If you think of Subaru as the samurai warrior of rally racing, then Subaru Technica International (STI) is the sword he wields and UK-based Prodrive is that sword's razor edge. Prodrive is the engineering force behind the Impreza WRX STI, and is responsible for building Subaru's World Rally Championship (WRC) race cars. The N2010 racer is Prodrive's newest and most advanced contender.
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The N2010 is based on the third-generation (2008 to present) Impreza WRX STI, which is a Prodrive-tuned version of the standard Impreza WRX four-door hatchback. Prodrive departed from its standard practice of modifying sedans and coupes because the third generation hatchback is several hundred pounds lighter than its sedan counterpart. The Prodrive N2010 weighs 1350 Kilogram (180 Kilogram less than a stock STI). It is 180.3 inches long, 70.7 inches wide, 57.9 inches tall and has 5.9 inches of ground clearance (stock strut settings). Prodrive's racer has a 103.3-inch wheelbase, a 61-inch front track width (about 0.8 inches wider than a stock STI) and a 60.6-inch rear track width. The N2010's adjustable McPherson struts and Ohlins shock absorbers permit about 1.5 inches of suspension adjustment above or below the stock ride height.
World Rally's sanctioning body is the Paris-based Federation Internationale de l'Automobile, and the FIA is extremely strict regarding engine modifications. The N2010's engine is a near-stock turbocharged, 2.5-litre boxer (horizontally opposed) four-cylinder producing between 305 and 325 horsepower, depending on restrictor plate regulations. Subaru's H4 uses an aluminium block and head, and has four valves per cylinder, dual overhead camshafts and forged 8.2-to-1-compression pistons. Noteworthy engine modifications include higher flowing fuel injectors and a recalibrated computer that allows the race team to dial in more boost at lower rpm for a massive increase in torque -- about 393 foot-pounds of it.
The N2010 uses several coolant, oil, differential fluid, power-steering fluid and brake fluid radiators to keep things cool under racing conditions. The N2010 utilises either a race-prepared six-speed transmission or a full-race transmission with straight-cut gears, depending on class and conditions. The symmetrical all-wheel-drive system that Prodrive helped to engineer for the N2010's street cousin remains in place for the racer, but includes a few new parts to increase durability. The N2010 utilises spoked forged wheels and a super-strong roll cage to complement the minimalist interior.
Prodrive says that these enhancements can easily allow this approximately £124,150 Group N racer to keep up with Super 2000-class cars costing twice as much. Prodrive recently introduced a two-year lease program with an option to buy at the end, which even includes insurance and system rebuilds for the term of the lease.
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