Editor's note: This is part of a series at KSL.com featuring some of Utah's coolest cars. If you own a customized vehicle — from sports cars to semitrucks — email firstname.lastname@example.org with a photo of the vehicle and a brief description for consideration.
SALT LAKE CITY — If you’re one of those drivers who wants to show others how fast your car is by challenging them, consider this article a warning to not race a certain local Subaru. The owner of this 2007 Subaru said it looks like a “mom car” (which is literal because he bought it from his mother), but it is incredibly fast.
Brandon Katter paid his mom for the Spec B in 2013. From the factory, the Spec B Legacy had a six-speed manual transmission, 2.5-liter turbo, and upgraded shocks and wheels. For Katter, that was a starting point.
He said he’s gone through and updated everything on the car including suspension and engine, which was built by Metric Motors in Centerville. He did his own turbo upgrade and added alcohol injection. He explained that the system sprays a mix of alcohol and distilled water, dropping the temperature and raising the octane. The alcohol only kicks in when needed, so he can drive around town on pump gas getting decent mileage.
Coordinating fuel, timing, turbo, and the alcohol boost took a lot of programming and mapping. Katter said he used the stock ECU, Cobb software and plenty of driving. He said he been adjusting for more than a year and is still tinkering with it all.
He claimed to make 520 horsepower and 487 pound-feet of torque at the wheels a few years ago. He said ran a quarter mile in 11.68 seconds, hitting 125 miles per hour at Rocky Mountain Raceway. His goal is to join the 10-second club, which is tough if you also want to remain street legal.
The Subaru Legacy has never been the boy racer that its little brother, the WRX is. Katter said he’s owned a WRX, STi and a Mitsubishi Evolution. Those cars are all fast and let everyone know it with their spoilers, dams, skirts and wheels.
However, Katter’s Legacy keeps its appearance cool and doesn't look fast unless you look closely. If you know what to look for (exhaust in back, extra cooler in front) you can pick up on a few clues and realize that this is a fast vehicle.
Most car owners in this series get lots of comments wherever they go. Katter's work doesn’t typically get recognized, and he’s OK with that. Just don’t pull alongside him at the dragstrip without knowing what you’re going up against.
Brian Champagne has reported on cars for more than nine years. He holds a master's degree in communications from the University of the Pacific and teaches at Utah State University.