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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2018 STI, and have owned a 2015 STI and 2013 WRX. A couple days ago, I drove a 2022 WRX. I couldn't find a lot of testimonial comparisons between the VA STI and the VB WRX. Also, to put this in completely relevant context, I'm 37 years old with a toddler, so my expectations probably differ significantly from some of the younger members. This will be thorough. Here are my thoughts:

Opinions on everything are subjective, but to me, the car is mostly ugly. Yet, I like 3/4ths of it. The WRX has never looked that great and my 13 WRX was especially no exception. It looked like an angry squinty mule, and I loved it. My current 18 STI is probably the most handsome WRX/STI I've owned, but it also looks awkward from several angles, even with the wing gone. The 2022 WRX is not Subaru's attempt at beauty like the 2022 BRZ. That was not the intention here. The front end looks aggressive, and the side cladding gives a mean rugged impression. Marketing: You won. Again. However, the rear end is just offensive. Every single time I look at it, I can't bring myself to accept it. Who signed off on this?

The WRX I drove was white, which is an unacceptable color (for me) given the aforementioned features. I was up front with the salesman about this. I didn't want to give him a false impression I was going to buy that particular car, but when he looked up my past purchases, including our most recent 22 Forester, he took me serious as a potential customer. We order all of our cars, and the only colors I would choose on the VB are gray, gray, gray, gray, or gray. But maybe, just maybe, black, if it wasn't for me not giving two shits and using an automatic car wash, with brushes.

As for driving, as many reviewers have commented, I went in expecting to dislike the car, but ended up really liking it:

I wasn't eager to start it up, since I'd heard from so many journalists how lacking the sound was. I can't understand what they are talking about, because it was just as loud as my STI on startup, if not louder. If anything, it was louder than I wanted it to be, with the four-cylinder loud warmup cabin drone/buzz.

To say this car has any iconic "boxer rumble" is a huge stretch of the imagination, after owning three EJ's. To me, it has a typical four cylinder "performance" sound, with a maybe just a little more grunt. Once warmed up and on the road, enjoyed the sounds overall from the cabin, and couldn't care less about how terrible it probably sounded from the exterior. (As with any lifeless high pitched FA. Sorry.)

The gear box was stiff and precise, but felt less connected and engaging than my STI. The shifter sat pretty high, even with the factory short-throw and STI knob. (An absolute must with any WRX) It did, however, need less finesse to upshift and downshift, making it easier to drive. I like it better than my 2013 WRX, but less than my 2015 and 2018 STI's. It wasn't as connected, but far from sloppy.

The clutch on the car felt much softer than my STI. The pedal was lighter, but it had a nice amount of tension and the engagement point was about mid-way though the pedal, and easy to feel. Between the clutch and the shifter, I had to pay far less attention to the car then I do my STI, which made it a lot easier to drive. After living with a VA STI since 2015, this was a big plus for me.

The car had plenty of power, but from the reviews, I expected it to come on quicker. It had less turbo lag, but you could never mistake it for anything but a turbocharged four cylinder. Once boost kicked in, the acceleration continued throughout the rev range. Unlike others, I didn't feel like the car needed a higher RPM. The WRX/STI has never been known for a high rev range.

At lower speeds, there didn't seem to be as many hiccups between the transmission and engine. Just to entertain myself, I gave the WRX the beans from a stand-still, and it bogged and jerked to life at its own sluggish awkward first gear pace. It just further proved these cars aren't meant to be launched without significant abuse.

Overall, there was more mid-range power to play with, leading me to have to think less about when to shift. I didn't feel like I had to micromanage the car as much as my STI.

I liked the ride quality. The WRX felt firm, but not jarring like I'm used to. It was more springy, instead of slapping into every road imperfection. The suspension didn't feel as smooth and refined as other journalists made it seem, and you would never mistake this for a Camry. It paired well with the steering, which had enough tension at lower speeds, but allowed you to loosen your grip on the highway. The steering felt very direct. It was more loose than my STI, but the WRX would still snap in any direction you wanted it to.

By contrast, I have to always keep a firm grip on the wheel in my STI and make constant corrections on the highway. The WRX didn't completely let me fall asleep at higher speeds, but it also didn't want to constantly disagree with me at 70 mph. It was nice to be able to not have to brace myself for every bump and to relax my hands a little. It was again an aspect that provided plenty of fun, but demanded less attention.

