June 29, 2022

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Is the £552,000 Prodrive P25 the ultimate Subaru Impreza race car to hit the road?

Is the £552,000 Prodrive P25 the ultimate Subaru Impreza race car to hit the road?
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Drink up the specs – and looks – of this listed racerback of sports cars. equal to half mill?

Until now, restaurants were mostly cultured and elegant cars from the 1960s. Well, that’s a gritty spunk in the eye from the ’90s. Prodrive has revealed its final test drive with the legendary Subaru Impreza 22b. Learn about P25.

‘P25’, because the Oxfordshire-based racing car manufacturer will only build 25 of them, and because it was built to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Subaru winning a stage of the World Rally Championship — with a team run by Prodrive, of course. The company has been the brains behind all three WRC titles from Subaru so far, and now we’re getting a road car built with that level of expertise. Tasty.

Announcement – page continues below

The P25 is based on the 22B three-door chassis, a special edition Impreza created in 1998. Initially only the 400 was built for the Japanese market, but the demand for Subaru’s special 2.2-liter 276-hp engine (they said) was so intense that it built Three more for her rally team, five for Australia and 16 models for Rally Mad Brits. Today, the mint sells for £250,000 – £300,000 at auction.

Prodrive charges around £552,000 to honor it, but for that you get more power and less weight. Carbon panels are covered throughout the body of the donor, and thanks to the bucket seats and the lithium-ion battery, more grams are thrown away, so the total weight is 1,200 kg. This is the same thing as the Ford Fiesta ST. But you get all-wheel drive, and you double the power.

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Under the hood is a flat four-wheel drive – what else? Join a gigantic Garrett turbocharger. Instead of the 2.2 liter you got in the 22B, this is a 2.5 liter engine, developing 400 horsepower and 442 lb.-ft. With Anti Lag and Launch Control that shifts the first few gears for you, work from 0 to 62 mph in under 3.5 seconds and transition to a limited top speed of 150 mph.

Now that means you don’t shift gears manually – instead there’s a six-speed semi-automatic transmission. You might say it’s not very pure, but don’t forget this isn’t a Subaru product – it’s a Prodrive. Of course the racing team wants the fastest possible turnarounds. And you’ll have plenty to play with elsewhere.

Announcement – page continues below

The center differential has a variable torque split, there are adjustable Bilstein dampers, different engine maps, and you can even adjust the lag arrester. I bumped the spec sheet with interesting details: a titanium and stainless steel akrapovic exhaust. AP Racing’s brakes are so bulky that they need 19-inch rims to fit them.

Said rims were wrapped with tires specifically designed to work with the suspension which has better geometry than the old 22B because the track is now wider. The chassis was overseen by 22B designer Peter Stevens (and the likes of the McLaren F1 and Jaguar XJR-15). What a position.

Inside, the old Subaru is still recognizable, but there are leather, Alcantara and carbon fiber leatherettes. If you’re feeling particularly hardcore, Prodrive throws in the rear seats and fits a roll cage with belts instead. There is also a data logger to record lap times and phases. And a hydraulic handbrake that separates the center differential when the rear axle is locked, like a Toyota GR Yaris – or a proper rally car.

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It all sounds so beautiful and useful, but we can’t help but wonder – will the people spending half a million pounds on the final race on the road use it, Scooby, or will he just sit quiveringly on the set, and just get the admiring glances from the insurance broker?

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