2003 New York Auto Show: Subaru Baja Turbo
With the arrival of the Baja Turbo, which follows on the heels of the new turbocharged Forester 2.5XT and the astonishing WRX STi, Subaru has officially gone turbo-mad. This is the same nutty Baja we know and love, turned up to eleven. It employs the force-fed and intercooled 2.5-liter horizontally opposed four from the 2.5XT, producing 210 horsepower and 235 pound-feet of torque. The engine is paired with either a five-speed manual or a four-speed manumatic, and, of course, permanent all-wheel drive. Inside, there are seats for four, and out back, there is a petite, 41.5-inch pickup bed (extendable to 58 inches with the flip down bed extender), as well as the occasionally useful "Switchback" passenger compartment pass-through. Whether an extra 45 horsepower will make Subaru's Baja-ddity more palatable to car shoppers is anyone's guess. But the performance renaissance is in full bloom at Subaru, and we aren't complaining.