There is a whole segment of people in the VB facebook community (I know...) who declare this car as just as capable of a performer as the STI. The car feels lighter on its feet, no doubt, but it doesn't have that dug in planted feel when you push it through a sweeping turn. It was definitely plenty of fun, tossable, and eager to take accelerating turns, but it didn't feel nearly as confident.

I don't know which is quicker in a straight line in 2nd or 3rd gear, which are the only two gears I use to push the car a bit hard. The two cars delivery power slightly different, so it's hard to tell. Both are mid range happy, but the WRX seems to have a wider range both up top and down low in the rev range.

But, there is absolutely no mistake when I mash the pedal on curves or an onramp, the STI feels drastically more glued to the road. It gets heavier, tighter, and has noticeably less body roll. I did NOT feel this in the WRX, no matter how much the fanboys say it's better. I have no idea why people feel on the internet are so self conscious about how others view their cars' performance. I tried to keep my analysis comes from a pretty neutral place as someone who is very interested in the VB for a potential near future purchase. That, and I just don't care about which car is better or faster. The WRX absolutely may feel more fun to some, maybe even me, but by no means did I think it was the same animal.

Faster or not, I really didn't want to take this car back to the lot. I took a lot of time with the WRX... probably too much... to see how it did under normal in-town driving, cruising on the highway (it was still noisy despite the reviews), and admittedly tossing it around/romping it through some corners. I took my time to make sure I did plenty of up shifts and down shifts. I even mashed the brakes a few times to see how it did, which was plenty adequate. If you're running out of brakes and you're not on the track, you need to quit driving like a reckless dirtbag.

The WRX I test drove already had 100 miles on it, so I didn't feel like a complete jerk, but I took a pretty bold amount of time with it. Sorry, but that's what you get if you want me as a (likely) potential 6th Subaru buyer in ten years. I never smelled clutch or brakes, so it could have been worse. This was an informed consumer drive, not a joy ride.

I parked the car and spent about ten minutes going over every little detail. I didn't get the "more premium" vibe everyone else talked about. Granted, my car has a Recaro package and this was a mid-level trim. We would be in the market for a limited trim, which has a few minor interior accents, better seats, and a Harmon Kardon stereo. (Of note, I have found seats and small differences to make a drastic difference on the look and feel of an interior, especially compared to my nearly identical base 2015 STI interior, to my Recaro 2018 STI.)

The controversial center tablet was fine. I don't get the complaints. Although, I do not recommend trying to figure out the climate control settings while on the middle of the highway. The heated seat menu wasn't as damning as journalists made it out to be. The vents seemed higher quality, although the one to the far left doesn't have that much adjustability to bring it in closer to your body or face. It just kind of blows down your left arm.

I strongly dislike the carbon fiber patterned door handle and steering wheel inserts. I was happy when that went away from my 2015 STI to my 2018 STI. I don't understand the complaints about piano black. Clean your car, stop spilling your drink on it, or maybe just don't be so anal. Either way, the carbon fiber "not even trying anymore" stamped look is even worse than the "this is a really bad impression of real carbon fiber" look. You don't need carbon fiber in your ***king cabin anyway...

The doors and door handles felt solid. The buttons throughout the car had a very impressive silent non-plasticky quality feel. The cubby in front of the shifter has plenty of room for your phone, and is much larger than my STI or the ridiculously tiny area in our Forester. The cup holders seemed fine, although I like the pull-shut cover on my STI. (Surprise though... I never use it.) The most depressing part about the interior was the coin tray insert behind the shifter where you can tell the drive mode and diff settings would have been on my inevitable 2023 STI. (and I do mean inevitable)

The visibility was great, which is what my wife and I really love about modern Subarus, and one of the things that brings us back. That, and the same familiar minimalist cabin setup we enjoy. The formula just works for us. I sit up high, and the hood slopes in such a way where I could really see down in front of the car a lot more. Yet, the dash doesn't have the nice digital center cluster, so up top is just looks kind of flat and lifeless. Luckily, you can see both sharp hood contour lines centering the large bulge from the hood scoop. It looks pretty mean from the driver's seat.

