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Old 10-27-2001, 02:20 AM   #1
DoinkMobb
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Default is the Impreza owner demographic changing?

Who was buying Imprezas before the 2.5RS was released? How bout after the RS was released? And then who is buying them now that the WRX has been released in America?

I'm thinking that people bought the early model Imprezas because they didn't want a Ford or a Toyota or a Chevy and wanted a different car with 4WD. How many relatively inexpensive 4WD cars (not trucks) were available in the mid '90's?

When the RS was released in 1998, I think Impreza enthusiasts bought it up. I doubt kids who were into street racing or the "import scene" were going to pay attention to a wannabe rally car. But the people who were familiar with Subaru and the Impreza appreciated the car for what it was and liked it.

Now...with all the hype the WRX received and all the kids who were introduced to it through playing Gran Turismo, now everybody is jumping on the WRX bandwagon and buying this car up. The number of members on I-club has skyrocketed since the WRX was released in the US. I would say most of them are kids in their late teens or early 20's. And out of those younger people, I would say most of them bought the WRX because its a fast, new Japanese car and they saw in their video game and now they want it.

Do you think most of these people have even heard of a WRX before? Probably not.

I think a lot of kids are buying them because they are sick of Hondas and want something else to roll around in with their chrome rims, limo tint, stickers and ridiculous sound system. Plus they probably like the fact that they can street race their moron buddies and beat most of them.

I think the Impreza owner demographic is taking a change for the worse. The typical owner is no longer an "enthusiast" anymore, someone who actually appreciates the car for what it is...more than likely it's some punk kid with the latest Japanese import, driving around thinking he's all badass.

When the price of used WRX's come down, be prepared to see body kitted, stickered, lowered, tinted, bass thumping, neoned, double stack winged, 19" rimmed 4WD rally cars being driven by some 17 year old.
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Old 10-27-2001, 02:41 AM   #2
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Do they speak English in What?

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the Rex in the new Honda Civic Si ...get used to it.
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Old 10-27-2001, 02:53 AM   #3
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Civic Si plus 67 horses, AWD, turbo, LSD...

Hmmm...maybe older Imprezas will become popular as did the older Civics and I can sell mine to somebody for more than it's worth.
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Old 10-27-2001, 02:54 AM   #4
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You can only be a succesful underdog for so long.
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Old 10-27-2001, 03:16 AM   #5
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DoinkMobb, finally I find someone else that has a Brighton, at least I would assume this with your Impreza being a FWD. To my knowledge the only FWD Impreza out there is the Brighton.
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Old 10-27-2001, 03:39 AM   #6
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Sorry us X Honda owners runined your party dude. Most WRX owners are in their mid 20's. I'm 26. And I'd say about 1/2 are X Honda owners (mostly GSR, Type R and Prelude owners). All of those cars handle better than a stock WRX. But the WRX has so much more potential. And most of us are tuners, not ricers. Don't stereotpye people. Its a bad habit.

Oh, BTW, all these X Honda owners may bring some interesting tuning to the WRX , so don't be so negative.

Btw2, It was the same way with my Prelude, there were a few HS kids whos parents bought them the car, but most people didn't rice them out. when I saw a riced out Prelude I almost puked. Not many Riced out integras either. The over 20K club does not get much of it...
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Old 10-27-2001, 03:47 AM   #7
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Hmm... I'd have to agree, but it's only natural that it had to happen. When I got my '00 impreza RS I wanted the car since I first saw it in '98 or so, since then though the popularity of the car has radically changed. When I bought my car, (and alot of RS owners can agree to this ) my co-workers and friends first reactions were "what? a subaru??? too bad... " because back then it was a very uncomon car and wasn't advertised well.

Now however, the subarus are considered to be the "IN" car, cool to have and cool to drive. I don't particularly like that, however, it was to be expected as the improvement in powertrain was dramatic and subaru had finally started advertising it's wrx.
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Old 10-27-2001, 03:55 AM   #8
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Im seeing mostly 25+ people in Rex's so far, and half in the 35+ cadigory (and a surprizing number in the 50+ range)
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Old 10-27-2001, 07:13 AM   #9
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While it may offend my sense of style, it really isn't any of my business if someone rices-out their WRX.

As for the demographics - wouldn't you be shocked if it didn't change from the RS to the WRX? It is just a little sad to see folks like Joel Gat and that guy out in Redmond (what was his name? ) replaced by cocky newcomers.
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Old 10-27-2001, 08:36 AM   #10
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I've heard the same conversation about VW's. Old GTI versus the new GTI guys. If the youg guys want neon and stickers, who cares. Happy Motoring.
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Old 10-27-2001, 09:22 AM   #11
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I would not panic!

In the UK and Australia the WRX is the ultimate enthusiasts car. It is "the" car that everyone wants.

