Things I like:
- No more break-in period! Life is much better now that I’m allowed to occasionally wind out a gear or three.
- Speaking of gears, the shortened 3rd in this car (new for the 2019 MY) was a little weird at first but it’s really grown on me. It affords a little more low-speed flexibility in a car that doesn’t like low revs, and it tops out around 75, which is just about perfect for accelerating onto highways.
- It’s still fun to drive in general and the above average NVH has yet to bother me.
- OEM tires are actually decent. They’re Yokohama Advan Sport V105s, which feel almost as good as my other >200TW favorites.
- Modern infotainment w/ Android Auto after going 10+ years without so much as an AUX jack. The UI isn’t half bad to work with either.
- Auto climate control is much smarter and less dramatic/intrusive in its operation than it was in my Outback XT.
- DCCD and SI-Drive actually make a difference in how the car drives. I’ve mostly been gravitating towards Auto- and Intelligent for normal daily driving. I’ll occasionally bump up to Auto for rain or Sport for fun.
- The handful of longer (4-6 hour) trips I’ve taken with it have gone well. No major complaints from rear seat occupants so far, just some general remarks that it’s a little smaller than the OBXT was.
- WRX waves are a thing.
- Having something practical/comfortable enough to easily reach fun roads away from home and then thoroughly enjoy them once I arrive.
Things I don’t:
- Fuel economy, obviously. 20-21 MPG on the daily grind and topping out around 25 on long highway trips isn’t exactly surprising or much different than the OBXT, but it still isn’t good either.
- The WRX gets an oil temperature gauge but the STI doesn’t.
- DCCD reverts to Auto every time the car starts up.
- Obscene amounts of brake dust.
- Seat bottoms could use a little more bolstering to better match the sides.
- I have to sit a little further back than I’d like to prevent my shin from occasionally banging into the bottom of the dashboard while operating the clutch.
- Disabling hill hold (as I have done) and leaving it off (which the car thankfully remembers) results in a constantly illuminated gauge cluster light. This is the same light that is normally used to indicate hill hold system failures...
- The big wing tends to attract stupidity. Fortunately, most of it tends to quickly depart after I refuse to reciprocate.
Things I’ve changed/added:
- Tint: Llumar ceramic 80% on the front side windows and 50% on everything behind them. I wanted to remain legal in all the states that it’s likely to visit (and then some) and not be awful to drive at night (like the husband’s FR-S is with its 20-35%). It has been surprisingly good at mitigating heat in spite of being lighter than what most people opt for.
- PPF: XPEL full front + side skirts. Unfortunately I did have one rock chip beat me to the punch :-/
- A dash cam (Street Guardian SGGCX2PRO). Routing the power cable through the dashboard, windshield trim, and headliner was easier than expected. Only two bandages worth of wounds were suffered.
- RallyArmor mud flaps. They worked well on my OBXT, so I was happy to give them my business again. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that they now provide metal reinforcement brackets (at least for this application).