Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Custom Screen Image on your Subaru

If you haven't been following my blog, you should know that I'm a big fan of rally.  Racing to the limit on tarmac, dirt, and gravel roads is an awesome test of both car and driver and I enjoy following rally teams pursuit of perfection in these demanding conditions.  One of my favorites to follow is Subaru Rally Team USA and every time I watch in-car videos I see that logo on the dashboard.  So when I found out I could do the same thing in my 2016 WRX STI (or any Subaru with a 7.0 inch Touchscreen) I was pretty stoked.

SRTUSA_BlackAll you've gotta do is download this image to your computer and follow the instructions in this short video I made.  You can do this with any picture, but this one has been specifically sized and designed for use on Subarus with the 7.0 Inch Multimedia Plus or Multimedia Plus Navigation systems.

Check out the video below and follow along to add this to your Subaru!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

New Chapter for an Old Car

For the last 3 years I've been working on resurrecting a beat-up 2000 Impreza 2.5 RS Coupe.  It's had quite the transformation from rust bucket to rallycross champ.  I've really grown attached to the car in that short time, but I've come to slowly realize that I need a cleaner car.  By clean, I mean not 16 years of rust and rot and neglect and patchwork body repairs.  However, finding a suitable replacement here in the midwest has been nearly impossible.  These older Subarus have not survived the harsh winters and even harsher chemicals put on roads here in Nebraska.  Rusty quarter panels seems to be as sure of a thing as leaky head gaskets on these old Subies.

However, I've managed to find a suitable replacement to swap a few things over and continue to grow and improve with.  Hidden away in Washington State I managed to find a 1999 Impreza 2.5 RS Coupe... same color and everything, just no rust.  In fact, the car is in awesome shape and is more than ready to take up the mantle of my previous project car.  However, the story of this RS Coupe has a more interesting start than that.

I've been following Agatino Fortunato since the beginning of the 2016 Rally America Series back in January.  Tino and the All Fours Rally Team have a Super Production WRX STI that they compete with and I was lucky enough to meet them at the Rally in the 100 Acre Wood earlier this year.  Instead of trucking the Impreza here and fixing the head gaskets on the '99 Impreza, I got in touch with Tino.  By some strange force of nature, they're going to button it all back up and drive it on it's maiden voyage to Ojibwe Forests Rally next week!  Now all I've gotta do is quit geeking out, make some plans, and meet them there to drive my new rally car home!

I wish I could attend the whole rally, but I have to work that Saturday.  I'll be hitting the road, driving through the night to make it there, get some rest, check out some of the rally, get the car, and head home with it.  What an adventure I've got coming!  I'm pretty stoked to have this cool of a story linked to a car I'll be picking up.  What a way to start a new project!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Subaru Generational Changes

I work in Subaru sales and a common question I am asked is "When is the bodystyle changing?"  Knowing what I know about the cycle most Subaru bodystyles take, this can be a pretty easy question to answer... but all of that might be up in the air with the new "Global Platform" that Subaru will be going to in 2017 starting with the new Impreza. 

Confused already?  Here's a quick rundown of what Subaru currently does with their lineup.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Colorado Bound!

This week my wife and I are taking a much-needed vacation.  Work has been busy for both of us and we haven't really had a breather since January, so when our friend from Colorado invited us to their wedding... we decided to turn it into an adventure!

We'll be taking our trusty 2015 Subaru Forester XT along for the journey.  As much fun as my STI would be on these scenic roads, the Forester is the smarter pick and still delivers a good amount of fun.  Between the better fuel economy, added space and comfort, and the massive sunroof to help us enjoy the scenery as we weave through mountain passes, we're excited to jump head-first into this adventure with our Subaru!

On our to-do list is the Rocky Mountain National Park.  I've visited the park twice, but both times were quick pass-through visits that really didn't do the park justice.  We're planning on spending most of our Thursday there, so it'll be nice to take it all in without being on the clock.  Friday we might have some more time to visit other parks before wedding commitments come into play, but we'll make the most of it regardless!