For Northern North America (or anywhere it snows!) it is just plain the ultimate car!
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Old 10-27-2001, 09:55 AM   #12
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I would have to agree that most of the people I've seen driving WRX's have been middle aged men to be honest. I've seen one other kid that has one that's probably younger than I am (23 almost ) and one of my other buddies at work has one and he's about the same age. I can't say I've seen any 16-18 year old kids driving these things around. Thank goodness btw. I remember how I was when I was that age, 5 years ago, and I can't imagine the trouble I'd have gotten in if I had a WRX then. WOW, scary to think about...
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Old 10-27-2001, 10:21 AM   #13
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What's so bad about that? If Subaru can sell more cars here, more power to them. The US car market is tough - just count the number of huge Europeans brand that won't even sell cars here - Fiat, Peugeot, Renault, etc. Do you want Subaru to be like that? Or like Suzuki, which is basically gone?

Another good thing about a bigger market is that we now have plenty of aftermarket performance parts.

And, I am sure Buick, Cadillac, etc would like to have this "problem" of having too many young buyers.

-Ray
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Old 10-27-2001, 10:35 AM   #14
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Who cares if a guy buys a WRX and pimps it out? They bought the car not you. I personally think it looks like sh/it. Thats what makes the world go round. Why do so many Subaru drivers feel like they are better than evey other car owner in the world. After owning my GT I will never buy from another maker, but I'm not going to down someone for doing it. I don't care what anyone says but Honda, Nissan, and Toyota make great vehicles. So you really can't blaim someone for buying one. I like(love) Subaru and Joe Smith likes(loves) Hondas so what?
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Old 10-27-2001, 11:19 AM   #15
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I don't really mind, I only saw 3 maybe 4 other WRX on the road, I still see a lot more outbacks. I'm not really scared of seeing modded WRx in these neck of the woods, there is only one "performance" shop and they concentrate on honda's. There is a few VW's as well.
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Old 10-27-2001, 11:28 AM   #16
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Yes, the demographics of Subaru is turning. When I was home last weekend, I went to the local dealers lot on Sunday because I hadnt seen a WRX for over THREE (3, trois) months!! As I am walking around, some "others" pull up in a pimped out Audi. So let me set the scene:

Me:
1. Im 19, saved for years, bought a 95 Impreza L AWD 2.5 years ago
2. Full Thule Rack on roof (bike, ski, fairing)
3. Hood Protector with 84ish GL emblem(looks nice, trust me)
4. Black Steelies with snow tires
5. No car wash since early August (possibly longer)
6. Me in brown Carhart overalls with my blue Subaru t-shirt
7. Me drooling over a my00 5-speed GT wagon/RS Coupe...and a blue WRX wagon...so shoot me, it be off da hook yo

Them:
1. Limo tinted Audi stickered out
2. Some sort of gang colors
3. Pant leg rolled up, other down
4. Bandanas on heads
5. Fubu shirts
6. Chrome rims
7. Drooling over a Yellow WRX sedan

Whoa!! Is that a sharp contrast or what!?!?

Subie on!!

Kevin
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Old 10-27-2001, 11:33 AM   #17
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Have a Nice Day? The only thing...

I've seen more older couples driving WRXs than younger enthusiasts. The WRX is now an official member of the "Five Under the Limit" club. Virtually all WRX sightings are older drivers in the right lane driving under the speed limit. And hey, I'm all for that. If Subaru can sell that many WRXs, they'll bring over more and more powerful versions (STi, etc.). The 2.5 RS was a demographic test for the WRX and the WRX is a demographic test for the WRX STi.

The only thing that saddens me is the lack of community. It used to be that I could wave at any Impreza driver and they would honk, smile and wave back. Now, when I honk and wave at another Impreza driver, I get stares of confusion. Occasionally, I get a punk who gives me the evil eye, downshifts and then floors it like I'm trying to street race.

Ohwell. So be it.

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Old 10-27-2001, 12:59 PM   #18
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Very good points being made here. As a 24 yr old about to purchase a WRX Wagon I can say that I did know about the WRX before GT3 and I knew that you couldn't buy one in the states. I still liked it. While you will see a few "Fast and Furious" WRXs, they will never break into the scene the way the Civic or the Eclipse has because of their sticker price, IMHO. The extent of the mods I'm planning for the wagon would be wheels (bbs type) and tint, otherwise it's perfect just the way it is.

Isn't it amazing that the inclusion of a car in a video game can increase it's sales?

