Junkyard Find: 2002 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS Sedan


2002 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS in Denver junkyard, LH front view - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThe Subaru Impreza has been with us since the 1993 model year, and you’ll still see plenty of the first-generation Impreza Outback wagons on the streets (and in the junkyards) of Colorado. All US-market Subarus got all-wheel-drive starting in the 1997 model year, so the company’s American marketers had to show a distinction between the outdoorsy/nature-loving image of the Impreza Outbacks and the rally-inspired image of the other Imprezas when the second-generation cars appeared here for 2001. Here’s a hard-to-find early-second-gen Impreza 2.5 RS sedan, showing off its WRX-like styling in a Denver self-serve yard.

2002 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS in Denver junkyard, decklid emblems - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsIn fact, all ’02 Impreza sedans that weren’t WRXs were RS 2.5s; the Outback Sport came only in wagon form.

2002 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS in Denver junkyard, engine - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThe first-generation WRX never made it to American Subaru showrooms, so the ’01 WRX was the first to appear on our roads (legally, that is). The 2.5 RS sedan shared some body parts from the WRX, along with some WRX-ish wheels and a big decklid spoiler. Just as the Mitsubishi Lancer OZ Rally looked sort of Evo-ish while packing a commuter-grade econo-engine beneath the hood, so did the Impreza 2.5 RS get the ordinary 165-horse, naturally-aspirated H4 engine that went into all those jillions of Legacies and Foresters.

2002 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS in Denver junkyard, gearshift - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThe installation of a Fun Reduction Device made this car even less WRX-like.

2002 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS in Denver junkyard, wheel - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsBut! Someone decided this car looked sufficiently racy to give the wheels the red-paint treatment.

2002 Subaru Impreza 2.5 RS in Denver junkyard, hood - ©2021 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsI don’t know if a real WRX scoop was glued/bolted here or if it was a furiously aftermarket unit, because some junkyard shopper purchased it before I got here.

OK, this JDM ad is for the second-gen WRX sedan, but it’s just so heroic that we all need to watch it.

For links to more than 2,000 additional Junkyard Finds (including many Subarus), visit the Junkyard Home of the Murilee Martin Lifestyle Brand™.





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