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  • Mark Vallet
    Automotive Editor - June 15, 2016

    Expert Rating

    5.0 (Excellent)
    20 City / 27 Highway

    Unlike other websites and magazines, our ratings are not based solely on a singular road test, but rather a more encompassing batch of criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value. When comparing vehicles using our Rating System, it's important to note that the rating earned by each vehicle correlates only to the models within its class. For example, a compact car cannot be compared to a SUV—They are different vehicles altogether.

    You can interpret our ratings in the following way:

    5-Star: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.

    4-Star: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.

    3-Star: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.

    2-Star: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.

    1-Star: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.

    2017 Subaru WRX OVERVIEW

    The 2017 Subaru WRX is a smart looking vehicle with a turbocharged 2-liter four-cylinder under the hood that will appeal to anyone who wants a high performance vehicle that is exceptionally fun to drive. It can hold five passengers and is loaded with technology and safety features, making it a great car for everyday driving.

    The base model WRX comes with a six-speed manual transmission; moving up to the Premium or Limited trim level adds the option of a Lineartronic CVT automatic transmission.

    The 2017 WRX starts at $26,695 for a base mode and can range up to $36,810 for a fully loaded WRX Limited with the EyeSight package and a CVT automatic transmission.

    What's New for 2017

    The WRX was completely redesigned in 2015 so changes this year are minimal. An upgraded cloth headliner is new for all WRX models. Other minor changes include an auto-on sensor for the headlights and automatic up/down control for the front passenger window.

    Choosing Your Subaru WRX

    All three trim levels of the WRX share the same 2-liter turbo-four engine that puts out 268 horsepower and manages a very respectable 27 mpg on the highway and 20 mpg in the city.

    The base model is paired with a six-speed manual transmission and an advanced all-wheel drive system. An automated continuously variable transmission (CVT) is available as a $1,200 option on higher trim levels.

    Optional packages don’t really exist for the WRX—only the Limited trim offering ad-on packages. Accessories are available on all trim levels, though, and range from a performance exhaust system to more trivial items like carbon fiber trunk trim.

    Standard equipment includes a 6.2-inch touchscreen that operates the audio system, Bluetooth accessories and a variety of music apps. A USB port also comes standard.

    The WRX is available in three trim levels: Base, Premium and Limited.


    The WRX base model is only available with a six-speed manual and starts at a reasonable $26,695. Amenities include a sport-tuned suspension and four-wheel disc brakes with brake assist. The cloth interior is complemented with a leather wrapped steering wheel and shifter handle. Automatic climate control is standard as is cruise control and a 6.2-inch touchscreen.

    The sports package of accessories cost $2,899 and includes the STI performance exhaust system, STI short throw shifter, 17-inch black alloy wheels and an STI leather shift knob. The footwell illumination kit runs $202 and the door edge guides cost $147.


    The Premium starts at $28,995 and includes substantial upgrades that include 18-inch dark gray wheels, a power moonroof, windshield wiper de-icer, fog lamps, heated side mirrors and upgraded front seats that are sportier and heated.

    The Premium is available with the standard six-speed manual or you can upgrade to the CVT for $1,200. An optional navigation system bumps the touchscreen up to 7 inches and adds blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and a push-button start at a cost of $2,600.

    Accesories range from body side molding ($265) to an auto-dimming mirror with a compass that costs $232.


    The top-of-the-line WRX Limited adds LED headlights, a powered driver seat and leather trim at a starting price of $30,995. Just like the Premium, this trim level is available as a manual six speed or with the $1,200 CVT.

    The Limited offers Subaru’s EyeSight package but only if the CVT is selected. This package is a major upgrade and adds $3,795 to the price tag. EyeSight includes the upgraded touchscreen with navigation, blind spot detection with change assist, rear cross traffic alert as well as keyless access, pushbutton start and an upgraded stereo system.

    The big benefit of the Eyesight package lies in its safety features, which include adaptive cruise control, pre-collision braking, as well as lane departure and sway warning systems. The usual lineup of accessories is available for the Limited.

    CarsDirect Tip

    The WRX is fun to drive, and for most buyers the six-speed manual is the best way to wring every last ounce of performance out of the WRX. The Premium offers the best array of features for the money, unless safety is your top priority. In that case, the Limited with the optional EyeSight package is the way to go. While expensive, the added features will enhance protection for your family.

    Get your price on a Subaru WRX »

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