So I test drove a WRX last weekend in the blazing heat…  the reason was because I’ve gotten a little tired of the Mazdaspeed3 (torque monster) in its FF layout and with the new Mazda 3 being released, my car is looking seriously outdated.

The results are in:

  • Power – good. a tiny bit laggy but once you’re above 3k rpms, it’s nice.
  • Suspension – soft.  They call it sport tuned suspension, but it felt like an Accord.
  • AWD is trippy!  I took some hard corners at high rpms and the car took it all in stride… no tire squealing, no torque steer, no understeer!  It’s pretty amazing that the ride is so soft and boring yet can handle this way.
  • The interior size is comparable to the Mazdaspeed 3.  The major difference is that the WRX traded the large trunk space for rear leg room.  I’m not sure which is better… but I tend to favor more trunk space since I never have to sit in the back haha!
  • Interior trim – FAIL.  It’s no exaggeration that the interior trim gave me cruel flashbacks of when I had to rent a Geo Metro when my car was at the body shop.  It really cannot get much worse than 1-piece plastic door trim.  No fabric panels, no change in texture…. just bam!   One piece door panel!  It was at that point that I realized how Subaru could sell a turbocharged car with AWD for 25k.
  • Audio – sucks.

It took some time to get over how fun the car is to drive, but I think I’d still rather stick with the Mazdaspeed 3.  Interior trim and nice audio equipment are essential to enjoying a daily commute.  Large cargo area is also important for family outings.  I just wish the Mazdaspeed 3 didn’t look so outdated and was anything other than FF.

Can’t think of any better alternative… might just have to stick with it for now.