Ok as someone older (26) when I got my wrx not even sti... Yeah the difference in power is SHocking.
I went from a civic... Commuter car whih has what 100hp at the wheels? To a car with 220 at the wheels. The difference was astounding. And I had been driving for years at this point already.
Putting a young kid in a car like that is just asking for trouble.
Also the summer tires do blow when it's cold and wet out. I found out first hand. Bought mine mid January and we had a light snow the next day barely any on the road but my car was all over the place and this was temps in the upper 30s to low 40s.
So yes tires absolutely make a difference with those stock summers. They are in fact slicker than snot in just cold wet weather.
Got continental dws on order that day.
Ordered a winter set the next year. God I love my altimax arctics never going back to anything else for winter ever.