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OT: Just Test Drove a WRX - Underwhelmed (long)

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OT: Just Test Drove a WRX - Underwhelmed (long)

 
Old 04-20-2001, 11:13 AM
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Default OT: Just Test Drove a WRX - Underwhelmed (long)

Since I have a QTip, I test drove a WRX auto. Also, to be fair, this was about a 7-minute test drive on suburban streets.

Seems like most of what I have read about the WRX is true. Feels VERY lethargic below about 3500 RPM, and the automatic doesn't seem to want to cooperate - I much prefer my 1.8T engine. Once the turbo is spooled, I think the WRX has some advantage, but with the slushbox it wasn't much fun getting there. For everyday driving, the Audi can't be beat.

But BOY is the WRX CHEAP. Not as in $26,500 cheap, but as in PlastiCAR. Sometimes I forget how high-rent the A4 really is. The doors felt about an inch think and the window glass felt like plastic. Tacky interior, cheap switchgear. Traditionally mushy Subaru brakes, although better than the ones in the Outback VDC I test drove in December - these felt like they would actually stop the car. Daytime running lights serve to accentuate the alien headlights.

On a positive note: Smooth powertrain, less body roll than the A4. Good steering feel, but did not feel as quick as my Audi's. The hood scoop appealed to my tackier side.

SUMMARY: I had been fearing that perhaps I had jumped the gun with my A4 and that I could have gotten a more satisfying car for cheaper had I waited for the WRX. I was wrong. The extra $3,000 my A4 cost me got me an extra gear, a sunroof and butt-warmers, more airbags than I can count and, most importantly, the feeling that I have a car that is worth paying for, that a small branch on the side of the road will not be able to penetrate my door, that the air conditioning switch will not pop off into my lap.

If I was buying a stick and wanted the most bang-for-buck, I'd get the WRX. But I'm keeping my A4.
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:19 AM
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Default Re: OT: Just Test Drove a WRX - Underwhelmed (long)

See I really think the WRX is for a different breed. I work with two guys that drive 2.5 RS and they keep trying to talk me into buying a WRX...

"It will run circles around an S4 with just a little bit of mods" Well its not just the numbers and the performance that matters to me, I want a nice looking ride and a comfortable one also. Since most of my time is going to be driving to work and not up at the course in the twisties.... So I think it really is dependant on what type of driver you are and what your priorties are... Get a WRX and take the extra money saved from buying an Audi and mod the crap out of it. And it will have yourself a really nice performaning car... Not to comfortable, but nice numbers..

Now for me I would like to be able to mod my car at my leasure, have fun doing it, and have a really nice commuting car... Thats why I think I have made my decision for the Audi A4...
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:20 AM
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PLOP!!! thats the sound of the air conditioning switch
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:36 AM
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Default thats exactly it, I think they are in 2 different markets...thats why

the S3 is such a better comparison, if it ever does come over
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:50 AM
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Default Re: You didn't spend $3000 extra

Subie dealers are marking up the WRX like it's hand-built by elves in the enchanted forest. You'd end up paying the same price. Factor in the quality differences (the A4 feels much more solid) and there's no comparison.

I too was contemplating the WRX, but the thought of paying 30 large for a Subaru made me re-examine...That, and the A4 smacks it in the looks department. The WRX looks to me like a Neon on andro's...

Lastly, the A4 is a grown-up car, while the Sube just screams "boy racer." An imortant difference when you're 22.
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:51 AM
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Exactly. Price looks nearly the same for same options
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:52 AM
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Default I agree with the different breed idea... The WRX is impressive on paper...and a car should(more)

be suited to the driver and the conditions that the driver plans on driving in.

A lightly modified WRX should run circles around an S4 in autocrossing for instance. It is a smaller and lighter car. The wheelbase is smaller, thus the turning radius is smaller. Lighter means less inertia to fight...

A track will even the playing field a lot... But the $$$ value is still on the WRX. (if you don't care about look & feel that is). If you spend the difference between an S4 and a WRX on mods for the WRX... yikes... it will probably get over 300hp...maybe closer to 400hp... Let's not talk NOS though...

Audi is the luxury brand of VW
Subaru is just Subaru... Practical cars... known in PBS circles as the more affordable Japanese alternative to Volvo.... you know all those intellectual yuppie wagon drivers =)

I still think the European Jetta (with 4 Motion - i.e. Haldex quattro) that has a 6 speed tranny is a better comparision to the WRX. Of course, 227hp is not easily obtained from a 1.8T (or VR6) engine without extensive mods... which will void the warranty no doubt.

The WRX is for the driver that craves performance and value over luxury. However, I still think that a chipped 1.8T is one of the best values on the road today. Subaru should be commended for bringing the WRX here finally. Perhaps it will convince Audi to drop prices on the S4??? =)

If WRX sales pick up, then Mitsubishi (the turbo supplier for the WRX) may be convinced to bring over the EVO... now that would be nice to see.

"Can't we all just get along??" =)
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:52 AM
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Default Depends on where you live......

...on the East Coast, $400-$500 over invoice isn't too hard on a WRX.
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:57 AM
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That is a great quote dude.
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Old 04-20-2001, 11:57 AM
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Default One comment........

<i>I still think the European Jetta (with 4 Motion - i.e. Haldex quattro) that has a 6 speed tranny is a better comparision to the WRX.</i>

See the link below....the WRX spanked the 4Motion Golf (i.e., GTI VR6 w/207hp) in Autocar's review....I can't image a Jetta would do any better.<ul><li><a href="http://www.users.totalise.co.uk/~scoobydoo/imprezaweb/reviews/trex/">Autocar Shootout: Impreza WRX vs S3 vs Golf 4Motion</a></li></ul>
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