This is my second Subaru. I owned a 2005 WRX sedan before, which was a terrific little car. As for the '08, I initially didn't think that an extra half liter in engine size would make much difference, but I was wrong. This car revs so smooth and effortless, if you're not careful you can touch 100mph on the freeway without even realizing it. The handling in this car is superb, with some minor body roll, but it's not noticeable in everyday driving. Fuel economy could probably be better, I used to average 20mpg on the stock tires (tires = awful), switched to lighter, performance tires and am getting 22-23mpg in mixed driving, up to 30mpg at non-freeway speeds if I set cruise and stay off turbo.
Turbo, AWD, VDC (and the option to turn VDC OFF), less of a cop-magnet, lots of add-on options from SPT and STi, no paint problems so far after 25k miles (I have World Rally Blue Pearl), ergonomic climate controls (can reach while my hand is on the shifter merely by extending a finger)
Suffers from brake fade, I've never been impressed with Subaru's idea of a stereo, BETTER STOCK TIRES, better windscreen seals (suffers intermittent 'creaks' and 'pops'), include stock body molding or mud flaps (kicks up lots of grime), MAKE AN STI SEDAN, add a stock boost controller
After 1000 miles, pretty content. Comfy, good head room, fun2drive! Smooth pickup, good ride. The 'hum' from the engine is AWESOME. Good sized trunk. Car is perfect for a single person - quick and fun, 4 door versatility, adaptable to add luggage racks. Sporty and stylish enough, but kinda flies under the police radar cuz it isn't TOO flashy. I did have a cooling hose issue (factory didn't tighten it), and it does 'rattle' a bit which is scary considering I traded in a 1997 Ford Probe that didn't rattle at all, but overall a very great car in my opinion if it holds up over time. Other Subaru owners near me all are happy with theirs. I have high expectations for this car.
The functional hood scoop, dashboard ambient lighting, windows are on door frames, unlike the Legacy I looked at. Great visibility. Oh yeah, and All-Wheel-Drive with side airbags = safe!
Climate control system requires a training course, but once you figure it out, totally fine. Sound system flat out STINKS for a $25,000 car. Would like to be getting more than 22mpg with 95% highway driving, but hopefully that will improve after the break-in period.
I purchased a Subaru Impreza WRX 5pd about six months ago. I must say it has been one of the most fun cars I have ever driven. Acceleration is good with the exception of a little turbo lag and the handling is great. The AWD take a bit getting use to being that you need to use a little more clutch than a FWD or RWD vehicle. I can wait to see how it does in the snow this winter. This is my first Subaru, but certainly not the last.
Handling, exterior looks, headroom, rear seat room, front sport seating, and the BIG tach right in the middle.
Better stereo, maybe smoother shifting (this could just be me getting use to a new AWD vehicle). I would say more HP, but then I should have purchase the STi version.
So far at 5k miles I am happy. This car has exceptional power and still gets ~23mpg with spirited driving. I have not driven much in the snow with the car, but so far the AWD has been great at keeping me gripping all the time. Transmission is smooth although the clutch makes odd noises occasionally. Seats are comfy. The tires should be upgraded at some point, however so far they are evenly wearing. Trunk in sedan is short where it meets the back seats. The brakes don't seem quite as "grippy" as one would assume. Also road noise is loud in this car, but I can deal with that. The stereo is somewhat weak but the engine is wonderful to listen to. Overall very satisfied with purchase.
Plain and simply, the 2.5L turbocharged Boxer engine. Installed a CAI and SPT exhaust and you can hear the engine come to life. No need for the radio b/c this is awesome to listen to. Also a lot of Subaru aftermarket accessories can be added easily, as most wiring is already done (ex sat radio).
Radio - very weak and not loud in non premium model (only 4 speakers). Tires - for stock tires they are not that great. Paint - the paint underneath outside door handles is scratched just from people's hands (I always use keyless entry). Better brakes Bigger trunk-sedan has a short trunk height.