2003 Subaru Impreza
1-6 of 6 reviews
Test drive review

Does Everything that Counts Well

by from Los Angeles, CA on January 27, 2010

Safe: Not only does it have a roll cage construction with crumple zones, it has side airbags and weighs over 3000 pounds. That puts it in the weight class of Camrys and Accords of similar age. What th...
Safe: Not only does it have a roll cage construction with crumple zones, it has side airbags and weighs over 3000 pounds. That puts it in the weight class of Camrys and Accords of similar age. What that means is you get to drive a car that is a whole lot more engaging than an Accord or Camry without giving up anything at all in terms of safety. Versatile: With the 60/40 rear seat folded down, you can put a lot of stuff in the back of this car. Or you can carry 4 passengers (5 in a pinch). AWD and a reasonably stiff suspension means you can also take it many places you would not take an ordinary car, including snowy mountains. Fun: 0-60 in under 6 seconds, and lateral acceleration of more than 0.85. Add AWD to that equation and you have a car that you can drive fast and in complete control. Almost any car with similar capabilities lacks the safety or versatility of the WRX. Snob Appeal: It is said that what you drive says a lot about you. Look in the parking lot of any suburban mall and you'll see few Subies and a lot of bug SUVs. Go to the mountains or where ever active people hang out, and you'll find clouds of Subies. Audio Delight: This side of Porsche, No 4 banger on the market sounds as good as a WRX. The only real negatives: Comfort: The car is not for people who want to isolate themselves from the driving experience. You have to pay attention to get the most out of a WRX, and it will not isolate you from the road. Fuel Efficiency: Full time AWD (the real thing, not the stuff offered by most other car manufacturers) costs fuel. The WRX takes premium too. Bottom Line: Sports Car fun. Family car versatility and safety.
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a used car

Uses car for Outdoor sports (hiking, cycling, etc.)

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

Best car I've ever owned

by from Wisconsin on September 18, 2010

Car is the impreza wrx. Awd with great handling. Highly recomended. Car is fast and still gets good gas milage. Trans shift pretty smooth for a long time If taken care of
Car is the impreza wrx. Awd with great handling. Highly recomended. Car is fast and still gets good gas milage. Trans shift pretty smooth for a long time If taken care of
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a used car

Uses car for Having fun

Does recommend this car!!

4 out of 5 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

Couldn't imagine owning anything else!

by from Denver, CO on December 28, 2006

03 WRX Wagon.I live an active lifestyle.Fun through fun roads, frequently nasty weather.Nearly everything I could ever want in one car.Performance: It is about as much fun as you need in a daily drive...
03 WRX Wagon.I live an active lifestyle.Fun through fun roads, frequently nasty weather.Nearly everything I could ever want in one car.Performance: It is about as much fun as you need in a daily driver.Fast, handles great, and a blast to drive.Big power up high altitude mtn passes fully loaded.Turbos are air compressors, so no low air pressure related power loss.More confident at 13000 feet than 350z.Many economic upgrades available.One common turbo adds 120 hp @ $1500.Overseas Subaru sold the same motor with over 300 hp, so it can handle it.Responds well to chips and pipes.Mine is stock until the extended warranty expires and parts start to fail.Much more fun than a '01 Boxer that I test drove.As single guy it's all the space I need.With racks I easily take two friends on long weekend bike and camp trips.AWD: I haven't missed a single powder day since I've owned it.Reliability: Flawless to 82k, will keep for another 80k).I don't abuse it but I drive hard.No other car is this much fun for the $13K I paid.Being pick:1) Really stiff, high performance clutch. This car appreciates aggressive driving.While I was rehabing my left leg, traffic was pretty painful.It's okay for normal driving and really appreciated during performance driving.2)WRXs are infamous for being tough to get into 1st and reverse.You need to double clutch to get into 1st above 7mph (i think that's the spec).But the downside is that it's a turbo with no low end torque, so acceleration in 2nd from 7-15 mph during normal driving is nearly nonexistent, sometimes feels dangerous.2) Interior comfort.Subaru really cheaped out on noise reduction.Interior plastic is the tacky stiffer,shiny kind.Wind noise due to poor weather stripping and inadequete insulation. Not very stylish either. Civic's have a better interior over all.Though very ergonomic (again, it's a true drivers car) for me; I'm 5'5".Steering wheel leather has seriously chipped.The seats are the most comfortable fabric seats ever made. Soft to the touch yet incredibly supportive.The interior is the only thing that makes me wish I splurged for the A3 or A4.3) Sports cars are not for everyone.Drive it first, because it?s unique.If you love it you will buy it.If the clutch, steering, brakes, shifter and suspension are too stiff for you, and the turbo is awkward get something else. 4) Paint chips easily.5)No Traction control
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a used car

