2016 Subaru WRX: A Really Cool Customer
The Subaru WRX has been known to be a high-performer on the desert floor racing in rally form with awesome power and performance. What was going to happen when Subaru tamed the beast and created a sedan out of the racer. Well, we saw the results last year in the form of a powerful pair, the WRX and WRX STI which both showed themselves with the features you want from this car that is built on the platform of the awesome desert racing machines that Subaru loves to send across the hottest areas of the world.
The intrigue of the WRX pair is there is absolutely no direct competition at all. These two are built with all-wheel drive as standard, which is normal for Subaru models, and have powerful turbocharged engines. The only real completion could come from the Ford Focus ST and Honda Civic Si, but wait, those are both front-wheel drive models. Ok if that doesn’t work how about the Volkswagen Golf R which is an AWD model? The problem for the Golf R is the lack of power and much higher price, leaving the WRX and WRX STI by themselves in their own little corner of the world.
We are already talking power so let’s get down to it, the base WRX shows itself with a 2.0-liter turbocharged flat four-cylinder engine. This is one of the best setups on the market and other manufacturers need to take notice. The flat engine offers a balance that helps make the AWD even better. This engine comes in with 268 horsepower and 258 lb.-ft. of torque and can be attached to either a six-speed manual to achieve 21 city/28 hwy mpg or a CVT to gain 19 city/25 hwy mpg. Even though a CVT isn’t always the best option for most cars, the WRX benefits greatly from this transmission setup.
The WRX STI shows up with a 2.5-liter turbocharged flat four-cylinder engine that reaches up to 305 horsepower and 290 lb.-ft. of torque. The STI is only available with the six-speed manual transmission and gives off a fuel mileage of 17 city/23 hwy mpg. Both of these engines require premium fuel to operate and are basically set up to be watered down versions of the heritage that made this car great in the World Rally Championships.
While neither of these is built to be fuel efficient, what they are made for they do exceptionally well. Driving in the WRX, either version, offers a ride that is precise in handling, controlled in braking and allows you to take full advantage of the AWD. The size of this beauty with this power under the hood and the control feature aboard have given higher priced sports cars fits all last years as the WRX showed off on any road. For this year, the car has been stiffened in just about every area, but still shows off with awesome control and power to give you the performance you want and need from your small sedan with the awesome insides.
How much does this kind of performance cost? The base model WRX can be had for $27,400 giving you a great car at an awesome price. Not very often can you find this kind of a ride for such a small number. Putting in the CVT will increase the price by $1,200 and the WRX STI starts at a little over $35,000 which is still well under the Golf R from Volkswagen. Fully loading the WRX shows up around $36,000 with the STI with every box checked coming in closer to $41,000 making this an overall value choice for some awesome driving performance.
Since we now know what we are looking at for price, and have solved the power equation, let’s see what these prices will bring you. First, the standard offerings for the WRX start out with automatic climate control, a rearview camera, an audio systems that uses Subaru’s Starlink touch screen with Bluetooth, Pandora, iHeart Radio and USB and auxiliary ports, 17-inch alloy wheels with performance tires and active torque-vectoring. Gaining the STI brings in dual-zone climate control, heated front seats, 18-inch wheels, LED headlights and Alcantara upholstery. Both models have seven airbags, a full suite of electronic stability aids and the rigid body construction.
When it comes to options, the WRX brings in an inverted strut suspension which gives an even better overall driving performance. Other additions include fog lights, an all-weather package, heated front seats, bigger wheels and bigger tires. The Limited version of either model adds a navigation system, an eight-way power driver’s seat and leather upholstery. The stand-alone features include the rear-vision system which has cross traffic alerts, blind spot detection, EyeSight collision avoidance and active cruise control to give the WRX and STI some amazing features for you to enjoy.
On the outside this car looks interesting. The open air flow port on the hood allows for excellent air flow through the engine to help with the increased power under the hood. This is a sedan, both models are, but other than this air flow port it is sneakily a sports car. Actually it is a well-known platform as it takes some cues from the old Impreza, but only cues, the WRX gives you some awesome looks and driving to enjoy that is all its own including the new spoiler which is much less defined than the old wing that was on this model.
The inside of the car is an area Subaru used to have trouble hanging with the Golf, but not anymore. The addition of some great materials and the updated information display system add some luxury feeling to this inexpensive sports sedan. Add in the flat-bottom steering wheel that is wrapped in leather and the comfort of the rear seat and the WRX is one of the most comfortable interiors in this size car on the market. Adding a great deal of power and performance to this car gets you a sports sedan you can be proud to own and have a lot of fun driving in as the Subaru WRX and WRX STI make their way to Subaru dealers later this year.