‘Cars on Campus’ Column:

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Phil Baus, B&W Staff

Phil Baus, B&W Staff

Remember when you were a kid, testing the chilly water with your toe before you took that first leap? Finally, you jump as high and far as possible, the whole time in the air, wondering whether this was a good or bad idea until that rush you got from plunging your whole body

It was that same feeling I got when I first stepped into Andrew Garrison’s, ’14, 2015 Subaru WRX STI. The car started with a rumble, louder than that of the last generation, which shocked me like cold water rushing over my body.

We drove from Goodman campus all the way to the bottom of “the Hill” and back up again, so I did not get to spend a lot of time in the car, but just enough time to get a sense of what this car is capable of. Compared to the last generation STI, I could instantly feel how stiff the chassis and suspension setup was because the car accentuated bumps in the road. However, I did not see this as a downside to the car, but rather a side effect from the increased performance of the stiffer chassis. In this sense, it felt almost like an oversized go-cart.

I have now driven and tested two generations of STIs and there was no clear cut winner for which generation I prefer. There are always upsides to previous generations, but the performance continues to increase with each iteration of Subaru’s rally-winning car. The advantages of buying STIs of past generations is the heritage that comes with them. Their rally inspired looks get more ostentatious and “boy racer” as they go back in time, and each generation of STI is an iconic as the next.
With every new generation of STI, the body style has always been the focal point for skeptics and die-hard STI fans. This new car is no exception, with its curves and edges being softened by its sleek and mature design. As time goes by, I have no doubt that people will start to warm up to this new body style. It has only begun its journey into the wild world of die-hard Subaru enthusiasts. I can get used to those angular daytime running lights headlights.

Car and Driver Magazine test-drove the new 2015 STI, and my wishes had finally been granted. The new STI can finally defeat its archnemesis, the Mitsubishi Evolution X, once and for all. When the Evolution came out in 2007, it was once again the new benchmark for the STI to beat, and until the 2015 STI, Subaru could never be as quick around a track whether it be on the road or dirt. The fact that there was another all-wheel drive super sedan that was better than the STI always tainted my view on STIs.
I love my Jetta more than anything, don’t get me wrong, but I cannot wait for the day I buy my next car. I could always envision myself owning a Subaru STI or a used Audi S model, but as time went by, I began to gain a respect for the Evolution X. I hated the fact that I had to give respect to Evo X for being such a formidable opponent to the STI. Finally, with Garrison’s new 2015 STI and the help of reviews such as the Car and Driver review, I can now say that the new STI is, hands-down, better than the Evo X in every way.

Under acceleration, the new STI has an addicting way of thrusting you forward, pulling all the way to red line. Out of respect for Garrison’s new car, I was not the one to bring it to redline, but while riding with him, he mashed the go pedal, and off we went. Shift after shift, launching us faster and faster. It wasn’t a violent acceleration, as the 2015 STI has the same exact engine that it has had for the past decade, producing the same 305 horsepower and 290 pound foot of torque it always has. Although this time, the engine has been slightly tweaked to produce more power down low in the RPMs.

My last column was titled, “What else do you need?”, and I’ve found that something else. It’s the new 2015 Subaru WRX STI. It’s everything Subaru owners have asked for in a new Subaru. They have a recipe consisting of the best aspects from the old generations while adding more performance to the areas that were lacking. With the added performance and all-wheel drive versatility, I cannot think of a better deal when it comes to super sedans based off of economy cars.

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