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Downer of the Day: No Subaru Forester S-Edition for North America

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On: Sat, Feb 5, 2011 at 11:06AM | By: Chris Weiss

Downer of the Day: No Subaru Forester S-Edition for North America

An SUV with the sporty, powerful 2.5-liter flat four turbo from the Impreza WRX? What could be better? Actually being able to buy it, that's what. Subaru indicated this week that the Subaru Forester S-Edition that it introduced at the Australian International Motor Show last fall will not be coming to the North American market anytime in the near future. It has, however, launched in Australia and will make it to China later this year.

The Forester S-Edition will be the new top-of-line Forester SUV and will derive 259 horses and 256 lb-ft of torque from its WRX turbo engine, giving it 40 more horses than the the Forester XT. That engine will be mated to a five-speed paddle-shift STI transmission. The Forester S-Edition also gets sportier suspension and AWD than other Forester models.

The S-Edition gets a little WRX influence in terms of looks, too. It has a similar hood scoop (also seen on the Forester XT), giving you a preview of the turbocharged power lurking underneath. It'll also be offered in a WR Blue paint scheme.

Other exterior modifications include 17-inch alloy rims, black grille, and silver roof rails. The interior will be upgraded with leather seats, blue stitching, and S-Edition badging.

When Subaru introduced the model in Sydney, it made clear that it was designed with the Australian market in mind. The Forester is, after all, Oz's best-selling compact SUV. It didn't make clear what other markets—if any—that it had in mind for the powerful SUV at the time, leaving us some hope that the U.S. was a possibility.

In a conversation with Inside Line, Subaru America crushed our hope and made it clear that the S-Edition won't be heading here anytime soon. China, on the other hand, will be a little luckier.

The Australian base price for the Forester S-Edition runs about $3,500 more than the Forester XT at $51,500.

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