FYI, forwarded with Howard's permission...
I spoke with the head Subaru guy on such matters late last week to clarify
the options on the WRX as I had been asked about 17 inch wheels and sport
suspension packeages. This is the first I had heard of the short shifter,
but the answer is the same. No to being eligible in Stock. Subaru has its
dealers set up as after market providers of a variety of hop up parts, but
none of them meets our definition of a standard or factory part. For
instance, when you order the 17 inch "option" the customer ends up with 8
wheels and tires, just like if you went to the local tire dealer.
Hope this helps.