1999 Subaru Impreza Turbo 2.0 from UK and Ireland


You have to own one once!!


Nothing has gone wrong so far in the 6 months I have owned it. Just had it's 36 month (inc cambelt) service which set me back £730 which included 2 new front tyres. Also the cambelt tensioner was leaking and that was replaced under extended warranty.

General Comments:

Easily the best car I have owned so far. The performance and handling is superb, and overtaking 3 cars at a time becomes second nature to you. Also really shines on country roads, or when it is raining leaving other cars behind.

The looks and stares you get from people on the street also takes some getting use to. Everyone I meet is also very interested in the car and want to find out more about it, I have never had a car attract so much attention.

Incredibly harsh on petrol and it runs a lot better on super unleaded. It also cost me £2000 to insure with tracker because I am 23 and living in London.

Have also had the ECU remapped in the car with a full decat exhaust so it is running around 20% more power.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd December, 2002

1999 Subaru Impreza Outback Sport from North America


A high performance bargain


Nothing, my only complaint is that I didn't get a Subaru sooner.

General Comments:

This is an all around great car.

Domestic cars are garbage.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th July, 2002

1999 Subaru Impreza GL 2.0 petrol from UK and Ireland


Great engine and 4 wheel drive, pity about the rest.



General Comments:

Fantastic flat four engine on the open road. Very torquey and revs to the limiter with ease and without complaint.

Engine sounds absolutely superb. It has a lovely low, rasping growl. It makes you want to rev it all the time.

Stodgy engine in traffic. Very jerky when coming on and off the throttle.

Slick gearbox. After a while you forget its there as it is so un-troublesome. They should all be like this.

Poor fuel economy. This is partly due to the above comment as it is so tempting to put your foot down. I have been on the M25 with the petrol light flickering really wondering whether I will make it to a filling station - the needle really does go down very rapidly.

Tremendous grip from the 4 wheel drive. Standing starts are phenomenal in the wet and the power can be applied so early in a corner that you really can't believe it's sticking.

Good performance. The torquey nature of the engine makes applying the power very easy.

Lifeless Clutch. Difficult to judge for smooth getaway.

Awful steering. Very, very light with absolutely no feel. Steering wheel way too large - feels like piloting a boat rather than driving a car. It is fairly accurate though so it is a bit like playing a car simulator computer game. The steering is also very low-geared so a great deal of turning is required to get the car pointing where you want it.

Average handling - Although the grip is superb, the handling isn't much to get excited about. It will understeer horribly into corners and the body roll is very pronounced. Allied to the light steering means it is not much fun on very twisty stuff.


This car has some great plus points, but too many negatives. I'm sure if there was a hair-dryer-type device attached to the engine and there were over 200 horses to tame it would be superb (as long as they put a smaller steering wheel on the thing).

As mentioned, the engine is a stonker, and the 4 wheel drive is agricultural (you can hear the diffs clunking away when applying power through bends) but great fun.

It is such a pity that it has typical Japanese steering completely removing any sporty aspirations. I know many reviewers say these cars have great handling (the Turbo maybe does, but I am talking about the poor relatives) but I really think that handling gets confused with grip. Yes, the grip is good on the throttle, but the handling is weak:- It understeers into bends, rolls and gives no feedback to the driver which, in my opinion, is what handling is all about.

Overall, the engine and the 4 wheel drive are the only reasons you would buy this car. It is a question of whether you can live the the rest of it being so very average...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 1st July, 2002

28th Jul 2007, 21:16

Don't say typical Japanese steering, this is a wrong generalization; I own a 97 Nissan Altima that has wonderful steering.

28th Sep 2007, 08:34

Thanks found the review useful.

27th Jun 2011, 11:30

I have the 2.0 sport wagon and yes the steering wheel is rather large, helping to reduce feedback and it did under steer. I put that down to my crap tires.

I also disagree with Japanese cars have crap steering. I have a Nissan Primera which has great feedback and it's nicely weighted. I still would like it to be a bit heavier. That's because I had 3 Cavaliers and it's nicely weighted.

I do think the Primera would leave my Scooby for dead on a nice back road, but that's more a credit to just how good the Primeras are, not how bad the non turbos are.

14th Mar 2013, 16:16

Wow, I wrote this review 12 years ago by the looks of it, and it's got a couple of more recent comments. Was just looking at old Imprezas today, and I think I might have been a little harsh on the basic models. I quite rate them now. The steering was a bit light, but I subsequently had a Primera that had great steering - light, but great. I've driven many cars with worse than the Subaru. Apologies for generalising, but hey, it's only a car and I had to write something interesting.