We all remember Tron, if you didn't see the movie about the hacker who is literally pulled into a video game then you've probably played the arcade version where a bewildered Bruce Boxleitner (Tron) is forced to undergo a series of gladiatorial games in order to escape his pixilated prison. What does this have to do with the scintillating Subie before you? Well, the owner, Ferdie Ang has managed to drive himself right into a video game.
When Turbo attempted to reach Ferdie for a short Q&A he replied with, "Hold on, I gotta call you back. I'm being filmed for a video game." Ferdie was in the midst of piloting the Subie through a canyon at an undisclosed location somewhere south of Los Angeles.
"Yeah, NAMCO had me out driving all day for this video game," Ferdie said later.
"Oh yeah, what's the name of the driving game?" we asked. Wanting to know when and where we could drive Ferdie's car into a ditch or off a cliff if we so choose.
"Uh, Umm. I forget," he said.
Turns out it would be breach of contract for Ferdie to tell anyone the name of the game. In other words, if he told anyone, he'd have to kill them.
Since when did modifying your car gain you immortality in the virtual world or put you in danger of violating a contract? To find out, we have to go back to the beginning. Not to the beginning of time but to the beginning of the buildup.
"When I bought the car it was bone stock," says Ferdie. "It was supposed to be my beater to take snowboarding."
At first, Ferdie just wanted to negate the car's natural tendency to oversteer. A Prodrive aluminum front strut bar would be the first in a long line of modifications to the suspension and the rest of the car. As you can see from the photos this Impreza isn't your run-of-the-mill exhaust, chip, and filter upgrade. The car has been thoroughly reworked both inside and out.
During the span of about a year and a half, the car has been through literally dozens of changes in parts and sponsorships in the quest for perfection. Six exhausts, three sets of springs, eight sets of wheels, and three turbochargers later, Ferdie has only recently come to be satisfied with the look and feel of the car. Now that it's finished, he can sit back and rake in some well-deserved cash using the promotional power of the car. General fees for use of an automobile for something like the Namco game run about $500 a day. This may not sound like a lot but what is a car supposed to do, get a SAG card? The car has also appeared in commercials for T-Mobile and NOS Energy. On top of this, the car made the cut for "The Fast and the Furious," part three. In this case, the car had to stay at Paramount Studios for a month during filming. This is all starting to add up. Ferdie reckons he has about $45,000 of his own money into the Subaru and another $65,000 in the retail value of the parts. The grand total of promotional fees he has received for these events, including the LA Auto show, exceeds $10,000.