2011 Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
vs. 2011 Volkswagen
Golf TDI

2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI

10.0

starting from

$34,720

Reasons to buy the Subaru Impreza WRX STI

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Better drivetrain traction
all-wheel drive
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Power mirrors
Standard
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Sporty performance
11.1 lb/hp
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Zippy 1/4 mile time
13.8 s @ 101 mph
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI

9.1

starting from

$26,055

Reasons to buy the Volkswagen Golf TDI

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Fantastic highway fuel efficiency
42 mpg
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Fantastic range on the highway
609 miles
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Good city fuel efficiency
30 mpg
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Fantastic range in the city
435 miles
Luxury Features 10.0 vs 7.8
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Winner: Impreza WRX STI
[details]
  • Leather comes standard on the Impreza WRX STI; the Golf TDI only offers cloth seats
Road Tests 10.0 vs 8.2
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Winner: Impreza WRX STI
[details]
  • Around 20% faster in the 1/4 mile, 13.8 s @ 101 mph vs 17.1 s @ 81 mph
  • The Impreza WRX STI hits 60mph more than 40% faster, 5.4 seconds vs 9.4 seconds
  • The Impreza WRX STI can change direction more than 10% faster, 0.93 g vs 0.84 g
Performance 10.0 vs 8.6
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Winner: Impreza WRX STI
[details]
  • All-wheel drive provides better traction off-road and in poor weather, all-wheel drive vs front-wheel drive
  • The Impreza WRX STI's power-to-weight ratio is around 50% better, providing a sportier ride, 11.1 lb/hp vs 21.7 lb/hp
  • More than 2x more powerful, 305 HP @ 6,000 RPM vs 140 HP @ 4,000 RPM
Cost 9.6 vs 10.0
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Winner: Golf TDI
[details]
  • Gets around 80% more miles per gallon in the city, 30 mpg vs 17 mpg
  • The best price we've seen is $8,665 cheaper (more than 20% less), $26,055 vs $34,720
Safety Features 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Child door locks come standard
Entertainment System 10.0 vs 10.0
Too close to call
[details]
  • Neither has a subwoofer; audio won't have that deep thumping bass sound
  • Neither offers speed-sensitive volume
Crash Test Ratings - vs -
Missing information
[details]
  • Poor protection, 10% to 20% chance of rolling over during emergency lane change
Practicality - vs 10.0
Missing information
[details]
  • Both have a rear seat that folds down for extra storage space
  • Both offer an upgrade to a navigation system
Overall 10.0 vs 9.1

Luxury Features

Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Volkswagen
Golf TDI
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moon roof Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers a sun roof
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power seats Not Available vs Not Available Neither has a power seat option
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keyless entry Standard vs Standard Both have keyless entry
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leather Standard vs Not Available Leather comes standard on the Impreza WRX STI; the Golf TDI only offers cloth seats

Road Tests

Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Volkswagen
Golf TDI
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0-60 mph 5.4 seconds vs 9.4 seconds The Impreza WRX STI can accelerate to 60mph quickly, but the Golf TDI is pretty bad
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Braking distance at 60mph 123 ft vs 132 ft Both have average braking ability for this class of vehicle
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1/4 mile 13.8 s @ 101 mph vs 17.1 s @ 81 mph The Impreza WRX STI's 1/4 mile time is good, but the Golf TDI's is below average for this class of vehicle
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Lateral acceleration 0.93 g vs 0.84 g The Impreza WRX STI has good cornering abilities compared to the merely average Golf TDI
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Top speed 144 mph vs 125 mph The Impreza WRX STI's top speed is average for this class of vehicle, but the Golf TDI is just OK

Performance

Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Volkswagen
Golf TDI
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Horsepower 305 HP @ 6,000 RPM vs 140 HP @ 4,000 RPM The Impreza WRX STI is fairly powerful, but the Golf TDI is underpowered
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Number of gears 6 vs 6 Average number of gears
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Transmission Manual transmission vs Semi-automatic transmission Both the Golf TDI's semi-automatic transmission and the Impreza WRX STI's Manual transmission are unusual transmissions for this class of vehicle
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paddle shifters Not Available vs Not Available Neither offers paddle shifters
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Air compressor Turbocharger vs Turbocharger Both have an air compressor, quite rare for this class of vehicle
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Power-to-weight ratio 11.1 lb/hp vs 21.7 lb/hp The Impreza WRX STI is a sporty car, but the Golf TDI is sluggish
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Drivetrain type all-wheel drive vs front-wheel drive The Impreza WRX STI's drivetrain is well-equipped for driving off-road or in poor weather, but the Golf TDI is not
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Curb-to-curb turning radius 36.1 ft vs 35.8 ft Both cars corner comparably to other vehicles in their class

