Fancy a bit of practicality with your rally-bred Subaru road car? That's what the Japanese manufacturer is offering with the STi version of its capable and very user-friendly Forester compact SUV which is now available in New Zealand.
The STi Forester will complement other high performance models - the Legacy GT and Impreza WRX STi - in the local Subaru range. Subaru of NZ already markets naturally-aspirated and turbocharged versions of the standard Forester.
The Forester STi will sell for a little under $60,000. Its turbocharged and intercooled 2.5-litre, horizontally-opposed our-cylinder engine develops 195kW of maximum power at 5600rpm and 378Nm of peak torque at 3600rpm. Subaru of New Zealand will only be importing the Forester STi on to firm order, and it will be available in World Rally Team blue, black, crystal grey or white.
The Forester STi has the same six speed manual gearbox as the Impreza WRX STI, and runs Subaru's symmetrical All Wheel Drive transmission system complemented by Suretrac limited slip differentials.
It sits on unique STi-embossed 18-inch alloy wheels fitted with Bridgestone high performance RE 030 tyres. Inside the wheels are Brembo ventilated disc brakes with ABS operation.
The MacPherson strut sports suspension rides 30mm lower than the other Foresters in the range, and the STi has 170mm of ground clearance compared to the 200mm of the other models.
It has an alloy bonnet and unique grille, front bumper and spoiler. There is a roof spoiler at the rear and the roof rails are silvered. In the cabin there are STi sports front seats, a leather-wrapped Momo steering wheel and alloy pedals and footrest.
The CD sound system has a six-stack changer and a sub woofer and amplifier. Dual front airbags are standard, along with automatic air conditioning, electric windows and mirrors and remote control central door-locking which includes the engine immobiliser. Added security is provided by an alarm system and the application of Data dots.