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Old 04-03-2003, 01:01 AM   #1
Alleggerita
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Default Autocar March 26 - Evo VIII vs Prodrive STI

Note that this article refers to British spec cars with their STI lacking the USDM spec C front end geometry, front LSD and the DCCD. Nevertheless some of the comments are consistent with threads on vwvortex etc.

Some quotes:

"But blast away on a typical UK B-road and its steering precision, brake feel and handling balance outshine the faster STI."

"the further and harder we drove into Wales, the less obvious the Impreza's advantage became. Yes, it was more explosive on full boost and felt a fair bit quicker on outright acceleration whenever a big straight came into view. But despite being a good two seconds quicker to 100 mph on paper, in practice it could never quite serve up what it promised to do on the menu: namely leave the Evo behind. In fact, as we eventually learned over one sensationally fast and undulating B-road, when push comes to shove it's actually the Evo - down on poke but still holding all the aces when it comes to front-end bite, steering precision, brake feel and general handling agility that rules."

"Disappointingly similar in spec and feel it may be to its predecessor, but the Evo VIII is still a car in which the speed your brain can operate at is the major limiting factor when it comes to generating cross-country pace. In most scenarios the car is way ahead of you, and responds cleanly and faithfully to whatever inputs you make - be that at the steering wheel, or any of the three beautifully weighted pedals. Like never before, it really does go where you want it to with zero understeer and maximum composure - almost certainly the result of the tweaks they have made to theall-wheel drive system."

"The Impreza on the other hand, still needs coaxing, still needs persuading through a sequence of fast corners, despite its recent chassis improvements. You drive the STI quickly across country, clear in the knowledge that it will understeer if you push it too hard, and that the brakes will if you attack more than threee fast downhill corners on the trot. So if you drive it hard, yes, but all the time you have to compensate for its flaws, otherwise you will leave the road in a gale of uncontrolled acceleration. It's the exact opposite of the way in which you drive the Evo, in fact, because it's what the car can do, not you, that dictates the pace."

Just a few comments. Autocar generally likes Subies but has always loved the Evo. The brake fade I find rather curious, as in a previous report on the earlier ST and Evo VII the STI actually had superior brakes.

I cant wait to see how much the added USDM trick bits change the equation in comparison to the US Evo that has had a lot of stuff deleted compared to the Euro spec car.
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Old 04-03-2003, 01:17 AM   #2
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This is the UK Sti - No DCCD-A, without the Spec C front end geometry, and without AVCS I believe. No twin-scroll either.

Vs. the UK Evo - which comes with the 6-speed box, lighter weight, AYC and ACD.

So basically, the lowest spec STi (in terms of handling equipment) loses out to a full-spec Evo (in handling in the hands of one driver), yet it's comparable to the USDM market with an Evo that is heavier, has only a 5-speed and lacks AYC/ACD vs. a USDM STi with the DCCD-A and an even more powerful engine in terms of low-end grunt?

Cheers,

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Old 04-03-2003, 01:45 AM   #3
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@Paul I believe that the standard UK Evo VIII does not have AYC/ACD. It should be similar to the US Evo VIII. However, I do not know whether Autocar has tested the Japanese version.

Morevover, I have a question relating to the Spec C geometry. I believe that several car magazines wrote that the Spec C geometry makes a huge difference but may be a little bit too harsh for daily ride. Do you believe this is true?

Cheers,

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Old 04-03-2003, 02:35 AM   #4
shirokuma
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Quote:
Originally posted by Devlin
@Paul I believe that the standard UK Evo VIII does not have AYC/ACD. It should be similar to the US Evo VIII. However, I do not know whether Autocar has tested the Japanese version.

Morevover, I have a question relating to the Spec C geometry. I believe that several car magazines wrote that the Spec C geometry makes a huge difference but may be a little bit too harsh for daily ride. Do you believe this is true?
I've read the article in question - that Evo does indeed have the AYC/ACD of the JDM car. I believe the UK Evo's always have, as a matter of fact. And it also makes more power than the USDM Evo, and doesn't have the safety additions to the front of the USDM Evo. There is little different between an UK Evo and a JDM Evo.

