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Subaru Impreza WRX STI Type RA Japanese Import


stupidly quick, boosting (that sound), handling amazing, looks great,

on this model lack of ABS and Air con this is not standard though !

Recommendable Yes:

Detailed rating:


Fuel consumption


Value for Money

Road HandlingExcellent


3 Ciao members have rated this review on average: very helpful See ratings
very helpful by (75%):
  1. farrelpl
  3. cbzcbz
and 3 other members
helpful by (25%):
  1. mysteryshopper2
  2. purplelynne

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This was a 1996 Japanese import that spent its life as a Japanese street racing car. It was the race altered edition of the WRX STI. This meant it had no sunroof, no electrics in the front ie. windows and wing mirrors, no ABS and no air con. It did have a double din stereo and it did have a 5.5" straight through stainless steel exhaust. It was stupidly modified in the engine department and it did have creedy boost gauges.

This car was brought from a garage in Stoke. It was a Japanese import. It is a very rare car I have only ever seen 1 other like it. However, due to more imports coming into the country and the price for these beats being between 9-11k I thought I would write this review.

This car kicked out 345bhp and went from 0-60mph in between 3.5 and 4 seconds. Don't believe me I have the evidence in the form of many scared friends who can testify.

I had the car for a very short space of time. The garage who sold it to me tried to rip me off as the mileage was clocked wrongly and the crank went after a while problems with the con rod etc. this would have been engine re-build time. Luckily I knew my statutory rights being a lawyer and my firm helped me recoup the money and sort it out.

I did however get to see this beast in action. Bear in mind this was modified. However due to it being race Altered and lighter it is quicker than most scooby's. The car was gorgeous STI seats are amazing velour and they just grip you. The grip and handling of the car for its size was ridiculously good and you didn't notice that the ABS wasn't fitted as the huge discs did all the work for you.

This car was fast. 0-60 in 3.5 seconds. When the turbo kicked in and the car boosted it shot forward. I found a re-circulating dump valve was better than a normal dump valve and kept the power more consistent.

I would recommend this car to anybody. My clio 172 is like a smart car in comparision. This thing moved. You could be idling at 70 on a motorway and be up to 140 within 5 seconds!

If you get the chance to get one and you can afford the risk of it going wrong (a rariety but on imports who knows) then do it. This is better than any other like car. Only the TVR tuscan S have I drove that has made me feel better and only that car was faster.

loved this car it had everything. Disappointed was an understatement when it went wrong. However words of warning. Scooby's are usually very reliable but;

1) UK dealers won't touch imports- if they do they only replace with UK parts which can wreck to mods on a car
2) Tesco is cheapest insurance but you hve to buy an alarm and tracker. However, tracker systems are amazing I will post shortly about them.
3) Imports are sometimes merely used for racing thus with no way of checking the background to a car or its genuine mileage you take a risk. Sometimes the source is good sometimes its bad. Despite the mess up I still think this car was worth all the aggro
4) don't get ripped off know what your buying I thought I did but I was wrong. Its easy to get sucked in especially when you have a piece of machinery like that next to you.
5) f you buy one of these BEWARE unless you plan to become seriously rich (or a pilot) this will be the fastest thing you ever drive I think i peaked to soon I had this at 23 now my 172 can't come close. I feel like I lost a grand and found a tenner.
6) also beware tendencies to put your foot down and boost continually will mean the engine will be under extreme pressure and with an import you don't know what condition that engine is in

Ultimately if you like speed and comfort and handling and you want an evo or a scooby or a car that is everything you could dream of don't buy a normal one take a chance an get a Jap import that is a type RA its amazing I stillthink about this car daily!!!!

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Comments about this review »

cbzcbz 08.07.2004 19:23

Good review :-) Nice cars scoobys but too many get stolen to order :-( Happy with my 150Bhp Rover 200. Does the job for me :-)

REALLYFIT 08.07.2004 18:05

No I said they generally won't touch them the main Subaru dealers will re-build the engines but only with UK parts. Of course there are garages that will touch them but in my experience which is all I have to go on they wouldn't. Mine was tuned excessively though under the bonnet this may have been the reason.

ndf9876 08.07.2004 17:55

I think you got some facts wrong about Jap imports, check out my review for the lowdown :-) For example you say main dealers won't touch imports and they will only use UK're taking your car to the wrong places!!!

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Product Information »

Manufacturer's product description

Subaru present the Impreza 2.0 WRX AWD 4dr Saloon with 5 Speed Manual Gearbox, Four Wheel Drive (4x4) running on Un...

Product details

Body Type Saloon
Fuel Type Petrol
Range Subaru Impreza


Listed on Ciao since 28/07/2000

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This review of Subaru Impreza 2.0 WRX has been rated:

"very helpful" by (75%):

  1. farrelpl
  3. cbzcbz

and 3 other members

"helpful" by (25%):

  1. mysteryshopper2
  2. purplelynne

The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.

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