Coolest Import Cars for Canada in 2017

2017 should be another exciting year for Canadian car enthusiasts.  One reason being that cars manufactured in 2002 are now eligible for import!

Canadian vehicle import regulations allow cars manufactured over 15 years ago to be brought into the country.  This means we will have access to cars produced in 2002 that were sold as either 2002 or 2003 models.

We are lucky to see cars like the Skyline GTR (R32-R34), Impreza STI (GC8), Lancer Evo (I-VII) and Lancia Delta Integrale EVO on the road.  Our American neighbours still have to wait 25 years until they can import cars from 1992!

Two guidelines for my selections this year:

  1. The car must not have been available on the Canadian market.
  2. Either be a new generation or a special edition not previously eligible for import

Now time for the list:

1. Mazda RX-7 Spirit R

Mazda RX7 Spirit R - The Ultimate Evolution of the RX7

This one hit me hard.  2002 was the end of the road for the FD3S Mazda RX-7, a lightweight RWD sportscar powered by an unique twin-turbocharged 1.3L rotary engine.

Mazda decided to send the legendary JDM icon in style by introducing the RX-7 Spirit R.  The motor was left alone with the 276hp gentlemen’s agreement still in place.

Focusing on the chassis, Mazda installed stiffer springs with matching Bilstein shocks.  The exterior and interior were also upgraded, highlighted by an adjustable rear wing.  A gorgeous set of staggered forged BBS wheels with sticky tires matches the aggressive styling.

Production of the Spirit R was limited to only 1,504 cars split between three variants:

  • Type A: 2 seater, 5-speed manual, over 1,000 made
  • Type B: 2+2 seater, 5-speed manual
  • Type C:  2+2 seater, 5-speed automatic (why Mazda!?!?)

Mazda RX7 Spirit R - The Ultimate Evolution of the RX7

If I could pick one JDM legend, the Spirit R would be the one sitting in my garage for the rest of my life.

Road & Track did a feature on the only factory LHD RX7 Spirit R in the world which was built for a Mazda North America executive.  What does a guy have to do to get a freaking custom built Spirit R around here???

Photos: Mazda

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2017 Subaru BRZ and… BRZ STI?

Subaru BRZ Updated for 2017: Available Performance Package and New Mysterious Model Teaser

First things first: Subaru has not announced a turbo or supercharged BRZ yet!  However, the 2017 BRZ is getting some upgrades with a new optional performance package, improved performance, updated exterior and interior styling, LED headlights and taillights and a newly revised track mode.  Available in Premium and Limited trim levels, the new models will be available at dealers starting in winter of 2017.

They also released a teaser photo of a yellow BRZ with a new spoiler to be unveiled on June 12 at Wicked Big Meet.   The yellow looks very similar to the Sunrise Yellow JDM Subaru BRZ tS that features a bunch of STI goodies like suspension, bushings, chassis bracing, Brembo brakes and 18″ wheels wrapped in Michelin Pilot Super Sports along with exterior and interior upgrades.  specialseriesy

The 2017 model will receive updated coil springs and dampers along with a larger rear anti-sway bar.  Strut tower braces, transmission crossmember plate and rear wheel housings were also reinforced to stiffen up the chassis.  The stability control has also been given a more aggressive tune with Track mode replacing the previous Sport mode.17BRZ-1


The 2.0L FA20 boxer engine has receives a slightly bump to 205hp and 156lb-ft of torque with new valves, camshaft and cylinder heads designed to reduce friction along with a new aluminum intake manifold and headers for more air flow.  The final drive ratio has been reduced from 4.1 to 4.3:1 for improved acceleration.brz-17-hero

An optional Performance Package will now be available for 2017 with the manual Limited models, including Brembo calipers and larger rotors on both front and rear brakes, SACHS performance shock absorbers and black 17×7.5in wheels.brembo-brakes

The new Limited models will have a new vehicle performance display that will indicate lateral Gs, accelerator pedal position, braking force, steering angle, oil and water temperature, battery voltage and a lap timer.  The Subaru Starlink 6.2″ multimedia system will be standard for both Premium and Limited models.brz-17-multi-function-display17BRZ-2

LED headlights and taillights will be standard for 2017.  Available fog lights will be LED as well.brz-17-headlights


Check back on June 12 to find out what Subaru has in store for us!

Photo Credit: Subaru