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Will New Subaru WRX STI Have A 6-Speed Manual When It Goes All-Electric?

Will an all-electric Subaru WRX STI still have a 6-speed manual transmission? Check out what could happen with the manual gearbox.


When the Subaru WRX STI gets an all-electric drive train, will it still come with a 6-speed manual transmission? In the world of all-electric vehicles, the manual transmission is nonexistent. Tesla vehicles use a 1-speed transmission, and only Porsche E-Performance and Audi e-tron use a 2-speed gearbox in their electric cars for improved performance on the German Autobahn. 

Is the manual gearbox a thing of the past now with performance sports cars like the Subaru WRX STI? According to a report from Motor1, Toyota just filed a new patent for a clutch-activated manual transmission for electric vehicles with a similar shift lever as you’d find on a GR86 and BRZ sport coupes.

2023 Subaru WRX STI, next-generation Subaru STI, electric STI
photo credit: Subaru WRX S4 STI performance Concept

In Toyota’s patent filing, they say, “The controller of the electric vehicle is configured to control the torque of the electric motor using the manual transmission vehicle model based on the operation amount of the accelerator pedal, the operation amount of the pseudo-clutch pedal, and the shift position of the pseudo-shifter.”

A “pseudo-shifter” implies the shifter could be used for fun and not necessarily needed to transfer the electric power to the wheels. Toyota goes on to say, “The electric vehicle also includes a shift reaction force generator that generates a shift reaction force in response to the operation of the pseudo-shifter using by the operating of the reaction force actuator.”

2023 Subaru WRX STI, next-generation Subaru STI, electric STI
photo credit: Subaru WRX S4 STI performance Concept

Toyota says they are developing a simulated manual shifter that includes movement like you’d find in a sports car’s manual transmission. That’s good news for performance and driving enthusiasts. 

Subaru Solterra EV uses StarDrive 

In the Solterra, Subaru connects its Symmetrical all-wheel-drive system with its StarDrive Technology. Subaru says StarDrive “channels smooth linear output providing outstanding traction and capability in all kinds of weather and terrain. Subaru StarDrive delivers substantial on-demand torque at all speeds with power and driver-selectable regenerative modes.”

Because Toyota owns 20 percent of Subaru Corporation, they shared electric vehicle technology to develop the Solterra and bZ4X all-electric SUVs. In the future, Toyota may share this new manual transmission with Subaru Corporation to use in the GR86 and BRZ joint venture. 

Subaru could use the transmission technology in the next-generation all-electric WRX STI performance sports car. Or they could develop their own “pseudo-shifter” manual shifter of their own. Either way, it’s good news for performance and driving enthusiasts when the WRX STI goes all-electric. 

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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press. Check out Subaru Report where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

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Photo credit: Subaru


Christopher mccoy (not verified)    February 27, 2022 - 11:55AM

Yes please yes please CVT transmission would be the shit my girlfriend is a huge fan she has owned 8 subarus and misses he wrx cvt and she has a crosstrec now she is ready for this one sexy as he'll please bring it on thank you