The 2008 Subaru Impreza WRX STI is cursed with one of the worst names in the automotive world. Rivaled only by the Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec-V, the 2008 STI is all new this year, and only available as a hatchback. That right there kills the STI for many folks, because wagons / hatchbacks just aren’t in, at least here in the US. On a positive note, the giant wing that plagued the previous STI sedan is gone.
The heart of the STI, that turbocharged boxer 4, was also tweaked for 2008, and received 12 horsepower bump. Peak torque ( 290 lb-ft ) comes in 400 RPM lower, which should aid drivability a tad. If you’re willing to abuse the clutch, the quarter mile will disappear in about 13.3 seconds – not to shabby for a compact hatch. Handling is fantastic, though a tad worse than last year’s model.
The biggest problems I have with the STI are looks and price. I’m not a hatchback kind of guy… and even if I was, I would think the STI is ugly. Besides that, the price is astronomical. $35 grand for a Subaru? If you strap on Navigation and the fancy wheels, you’re staring at a nearly $40 price tag. FOR A SUBARU. Forty grand buys a whole lot of cars these days that don’t say Subaru on the back. Performance aside, I think that still says a lot.
2008 Subaru Impreza STI Specs
- 305 HP 2.5 liter turbocharged 4 cylinder engine
- 6 speed manual transmission
- Standard AWD
- 18″ alloy wheels standard
- Base MSRP : $34,995
- EPA Says: 17 mpg city / 23 mpg highway
2008 Subaru Impreza STI Reviews
TTAC reviews the 2008 Subaru Impreza STI and isn’t thrilled with the interior – ‘The STI’s interior is a travesty at the price. Someone (Subaru? GM? Toyota?) replaced the previous car’s nice-for-an-econo-box plastics with crap. Crap whose crappiness is increased exponentially in full consideration of the STI’s $40k price tag. The STI’s cabin “boasts” a cartoonishly oversized (or is that MINIshly?) tachometer, festooned with green and pink neon lights, which glows a deep orange-red. Now that’s cooking with class! Radio buttons on the steering wheel of an STI? In a word, nyet!‘
Inside Line reviews the 2008 Subaru Impreza STI and has this to say – ‘Our 2008 STI’s 0.90g skid pad performance (while exceptional) is slightly below the old car’s 0.93g effort. Perhaps the 245/40R18 Dunlop Sport SP 600 tires don’t have as much ultimate grip as the Bridgestone Potenza RE070s of old. At the same time, we couldn’t feel the difference on the open road, where real corners that feature direction changes more closely mimic the slalom.’
Motive Mag reviews the 2008 Subaru Impreza STI and has this to say – ‘I walked away from Subaru’s latest hot pocket wanting more, especially on these roads. This new STI is a more refined, more mature, and more capable performance sedan than ever before. At its $35,995 base price, it isn’t cheap, but it’s certainly attainable for a lot of driving enthusiasts. The STI’s real charm is that it not only represents a decent value when placed up against expected rivals like the upcoming Mitsubishi Evo X, but also less obvious 300+ horsepower performance coupes like Infiniti’s G37 and BMW’s 135i.’
Popular Mechanics reviews the 2008 Subaru Impreza STI and has this to say – ‘And, of course, part of that confidence comes from the massive brake package. The Brembo brakes are now emblazoned with “STI” emblems, and the dual-piston rear calipers now use larger pistons. Rotors grow from 12.77 in. to 13.0 in. up front, and from 12.3-in. to 12.6-in. at the rear. Pedal feel is dramatically improved from the 2007 car, but the distance separating the gas and brake pedal feels wider. And the brake pedal itself feels higher—much closer to the driver. So pulling off clean heel-toe downshifts requires a significantly longer jab.’