There is one thing I am looking forward to above all else in 2008. A twin test. This may seem odd, in a year when the Jag XF arrives, Hamilton gets a second chance at the F1 title and we finally get a spiritual successor to the Alfasud, but this really is the big one. This is Impreza vs Evo.

There are many important one-on-one battles in motoring: 5-series vs E-class, Focus vs Astra and Ferrari vs Lamborghini to name just three. But the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution versus the Subaru Impreza WRX STi is in another league. It’s Godzilla vs King-Kong, Ali vs Foreman. Well, it is for anybody who grew up with dog-eared posters of nineties Japanese performance cars plastered over their bedroom wall. Which happens to include me.

It doesn’t matter to me that these cars are no longer rally-bred specials, and that some of the faster hot hatches are getting ever closer to their cross-country ability – these are still very special cars. And as a fully paid-up member of the Playstation generation, any new iteration of these cars is a massive event.

In 2008, blistered wheelarches, outrageous spoilers and exhausts you could camp in are back. The first thing I’m going to do this year is clear a space on my bedroom wall for some new posters…

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