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Hi guys, I have just become the proud owner of a brand new MY17 STi Premium and wanted to share my first impressions.
After much deliberation between the WRX and STi, I rolled the dice and went with the heart decision instead of the head.
Due to the high demand and few STi's available in Aus, I only got a 3 minute test drive in the STi and the Dealer would not let me go above 60 km/h or hit boost as the car was sold and about to be delivered!!!
I had to turn to forums & blogs to see what others thought to make the choice between the WRX & STi... this car will be my daily driver. 90% of opinions seemed to state that as a daily driver, the STi would be a horrible choice. Most focused on the hard ride, the turbo lag at lower rpm, the gear ratio, the fuel consumption, only worth owning if you go to the track, etc.
Well opinions are formed by prior experience and after a few days of ownership and about 500km, I disagree with almost everything I read!
In the past I have owned 80's turbo 4 cyl. sports cars, rotary turbos, a GTi, Jeeps, diesel trucks, boring family sedans, and a big block 7.2 litre V8. Some were great to drive, some were great to look at, and some were just not great at all.
And now the STi... The BEST car I have every owned.
For me, it is the perfect mix of everything I want in a car.

In Premium trim, the interior is a VERY nice place to be. Leather everywhere, fantastic comfortable seats, massive boot space, great steering wheel feel, excellent visibility (even with the wing), clear instrumentation, nice infotainment system with GPS, enough cameras and sensors to assist in tight spots (although rear parking sensors would be nice), and an overall feeling of luxury I am not used to in a sports car. Could I spend 8 hours a day in it?... ABSOLUTELY.

The exterior is great too and I have yet to see a photo that does the car justice as it looks much better in the flesh. For me, it's exactly the right balance of conservative styling and underlying aggression. I did get the front lip option as I think without it the front end looks just under finished. I do wish Subaru offered a lower profile rear wing somewhere between the massive one I have and the WRX boot scoop, but maybe I've become a little more conservative with age.

To address the other negative opinions people had about daily driving an STi:

Hard ride - Is it hard?... Well, it is certainly firm but it gives you incredible feel of the road. It will not send you to a chiropractor after 10 minutes although you will want to take speed bumps with caution and avoid potholes.

Turbo lag - Of course there is lag, it is a byproduct of having a turbo. Is it unliveable?... Absolutely not. There is enough power generated < 3500rpm to still be more than adequate in normal traffic conditions. It is quicker off boost than some naturally aspirated so called performance cars I have owned in the past!

Gear ratio - They are short! You will change gears a lot! The gearbox feels great, to me, and I wouldn't want it any different. If you don't like changing gears, get a WRX CVT... Simple. It would be interesting to feel the difference with the short throw shifter but it would need to be a hell of an improvement over an already great feeling gearbox to justify the extra $.

Fuel consumption - I have a fuel card from work so this was never a consideration for me. It is a bit thirsty for the engine size and power output but there are definitely other cars out there that will cost you a lot more at the pump and be far less enjoyable to drive. I would consider the extra fuel cost as the price of driving a truely fun and exciting car.

Only worth taking to the track - This is just rubbish! Yes... It would be a phenominal car to take to the track but to say ownership should be exclusive to those who do is ridiculous. The STi will bring a smile to your face wherever you're driving it. You may find, as I have, that you start avoiding motorways in favour of the backroad twistys adding 30 minutes to your trip to work, but you will arrive with a spring in your step and be watching the clock all day waiting for the chance to do it again on the way home!

Hope this helps anyone trying to make the choice between the WRX & STi. They are both awesome cars and Subaru has made the choice even harder now by making the 2 models as different as they are similar. The best advise I can give is try to test drive them both as much as you can... an option I didn't have but, for me, am 100% happy with my choice.
 

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Æternum
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15,465 Posts
Nice writeup and welcome!

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G890A using Tapatalk
 

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Water.....sometimes waves
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yes, nice summary. At one point when you mentioned "massive boot space" I was ready to disagree.....then I realized you meant the "trunk" LOL. I actually bought new boots (work shoes) to make working the pedals in the limited space, easier :)
 
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