• Jul 27, 2007
Although all the major media outlets have posted their reviews of the new WRX, nothing compares to actually getting some seat-time in Subaru's latest iteration of the Impreza. If you're willing to look beyond the stagnant styling, the new 'Rex still has the potential of being every bit as good as its predecessors (although the plastic intake manifold concerns us), and there's no better place to wring it out than on a closed course under the guidance of professional drivers.
Mark your calenders -- on Saturday, August 11th, Subaru is allowing visitors to the Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California to do just that. Beginning at noon and continuing through 8 PM, potential buyers, and anyone willing to put up with DJs from Blender, can head out on a closed course to get a feel for the new Impreza. Not only will you get some track time, but afterwards, you can play WRC co-pilot on a special "rally stage" to see how the pros work the 224-hp 2.5-liter boxer and AWD system to their full potential.

You can get all the details in Subaru's press release after the jump. And if you do attend, leave a comment in this post with your Impreza impressions.

[Source: Subaru]



PRESS RELEASE

Subaru Impreza WRX enthusiasts are expected to turn out in force to be the first to drive the new performance model at a special Consumer Ride and Drive event on Saturday, August 11, 2007 at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, CA from 12 p.m. until 8 p.m. Attendees will have the chance to drive the legend themselves or ride shotgun with a professional driver on a closed course. In addition, there will be an Impreza WRX festival including a tuner car salon, live DJs, games, and much more.

The event will feature two driving courses; the first is a dynamic driving course that highlights the acceleration, handling, and braking capabilities of the all-new Impreza WRX; the other course promises the ultimate thrill ride as attendees co-pilot the car on a Rally Stage and experience the new Impreza WRX driven to its limits by a professional driver.

There will also be a complete Impreza WRX festival. Festival activities will include:

-- Tuner Car Salon hosted by NASIOC
-- Live Blender DJ's
-- A Video Gaming Lounge
-- RC Car Track
-- Subaru Rally Team USA Traveling Trailer
-- SPT Performance Parts Display
-- Product Walk Arounds
-- Subaru Gear Merchandise
-- 2008 Subaru Model Lineup

The new 2008 Impreza WRX comes with a 224-hp 2.5-liter boxer four and reaches 60 mph from rest in just 5.9 seconds. With new, more sophisticated styling and two new body styles, a 4-door sedan and a 5-door model, the Impreza 2.5i and Impreza WRX breathe new life into the compact performance market. The new Impreza models deliver significant improvements in comfort and utility, while delivering the handling, performance and Subaru Symmetrical AWD that made the original Impreza such a success. Also new for 2008, is the availability of Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC) on both the Impreza 2.5i and Impreza WRX.

In 2002, Subaru changed the face of the performance market with the introduction of the original WRX, a car that could deliver turbocharged, rally-bred performance in any driving condition. The all-new 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX follows that lead with an all-new breed of AWD performance car. Larger than its predecessor, the 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX now rides on a 3.7 inch longer wheelbase (103.1 inches) that improves ride, interior space and utility.

Source: Subaru of America, Inc.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 12 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      According to Sport Compact Car magazine, the plastic intake is going to limit the ammount of boost that this engine will be able to handle. They state that switching back to an aluminum setup (like the current WRX and STI use) is going to be a pretty big investment because of all the additional plumbing required for the swap. So it sounds like this engine should be fine for small mods but its not going to able to bump up to STI levels very easily. They also say there will be similar boost issues with the plastic intercooler end tanks. This, along with a softer suspension takes the appeal away from me more so than the bland styling.

      Its still worth a test drive but I have my doubts.
        • 7 Years Ago
        If you have the money to buy the supporting parts to up the boost to 20 psi, you probably also have the money to swap the plastic i/c and manifold. =) A junkyard manifold from an older WRX isn't that expensive.

        Otherwise, the plastic flows better (smooth) and saves a lot of weight from the top of the motor.
      • 7 Years Ago
      OMFG!!! I live in Arcadia!!!
      • 7 Years Ago
      Subaru has been using plastic intake manifolds for several years now. Seems to work fine, and probably saves them a pretty penny.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Fugly!
      • 7 Years Ago
      why would I

      It's one of the ugliest cars ever designed (IMO)



      • 7 Years Ago
      i thought that every auto exec knew to never to introduce another hatchback. especially not to the 20k+ market
        • 7 Years Ago
        Based on? The strong sales for the Audi A3, Mazda3, and previous Subaru Impreza?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Wanna see what that plastic intake can handle? Go look at legacygt.com and there are quote a few cars pushing way more boost than SCC says it can handle. Some STI's are also using the legacy intake flipped backwards for shorter piping to a FMIC.
      • 7 Years Ago
      RidenLow, I agree there are some benifits to the plastic intake. It also keeps air cooler which is always a good thing.

      Sport Compact Car's point was in addition to the manifold, you will also have to replace many things in addition to the manifold. Doesn't sound like an easy swap-out.

      I'm thinking the STI MAY be a better place to start if you are really wanting to tune the engine. But the new WRX should have plenty of aftermarket support in no time, some of which should help or solve these problems.

      The article is a decent read for a few technical details of the car... http://www.sportcompactcarweb.com/features/0706_sccp_2008_subaru_wrx
      ronin
      • 7 Years Ago
      In the late 60s the new line of pony cars- mustangs, camaros, and firebirds, appealed to young male enthusiasts. Ten years later and your typical camaro driver was a young(ish) female.

      Perhaps when the Mitsubishi Eclipse came out it appealed to young male enthusiasts. Even by the time Fast and Furious came out the Eclipse was already your basic chickmobile.

      The original Miata roadster turned within a couple years.

      Perhaps the e(de?)volution of the demographic appeal is inevitable, and one the marketing departments look to as a reliable move to skim the next market segment.

      Perhaps this is too cynical. Wait, no it's not. We are witnessing the descent of the WRX from enthusiast's cult short to chickmobile.

      This will help Subaru's bottom line.