The steering wheel is leather wrapped and feels decent. The buttons have a quality feel. This model did not have a sunroof or have power seats that the Limited trim comes with. There was plenty of headroom and the seats still had adequate adjustability to easily get into a comfortable driving position. The arm rest on the door is nicely angled at an incline toward the steering wheel, which provided a comfortable resting position. People complain about the center armrests that have always been for looks only on the WRX/STI models I've owned. Maybe I'm used to it, but I didn't even think about it until I parked the car and looked everything over.

I didn't bother even turning on the stereo. The stereos in our WRX, (2) STI's, and former Crosstrek were mid 90's terrible, so I expected nothing different. The Limited trim comes with the HK system, which we're really pleased with equipped in our Touring trim Forster. The gauges are nice... but the only problem is they're identical to my STI. It would be nice to have something different to look at for the next five years, so I'm hopelessly crossing my fingers there will be a change for 2023. Apparently they didn't expect 2018-2021 VA STI owners to buy the 22 WRX... or did they?

For whatever reason, the car felt smaller than my STI, when sitting in the driver's seat. Even while driving. I know this isn't actually the case. This made the car feel a little more like a compact, and possibly cheaper as a result. I still feel like a lot of that will change with the top trim level, and a slight legal tint on the windows. By contrast, the back seats and rear passenger's compartment felt huge. It was like being in two different vehicles. There were 2 USB chargers back there, but the plastic trim pieces on the doors felt noticeable cheaper. This would be a problem I'd never have to live with.

Overall, I really really really liked the car. I was expecting at best to view it as tolerable for my next car. When I equip all of the options, it will fit the bill to be a really fun car I can transfer my car seat to, get better gas mileage, and be more comfortable for my 30 minute commute to work. The 2022 WRX is by far an easier car to operate, but it still feels like a very capable performing vehicle. I honestly think I would possibly enjoy it more than my STI's, since the car demands less focus to drive perfectly, and although you still feel every bump in the road, it doesn't punch you in the kidneys.

As I said before, the warranty in our STI is up next Spring, and we plan on ordering whatever we want in January or February. The cash is there, but I like my cars to come in when it isn't constantly frigid outside, and the timeline should put delivery in for March or April. The WRX is the only car that completely checks all of the boxes for us, so we're not considering much else. I've really enjoyed every Subaru and WRX/STI I've had so far, so why change? (Aside from one long story suspension issue Subaru made right...)

I was pleasantly surprised with how impressed I was with this car. If we do purchase a WRX, every single box checked for the options and trim we want, will put a dark gray metallic at $40,000. That includes completely unnecessary items like factory mud flaps, and a beloved front lip. That's a bit pricey for a WRX, but I'll be in my 40's when we get rid of the car. Amenities and warrantied factory add-ons become increasingly pleasing to me as I get older. In the dark gray, I think it will be just mature enough to be an acceptable "cool dad" car. It's definitely a strong possibility.

On the other side of the coin... I have an acquaintance who says he can get me a 23 Type-R when they come in for only (lol but reality) $5,000 in markup. He's going to call me if they do have one en route. (In any color but than bright blue) If his unlikely promise turns out to be true, it would be hard to pass up, would it not? That wing in my 40's though... eh. I'm not counting on it. No heated seats? I think I would probably keep that $5,000 in our savings and drive something in which I wouldn't be embarrassed to drive to a future parent-teacher meeting.

Thanks for reading.
 

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I'd opt for the type r not for reliability but because I want one.

It's good to get a perspective from someone who isn't media or overcome with excitement to get a WRX. Little bummed about the tighter cabin.

I'm actually surprised you mentioned how well it does handle considering the suspension hikes the ride height.
 

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Nice writeup. Sounds like it improves a bit on the VA wrx but doesn't handle like an STi. Surprised to see the shift action is close to STi, seems to be a massive improvement then. The VA wrx shifter and rev hang is awful and needs complete attention for every shift up to 3rd gear.

Never understood why some people are embarrassed about driving a car with a wing. If anyone should be embarrassed, it's the giant and pointless suvs and trucks which never leave pavement.

Type r would be nice, the current one is too dull though. The last gen type r was one of the best looking cars ever made. Pretty funny when I saw that grand tour episode with xkss/d-type, db4 and type r. The type r looked much better than the xkss, and almost evenly matched with db4.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
^I'm self conscious person in nature, so the wing didn't help. I didn't start to feel silly until I started dropping my daughter off at daycare. When I trunk swapped with a WRX, I actually thought it made the car look a lot more mature and better looking.

