the 2.0L STi engines are just built waaay stronger... and the gearing is better for performance. i wont waste my time arguing those who are less informed, so do a search. there's a thread over in nazicock for those interested in the 2.0 forum.
as for the purpose of a stripped down model, its not gonna sell well to the general public. its sole purpose is to provide for those of us who actually race the car and dont need all that junk. just a shame mitsu didnt release a rally style version or at least the option for smaller brakes so people can fit rally wheels on there. subaru is leading the rally car segment in the US so it would make sense for them to sell a RA Spec C version here... just so all we gotta do is cage it, swap suspension, add safety equipment and rally it!