February 14 may be the day for Valentines but for those with petrol coursing through their veins, that date in 1994 is best known for the arrival of the Subaru WRX in Australia.
It’s hard to believe 25 years have passed since the first souped-up compact Suby WRX (World Rally eXperimental or World Rally Cross, depending on location), hit our shores and created such a huge impact. It boasted supercar performance but in the shape of a small, affordable Japanese sedan, at times a hatch and for a short while, a stylish two-door coupe, that now commands huge dollars on the auction scene.
The WRX isn’t hard to spot, even today and its most popular hue is the bright blue with gold painted wheels; identical to the World Rally Cars thrashed by Colin McRae and others. If McRae won on Sunday the order books would overflow on a Monday… globally. The WRX was also offered in different colours but the blue and gold combo were easily the most popular.
Adding additional spice to an already tasty morsel was the Subaru Tecnica International or STI versions upon which the WRC weapons were based. It was easily recognised by its high and huge rear wing and distinctive boom, boom, boom engine beat from its hugely powerful 2-litre turbocharged flat four engine. Now in its 25th year, the WRX (and STI) is a far more refined beast than the early examples. What hasn’t changed is its blistering performance and bang for your buck. The WRX is still rallied today in Australia by young-gun Molly Taylor who is flying the flag for Subaru in a WRX STI, painted blue… some things never change.