The Spec C geometry shouldn't make too much of a difference in the NVH, at least from what I could tell from driving a standard STi without and a spec C with. Other changes to the RA in the name of weight savings would probably have more to do with the noise than the geometry changes. I haven't seen those magazine reports - maybe they are referring to the aftermarket kits that do the geometry changes, which do indeed add to the NVH.

Cheers,

Paul Hansen
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Old 04-03-2003, 09:27 AM   #5
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Autocar has always liked the Evo better than the STI, although
the article implies the contest between the cars is now close,
that is basically what they said about last years comparison.

Last year they said the STI would be better if it had a better gearchange (in terms of shift quality), which was odd because more long term EVO testers complain about balking second gears, slow syncros and difficult to modulate clutches, whereas there has been less criticism and more praise of the STI six speed.

On the other hand AutoCar also complained about understeer in the STI relative to the EVO both this year and last. This has been the most consistent observation in favor of the Mitsu. Last year they
also found the STI ever so slightly faster in a straightline (JDM vs. JDM mind you), this year the gap seems to have opened up a bit.

Some inconsistencies are to be expected of course, maybe different testers? Last year "Evo interior couldn't match STI quality". this year - "new dash design of EVO barely changed but still more stylish than STI". Uh same interiors guys, not much changed, and it's pretty obvious that the STI has the better 'looking' interior for what its worth, so.....

Personally i'm interested in roadcourse times for both cars.
I'm curious is the EVO can be demonstrateed to be objectively
a faster handling car or if perhaps testers react positively to the
combination of ultraquick steering and ultrastiff suspension regardless of whether it is quicker or not.


http://www.warrender.co.uk/testfrmr.htm
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Old 04-03-2003, 09:50 AM   #6
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Recently. I came across this article http://www.mypersonaldrive.com/Subar...ton-Cranky.asp
which explaines the superiority of Subaru boxer engine.

It's also a bigger engine (2.5 v.s. 2.0 of the EVO).

Subaru has perfected the art of AWD.

..Ben
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Old 04-03-2003, 02:01 PM   #7
Alleggerita
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I have little doubt that the USDM STI is going to be faster on the track than the US Evo. Also it is definitely going to be faster in a straight line. But reports suggest that the Evo handling may be more sublime on a public road even though it's likely to be ultimately less capable.


What makes some testers go on about the subjective experience re: the Evo's handling on public roads?

I suspect it's more than just electronic gizmos on the Euro spec and JDM spec cars. It sounds that there is a similar response even to the stripped down US Evos. What is it that about that chassis that has obviously provoked Subaru into a full frontal attack suspensionwise (front LSD, DCCD, spec C front end geometry)?


Is it the quicker steering ratio?

Is it less overhang and weight in front of the front axle?

Is it manufacturer's chassis tuning philosophy re: understeer?

It is unlikely that it is chassis stiffness - I think the STI is likely to be much better here. The STI also has an advantage re: lower center of gravity due to the longitudinal boxer layout.

I love the boxer motor and I think it's a neat piece of engineering. However, I suspect that one of the reasons for Mitsubishis being easily modable to high hp levels is its archaic cast iron block that probably lends itself to high boost applications as long as there is enough octane.

It would be neat to see Nurburgring lap times for both cars including speeds in different sections.
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Old 04-03-2003, 04:01 PM   #8
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Sorry, but that understeer "problem" is one of the main reasons a WRX of any kind is brutaly fast on a real world mountian road. You dive in a corner, do nearly anything with the controls, and at worse the nose starts to push wide. There isn't that fear that it will suddenly go tailpipe first into the ditch, or loose the front completely in a complete "wash out" understeer and meet the same ditch radiator first.

Having to WORK at making the car work is also part of the WRX equasion that makes the stockers fun. Who really wants to drive a car that is as involing as a rollercoaster ride? After all you are the Driver so being able and REQUIRED to drive it is part of the fun.
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Old 04-03-2003, 06:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by XT6Wagon
Sorry, but that understeer "problem" is one of the main reasons a WRX of any kind is brutaly fast on a real world mountian road. You dive in a corner, do nearly anything with the controls, and at worse the nose starts to push wide. There isn't that fear that it will suddenly go tailpipe first into the ditch, or loose the front completely in a complete "wash out" understeer and meet the same ditch radiator first.

