Long term tests

Subaru Impreza WRX STI

Our Impreza's taken everything in its stride, and can be fuel-efficient, too, if you drive sensibly

The STI recently developed a disconcerting clunk from the vicinity of the front offside wheel when manoeuvring at low speed. I took it along to the ever-helpful Souls of Olney, who concluded that it was simply the noise of the pad falling away from the disc after an application of the brakes, probably caused by a slightly sticky caliper. Nothing to worry about.And just as well, because we’ve thrown everything at the STI over the last month or so – kids, dogs, substantial mileages and absolutely filthy weather – and it’s taken everything in its symmetrical four-wheel-drive stride.

The latest-generation Impreza is robust and reasonably commodious, though the shallowness of the boot combined with the sloping rear glass means it’s less accommodating than the old-style Impreza wagon. Our pointer certainly gave me a pretty stern look as I squashed her in with the bags of pressies for the haul down to South Wales for some New Year festivities.

Subscribe to evo magazine

Experience the thrill of driving with evo magazine. Subscribe now and get your first 5 issues for £5 or buy the latest issue in all good newsagents!

Given that the car was heavily laden with young Tomalins and canines, but mostly because at an indicated 80mph-plus the road-roar from the fat Michelin Pilot Sports virtually drowns out conversation, I took it steady and saw a record 28mpg. That won’t happen again – now I’m back in work mode and it’s just me, I’m enjoying the STI’s walloping performance and staggering traction to the full.

In fact I’ve started craving even more power, and that’s got me wondering about the Prodrive Performance Pack. Able to be retrofitted by your dealer, it’s basically a new ECU and exhaust system, which raises power from 296 to 325bhp. It’s expensive at £1600 but it does fill out the top end, where the standard car starts to get a little breathless. All we need is the go-ahead from Subaru UK. I’ll keep you posted.

Running Costs

Date acquiredMay 2007
Total mileage16,601
Costs this month£0
Mileage this month2412
MPG this month24.9
Advertisement
Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/subaru/wrx-sti/22091/limited-run-subaru-wrx-sti-s209-pricing-announced
Subaru WRX STi saloon

Limited-run Subaru WRX STI S209 pricing announced

15 Oct 2019
Visit/subaru/wrx-sti/22129/subaru-motorsports-revives-iconic-blue-and-gold-livery
Subaru WRX STi saloon

Subaru Motorsports revives iconic blue and gold livery

11 Jan 2019
Advertisement

Most Popular

Visit/porsche/911/201958/porsche-911-gt3-vs-gt3-rs-vs-gt2-rs-track-battle
Porsche 911

Porsche 911 GT3 vs GT3 RS vs GT2 RS - track battle

Porsche’s GT3, GT3 RS and GT2 RS are the most hardcore of the 911 breed, but pitched head‑to‑head which will we crown champion?
15 Nov 2019
Visit/buying-advice/19675/used-car-deals-of-the-week
used cars

Best used cars for sale this week

We’ve delved into the classifieds and chosen our favourite cars for sale this week
15 Nov 2019
Visit/ferrari/201950/new-ferrari-roma-612bhp-198mph-gt-car-joins-the-range
Ferrari

New Ferrari Roma: 612bhp, 198mph GT car joins the range

Ferrari has expanded its GT car range with the V8 powered Ferrari Roma
14 Nov 2019
Visit/hyundai/201819/hyundai-i30-fastback-n-versus-the-nurburgring
Hyundai i30 N

Hyundai i30 Fastback N versus the Nurburgring

We brought the Hyundai i30 Fastback back to its spiritual home in Germany's Eifel mountains, where there is a racing track you might well have heard o…
7 Oct 2019