I love this car. It's got gobs of power in every gear, handles like it's on rails, has great fitting seats (for the average size guy at least), nice visible gauge cluster, and gets good gas mileage considering what it is. It's a factory made race car, that is totally street drivable. I can even haul the kids around town with no discomfort what so ever. The best car for under $30k and even beats some higher prices exotics.
I wanted an STI long before they came to US shores. The amount of power Subaru was able to extract from a four-cylinder, 2.5 liter engine is nearly obscene. I paid $27K for a 375hp (after a few mods) monster that's as much fun on the racetrack or an autocross course as it is running errands around town. The guttural roar of the boxer, accentuated by an aftermarket turboback exhaust, makes you want to turn off the radio and roll down the windows. I am forced to drive like a complete jerk by this car, and still manage to get 25 mpg around town. Test drove the Evo, the VW R32, the S2000, and while this isn't as comfortable as the VW or as go-kart light as the Evo, it is by far the most fun.
There is no other car on the planet that makes more sense than a Subaru WRX STi! It makes 300 hp+300tq with no turbo lag from a turbocharged and intercooled 2.5L Flat 4 cyl,AWD,6 speed tranny, 4 doors, looks that could kill and with minor modifications can make well over 400 hp (like mine does). Sure the ride is a little harsh, but you're glued to the road I feel safer driving my 2 daughters around in it than any SUV or Volvo. Decent gas mileage and very reliable in all weather conditions. Plus 0-60mph in 4.5 sec & the 1/4mile in 13.3 sec@104mph STOCK! I've spent approx $3500 and my car makes 427whp@6400rpm&446wtq@3600rpm,0-60 in 3.8sec & the 1/4mile 12.3@117mph! Its my daily driver too.
This car is an excellent choice if you are a driving enthusiast who wants a daily driver. The engine pulls good at any RPM, almost feels like there's no turbo lag in day-to-day driving. The car is practical even with its design intent. Four doors and easy to drive make it a great daily driver. The gas mileage may be poor regardless of how you drive, but you will be hard pressed to drive this car like a normal person. The car begs you to push it as hard as you can. The suspension is tight but you can live with it. I have raced that car in autocrosses and the handling is fun, you can achieve oversteer with the right tire pressure. The brakes are also out of this world.