Subaru Impreza WRX STI 2008 review

           The Subaru has at last revealed details of its hardcore new Impreza WRX STI which is substantially different to the non-turbo five-door models now being delivered to first customers. And with a heavily-revised new 296 bhp turbocharged 2.5 liter 'boxer' engine, totally new platform and suspension plus even more advanced symmetrical all-wheel drive system, the World Rally Championship look-alike is sure to satisfy Subaru traditionalists.
           This time around, instead of the sedan, STI chose the Impreza hatchback as the basis for its project. The new car's rear overhang is 4.7 inches shorter than the old STI's  despite a 3.3-inch increase in wheelbase - which helps concentrate the vehicle's weight between the axles for better handling. It also stops Solberg from ripping off that pesky rear bumper as he slides his rally car sideways around tight corners on narrow rally stages.
         The new STI also boasts stronger low to mid-speed torque thanks to variable-valve timing for the intake and exhaust system and a fast-warm catalytic converter for reduced emissions. Power is now 296 bhp at 6,000 rpm with torque of 300 lb-ft at 4,000 rpm. The much-praised six-speed manual transmission has been revised, with a shorter-throw gear-change and lighter movements, especially from neutral to 1st and 1st to 2nd gear thanks to a revised synchromesh.


            * Type of engine: Turbocharged Flat-4
            * Horsepower: 6,000 rpm

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