2012 Subaru Impreza: ABS/ESC Review
November 20, 2012
Reader fordson1 recently inquired about Impreza ABS and stability control performance, particularly at the low speeds we encounter in the parking garage. So I put the Impreza to the test. I found ESC minimally intrusive, which proved useful for bending around the concrete pillars and outrunning some upset guards on golf carts. They frown on any movement above 5 mph and zealously enforce rules of the road.
ABS works equally well, and really shines when charging up the ramp to street level, trying to make the signal, when the skinny guy on a fixie-bike -- no lights and no reflectors mind you, just a mustache and a tank top -- crosses in front of you. The Impreza exhibits long pedal travel but consistent stopping distances, saving the windshield from a full serving of hipster scramble.
That's the Impreza at low speed. Here's what test pilot Monti said about the hatch at its limits:
"Minimal to zero difference between running with ESC on or off. The system cuts in some, but not enough that you don't still have to adjust throttle yourself. The Impreza could not be coaxed into any kind of drop-throttle oversteer. ESC can't be fully defeated but has high limits before it starts cutting the throttle and adding brakes."
Dan Frio, Automotive Editor