Long term tests

Subaru Impreza WRX

Henry heads to the West Circuit, but worries about how to get the 4WD Subaru Impreza WRX Sports Wagon going sideways

It had been bothering me all morning. How was I going to get the Subaru sideways for Andy’s Nikon? On the road the best way to approach a corner is to get it turned in almost before the apex and then let the four-wheel drive fire you out with a smidgeon of looseness at the back – if you’ve got it just right.

Through longer corners you also have the option of rolling it in on the brakes to set everything up nicely, with the Labrador’s end of things swinging out a fraction and then staying there. But I wasn’t entirely convinced that either of these techniques would blossom into the sort of cornering shot I remember Dickie Meaden achieving with a five-door WRX a couple of years ago (£20K drivers' cars, evo 078).

Subscribe to evo magazine

If you're passionate about the world's greatest performance cars, experience the thrill of driving with evo magazine. Try your first 5 issues for £5.

Fortunately I needed to visit the West Circuit to get to grips with our new timing equipment, and if lairy was to be achieved then Bedford Autodrome’s vast acres seemed like the place to achieve it. It would also give me a chance to try out the Schroth QuickFit harnesses we featured in Essentials a couple of months ago.

Their big selling point is that they can be attached to the car using the bolts that secure the two standard inertia reel units on the driver’s side (which the ever-helpful Souls of Olney kindly did for me in a matter of moments); additional location is then achieved using the existing seatbelt sockets, meaning you can tidy the harnesses away in an instant when you don’t want the full-on Group N look. Turns out they work really well; there’s nothing like being held in place tightly to give you a new perspective on a car’s poise. Go to schroth.com if you fancy a set.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

First time into the fast left of O’Rouge was all it took in the end. Third gear, dive in a bit quickly on the brakes and round comes the back in a nice big arc. Choose the moment, back on the power and then simply drive out of the slide. Brilliant. And a bit of a relief.

Running Costs

Date acquiredOctober 2006
Total mileage11,102
Costs this month£0
Mileage this month1,430
MPG this month26.6mpg
Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/toyota/yaris/201932/toyota-yaris-gr-4-hot-hatchback-teased-successor-to-the-grmn-and-a-true-wrc
Toyota Yaris

Toyota Yaris GR-4 hot hatchback teased – successor to the GRMN and a true WRC homologation special

6 Nov 2019
Visit/audi/r8/201931/entry-level-audi-r8-v10-rwd-added-to-the-range
Audi R8

Entry-level Audi R8 V10 RWD added to the range

6 Nov 2019
Visit/bmw/m2/201929/track-only-bmw-m2-cs-racing-unveiled
BMW M2

Track-only BMW M2 CS Racing unveiled 

6 Nov 2019
Visit/volvo/v90
Volvo V90 estate

2019 Volvo V90 T6 R-design review - the great estate?

5 Nov 2019
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/alfa-romeo/21322/alfa-romeo-to-launch-new-700bhp-8c-and-600bhp-gtv-coupe
Alfa Romeo

Alfa Romeo culls sports car programme in wake of FCA merger

Italian’s future performance models killed off in favour of more profitable SUVs
11 Nov 2019
Visit/caterham/201924/caterham-620r-v-ariel-atom-35-v-elemental-rp1
Caterham

Caterham 620R v Ariel Atom 3.5 v Elemental Rp1

Flight Club - lightweight track day toys with heavyweight powertrains, Steve Sutcliffe compares them on track at Anglesey circuit in Wales
5 Nov 2019
Visit/maserati/granturismo/201792/maserati-granturismo-zeda-run-out-model-revealed
Maserati GranTurismo

Maserati GranTurismo Zéda run-out model revealed

It’s out with the old, in with the new as the final GranTurismo paves the way for Maserati’s ambitious electrified future
12 Nov 2019
Visit/hyundai/i30-n-hatchback/201775/hyundai-i30-n-versus-hyundai-i30-tcr
Hyundai i30 N hatchback

Hyundai i30 N versus Hyundai i30 TCR

Can Dickie Meaden beat Steve Sutcliffe in a straight(ish) race? We sent them to the Circuit Nuvolari with a pair of Hyundai i30 Ns to find out.
20 Sep 2019