I bought this car to replace my overworked Honda Civic. This car has more than enough power and grip to satisfy most people. It makes driving fun again. I've been netting 26MPG the first couple of tanks. The hatchback is very roomy, but the rear window does cut it down some. The interior has the feel of an igloo cooler, but when you're driving you tend to forget about it. Stereo isn't that great, but like others have said you buy this car to enjoy driving it. Getting into the upper RPM range sounds like you're taking off in a jet even without the optional exhaust. This car has made my daily driving errands enjoyable, and I can't wait to hop in it again.
TURBO! AWD handling, comfy heated seats, unique feel of a Subaru (not like driving other manual cars), more aftermarket accessories than you can shake a stick at, an exhaust note to die for, a cult like following of Subaru supporters.
Less plastic on the interior panels, add a stereo with an included amp and subwoofer (the EX Civic has a 300watt system for crying out loud), drive by wire gas pedal feel vague at first, high performance All Season tires instead of summer tires.
Drove lots of cars to compare; '10 GTI, '10 Legacy 2.5GT, '10 A3, etc and ended up with my 2nd WRX. Had an '02 before and loved it...5 cars later I'm driving another one that is much more expensive unfortunately, but also much more car all-in-all. Can't beat the performance, comfort, AWD, and utility of the WRX in this price range, nothing comes close. I love the design and interior of the GTI and admit it's interior is especially much better than the WRX for the money, but the lack of power, AWD, and cargo space made it fall behind too far. Just had a big ice/snow storm and car performed flawlessly!! I'm very happy with my choice.
AWD, amazing acceleration in all gears, SPT exhaust is AWESOME (recommend it!), momo shift knob, very comfortable seats, roomy back seat, hatchback utility, don't see many on the streets, safety, excellent warranty program, great experience with dealership, lots of fun add-ons, what's not to like?!
Stock stereo even in premium pkg is pretty bad even with sub/amp pkg added, but you don't buy this car for the stereo! Gas mileage could be a little better, but for the power/awd performance I'm not complaining...only other thing would be slightly weak interior/exterior paint...chips easily.