza name – an acknowledgment of separate development paths for Impreza and WRX variant chassis’ and technology going forward.

1998 Impreza WRX STI 22B

Perhaps the most iconic WRX STI of all, the Impreza WRX STI 22B was a special edition to commemorate Subaru’s 40th anniversary. Featuring a larger 2.2-litre engine and widebody based on the WRC winning rally car, only 424 examples were produced (24 for export outside of Japan, 5 for Australia), making it extremely desirable.

Caring for your Subaru WRX STI

If you own a new or used Subaru WRX you’re already in the club – with full access to a range of benefits and peace of mind the moment you drive out of a showroom.

Whether determining service pricing, seeking warranty information or joining our roadside assistance program, visit the Subaru Owners section.

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Subaru pre-owned cars

Have your heart set on a Subaru WRX STI? Click below to browse our current Subaru demonstrators and pre-owned vehicles.

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