I'll have some photos and a road-trip report of our Forester XT when we return!

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Boxers @ Baxter is a BIG success!

The 2nd annual dealership-sponsored "Boxers @ Baxter" kicked off at 6pm on July 9th.  With well over 200 Subarus and over 300 attendees, the event marks the largest Subaru meetup held in Nebraska.  This event was hosted by Baxter Subaru in Omaha, NE in cooperation with Subaru of America and Vermont Sportscar.  Fans gathered with their Subies to check out the Subaru Rally Team USA display and rally car, got free food and giveaways, and enjoyed the company of their fellow owners on a sunny Saturday evening lining the lot with their cars.  From brand-new WRXs to 70s classics, there was a wide range of models present for people to check out.

Below is a full archive of photos from the event plus a short video walk through of the meet!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Season 4 of Launch Control Begins!

Subaru and Formula Photographic have teamed up again for a 4th Season of their "Launch Control" series that follows their motorsports programs.  Earlier this year the film team was spotted in the snow with David Higgins just before the RallyAmerica National Championship kicked off at the Sno*Drift Rally in Altanta, MI.  After the Rally in the 100 Acre Wood, they mentioned that Season 4 would return in late spring.  Today the wait is over!

While it might be July today... the series starts in mid-March as Higgins and Pastrana battle it out at the Rally in the 100 Acre Wood (which I was at) in Missouri!

As usual, if you follow Subaru Motorsports already, you know what the outcome of each race will be.  However, Launch Control has been a sought-after series to follow for enthusiasts because of the stories that emerge from each event that don't show up in the results at the end.  They deliver once again with their 4th season kicking off today, so fans have a lot to look forward to in the coming weeks as the series continues.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

RS and STI Rallycross (Video)

I have been working on my 2000 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS Coupe since September of 2013.  As I have repaired it, I have also been building it up for use in our local NRSCCA Rallycross events and it has been a fantastic car for the job!  I've shared the wheel dozens of times... but never really quite like this last weekend.  Usually I have a co-driver tag along with me and we'll take turns driving my coupe through the dirt course, but on June 26th things were a little different!

A bit of a perfect storm allowed me to have a little more fun at this event.  I had two friends who wanted to drive the RS with me, and I couldn't really say no to either of them.  Having a 3-Driver car would be a bit hectic.  However, this time around I was the Event Master (EVM) so I decided I'd have a little fun of my own.  While both my friends competed with my RS coupe, I decided to get my other car a little dirty. 

I competed with my 2016 WRX STI Series.HyperBlue at this event!  As Event Master, I didn't really technically have to "compete" to gain top points for this event... so it was the perfect opportunity to just have FUN with this weapon of grass destruction and take it easy as needed.  A few rougher portions of the track could've wreaked havoc on my front bumper with the longer approach angle the 4th Generation WRX STI has if I had been pushing like I usually do.  That didn't stop me from getting sideways rockin the number "75" of my rallying hero David Higgins.

I had long thought that the WRX STI had become more of a street machine than a out-of-the-box rally car like they used to be.  However, the dinosaur EJ25 under the hood and incredible AWD system reminded me this car still has rallying pedigree in it's 5W-30 blood.  This Hyper Blue head-turner was absolutely amazing to drive... even with all-season tires on it!  The steering and suspension and power worked great together as I slid and sped through turns!

Both cars were fantastic for this event!  The driver and co-driver in my RS clawed to 1st and 3rd in their class and even a 3rd-place overall finish.  My "Higgins Blue" STI managed to complete the event in 4th overall.  I imagine with some decent rallycross tires and a will of iron would've even yielded stronger results, as the car was only 3 seconds off of my rallycross-prepared RS.

Enjoy the GoPro footage of both of these cars running through the course below!