2006 Subaru Impreza WRX STi owner review

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JJOC
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PROS
  • The sounds, the emotions, the driving experience
  • The rally-inspired styling
  • The investment prospect
CONS
  • Taller drivers will struggle to find a good driving position
  • Fuel economy, and expensive STi parts
  • Neglect maintence and it will cost you later down the line

About the Subaru Impreza

JJOC purchased this Subaru Impreza used for $20,000 (including all on-road costs) in 2020. JJOC would buy this car again because: “I love the old-school turbo feel, sounds, and emotion. The AWD system is amazing. It’s very liveable as a daily driver, and the aftermarket support is amazing.”

How reliable has your car been? Tell us about any issues.

No major reliability issues in 15,000km. There’s high oil consumption, which might suggest engine/turbo wear. However, the car is still running perfectly. Headlights have had issues with condensation. HID ballasts are expensive to replace if the issue is neglected.

What do you think of the ownership experience with your car?

Maintenance/Servicing: Parts are easy to get and are generally universal with other Impreza models older and newer. Despite that, turbo Subaru parts can be very expensive.

Cachet/Community: The car definitely get looks and thumbs up on the street. Many people know what they are looking at as older STis are quite rare to see on the street these days. Great community of WRX enthusiasts. I always get a wave or get asked questions about my car, which I enjoy.

Extensive aftermarket support, if that is what you are into.Car is on coil overs, tuned to 210 all-wheel kW, turbo-back exhaust.

Are you happy with the price and features of your car?

Purchased for $20,000 in 2020. I still think they are worth the price, despite costing over $30,000 now.

It is not a modern car by any means in terms of comfort and technology, but I am very satisfied with the performance and driver-focused features of the car. (AWD system, Brembo brakes, engine)

What do you think of the performance and economy of your car?

Performance: At 210 all-wheel kW, the car is fast enough to do low four seconds to 100km/h. The turbo spools quite aggressively around 3500rpm, which can catch you by surprise if you fall out of the boost range.

The adjustable, full-time AWD will never make you want to go back to a Haldex system ever. Brembo brakes are superb.
I’m averaging 15L/100km. You could easily average around 12-13L/100km without my lead foot.

What do you think of the technology in your car?

Technology is as expected for a 2006 car. Double-din head unit and audio system can be readily installed.

No traction control or stability control.

What do you think of the ride comfort and handling of your car?

The car feels very light compared to other AWD cars I have driven. AWD system makes the car very playful and adjustable.

Road noise is loud. The STi seats are very ergonomic and comfortable. The aggressive turbo spool can be uncomfortable in traffic.

Having come from a Subaru BRZ, the car is no less comfortable than that. The quality of the plastics is to a similar level and it is perfectly suited to be used as a daily. A lot of soft-touch plastics inside, the suede/Alcantara seats and door trim feels so nice to the touch.

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Ratings
Overall8.1
Show Breakdown
Technology 6.5
Reliability 8.5
Ride & Handling 8
Price & Features 8.5
Performance & Economy 8
Ownership Experience 9