Wow, I haven't sampled a WRX since Subaru bumped up the engine's power last summer. The increase in horsepower and torque really makes this car more fun to drive, and the boom from the SPT exhaust system gives you an extra reason to run the engine up to redline. I didn't drive the car hard enough to really make any judgments on the effectiveness of the chassis upgrades, but I took one off ramp fast enough to experience a little lift-throttle oversteer. Childish, but fun.
Other than the STI front lip, this white WRX is a great little sleeper. It doesn't look as fast or as fun as it actually is, though it's still not an STI. Given the practicality of the hatch, I can immediately see how someone would choose the WRX over a Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart, at least until we get the Sportback variety here. Even then, Mitsubishi doesn't have a line of parts to compete with SPT. If you can't afford a new WRX, you can still buy SPT parts for a late-model car. That's a very smart move on Subaru's part.
Phil Floraday, Senior Online Editor