Can You Drift a Subaru WRX?

The Subaru WRX may not be the first car that comes to mind when it comes to pulling crazy sideways drifts through a corner. Many enthusiasts choose popular platforms like the Nissan 240SX, the Mazda RX-7, or the BMW M3 to get sideways due to their rear-drive configurations. But if you have seen the movie Baby Driver, with its high-speed AWD drift scenes, you may wonder if it is possible to do that with a WRX in real life.

A silver Subaru WRX race car drifting.
A silver Subaru WRX race car drifting. | Unsplash

Drifting a Subaru WRX is possible, but it takes a lot of effort

In short, yes, you can drift a Subaru WRX. However, its Symmetrical AWD system will keep its front wheels spinning when you enter a corner, so you’ll need to make excessive use of the car’s e-brake to break the tires loose, according to this blog. As we know, it’s much easier to drift a rear-drive car since all of the power is coming through the rear wheels.

But in an AWD car like the WRX, getting sideways takes a lot more effort. According to Car Throttle, “The reason is quite simple: when you get the car on throttle mid-corner, the weight moves aft, causing the rear of the car to squat. This makes the front end lighter, and because the power is being sent to the front wheels, the tires become overwhelmed – inducing understeer.”

However, if you insist on drifting a WRX, it’s better to start out on a gravel road since the surface will be loose, which will help the rear end kick out. You can also try drifting on a snowy day, as the ice will help the car get sideways.

Some newer AWD cars have a “drift mode”

The rear view of a Subaru WRX in the middle of a drift.
A drifting Subaru WRX | Unsplash

If you want an AWD that’s easier to get into a drift, you may want to spend more money on something newer like a BMW 8 Series, Ford Focus RS, or even a Mercedes-Benz E63. We know, all of those cars are a far cry from the Subaru WRX, but the one thing they have in common is a “drift mode.”

This mode puts the power solely on the rear wheels so the driver can make the car slide without too much effort. Keep in mind that it’s mainly to be used on a closed course or a race track, so sliding around on the street with other cars present is not exactly encouraged.

If all else fails, buy a RWD drive car

A drifting Subaru BRZ
Christian Erlandsson of Norway in his Subaru BRZ during the round 1 of the Drift Masters European Championship. | Ben McShane/Sportsfile via Getty Images

If you really want to get sideways and are unsure if a Subaru WRX is for you, then you can always buy a RWD car. We recommend buying a Subaru BRZ as its rear-drive architecture, and skinny tires are a good recipe and are a good way to learn how to drive if you have never done it before.

If that car is a little too pricey for you, then the tried-and-true Mazda Miata should work well. But if you want to get crazy, then we can also recommend trying out a Porsche Cayman, as its mid-engine, rear-drive layout is hard to beat.

Ultimately, you can drift a Subaru WRX, but it may take some practice to do it properly. But if all else fails, just buy a rear-drive car; it’ll be much easier.

RELATED: What Is the Point of Drifting?