Subaru WRX STI launch at Taupo

Subaru WRX STI launch at Taupo

OK, it was for the Tribeca as well as the Impreza WRX STI, but the STI was the fun bit. After a morning’s rampage through the back roads around Taupo in the Tribeca we got to experience the STI on the race track. First up though was a demonstration in Subaru’s Legacy to show the effectiveness of VDC (Vehicle Dynamic Control). This consisted of entering a wet chicane at speed to invoke a diagonal slide (something that would usually result in a spin), and slamming on the brakes to let the car sort it all out.

Instinct tells you to steer in and gently push the brake (which I did the first time), but on  the second go I slammed the anchors on and the Legacy just pulled up like nothing was wrong. This VDC is really something for drivers who don’t know what they’re doing!

Next up was a slalom course around part of Taupo’s track. It formed a loop with some very tight corners, and the whole thing was done in second gear. We each had four runs, 2 with the active centre diff on auto, and 2 with it locked. With the locked diff I set the fastest time of the day, 0.6 seconds ahead of anyone else at 27.75 seconds.

Then we got to drive it around the track for two lots of two laps. The VDC means you just cannot get this car out of shape (well, a heinous excess of speed will see you come off the track, but you can’t spin it). Even rally ace Sam Morgan didn’t get it into a spin. I’d write more, but I’ll save that for the review (plus, it’s nearly 10pm and I have to be at the airport again tomorrow for 5:50am and I haven’t packed yet).

So, a good day was had by all. I would buy an STI if it wasn’t sold out until August! That’s how popular they are.

OK, it was for the Tribeca as well as the Impreza WRX STI, but the STI was the fun bit. After a morning’s rampage through the back roads around Taupo in the Tribeca we got to experience the STI on the race track. First up though was a demonstration in Subaru’s Legacy to show the effectiveness of VDC (Vehicle Dynamic Control). This consisted of entering a wet chicane at speed to invoke a diagonal slide (something that would usually result in a spin), and slamming on the brakes to let the car sort it all out.

Instinct tells you to steer in and gently push the brake (which I did the first time), but on  the second go I slammed the anchors on and the Legacy just pulled up like nothing was wrong. This VDC is really something for drivers who don’t know what they’re doing!

Next up was a slalom course around part of Taupo’s track. It formed a loop with some very tight corners, and the whole thing was done in second gear. We each had four runs, 2 with the active centre diff on auto, and 2 with it locked. With the locked diff I set the fastest time of the day, 0.6 seconds ahead of anyone else at 27.75 seconds.

Then we got to drive it around the track for two lots of two laps. The VDC means you just cannot get this car out of shape (well, a heinous excess of speed will see you come off the track, but you can’t spin it). Even rally ace Sam Morgan didn’t get it into a spin. I’d write more, but I’ll save that for the review (plus, it’s nearly 10pm and I have to be at the airport again tomorrow for 5:50am and I haven’t packed yet).

So, a good day was had by all. I would buy an STI if it wasn’t sold out until August! That’s how popular they are.

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