Subaru is reviving the WRX TR (“Tuner Ready”) for the 2024 model year, offering up goodies previously locked behind the cushy GT trim to enthusiasts who can’t be convinced to commit to the current top-tier model’s mandatory CVT. Borrowing inspiration from the Prodrive WRX prototype we drove earlier this year, the WRX TR offers a bundle of goodies for track-day enthusiasts without much fluff — or any additional power.
The new TR doesn’t come exclusively with a manual, mind you, but to opt for the CVT would be missing the point. The TR gets a Brembo brake upgrade (six-piston front; two-piston rear) with larger discs and calipers and a larger master cylinder for improved heat management and track longevity. The steering rack, spring stiffness and damping rates were all tweaked to reduce body motions and improve steering response without sacrificing ride quality, but those are matched with an upgraded set of Bridgestone Potenza S007 summer performance tires wrapped around 19-inch wheels. They’re no wider than the Dunlops offered on the current 18s, but we expect they’ll be more communicative (both in terms of feedback and road noise) thanks to the thinner sidewalls and taller wheels. Subaru also threw in the GT’s eight-way power adjustable Recaro seats, which are both more attractive and more tightly bolstered than the standard buckets.
And unlike the GT, the TR makes no attempt at being fancy, so some noteworthy items are missing. The moonroof is gone, which saves both weight and cost, and the GT’s fancy adaptive suspension was left out of the deal too. That’s fine; you don’t need it. And while the infotainment system offers full wireless smartphone integration, it does not come with the built-in navigation. Don’t worry; you won’t miss that either. But we’d be remiss if we didn’t bring up the now-discontinued STI, which offered both more raw horsepower and the ability to fine-tune the center differential behavior. Those you’ll miss. 2024 also marks the first year Subaru is offering its full EyeSight safety suite (including forward emergency braking) on manual-transmissions models; just turn off everything you can before you take your TR on track, please.
The 2024 WRX TR should be plenty tuner-friendly, but it remains to be seen whether it will be similarly wallet-friendly. Pricing will be announced close to the 2024 WRX’s final on-sale date, which we expect to be either late this year or early next. Stay tuned (Sorry.)