Cost

Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Volkswagen
Golf TDI
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MSRP $34,720 vs $26,055 Both are priced reasonably
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In-city gas mileage 17 mpg vs 30 mpg The Golf TDI has great city mileage, but the Impreza WRX STI is very inefficient
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basic warranty miles 36,000 mile vs 36,000 mile Shorter basic warranty
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basic warranty years 3 year vs 3 year Shorter-lasting basic warranty

Safety Features

Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Volkswagen
Golf TDI
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antilock brakes Standard vs Standard Both come standard with ABS brakes
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Stability control system Yes vs Yes Both have electronic stability control
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Airbags 5 vs 5 OK number of airbags
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Rear brakes Disc vs Disc Both have the usual brakes for this class of vehicle
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child door locks Standard vs Standard Child door locks come standard
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Roadside assistance system None vs None

Entertainment System

Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Volkswagen
Golf TDI
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Number of speakers 6 vs 8 The Golf TDI has an OK number of speakers, while the Impreza WRX STI has very few
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Has speed sensitive volume No vs No Neither offers speed-sensitive volume
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CD player Standard vs Standard CD player comes standard
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premium radio Not Available vs Standard Have your pick of music from around the world with the Golf TDI's satellite radio
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Has auxiliary audio input Yes vs Yes Both have an audio-in jack so you can plug in your own MP3 player to the stereo
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Has subwoofer No vs No Neither has a subwoofer; audio won't have that deep thumping bass sound
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entertainment system Optional vs Not Available It'll cost you to get an entertainment system on the Impreza WRX STI; but it's not available at all on the Golf TDI

Crash Test Ratings

Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Volkswagen
Golf TDI
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Rollover resistance 4 stars vs 4 stars Poor protection, 10% to 20% chance of rolling over during emergency lane change
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Front driver crash test Unknown vs Unknown
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Driver side crash test Unknown vs Unknown

Practicality

Subaru
Impreza WRX STI
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI Volkswagen
Golf TDI
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Passengers 5 vs 5 Average number of seats
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Highway driving range 389 miles vs 609 miles The Golf TDI gets fantastic distance, but the Impreza WRX STI is very limited
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Cargo space 11.3 ft3 vs 15.0 ft3 Both have OK cargo room
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front seats 55.6 ft3 vs 51.3 ft3 The Impreza WRX STI has roomy front seats, but the Golf TDI is very cramped
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folding rear seats Standard vs Standard Both have a rear seat that folds down for extra storage space
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power outlets Standard vs Standard Both have power outlets
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roof rails Unknown vs Not Available
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navigation system Optional vs Optional Both offer an upgrade to a navigation system
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Cupholders 8 vs 4 The Impreza WRX STI has an absurd number of cupholders, 2 extra in front and 2 extra in rear
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front air conditioning Standard vs Standard A/C for hot summer days comes standard

Other Vehicles to Consider

2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI Limited 2012 Ford Mustang GT Impreza WRX STI Limited vs Mustang GT
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX 2012 Honda Civic Si Impreza WRX vs Civic Si
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI 2011 Nissan 370Z Touring Impreza WRX STI vs 370Z Touring
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI 2011 BMW 335i Impreza WRX STI vs 335i
2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STI 2011 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution GSR Impreza WRX STI vs Lancer Evolution GSR
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI 2011 MINI Cooper Golf TDI vs Cooper
2011 Volkswagen Golf 2011 Honda Fit Sport Golf vs Fit Sport
2011 Volkswagen Golf 2011 Toyota Corolla Golf vs Corolla
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI 2011 Volkswagen Tiguan SE Golf TDI vs Tiguan SE
2011 Volkswagen Golf TDI 2011 Toyota Prius Four Golf TDI vs Prius Four

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