Loving this site,
-Jeff
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Old 10-27-2001, 01:34 PM   #19
Subie Gal
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Talking

i think i get what he's saying...
the TRUE SUBARU enthusiast who knows and loves ALL Subaru's...

has posters of the old RX Turbo's that used to rally...
on up to the new WRX WRC cars...

that is what's fading... disappearing...

and it's ok!!
we oldies welcome the new brand of enthusiast with open arms...

so what if they dont know squat about Subaru as a whole...
or love the history of the car....
and only know of the WRX...

that just makes us that do do these things...
more knowledgable
a bit harder to come by...
and a unique group indeed!!!

hey we can ed-ju-ma-cate them all...
*sniff* i love u guys!!
former Honda owners or not!

j.
www.subiegal.com
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Old 10-27-2001, 01:43 PM   #20
WRX Power
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I like the older RS's and such, and have been a rally fan for awhile now. But after having a 300+hp Supra, it's not easy to go buy a n/a 2.5 RS and compare it. Since my purchase of a WRX, it's been everything I've wanted that Subaru never had given the U.S. market before. That's what sold me. And yes I bought and pay for my car myself
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Old 10-27-2001, 02:12 PM   #21
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What really pisses me off about the so called "true" Subaru enthusiasts is the attitude. I suppose you get this in every car group whether you buy an Audi, BMW or a Chevy. But the attitude is always directed at Honda owners. What I find funny is that most "true" Honda enthusiasts are as hard core as anyone. They do motor swaps, have meets, race and are good people. Of course there is that one group that ryces out Hondas, but they are 16 year olds mostly. The same people ryce out any other type of car. But please don't bash Honda or make fun of Honda owners. The same Honda owners are taking your beloved WRX and making them into speed monsters. And don't forget some of Honda's history in CART. They are one of the most winning Maufacturers in history and have the most racing pedigry of any Japanese auto manufacturer. They started out as a race car company, not a mass production company. And lets look at the real race cars made for the street starting in 1991:

Honda NSX: I think you all know that one!
Honda Prelude VTEC: 200 HP, 4 Wheel double wishbone suspension. The best handling FWD car in the USA until the Type R.
Honda Integra Type R: The best handling FWD car on the planet.
Honda S2000: The best handling sports car for under 40,000 in the world.

Now, Subaru may be battling it out for the best rally car, but Honda is hands down the #1 car maker in the road coarse handling department. Just a little history for you guys. Honda deserves more respect than many of you think. And, if you have ever owned a Honda, you will know why they are so big in the USA. For the price, build quality is unmatched, service is excellent, and the cars just go forever. If you ever have to deal with Honda service, you will have an excellent experience. None of the, "It was raced, warranty denied." crap. And they do issue TSB's at the slightest problems, even sqeaks.

So next time you guys see an S2000 or want to make fun of a Type R, just remember the history, and think that just maybe a true automobile enthusiast is behind the wheel of that car.
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Old 10-27-2001, 02:14 PM   #22
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Thumbs down PUHlease!

just listen to your elitist BS!! demographics changing for the worse? SO WHAT!? if a kid wants to pimp up his ride, BIG DEAL! does everyone have to conform to this LL BEAN/outdoorsy/rally enthusiast image??? I THINK NOT.

this argument is absolute doggy do...
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Old 10-27-2001, 03:01 PM   #23
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Don't like the ricers?... Then as Vin Deisel would say - "SMOKE EM!"

JD - The JDM Fanatic

PS - I'm one of those GT kiddies who was introduced to the Impreza through the game. Came across one in a parking lot and thought it was a Skyline Ever since, I've loved em...
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Old 10-27-2001, 03:20 PM   #24
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i'm just wondering but why do some of you guys have so much against 16-18 year olds driving subarus. just because they are young doesn't mean they can't drive a subaru. not every young driver is a ricer you know........... also i bet i've seen more mid aged people in their late 20's or 30's driving in riced suv's than anything. the only thing that makes me pissed off is kids thinking they are going to buy a impreza to build a 400hp monster and don't know anything about the car............. get real.

BTW i'm one of thoes 17 year olds that their parents bough them a subaru.

and no i did not get the impreza because of grand turismo or reading the project impreza done by scc.
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Old 10-27-2001, 03:30 PM   #25
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If a different demographic means Subaru selling more cars then I'm all for it. I have yet to see a WRX owner under the age of 25 (I'm assuming ages). Kids 16-20 don't go out and buy $25k cars and the ones that have parents that buy them for them are far and few between. A Civic isn't in the same price category as a WRX, so I'm not real sure that the WRX is "replacing" the Civic. 99% of the Si owners I've met have been real enthusiasts and tuners, and I'd be happy to have them as WRX owners. I'm not sure what brought out the long Honda rant I didn't see anyone making any bad remarks about them. I bought my WRX after owning an OBS, I could care less if people buy a WRX as their first Subaru. If they paid $24k+ for a car then whatever they want to do to it is fine by me. I don't have to like it however
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