We have different tastes, because I like the subtlety of the new Type-R more than the last generation. To me, it's a beautiful car... but again with the wing at 40.

I'd opt for the type r not for reliability but because I want one.

It's good to get a perspective from someone who isn't media or overcome with excitement to get a WRX. Little bummed about the tighter cabin.

I'm actually surprised you mentioned how well it does handle considering the suspension hikes the ride height.
The reason the cabin may have felt tighter is because I was driving our Forester around all day. I was having it serviced at the Dealership when I noticed the WRX and decided to go for a drive. (I was really surprised they had one) It probably wouldn't have felt as small as it did if I'd driven my STI. I think it's supposed to be bigger, by overall dimensions. The back seat was really impressive, though. However, it's said to have less headroom. I'm 5'10" and I'm all limbs so don't sit up that tall. I didn't notice it at my height.

Maybe part of what factored into my handling impressions are the expectations I had going into my drive. I really expected the car to be dialed down. But, this is a handling experience from someone who never pushes anything close to its full potential. I have no idea what the car can do at the limit, nor would I ever. I've never heard tire squeal on my STI, and I definitely didn't hear it in a car that wasn't mine.
 

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Fair enough, the last type r was fantastic but polarizing, almost a teenage car dream come true. The new one is more conventionally pretty and you can get a carbon fiber wing that's more understated than the painted one if you feel self conscious.

Would be interesting to hear opinions about VB handling over the limit from someone who owns it. Rarely spun the wheels in a straight line but sideways the VA wrx understeers lightly on stock suspension and neutral when you dial camber to ~2 deg with zero toe. It's best on greasy surfaces because you can make it rotate while sliding by flooring it.
 

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^I'm self conscious person in nature, so the wing didn't help. I didn't start to feel silly until I started dropping my daughter off at daycare. When I trunk swapped with a WRX, I actually thought it made the car look a lot more mature and better looking.

We have different tastes, because I like the subtlety of the new Type-R more than the last generation. To me, it's a beautiful car... but again with the wing at 40.


The reason the cabin may have felt tighter is because I was driving our Forester around all day. I was having it serviced at the Dealership when I noticed the WRX and decided to go for a drive. (I was really surprised they had one) It probably wouldn't have felt as small as it did if I'd driven my STI. I think it's supposed to be bigger, by overall dimensions. The back seat was really impressive, though. However, it's said to have less headroom. I'm 5'10" and I'm all limbs so don't sit up that tall. I didn't notice it at my height.

Maybe part of what factored into my handling impressions are the expectations I had going into my drive. I really expected the car to be dialed down. But, this is a handling experience from someone who never pushes anything close to its full potential. I have no idea what the car can do at the limit, nor would I ever. I've never heard tire squeal on my STI, and I definitely didn't hear it in a car that wasn't mine.
I don't either. It's a road car.

I'm still in the market for one I've just decided to wait a while and let the market burn itself out. There is a guy out by my brother selling a 4bt swapped XJ I'm really considering. Everything's good on it and he has the replacement floor pans. If I get it it'll fill my unexplainable need for a jeep and free a place for a new WRX. Mine would have to be orange. It's just so garish and obnoxious I'm becoming attached to the color
 

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The gear box was stiff and precise, but felt less connected and engaging than my STI. The shifter sat pretty high, even with the factory short-throw and STI knob. (An absolute must with any WRX) It did, however, need less finesse to upshift and downshift, making it easier to drive. I like it better than my 2013 WRX, but less than my 2015 and 2018 STI's. It wasn't as connected, but far from sloppy.

The clutch on the car felt much softer than my STI. The pedal was lighter, but it had a nice amount of tension and the engagement point was about mid-way though the pedal, and easy to feel. Between the clutch and the shifter, I had to pay far less attention to the car then I do my STI, which made it a lot easier to drive. After living with a VA STI since 2015, this was a big plus for me.
I've always felt the VA shifters were stiff and clunky.... Maybe it's really only the WRX shifters, since I've not driven an actual STI to compare. But the two 2022 WRXs I've tested were no different than previous years. What would really impress me is if they could build a shifter that feels like a Honda or VW.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I was thinking today, I just don't know why I want another one, but I do. It's like... most of the competition is faster. Some have better ride quality. Some have better interior and amenities. Some look better. Some are more reliable. Some are more affordable. But, the WRX is still decent in those areas. I seriously pondered this. The only reason I can think of why I love these cars so much is the model is pretty much a practical jack of all trades, but master of none.

