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Subaru Impreza WRX



  • thecatthecat Posts: 535
    Yeah .. you're younger and have more hair too.

  • sarnysarny Posts: 17
    I am looking into getting a wrx sedan and I am wondering what people in the Los Angeles area are paying for them.
  • I'm considering the WRX sedan - very impressed by performance numbers. I have a '99 Passat 1.8T. Haven't driven the WRX yet, so I was wondering what to expect. For anyone who's driven both, what will I be giving up between the Passat and WRX, and what will I be gaining?
  • Passat vs WRX

    - Size: WRX is smaller and tighter all around
    - Handling: WRX feels stiffer and less body roll
    - Power: Passat feels stronger at low RPM's, WRX feels a bit anemic under 3000 rpm. At 6000 rpm, Passat starts running out of steam, WRX is pulling strong. I always find that the WRX never feels as fast as the numbers would suggest, but if you compare yourself to other cars around you, you find yourself moving pretty fast with only moderate effort.
    - Steering: WRX is heavier feeling, Passat is very light
    - Shifter: WRX is a bit more precise
    - Brakes: no as grabby as the Passat, a bit smoother
    - Tires: WRX's are better but no by much
    - Amenities: inside looks cheaper than a Passat, the Passat has higher level of luxury. No sunroof on the WRX.

    So in moving from a Passat, you are giving up some of the comfy luxury, but you get a car that comes alive in a big way if you drive it hard.
  • Ive test driven the V6 with 4 Motion a few months back. It enjoyed it as my general goal was to check out sporting like cars that had a back seat. I didn't have the opportunity to take it on any significant turns as with the WRX But overall that the suspension was comparatively mushy to the WRX. Even though it was a V6 with the "click" tranny it felt and drove heavier and was not as quick. To generalize the Passat was ore of a family luxury model. The interior of the Passat was nothing short of beautiful with its fit and finish as compared to the WRX or any other car that I have driven. Maxima, V6 Accord, GT-S Celica, and the RSX. Over a process of time I realized my priorites in what I wanted. Handling and feel of road are far superior in WRX than all those. The Passat is much roomier also in comparo. So I could imaghine that if a person had some large adults that wanted to dirve for a long haul they would be bettter off with their Passat. But give me WRX any day this car is something far beyond a comfy luxo cruiser. the auto tranny is an issue for me too. The WRX is based on a rally car. The Passat is a nice family transportation with a hint of elegance. So is it hand me the Grey poupon? with the Passat? or is it wow why cant I stop grining as i drive?wiht the WRX?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    For the most part you give up space and quiet for performance and handling.

    Imagine a chipped Passat with stiffer springs and shocks, bigger no-sway bars, and a wheel and tire package, minues some space, and you get the idea.

    AWD also "feels" very different than FWD.

  • Thanks for the answers... One more question though - any squeaks and rattles in the WRX when it's new or a few months old? My Passat is almost three years old, and I'm starting to notice some. How do you expect the WRX to be in this category long-term?
  • Go to the forums at and get an eyefull of WRX related gripes, including many complaints about rattles, clunks, etc. This is a very polarizing car - owners seem to either love it for what it is, and forgive all its shortcomings, or damn it for its faults and limitations. You'll have to decide if it fits your bill.
  • sarnysarny Posts: 17
    Does anyone have an opinion on the upgraded stero options. Is it worth the extra $470 for the speakers and amp? Also, is that an additional four speakers or do they replace the six that already come with the car standard?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Passat likely takes the edge in the quality of its interior trimmings, but I'd gamble on the WRX for long-term reliability.

