Back in the late 90’s there was one car that could do it all, and everyone, including me, wanted one.
The Subaru WRX – it was an affordable, turbo charged, all-wheel-drive, road-going rally weapon then and you know what, it still is.
The Subaru WRX has been through some ups and downs over the years, the changing body shapes and different looks getting more than a few noses out of joint [ point to car nose ]
But, the 4th generation car, which is available exclusively in a sedan body, with its angular and aggressive style is one of the best looking WRXs in a long time.
There is a 6.2-inch touch screen in this entry-level WRX and a 7-inch unit in the Premium and STI models.
It offers a reverse view camera and phone & audio connectivity but if you want satellite navigation or internet music apps like Pandora you’ll have to jump up a trim level.
The rest of the cabin is quite spartan and basic, but you do get this cool gauge cluster, lovely leather-wrapped wheel and of course the snug and supportive sports seats.
What you don’t get though is Subaru’s excellent Eyesight driver assistance and safety systems.
Premium grade cars do get Vision Assist though, which adds blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert and lane change assist.
The rear bench isn’t hugely roomy but it is comfy.
The boot is pretty decent for a small sedan at 460-litres and there are 60/40 folding seats for added convenience.
It’s been more than 20-years since the first WRX burst onto the scene. Back then, for just over $40k you got a 155kW / 270Nm 2-litre turbo under the bonnet.
Now, for just under $40k, behind that familiar boxer thump, you still get that 2-litre turbo, but there is 197kW and 350Nm at your disposal.
And despite the car bulking up some 200kg over the years, it still has plenty of hustle.
Find yourself on some winding roads, and the WRX has always been a fun thing to drive. The AWD system has a 50/50 split from front to rear.
Keeping it high in the rev range, there’s plenty of punchy response.
With your speed in check, turn in is direct and accurate. Overcook it a bit, and the car will err towards understeer.
This car has the 6-speed manual transmission. You can get the 2016 WRX with a CVT – which is arguably a better choice if you spend most of your drive-time in town – but the manual is just that little bit more engaging.
It’s nice and notchy with a short throw. The clutch can be a little firm with a touchy take up point.
If you’ve ever had one, or ever wanted one, the 2016 Subaru WRX doesn’t disappoint.
Sure some of the materials are less than premium but for a fast and fun sports sedan, that still offers solid bang for your buck – the Rex is pretty hard to beat.