It's like it does everything well enough to satisfy me, where as other options are notably superior in some aspects, but inferior in others. I don't strive for mediocracy, of which the WRX could be classified as... but the thing is it has everything I want with the total all around package. I'm just worried that I would be 'settling' with something familiar vs. branching out, but I've been pleased with my past three cars. I ask myself if it's worth changing the formula.
 

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Realistically you never push any car close to the limit outside of tracks so the differences in power and grip matter much less in real life than on paper. Also subaru and mazda interiors are convenient and built around user needs rather than weirdo futuristic shit which is only good for concept cars (& yes i am aware of the irony of hvac on screen for the new one).

Better question is why change? If you like your current STi, why not keep it long term. You are not going to find another new car with hydraulic steering below mclaren prices now.
 

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Don’t be self conscious about your STI’s wing. The only way to please the daycare parking lot folks is to get a Tesla. I’m 48 and use my ‘21 WRX to haul my 4-year-old kid to daycare. I wish I had an STI!
 

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Instead of the wing being embarrassing, you would have to endure that whole rear bumper, and the odd shape of those plastic fender arches. I have a 2018 STI also, and like you was looking forward for a new STI this year, but I really don't think the new car is better than what I have now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I want to order something new while the trade-in for used cars remains ridiculously high. I bought mine for $40,000 and I can now trade it realistically for $35,000. As important, I want something with a warranty. The WRX, and just about everything else, is, or at least seems, more comfortable to live with. I have a new job with a 30 minute commute. It's not much, but I want something comfortable.

The dozen times I've prices a limited WRX, it has come to right at $40,000 with absolutely everything I want on it, at dealership cost. Essentially, for around $5,000 I can have a new warrantied car for another five years. I've never owed on my STI, so essentially it's just dipping into our checking account for a clean slate. Gas mileage is also in the 'not very good' category, which is better than the 'terrible by 2018 standards' category.

I like the fender arches on black and gray. Not so much on anything else.

My acquaintance still says he can secure a Type-R for me, which they're said to have in Spring. I'm first on their list. Just because it is a Type-R, and there will be limited chances to buy something that special with ICE in the very near future, I would strongly consider it at the $5,000 markup he specified. This is considering with a higher trim level 2023 STI we most certainly would have purchased, we anticipated a $45,000 cost. (What a shame) But, when I confirmed the markup again, he changed it from "$5,000-$10,000." OK dude... I see where this is going.

It's a shame I think the GR Corolla isn't attractive in Core form, and it doesn't even come with an armrest. The circuit trim I would be interested in will be virtually unavailable. There are already pre-order lists, and every dealership is said to be delivered one. At the $44,000 cost, I would imagine markup would put it well over $50,000.

With even Civic Si's hilariously marked up, it's a weird time to buy anything special. Although Subaru isn't budging much on their prices, at least they aren't price gouging.

As far that the wing being gone, not only do I think it makes the car look more mature, but I like it much better. I think it actually looks more aggressive in a certain sense, since it doesn't look like a car with more bark than bite. But yeah... I started to feel silly in it as well. I'd still feel a little silly in the Type-R, but I feel like it blends with the car better, and I wouldn't care because of what it is. A fast civic will never be cool to the general public, anyway. At least some people know what the STI is.
 

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That last part is especially true. Even the wrx gets more attention and casual conversations than some genuinely fast cars. Friend's rs3 as case in point.

GR corolla seems to be fighting the evo8. Based on reviews and photos, it seems too spartan and hard-edged for a daily. Also at 45k it's very close to the m240 or i6-manual supra.
 

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hey...first post here but wanted to chime in as this is a great review and very few of. I sold my 21 STI Base in January for a variety of reasons. I picked up a 22 Premium this last Saturday. I would agree on most points except that I have some more driving days in there versus a test drive.

I actually the the front feels larger, and the seats are also a tad larger than the VAs. The seat base extends a little further, and the side bolsters are real the real deal for base seats....reminds me of the BRZ/86. I didn't go with with the STI limited or with Recaro's because they felt near identical to the base seats. The rear definitely has more more room than the VA.

