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Jay Leno Was Pleasantly Surprised by His Drive in a Subaru WRX STI

Jay Leno owns some of the rarest vehicles in the world that the common consumer will never drive. That’s part of the fun of watching Leno’s show. He loves showing off automobiles that have a combination of fierce looks and unbelievable speed. Watching him almost makes you feel like you’re in the car with him.

Just because Leno shows off expensive cars doesn’t mean that he’s a car snob, however. He won’t hesitate to jump behind the wheel of a vehicle that he doesn’t want himself, just to see how it drives. That was the case when he drove Bucky Lasek’s 2016 Subaru WRX STI. Here’s a recap of the episode where Leno took the STI for a spin.

Bucky Lasek’s 2016 Subaru WRX STI

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Leno isn’t known for driving Subarus. His fans know him for his supercars that look like something from a superhero film, like McLarens, Lamborghinis, and Mercedes. He also really enjoys driving coupes. So how did Leno end up behind the wheel of a Subaru WRX STI?

As it turns out, Leno is friends with Bucky Lasek, a professional skateboarder and race car driver. The STI is actually Lasek’s personal car, which he had several modifications made.

Leno asked Lasek about what he had done, and Lasek said that he added a precision performance package, a pairing front mount, and increased the horsepower from 300 to over 400. Some of the other changes Lasek had made are not available to typical consumers. These changes included special made carbon fiber mirrors, a hood that resembles a race car, and aluminum skid plates to protect the oil pan.

Lasek’s team knows that he’s just as wild behind the wheel as he is on his board, so they added gurney flaps to protect his Subaru WRX STI from gravel that flies up when he’s spinning out.

Lasek explained that he wanted a rally-style street car that will function just as well on the track as it does when he’s headed to the grocery store, and that’s exactly what he got.

What did Jay Leno think of the Subaru WRX STI?

Jay Leno seemed to be surprised at how smooth the STI drove, and stated that he really liked it. He was very impressed with how ‘beefy’ Lasek’s Subaru WRX STI is, as compared to other race cars that feel difficult to get in and out of.

Leno did express that he was surprised the STI is considered a crossover, because he thinks of crossovers as SUVs. As he drove with Lasek, Leno recalled how Subaru replaced Saab as the vehicles that can go in any type of weather.

While driving Lasek’s modified Subaru WRX STI, Leno stated,

“These cars feel so different from the way they used to feel like. It feels like a more substantial automobile. A little heavier, faster, more powerful.”

Lasek replied that he could have gotten more horsepower if he added more torque, but he felt like the STI would have lost much of its drivability.

Overall, Leno really enjoyed driving the STI. Even though it’s not the typical coupe he loves, Leno liked the fact that he didn’t scrape the bottom and had the potential to go off-road.

What does a typical Subaru WRX STI look like?

RELATED: What Does Consumer Reports Have Against the Subaru WRX?

If you’re interested in a Subaru WRX STI, it won’t look like Bucky Lasek’s car, but it’s still a great vehicle. It has a close-ratio six-speed transmission, AWD, and a turbocharged 2.5-liter flat-four engine. It also looks beefed up compared to other rally cars.

Car and Driver thought it was a decent car, but disliked the fact that it tends to lag. The STI is also very loud, as seen when Jay Leno drove it. That being said, it might be within some consumer’s price range at $37,895. If you want one similar to Bucky Lasek’s, you’ll have to make the adjustments yourself.