Subie fanatics know the Spec C moniker has been long associated with hard-core, rally race-inspired editions that are solid, invigorating rides. Subaru has bestowed the vaunted badge on the latest iteration of its flagship performer, the WRX STI. Unfortunately, the Spec C is a JDM-only model and, sadly, Subie is only pumping out 900 units.
Visions of what could have been start under the hood where Subaru's 2.0-liter boxer engine (JDM STIs still run EJ20s) sports a remapped ECU and special low-friction ball bearings in the turbo. This nets 304 bhp at 6400 rpm and 311 ft-lbs of torque at 4400 rpm. Subaru reports the goal was quicker response and improved acceleration, not a big jump in peak power. An intercooler water spray setup was added to enhance system efficiency.
The handling was also addressed with a fully retuned suspension, chassis-rigidity mods, a redesigned steering system, LSD improvements and more serious rolling stock. Spec Cs roll all-new lightweight 18-inch wheels wrapped by 245/40 Bridgestone Potenza RE070s.
An aluminum hood, mini battery and lightweight Laminar glass shave precious pounds in the front of the car and at high center of gravity points to optimize handling. Man, it's 2009 and the Japanese market still gets high-tech hot rods we can only dream about.