2023 Subaru WRX Long-Term Update: Double the joy with two Christmases!

Upon making the move from the Mid-Atlantic to the Midwest in 2016, I encountered a new reality that I was unfamiliar with: a real winter. While my previous hometown had seen some significant snowstorms, they were not common occurrences and were newsworthy when they did happen. Our winters were so mild that the local press would often lend out cars in January or February that still had their factory summer or high-performance all-season tires. I vividly remember navigating the back roads of Anne Arundel County during a “commutageddon” episode in a Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart with useless summer tires and all-wheel drive.

Over the five years since my relocation, winter has gradually become less severe. The harsh polar vortexes and frozen lakes are no longer as frequent, and any winter precipitation is more likely to be rain or slush. Getting more than one significant snowstorm now feels like a victory for those of us who grew up admiring those who had snow forts and sledding hills to enjoy during the winter. Now, twice since we acquired the 2023 Subaru WRX for long-term testing, we have experienced genuine snow accumulation. View Road Test Zac Palmer and me looking out the window:

Our Subaru WRX is equipped with Bridgestone Blizzak WS90 snow tires in the factory 18-inch size. While I find them unpleasant on dry pavement due to their squishy and unresponsive nature, they perform exceptionally well in snowy conditions. The added traction from the snow tires combined with the all-wheel-drive system make the WRX incredibly easy to control in the snow. Even during the worst of our mid-March snow accumulation, I found myself outperforming other drivers on unplowed roads and slippery surfaces.

With spring approaching, this will likely be my final driving update before switching back to summer tires. I am looking forward to that change. In the meantime, I plan to enjoy some music from my CD collection and continue to test out this millennial-spec sport compact.