The first time I got behind the wheel of the Subaru WRX from the last batch, I was utterly underwhelmed. I had heard so much about its proud heritage and had received glowing reports of its power and personality, and went in expecting something pretty special; what I was confronted with instead was a limp, insipid sort of hybrid misfit, totally unsure about what it wanted to be and consequently getting stuck in a swampy no man’s land. Luckily, miraculously, barely credibly, the latest run-out for the old staple is an entirely different proposition, and one that returns the WRX to its historical place at the front of the pack. Subaru have returned to form with a real beauty.
Looks can be deceiving, and that is an understatement when you take a close look at the Subaru WRX. The WRX has nice styling that comes in a few variations from the standard WRX model. There is the WRX STI and the WRX STi spec R styling. The aggressive styling of the spec R model is particularly distinctive with its big bonnet bulge and scoop incorporated in the front air dam. The exterior lines are swift and pleasing. Some would say that the design is, in fact, conservative, compared with WRX models that have gone before. .
This will appeal to the sophisticated buyer
Slip inside the WRX and fire the engine up, and this car is simply chomping at the bit to unleash the horses under the bonnet. Underway, you realize the true nature of the WRX; it’s a downright powerhouse! The standard WRX comes with a 169 kW, 320 Nm engine. This is enough to dispatch 0-100 km/h in just 6.4 seconds through a five speed gearbox. The other two versions have the quick shifting six-speed manual gearbox. The WRX STi has 221 kWs to play with and 407 Nm of twist. The intercooled turbocharged Subaru Boxer petrol engine is simply awesome. The quickest of the WRX models is the STi spec R – 5.2 seconds is all it takes to reach 100 km/h from a standstill in this baby! This experience is performed via the six-speed manual gearbox. Any of the WRX models have incredible handling and tenacious grip. The drive is engaging, loads of fun and very more-ish.
Inside a Subaru WRX, you have a choice of a 6-way manually adjustable driver’s seat and a 4-way adjustable passenger seat. Both options are dual stage heated. Electronically controlled cruise control, an auto dimming rear-view mirror, STI designed instrumentation and an audible red-line indicator makes the car a treat to drive. There is a 6-speaker premium audio system that boasts a 6 disc in-dash CD player with MP3/WMA capabilities. There is even an auxiliary audio jack to plug in external components. You can even get Sirius Satellite radio. A WRX comes with a superb automatic climate control system with an air filter. Drive a WRX, and yes, you get the speed but you also get comfort.
Subaru’s All-Wheel Drive systems provide exceptional safety by keeping you on the road and in control. There are also ABS Anti-lock brakes which have brake force distribution. Dual driver and passenger front and side mounted airbags come as standard.
So, all in all a crunching assumption of its inheritance for the latest incarnation of the WRX. I for one am truly glad to genuflex again before the throne, and display to the Subaru design team the deference that is their due for throwing out the last of the old batch, and whipping up instead something that is all cream and no water. Bravo!
Engine: 2457cc DOHC four-cylinder (16 valve)
Power: 195kW @ 6000rpm
Torque: 343Nm @ 4000rpm
Induction: Multi-Point & Turbocharged
Transmission: Five-speed manual
Driven Wheels: All
Brakes: Discs with ABS & EBD
Top Speed: 209km/h
0-100km/h: 5.3 seconds
CO2 Emissions: 247g/km (Combined)
Fuel Consumption: 10.4 litres/100km (ADR combined)
Fuel Consumption: 13.3 litres/100km (as tested)
Fuel Tank Capacity: 60 litres
Fuel Type: 95RON petrol
ANCAP Rating: Five star
Airbags: Dual Front, side & curtain
Safety: ESP & Hill Start Assist
Spare Wheel: Space saver
Suspension: Strut (F) / twin wishbone (R)
Cargo Capacity: 420 litres
Tow Capacity: 1200kg (Braked)
Turning Circle: 10.8 metres
Warranty: Three Year/Unlimited
Weight: 1410kg (Tare)
Wheels: Alloy 17 x 7.0-inch