  • After 2000 miles I've had no squeaks or rattles, the car feels very solid. Having said that, you tend to hear the mechanics of this car much more than some others (engine, exhaust, drivetrain). Rather than giving that luxury car type ride that can be had from some sport sedans (i.e. Passat, Audi, BMW etc) the WRX sounds more mechanical but at the same time feels as solid, and stable as anything I've driven. It certainly provides a different riding experience than my previous car (98 Accord) - more mechanical but is fun x100!!
  • They are such totally different cars that it is difficult to compare. I owned an audi a4 1.8t quattro and when the lease was up, i looked at a passat. The car drove beautifully, had an elegant and well-thought out interior and looked good. Still, the car was not nearly as sporting as my audi (without sport package). So, I decided to get another audi, this time a tt coupe. Last month, I also bought a wrx sedan (sedona red 5 speed sedan). I am very happy with the car, but it has numerous contrasting factors. For instance, the car feels very cheap (like when you close the trunk or go through a car wash you hear noises you never hear in the audi), yet it has no rattles. Also, you think of the wrx as a pure, rough uninhibited sports sedan, but the engine is almost too quiet. An earlier post mentions how it doesn't feel as fast as it actually is and this is very true. The car is very calm and inspires confidence at any speed. I like the shifter and the breaks are less touchy than the audi or vw, while stopping just as well. Tyhe seats look flimsy, but are actually very comfortable. As far as the radio, I must ask if anyone can recommend a good upgrade. I, like many others, did not get the upgrade, but the stock system is terrible, especially the speakers. Not being an audiophile, should i just get a good pair of speakers put in? Overall, great car.
  • jk111jk111 Posts: 125
    unfortunally, I am getting some squeaks and my car is only 4000 miles old. Some type of squeak from the front side suspension. I will need to take it in for a check up.
    WRX is definitly not as comfortable as the passat. And it will be louder as well. But I treat those things as "performance" Noises.. hehe.
  • When i ordered my car, i asked for the short-shifter. The dealer told me they were not yet available, but that i should be able to get it in New Jersey (I bought my car 300 miles from home to save $2100). I was told the shifter would cost me 260.00. The installation price was outrageous. Anyone have experience with the short-shifter and what kind of price should i expect to pay. Also, is the sti short-shifter advertised on the same as the one sold at subaru dealers?
  • barresa62barresa62 Posts: 1,379
    Just a FYI: The US/Canandian spec WRX has more HP than the Aussie/New Zealand & Euro markets, 227 vs 218 or so. The only market that has more is the Japanese home market. So, yes Subaru did have to drop the HP but not as much as they did in other markets. I have no doubt that if the marketplace is deemed favorable SOA of bring the STI here.

  • The more I live with my Rex, the more I'm realizing that it's probably one of the best-built cars out there. I've had mine for almost three months now, with plenty of driving down dreaded I-93 and I-495 in MA, and I'm damned impressed to say that there is but one tiny little chip in the paint on the hood. Looking a lot more closely at the hood paint, it appears that it's almost kind of "rubberized", and is definitely very chip-resistant (at least in black). None of the other cars I've ever owned have taken kindly to those highways...

    We can sit here and moan and groan about the noise the car makes (or lack of), but it's these little things that should make us realize how much thought went into its design :)

    Just my 0.02 worth...

    - Rexman
  • The Passat also has incredible gas mileage. My '99 1.8T averages 25 MPG in hard city driving, and it takes regular unleaded. I get about 33 MPG in highway driving.

    I was ready to buy a WRX wagon, but have now put it off with the WTC disaster. Right now, I am liking a car that sips regular instead of one that guzzles premium.

    Sure, the WRX can get decent mileage if your drive it the same way Grandpa drives his Oldsmobile... but then, what would be the point? May as well get the Impreza RS...
  • You will also pay a lot less for car insurance with a Passat.

    The WRX's upside is obvious... it kicks [non-permissible content removed].. When I test drove it, the salesman just handed me the key and said have fun... driving it put a big smile on my face, to say the least. If he had the color I wanted in stock I would have bought it then and there. But with this madness in the middle east, I'm sure glad I didn't make the purchase...
  • Cupholder do you live in jacksonville?
  • If we are talking about the WRX - it comes standard with 6 speakers - one bass/midrange in each door and one tweeter in each front door. The upgraded speaker package replaces the front door speakers with improved speakers. I think on the RS you gain tweeters in the upgraded speaker package.

    I have the short shifter in my WRX and think it is well worth it. The total cost of the shifter installed was $350. The item advertised at is the factory unit. Other's such as Kartboy are available for about $100, although they do not include the entire linkage, and a lot of people seem really happy with them.
  • I'm really curious - could you elaborate on what you specifically notice the difference to be between the stock and short shifter? Does it make the gating more precise, or just the length of the throws shorter? Do you actaully feel you can make 1-2, 2-3 shifts more quickly than with the stock unit? Did you ever have the short-shifter installed right of the lot or did you use the stock unit for a period of time? Any info would be helpful since this is an option I'm considering after 2,000 miles with my REX.

    thanks Ed
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    I recently tried the "shifting" of a WRX that was equipped with the short shifter—on the showroom floor. It felt a bit more precise and the throws were shorter. I haven't "driven" one however.

