Subaru’s go-anywhere Impreza compact sedan just received a comprehensive update for the 2014 model year, with modern new styling and efficient CVT transmissions that help it to become the most efficient all-wheel-drive vehicle you can buy. With buyers responding well, the big news for 2015 is a move to the new Impreza platform and design for the hotter WRX and WRX STI models.
Now only available in four-door sedan trim, the pair of Subaru AWD wonders benefit from new more-restrained styling while carrying on their traditional design elements, such as prominent foglamps and squared-off, bulging fender arches. The STI receives a deeper front air dam, gold BBS wheels and a new take on the massive rear wing we’ve grown to know and love.
Power in the new WRX comes from a relatively new engine from the Subaru brand, a turbocharged 2.0-liter Boxer four-cylinder that’s related to the unit in the Forester. And power there is, with output rising to 268 horsepower and 258 lb-ft. of torque. The STI uses a slightly retuned version of its 2.5-liter turbo four-cylinder from the previous generation, now making 305 horsepower and 290 lb-ft. of torque, and still only paired with a 6-speed traditional manual transmission.
Now available on the base WRX as well as the hotter STI, Subaru’s revamped active torque vectoring all-wheel-drive system is a real treat, able to distribute power both side-to-side and front-to-rear as well as using braking on individual wheels to improve cornering response. The STI, for its part, receives a stiffer suspension tuning as well as Subaru’s new Multi-Mode Driver Controlled Center Differential with driver-selectable modes for torque splitting.
Both the WRX and WRX STI will hit Subaru dealerships and a stoplight drag near you in Spring 2014. Pricing will start at $26,295 for the WRX and $34,495 for the STI.