Back in 2013, Subaru, the long-time purveyor of all-wheel drive wagons and utilities, shocked us all when they unleashed the lightweight, rear-wheel drive BRZ sport coupe into this SUV-crazy world. It was like a fantastic breath of sports car nostalgia that we just couldn’t get enough of. And Subaru has only made it better since then, finally giving it an STI-like treatments. So, let’s hit the track in the new BRZ tS!

The Subaru BRZ indeed seemed to come out of nowhere when it arrived 11 years ago, and we’ve been loving every chance we’ve had behind the wheel of this throwback rear-drive sport coupe ever since. Now, there’s a new BRZ for us to enjoy, this 2024 Subaru BRZ tS.

The phrase “sport-tuned” is vague and often over-used, so what does that really mean for the BRZ? And how does that translate to performance at Savannah, GA’s Roebling Road Raceway?

2024 Subaru BRZ tS 3/4 Front
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Grill Closeup
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Front
2024 Subaru BRZ Profile
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Dead Rear
2024 Subaru BRZ tS 3/4 Rear
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Badge
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Engine
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Wheel
2024 Subaru BRZ tS 3/4 Front2024 Subaru BRZ tS Grill Closeup2024 Subaru BRZ tS Front2024 Subaru BRZ Profile2024 Subaru BRZ tS Dead Rear2024 Subaru BRZ tS 3/4 Rear2024 Subaru BRZ tS Badge2024 Subaru BRZ tS Engine2024 Subaru BRZ tS Wheel

Well, what Subaru has done with the tS, is indeed made the BRZ more capable on track and thus even more fun to drive overall. The big additions here are suspension and brakes, replacing the standard shocks and struts with Hitachi Sensitive Frequency Response Dampers, and upgrading the brakes to Brembos with gold calipers that clamp down on larger 12.8-inch discs up front and 12.4-inch discs in the rear. Unique 18-inch alloy wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport 4 performance tires complete the package.

Subaru falls short of calling it a full-on STi model, but does claim it has been tuned by STi, and there are prominently displayed STi logos on the start button and in the gauge display, along with unique trim and leather covered sport seats with Ultrasuede inserts, and lots of blue stitching on the seats and elsewhere in the cabin.

Outside, it’s mostly just the same tidy, low, wide, and lightweight aluminized BRZ we’ve come to love, with new logos, and black painted mirror caps. What there isn’t is any additional power, as the tS soldiers on with the standard BRZ’s naturally aspirated 2.4-liter flat-four rated at 228 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. Now, those numbers don’t exactly scream track performance, but the fact that the tS is only available with a six-speed manual transmission does reveal what this particular BRZ is all about.

What Subaru has done with the tS, is indeed made the BRZ more capable on track and thus even more fun to drive overall.

And it was pure joy working that shifter in and out of the turns here at Roebling; the BRZ was already so well-balanced to begin with that it took a few laps of really pushing to feel the increased firmness and more settled nature on turn-ins of the new suspension setup. The better brakes addition was more easily noticed, and much appreciated, as we were able to dive into corners just a bit deeper than before.

Surprisingly, even on this big, fast track, the BRZ still doesn’t feel underpowered, just fun, as it and its platform-mate Toyota GR86 have from the very beginning. And 6.1 seconds to 60 is still plenty quick for anyone, and that’s actually a bit slower than we’ve gotten typically in the BRZ. Under more ideal conditions than this unusually cold winter’s day in coastal Georgia, mid fives shouldn’t be a problem.

Good clutch feel and decent grip from the 215 rear tires allowed for surprisingly high rpm launches. Short throws and positive action to the shifter meant we had no problem maintaining momentum through the 14.5-second quarter-mile which we finished at 99 mph.

2024 Subaru BRZ Dashboard
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Front Seat
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Shifter
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Instrument Cluster
2024 Subaru BRZ Climate Controls
2024 Subaru BRZ tS Ignition
2024 Subaru BRZ Dashboard2024 Subaru BRZ tS Front Seat2024 Subaru BRZ tS Shifter2024 Subaru BRZ tS Instrument Cluster2024 Subaru BRZ Climate Controls2024 Subaru BRZ tS Ignition

Would we love to see and feel more horsepower coming from under the hood, a high-output turbo from the Toyota stable perhaps? Absolutely, but truth be told, it doesn’t really need it, as it puts the power that it has to use better than most cars on the road.

So, it may not be the full STi model that people have been clamoring for, but it’s not priced like one either, essentially tacking just $2,650 onto the price of a top Limited BRZ. It’s also worth noting, that while previous tS models were limited production, there are no such limits this time around, and this tS is the first manual transmission Subaru to come equipped with their EyeSight Driver Assist Technology.

So, if you want a BRZ that’s noticeably better for your track days, or just cars and coffee bragging rights, here it is. And everything that went into making the 2024 Subaru BRZ tS a more potent performer on the track, also makes it a better street car. That’s the kind of no compromise performance enhancement we can all get behind, and what continues to make the BRZ a winner no matter where the pavement takes you.


As Tested

  • Engine: 2.4-liter flat-4
  • Horsepower: 228
  • 0-60 mph: 6.1 seconds
  • Starting Price: $36,465
  • Transmission: 6-speed manual
  • Torque: 184 lb-ft.
  • 1/4 Mile: 14.5 seconds at 99 mph