The suspension is quite stiff in the 22 as mentioned. It feels like a WRX on the road. I'll be taking it up to the twisties this weekend to see how composed it stays.

Def on point regarding easier to drive. Something about the clutch, not the feel, but for sure is very pleasant.

The power band is is nice. You're definitely right. Still feels like an 'old school' turbo 4. Turbo does kick in sooner, but there is still some lag. Power holds well. Even on my 21 STI.....One day I can do a hard pull. You could feel the underrated power power shining. The next day, do the same pull, and you can feel the stock tune pulling timing and it just felt flat on its face. The power delivery, especially for street driving and on ramps so far seems very consistent. These cars were never the fastest in stock form, but they weren't slow either. On this 22, it really just seems more consistent and fine tuned.

The steering wheel is solid! The car's non EJ rumble is actually pretty loud as mentioned. There's a cold start chime like usual, and you can feel and hear the bass from inside the house.

The bipolar exterior. Frankly, I never had a problem with it, including the rear. I'm excited to not have to care so much about the fenders and rear end that tends to take quite a beating from....DRIVING. I mean, how WRXs do you not see with full on splitters from front to rear and million canards that are guaranteed to have never seen a track day!

Points of reference. I have a weekend Mazda NC Miata with turbo set up for weekend mountain drives and track days. Had the 21 STI before this. A 17' Mustang GT PP1 with full suspension, wheels and exhaust, An AP2. A 240sx with blacktop....etc etc. I've been around the block in the hobby for the past few decades. I'm not married to a brand. I truly enjoy em all, and for what each has to offer.

As I understand, every new model especially of the WRX has always been hated on. I think the car, with it's 'questionable' identities, looks far greater in person...obviously still subjective and everyone has a right to their own preferences and criteria. While I loved my 21 STI for the short time, I understand those angles too. Was never really keen on the front end fender styling, which obviously started with the gen before. To each their own. No one's holding a gun to anyone's head. Like most of these cars that may look funky on OE form factor....you know how it is....add some suspension, wheels, exhaust....all of the sudden it is transformed, whether by function and/or aesthetics and looks good. err CTR....

I do encourage anyone to actually try to go spend some time with the new WRX. You may be surprised. You may not. Strangely and conflictingly, I actually feel to a certain a degree that my 22 is a bit of an upgrade to the VA. I try to not keep saying that to myself, but the more I drive it, it's hard to not come to those terms....and I'm far from a fanboi. I'm not comparing back to the bugeyes platform. No point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for the input. Just a few questions, if you don't mind:

So despite maybe not being as fast overall, do you find the car more fun to drive, due to the ease of driving?

Does it seem a lot easier to live with?

Now that you've lived with it for a while, does the road noise seem less?

Does the ride still feel less harsh?

Is it just me, or did the car really not seem much slower in a straight line?
 

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To be fair, it's only been 5 days living with it :) But that being said... see below...

Thanks for the input. Just a few questions, if you don't mind: So despite maybe not being as fast overall, do you find the car more fun to drive, due to the ease of driving? I would said say, its not a being as fast overall, because really, an STI isn't that much faster than a non-STI. Its more of the areas of focus where an STI may excel at. On the streets and even at the mountains, you should be driving 10 out 10 like on track, and you should be far from it. When does SI-drive and differential adjustment really affect you on the street or the mountains in mostly normal driving conditions. Sure, add some rain on the road, but it's the general AWD doing most of the work. So taking that away, I would say they are equal. I don't necessarily find it easier to drive, though I have not stalled the WRX whereas....the STI....I don't know how many times I've stupidly stalled it while backing up into a driveway...funny right. The car is fun to drive period, cuz its still a WRX. STI is still a WRX. Once more parts become available, I'm sure it can become more fun. I'm more of a handling guy vs top power. Not exactly sure if I answered your question.

Does it seem a lot easier to live with? It's roomy, its fun. Somehow the clutch, as you experienced, seems more refined or easier. Because of the cladding, I'm less concerned with keeping every aspect of the car pristine. What a breath of fresh air. Subjectivity here obviously. I'm going to enjoy driving the hell out of it, letting some of the elements take its course on it, and be less concerned. It's become more function and fun verses.....let me get out the deep-cutting polish every other day.

