2017 Subaru BRZ gets more power, new performance package

New package includes Brembo brake upgrade.

Subaru announced Wednesday that the 2017 BRZ will sport a handful of upgrades and new options, including a Performance package featuring Brembo brakes and upgraded shocks.

The changes come as part of a mild refresh which also brings some interior and exterior styling updates and some shuffling of available features.

OutsideThe 2017 model can be most readily identified by its new face. The grille remains the same, but the fog lamp surrounds (as well as the bumper cover itself) are new. The headlamps have also been revised, with LED lighting now standard.

In the rear, the spoiler has been redesigned and is now standard across all models. Subaru says the design changes are functional, improving ultimate downforce. The rear lighting has also been updated to incorporate LEDs, and the finish panel has been redesigned.

The 2017 BRZ's standard 17-inch wheels are also new.

InsideYou'll now find a standard 4.2-inch cluster display in both trims (Premium and Limited). The steering wheel has also been redesigned for a "firmer," more performance-oriented feel. Buyers of the Limited model who opt for the automatic transmission will also now find that wheel-mounted shift paddles are standard.

Under the hoodThe 2017 model also gets a slight power bump thanks to some engine refinements. It's now rated for 205 horsepower and 156lb-ft of torque--nothing astronomical, and entirely expected thanks to Toyota's similar announcement regarding the FR-S replacement.

The good news is, the differential final drive ratio has been shortened from 4.10:1 to 4.30:1 in manual transmission models. Combined with the boxer's extra ponies, this should make the 2017 feel a bit livelier in 0-60 sprints.

Performance packageThe all-new Performance package fits in nicely with similar bundles offered on other rear-drive sports coupes, incorporating a Brembo brake upgrade, Sachs shocks and unique 17-inch wheels.

What's next?Look for the 2017 Subaru BRZ to start arriving in showrooms in September. Any pricing changes should be revealed closer to launch.

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