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Next Subaru WRX STI launches with limited Launch Edition (pictures)

The 2015 Subaru WRX STI launches at the 2014 Detroit auto show with 305 horsepower and more differentials than you can shake a stick at.

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Antuan Goodwin

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1 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

2015 Subaru WRX STI

DETROIT -- Hot on the heels of the launch of the new 2015 WRX at the LA Auto Show, Subaru has pulled the wraps off of the 2015 Subaru WRX STI.
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2 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

Hood scoop

Like the WRX, the WRX STI features flared fenders, a wide body, aggressive styling, and a functional hood scoop.
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3 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

2.5-liter Boxer Turbo

That hood scoop feeds air through an intercooler atop its 2.5-liter turbocharged, four-cylinder Boxer engine. Output is given at 305 horsepower at 6,000rpm and 290 pound-feet of torque at 4,000rpm.
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4 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

STI wing

The STI's wing is huge, but functional. It's also the most obvious indicator that this is no mere Impreza.
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5 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

Exclusively sedan

We didn't expect to see a hatchback or wagon variant at the show, but the lack of a five-door is still disappointing.
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6 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

Multi-Mode Driver Controlled Center Differential

The STI uses Subaru's Multi-Mode Driver Controlled Center Differential (DCCD) version of the Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system. Using a planetary-type center differential -- which is somehow augmented by a mechanical limited-slip type center -- the STI defaults to a rear-biased 41:59 torque split.
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7 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

Splitting the torque

After being split fore-to-aft by the center differentials, the torque is again split port-to-starboard by a helical-type limited-slip front differential and a Torsen torque-sensing limited-slip rear differential. I'm counting at least three types of differentials in this MMDCCD system.
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8 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

Active Torque Vectoring

Active Torque Vectoring for the STI can apply brake pressure to the inside front wheel to facilitate more neutral cornering and is tied to the Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC) system.
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9 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

Steering wheel

In the cabin, you'll find black and red trim centered around a new flat-bottom, leather-wrapped steering wheel. Just beyond the wheel, the driver monitors the vehicle's systems with a new 3.5-inch LCD screen in the center of the instrument cluster.
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10 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

Touch-screen navigation system

An available touch-screen navigation system features a 6.1-inch LCD screen with voice controls that feeds audio to an optional Harman Kardon audio system.
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11 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

Six-speed manual

The WRX STI uses a reinforced six-speed manual transmission. Incline Start Assist can momentarily prevent the car from rolling backward when being driven away from a stop on an incline.
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12 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

SI-Drive

The Subaru Intelligent Drive (SI-Drive) system allows the driver to choose between three selectable modes -- Intelligent, Sport, and Sport Sharp -- to alter the vehicle's performance.
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13 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

LED low beams

The new headlamps use standard LED low beams. The taillights and center high-mount stop lamp (CHMSL) are also LED-based.
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14 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

2015 WRX STI Launch Edition

Subaru also announced a 2015 WRX STI Launch Edition. This limited-edition model includes an STI short-throw shifter, Keyless Access & Start, and special cabin trim with blue highlights.
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Signature color scheme

All 2015 WRX STI Launch Edition models are painted WR Blue and feature gold-painted BBS forged-alloy wheels.
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No CVT here

Neither Subaru's presentation nor its press release made any mention of a continuously variable transmission option.
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Limited edition

The WRX STI Launch Edition will be limited to just 1,000 units, which will be released over the first three months of the launch.
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18 of 18 Antuan Goodwin/CNET

2015 Subaru WRX STI Launch Edition

Expect the 2015 WRX STI and its many, many differentials to reach dealerships later this year.

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