Having to WORK at making the car work is also part of the WRX equasion that makes the stockers fun. Who really wants to drive a car that is as involing as a rollercoaster ride? After all you are the Driver so being able and REQUIRED to drive it is part of the fun.
Are you contradicting yourself?

Statement 1:
"You dive in a corner, do nearly anything with the controls, and at worse the nose starts to push wide."

Statement 2:
"Who really wants to drive a car that is as involing as a rollercoaster ride? After all you are the Driver so being able and REQUIRED to drive it is part of the fun. "

1 states that you can get away with almost anything when you enter a corner. 2 states that in order to have fun, one is "REQUIRED" to drive the car.

Well, to me "driving " a car means I have to "choose" the right combination of entry speed, line, braking force and steering input in order to get the best results coming into a corner. If I can just randomly pick any combination of these variables and STILL come out unscathed, then it is the car (not I) that is doing the "driving".
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Old 04-03-2003, 08:44 PM   #10
shirokuma
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Quote:
Originally posted by Alleggerita
What is it that about that chassis that has obviously provoked Subaru into a full frontal attack suspensionwise (front LSD, DCCD, spec C front end geometry)?

Is it the quicker steering ratio?

Is it manufacturer's chassis tuning philosophy re: understeer?
Actually, it's likely that the biggest changes to the handling of the STi is not the front geometry changes, and it's especially not the LSD (been on STi's for a while now). It's the rear suspension geometry that's curing a lot of the handling quirks of the STi.

As for the Evo's response vs. the STi's. Well, it does really get down to two major factors - stiffer suspension setup and faster steering rack. And if you look at the prevailing comments from magazines, the words that usually come up for the Evo is "faster on the track" vs. the STi as "better on the street".

Which means, literally, that the Evo compromises it's suspension setup for that sharp response and track handling, and the STi compromises for the street at the expense of a little less sharpness.

Which is better? That utterly depends on the driver's priorities.

Since I've seen enough evidence that the STi can hold it's own at the track against even the full-bore JDM Evo, then there is no simple "well, <insert awd troublemaker here> is the car to get for the track". This may be difficult for some people to do, but they'll just have to drive the two cars and actually pick one on feel, there isn't much of a difference otherwise.

Cheers,

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Old 04-04-2003, 01:13 AM   #11
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No, The WRX may tend to disolve into understeer when pushed, It does make you actualy turn and control the car to get the best cornering out of it. It simply lacks that "lets bite you in the wallet" snap oversteer that far too many cars have when pushed too hard in bad situations.
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Old 04-04-2003, 04:07 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by shirokuma


Actually, it's likely that the biggest changes to the handling of the STi is not the front geometry changes, and it's especially not the LSD (been on STi's for a while now). It's the rear suspension geometry that's curing a lot of the handling quirks of the STi.
www.apexjapan.com
Thanks for the great info.

I am curious whether it is just alignment specs that have changed on the STI rear suspension or also hardware that determines roll center, camber curves, etc?

I generally prefer cars and bikes that have a very mechanical feel to them and I suspect that a Mitsu might be too much videogame for me - nevertheless I'd like to drive one. As it looks, I will not have that opportunity in Canada, so it will be STI all the way up here.
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Old 04-05-2003, 12:31 AM   #13
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I read the AutoCar article today & found it interesting how it turns out (Evo better than STi, even tho Evo less extreme than past versions ) as compared to the cars we are going to get here in the US.

in the UK, you don't get DCCD or the 2.5l motor in the STi, nor the twin-scroll they get in Japan, nor the Spec-C suspension settings.

the UK does get the full-on Evo tho, AYC/ACD, 6-speed, the whole bit but here in the US we of course only get 5-speed & no AYC/ACD.

I think the ultimate test may be the US STi against the UK/JDM Evo, as they're both the most evolved of their type.

The AutoCar article notes that this is the last real battle between these two as the Evo will be replaced by a CZ-based smaller hatch in the nxt year plus leaving the Impreza alone in it's niche.



Ben
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Old 04-06-2003, 10:17 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by Alleggerita
I am curious whether it is just alignment specs that have changed on the STI rear suspension or also hardware that determines roll center, camber curves, etc?
Geometry changes, and some additional metal to keep toe changes under control. Something that should make it's way to the new WRX too.

Cheers,

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