  • I had a chance to drive a new Impreza WRX today.

    Talk about frightening car to drive! It's not the quietest car out there but when the car FLIES onto the freeway like no tomorrow you can ignore the noise issue easily. The handling is really good, very neutral almost right up to the limit even on windy roads.

    If I had US$26K to burn I'll take it in a New York minute.
  • After 2750 mi. our WRX wagon has no squeaks or rattles of any kind--really solid as a bowling ball. Besides the new body structure, a Subie mechanic showed me that the WRX also has a pair of special reinforcement braces on the underside of the front suspension that really adds to the structural integrity of the car.

    The lack of sound insulation means you are going to hear more mechanical noises than most other cars. Not a bad thing really--some very desirable early Porsches were the same way--after a while you sort of enjoy having the car "talk" to you while you're out on the road.

    The only problem for me so far was the creaking sound from the suspension mentioned here before. This isn't really the car's fault, but is caused by grit and gravel getting caught and imbedded in the undercoating on the coil springs.

    If you ever have this problem, have the dealer clean out the area where the coils contact the lower spring perches. Also, they need to lubricate this area really good with wheel bearing grease, and it should take care of the problem (knock-on-wood) :)
  • Just bought a silver sedan on Wednesday that came with the upgraded stereo package (speakers and subwoofer). So far I have no complaints. I haggled on the price and got enough off to absorb the extra cost. There was an identical car available with the spoiler for about the same price as the stereo upgrade and being a music lover I opted for the obvious. The speakers sound good and the sub is adequate. I'm sure I could do better spending the extra money at a stereo store, but since the car already had the upgrade, I am happy with it for now. The next money spent will be on 17" wheels and sticky tires. Someday I will probably replace the entire stereo with aftermarket (DVD and surround), but for now the upgrade made more sense to have an acceptable stereo for the short run. I was replacing a Miata and so far all I can say is WOW about the handling. Can't wait to get throught the first 1000 miles.....
  • Hi everyone

    I just bought a new WRX on Friday and I absolutely love it. I have the Subaru 6disc CD changer w/ cassette and think its nice but the sound quality in the car leaves something to be deserved. Not wanting to remove the 6 disc changer I was hoping to be able to hook it up to my amp/sub. I have a couple questions--

    1. Is there a way to hook up the subaru CD changer deck to a subwoofer amp? It doesn't have the standard RCA connections.

    2. When I try to remove the subaru deck, it has 3 sets of wires: the wiring harness group, the antenna cord, and a "mystery" black wire. This wire is connected to the side of the unit. Does anyone know what this is and how to take it off? it needs to be unplugged somehow in order to remove the unit.

    3. I want to run a power wire from the car's battery to the subwoofer amp. Any ideas how I can get through the firewall into the interior of the car?

    Thanks in advance!
  • Hi again,

    I figured out the first 2 questions that I previously had, but now another issue came up. I want to splice into the speaker wire for the rear speakers. So I checked the wiring at the rear speakers and both doors had the same color wires attached to the speakers - blue/yellow and red/yellow. But when I looked at the different wires by the head unit, there was only one blue/yellow wire and one red/yellow wire! Would they have used wires that are a different color at one end and the other? It doesn't make sense!

    Also, I still would appreciate any ideas on how to run a power cord from the battery through the firewall into the interior of the car.

    Thanks again,
  • I am very close to Making a purchase and wanted to ask someone that has some experience with the turbo gage extra. How usefull is this item? how important is it in the course of driving being that I dont plan to race officially. I do want to know if i have problems with the boost or too much or little pressure in the motor . So could someone care to specultate on the value of this gage that is an extra on one of the vehicles considerd?
  • jk111jk111 Posts: 125
    I think a turbo gauge is not useful if you are just going to leave the car stock. You will definitly want a turbo gauge if you did some type of turbo modification to it (manual/automatic boost controller.) It is useful to check turbo spikes and such..
  • varigvarig Posts: 99
    Last time I visited the dealership, the salesman said that they were not selling below MSRP. Granted, since I was not ready to buy a car that day, I did not enter into any heavy negotiating, so I don't know if that statement was all that firm. I know that Van Bortel's in NY and a dealer in Joplin MO are giving better deals. My question is has anyone gotten a good deal from their local dealer? In light of the soft economy, do you think that dealers may be more anxious to make a sale or is the WRX still too popular?
This discussion has been closed.