Subaru's widely-acclaimed new Impreza WRX saloon is now available as a limited edition model with World Rally Car styling cues and the option of a 245 PS Prodrive performance upgrade. Uniquely available in the UK and limited to 300 units, the UK300 will be many an enthusiast's dream thanks to its menacing looks and driver-focused specification.
The UK300 is a joint project between engineers at Subaru (UK) Limited and Prodrive Limited of Banbury, with major styling work carried out by Peter Stevens who designed the famous McLaren F1 and Subaru WRC rally car. Key changes include new headlamps featuring black gloss shells with twin high-intensity Hella light units identical to the Impreza rally car. Sitting above the twin lights are small diameter circular indicators.
The front spoiler receives a matching black gloss bib extension, while the standard WRX boot spoiler is replaced by a massive high-riding rally-style device featuring aerofoil tips at either side. The rear spoiler also has Prodrive badging.
Apart from looking purposeful, the front and rear aerodynamic aids also reduce high-speed lift, enhancing tyre grip and handling control. For example, at 100 mph, front lift is reduced from 35.6 lbs to 27.8 lbs while rear lift goes down from 29.6 lbs to 20.7 lbs - a reduction of 25.6 per cent.
Only one colour has been specified for the UK300 - WR Blue Mica - which is also extended to the WRX's standard deep side skirts.
The UK300 also boasts gold-coloured OZ 10-spoke alloy wheels measuring 18 ins by 7.5 ins and carrying the latest 225/40 Pirelli P-Zero Rosso tyres - up from the standard WRX's already generous 17 x 7 ins alloys with 215/45 tyres. Other exterior enhancements include white side indicators and white front markers.
Inside, the UK300 features blue suede-effect seats - the front being the rally-style bucket type - plus matching door inserts. The potential collector's car also has special deep-pile carpet and boot mats plus a limited edition numbered plaque.
Despite its extra appeal and exclusivity, the on-the-road price for the UK300 is only £24,995 on-the-road, £3,500 more than the standard Impreza WRX saloon.
A Substantial 245 PS And 261 lb ft Of Torque From Optional Performance Pack Meanwhile, sure to be a popular option is the new Prodrive WR Sport performance pack which boosts mid-range power and torque by more than 20 per cent and transforms an already outstanding engine.
The result is even stronger throttle reaction - right from idle - with an equally breathtaking power delivery at the top-end of the rev-range.
There is now no discernible tail-off in power from 6,000 rpm to 7,000 rpm where the standard WRX displays a slight softening of response. For example, even as early as 3,000 rpm, torque is 234 lb ft instead of the standard car's 206.5 lb ft, while maximum pulling power when using the optional 97 Octane fuel is 261 lb ft at 4,000 rpm instead of 215.4 lb ft at 3,600 rpm. Similar gains can be enjoyed in the power delivery with, for example, 206 PS available at only 4,000 rpm instead of 164 PS.
Maximum power is now 245 PS at 5,600 rpm instead of the standard WRX's 218 PS at the same engine speed.
Again, these figures are achieved by using 97 Octane fuel. Power when running on 95 Octane is a still substantial 230 PS at the same 5,600 rpm while maximum torque is 245.6 lb ft at 4,000 rpm.
'Real World' in-gear acceleration improvements of up to 25 per cent can be enjoyed with the optional Prodrive performance pack. For example, almost three seconds are shaved off the 20 to 75 mph time in third gear which is now 11 seconds. Meanwhile, the 25 to 100 mph time in fourth gear comes down by almost four seconds to 25.5 seconds.
The secret to the £1,600 Prodrive WR Sport performance pack option is a reprogrammed Electronic Control Unit (ECU), uprated intercooler piping and free-flow exhaust system with a large single tailpipe. This price includes VAT and fitting.
The Prodrive performance pack must be fitted after registration but can be ordered at the same time as the UK300 through any Subaru dealer. And by being fully approved by Subaru (UK) Limited, the Prodrive performance pack enjoys the same 3 year/60,000 mile warranty as the complete car.
Copyright © Subaru UK Press Department
So in summary.......
This will also be the first release of the PPP on the MY2001 and initially it will only available on these cars. Featuring a centre and rear exhaust silencer replacement, remapped ECU and replacement intercooler piping the PPP aims at increasing driveability and low down torque rather than concentrating on power increase.
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