Black beauty

Sunday, May 04, 2014    

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IF you are a fan of drag racing and Subarus, then look no further than this 1997 Subaru Impreza WRX STi Limited Edition built by local tuning shop Swiftune's owner and operator Ian Galbraith, when it hits the drag strip this Sunday at Vernamfield.

Taking a cue from many famed Japanese performance shops, Galbraith built this Impreza to showcase what his company can do.

"It's a demo car. The owner wanted a car that would be very competitive and still be fully street legal in street trim," Galbraith told Auto.

The requirements came partly because of the rarity of the STi being modified but Swiftune pulled it all together to create a Dr Jeckyl and Mr Hyde sort of a car. On the exterior there's very little hint of what lines beneath as the Subaru uses a subtle Prodrive bodykit, custom roof spoiler and bonnet. A look inside shows nothing out of the ordinary since the interior has the factory seats and the prerequisite gauges for any boosted vehicle.

The Mr Hyde stuff happens under the bonnet with an estimated 400 horsepower to the wheels via the stock drivetrain. All that power is kept under control by Bilstein coil-overs that lower ride height and Whiteline upgraded bushings.

"The engine is still two litres. The heads are stock, but we have forged pistons and rods to handle the 24 pounds of boost from the GT35r turbocharger," explained Galbraith.

The famous Subaru top mounted intercooler has been swapped for a more efficient front mounted unit and a Haltec Platinum ECU allows customised engine parameters. The result has been a best to date 12.1 second pass down the quarter-mile at Vernamfield.

— Rory Daley





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