Does recommend this car!!

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you?
Test drive review

WRX automatic is slow off the line

by from Silverthorne, Colorado 8,980' above sea level on April 2, 2008

This is the 2nd turbo-charged Subaru I've owned. The first was an '88 Loyale and I LOVED it! It's features were ahead of its time. I don't love my WRX. It's the first automatic I've ever owned and whi...
This is the 2nd turbo-charged Subaru I've owned. The first was an '88 Loyale and I LOVED it! It's features were ahead of its time. I don't love my WRX. It's the first automatic I've ever owned and while I like not having to clutch and shift, I hate the turbo lag. Step on the gas from a stop or passing and there is a frightening pause before it "shifts" and accelerates. Once it gets going it runs like a scared rabbit over 11,000 foot passes but don't try to beat that semi when making a left. Fifteen years hasn't seen many improvements in the interior or exterior. The wheel wells still jam with snow and ice and have to be knocked out before you ruin your tires. The interior of the '88 Loyale was more comfortable than the '03 WRX and a lot roomier. No adjustable lumbar support, unusable arm rests make long distance travel uncomfortable and what happened to the flip up steering wheel? I was excited to get another Subaru, especially one with so much power. Think I'll look for a different maker next time around.
Comfort
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Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a new car

Does not recommend this car

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Test drive review

Practical, reliable, but no fun at all

by from Denver, CO on April 10, 2017

What I liked: -Lots of cargo room -A tank in the snow -Good mountain-climbing torque -Easy to find parts for What I didn't: -Finnicky clutch- really tough to shift smoothly -No oomph (I see why so ma...
What I liked: -Lots of cargo room -A tank in the snow -Good mountain-climbing torque -Easy to find parts for What I didn't: -Finnicky clutch- really tough to shift smoothly -No oomph (I see why so many people buy the WRX!) -Lots of rattles and a very bumpy ride Overall: It's a great car to drive and not think about, but don't expect much acceleration or a smooth, quiet ride. If you're looking at a used one, make sure to have the head gaskets looked at! They go quick and often and are insanely costly to replace
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a used car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

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Test drive review

most reliable car ive owned

by from mammoth lakes, ca on May 16, 2017

Although my car has only 90,000 it is almost assured to get me anywhere (barring of course seriously unmaintained OHV roads. With proper maintenance and upkeep, this baby has been running strong for ...
Although my car has only 90,000 it is almost assured to get me anywhere (barring of course seriously unmaintained OHV roads. With proper maintenance and upkeep, this baby has been running strong for me for over 10 years. Although the body has a lot of plastic that is somewhat fragile, the engine never quits. I have taken this on two ~3000 mile road trips without issue, and driven it 75,000 miles since Ive owned it. Love this car, unfortunately it is nearing time for me to part with it because my lifestyle and accumulated possessions require a larger vehicle, most likely a truck.
Comfort
Exterior Styling
Interior Design
Value for the Money
Performance
Reliability

Purchased a used car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

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Our Expert Review: 2003 Subaru Impreza