Now that you've lived with it for a while, does the road noise seem less? road noise in the STI was ridiculous. Not that I cared. I think there is a little less road noise. I think the car has more of a solid feel to it, could have a tad more insulation from its new interior redesign. Not less car noise. Its still got a Rex sound. But I'll be going with a resonated pipe with muffler deletes.

Does the ride still feel less harsh? I think the ride feels similar to the STI. It's firm. Maybe not in all aspects. But it aint NOOO camry or Lincoln towncar. Is it just me, or did the car really not seem much slower in a straight line? Its not that much slower. Its a different power curve. It may feel slower because you're experiencing the power all throughout versus kicking in old school. As mentioned and you should know this. Power delivery in a straight line on a factor tuned STI, even with the 18+ model, was still pulling timing and falling flat. I mean, the WRX is obviously not a 300, 400, 500hp car. Its not gonna feel like it. But the overall driving experience is still there of the WRX based in its day n age. I'll be happy to comment after a mountain drive this weekend.
 

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I have a 13 STi , had an 09 WRX . The STi’s 6 speed is worth the 10K upgrade alone , add the Brembo brakes and you’re ahead of the game . The center Diff control I usually leave in Auto mode , but in the rain I’ve played with it and it does work very well .
 

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I want to order something new while the trade-in for used cars remains ridiculously high. I bought mine for $40,000 and I can now trade it realistically for $35,000. As important, I want something with a warranty. The WRX, and just about everything else, is, or at least seems, more comfortable to live with. I have a new job with a 30 minute commute. It's not much, but I want something comfortable.

The dozen times I've prices a limited WRX, it has come to right at $40,000 with absolutely everything I want on it, at dealership cost. Essentially, for around $5,000 I can have a new warrantied car for another five years. I've never owed on my STI, so essentially it's just dipping into our checking account for a clean slate. Gas mileage is also in the 'not very good' category, which is better than the 'terrible by 2018 standards' category.

I like the fender arches on black and gray. Not so much on anything else.

My acquaintance still says he can secure a Type-R for me, which they're said to have in Spring. I'm first on their list. Just because it is a Type-R, and there will be limited chances to buy something that special with ICE in the very near future, I would strongly consider it at the $5,000 markup he specified. This is considering with a higher trim level 2023 STI we most certainly would have purchased, we anticipated a $45,000 cost. (What a shame) But, when I confirmed the markup again, he changed it from "$5,000-$10,000." OK dude... I see where this is going.

It's a shame I think the GR Corolla isn't attractive in Core form, and it doesn't even come with an armrest. The circuit trim I would be interested in will be virtually unavailable. There are already pre-order lists, and every dealership is said to be delivered one. At the $44,000 cost, I would imagine markup would put it well over $50,000.

With even Civic Si's hilariously marked up, it's a weird time to buy anything special. Although Subaru isn't budging much on their prices, at least they aren't price gouging.

As far that the wing being gone, not only do I think it makes the car look more mature, but I like it much better. I think it actually looks more aggressive in a certain sense, since it doesn't look like a car with more bark than bite. But yeah... I started to feel silly in it as well. I'd still feel a little silly in the Type-R, but I feel like it blends with the car better, and I wouldn't care because of what it is. A fast civic will never be cool to the general public, anyway. At least some people know what the STI is.
Wings exist on other cars...ZL1 1LE | 911 GT3 RS | 911 GT2 RS | AMG GT-R, etc. I do understand that the WRX STi is a bit more for the younger crowd but, it isn't the only wing on the street. I think the WRX is a solid value. It has a bit of punch. It handles well. It has 4 doors. It has a trunk. You can haul folks and stuff in it. I cannot speak to the ride quality of the new WRX. However, the last model (I had a 2015) rode OK. It was in the same category as our CLA 45 AMG. A bit choppy and could jar you from time to time. Not DSSV harsh (yikes that will adjust your spine and not in a good way - Dynamic Suspension Spool Valve -F1 stuff), but a bit more jouncy than an S Class.

BTW, with car interest rates climbing, a good case can be made for cash buying if possible. I can no longer make a valid case for investment earnings out-pacing interest rates. Just as an aside, the new C43 AMG has the same turbo 4 as the CLA (name plaque AMG). The CLA had a bit of turbo lag. On boost, it was a kick in the @$$. Ours is the twin turbo V6 (no name plaque).
 
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