I was kind of nervous about driving a car that had been sitting for the better part of 12 months, and that had failed inspection in MA for some unknown reason (at least to me). My fears were not entirely unfounded, this is a Subaru WRX with 134,000 miles; it’s been modified some, but really very little it turns out. A short shift kit, different wheels, maybe some suspension, but mostly it was just dirty. And the day I went to put in on the road for over 2 hours - mostly highway, mind you - it was 86 degrees in the shade when I started out at 11:00 am.

The outside temp hovered around 93, creeping up to 95, but no lower than 91. This is an all black car, too. That top-mounted intercooler definitely wanted air moving through; I was nervous about getting stuck in weekend traffic, and used Waze to reroute myself around known congestion points. And you know what? It was FINE. The A/C even worked *just* enough on full blast to keep the sweat to a minimum.


I was pretty easy on it at first. I had checked all the vital fluids, tires, etc, put some fresh gas in, and off we went. The only light on the dash was the airbag, which, who knows? I was less than 3 miles from home when I found a fault. I was in a 2-lane 2-way road with a 55 limit, behind someone going about 30. Amazingly, there was no oncoming traffic in the long passing zone and my confidence in the little Subie was quite high, so I downshifted and floored it to get by the slow car. As I revved past 5k RPM, the car hiccuped and acted like I had backed off the throttle all at once; the Dreaded Check Engine light came on in addition to the “Cruise” light flashing, for some reason. I acted quickly, upshifted and continued to pass the car, waiting for some other symptom, but none came. It just misfired, so it seems, under heavy load. OK I can live with that. And maybe that’s related to why it failed inspection? Also I’m guessing the airbag light could be an issue for inspection.

I’ll get my code scanner back today and see what I can learn. Mostly, I was reminded how much FUN a WRX can really be. Oh, that turbo lag... but when you get into the boost, wow it’s just... fantastic. Such great noises, too! I want one, and I’m quite glad Subaru still makes these.

It looks good from 15' away, but as you get closer you can see some of the... imperfections. The interior needs a thorough detailing, but it’s not damaged, really. Just dirty.


Sorry I don’t have any other pics. It was too hot and I was unwilling to stop for any reason. The only stop I made was for fuel, about 15 minutes in. When I got to my destination, I was in a lake with a beer in my hand within seconds.

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