FLASHBACK: Short Tempered Subaru

Here’s a look at a feature we did of a famous 555 that appeared in one of our limited magazines. The car was too good not to share with all the new followers we got since then. So enjoy this blast from the past!

Do the letters STi ring a bell? Probably most of you are wondering about the abbreviation sexually transmitted disease. Well in motoring they are the most loved letters. Why? In 1997 some boffins from Japan decided to take the Subaru cars on a whole new surprising level.

The cherry blossom red STi means Subaru Tecnica International and it is the motorsport division of the beloved Subaru. Now just take a deep breath and look at this 1998 Subaru Impreza WRX Sti (RA) V limited. Ok that’s enough before you suffocate.

V limited to me, means vicious. It represents the STi’s highly respected fineness in tuning Subarus. I had the chance to have a look at one of the world’s lethal and extremely dangerous weapon, although the innocent looks scared me. When the engine was started the way it revved was just ear drum popping. It was like a hungry giant shouting in a fast food shop. You wouldn’t want to be near the exhaust pipes when it hits high revs.

It was developed to complement the Subaru World Rally team’s achievements. To make this car super special only 555 were made in the world. They specifically made 555 because of the premier sponsor ‘555’ cigarettes, which supported Subaru in rally championships. The RA (Racing group A) V limited edition was given a bear like sound, and it can make Floyd Mayweather scream like a girl.

The above white, peaceful looking Impreza is the 139th in the world and Zimbabwe is proud to say we own a piece of Subaru’s history, thanks to Spraytech.  With the characteristics of the WRC Subaru car, it’s able to play in the dirt, like a kid playing in beach sand.  Bodywork has been kept in whistle clean condition and it was further given matching shoes. Front headlamps and rear tail-lights were both smoked black to fully elaborate the simple looks and aggressive engine on the Subaru.

I know you probably wondering why I called it ‘Short Tempered’. We all know Subarus at times get really offended by some pitifully tuned engines. Many spend money to change a stock vehicle into a pretty fast car, but Subaru already make their stock cars fast. The V limited pushes its turbocharged 2litre engine to 280bhp/210kw, but can be pushed to 300bhp if the Japanese gentleman’s agreement is removed. All this power is established from a single turbo, meaning it can easily bury a Nissan 300ZX which is a 3litre twin turbo. Interesting! Besides the breathtaking total power, it also produces 325N.m@4000rpm of torque which is notable power. As for handling, the ride was made stiffer like a rally car and lighter so that you can easily enjoy the dirt. When it meets a girl, the V limited Impreza lets the engine torque.

What makes this car more intriguing is that, Subaru took out all the cheap stuff you would find in a normal Impreza Sti, and decided to install the parts that are found in the historic WRC Imprezas.


By looking at the short tempered Subaru Impreza WRX Sti V limited, what’s the first thing that comes into your mind? My mind says dirt! This car is certainly the son of the WRC Rally car legend. It sees the dirt just like a normal road; the gearbox and rpm push in consistently with the turbo. On the road it handles even better and quicker, it brings out that special edition in the car. And makes you feel very special. However many might think it’s just a normal Impreza, not knowing there is more to that under the skirt.


To conclude this wonderful historic journey and car that needs anger management on the road. I have to say it has both the beauty and the beasty power. Specially made, it makes every other competitor look like a tortoise and drive away. Driving this car feels like you are on the back of raging gorilla’s. It responds well to the acceleration. The sound it produces is exactly like a raging gorilla trying to get you of its back.

Subaru made its short tempered 1998 Impreza multi-talented. In a talent competition it can easily beat Chris brown. Is that a ‘No’ I just heard? Evidently it can dance by drifting and can sing louder in a circuit race.

Take it rallying, drag racing and drifting, V limited doesn’t mind. The funny thing is, it looks very simple and peaceful as its color white. Offend it and you will see its high revving temper.

#TK rating 9/10

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