Subaru works on a five-year model schedule, with vehicles receiving a refresh in their fourth year and a redesign for the sixth. That means that the 2021 Subaru Impreza is likely to carry forward with no changes after a 2020 refresh. Expect a full redesign for 2022.
Last year’s refresh brought mild changes to the exterior, but no one would blame you for not noticing. The biggest tweaks came at the front fascia, but the taillights saw an update as well. The Impreza should look familiar regardless — it’s essentially the same car as the Subaru Crosstrek, minus the fender flares and some ride height.
Inside, the current Impreza is surprisingly spacious for a compact sedan. Trim isn’t luxurious, but the layout is intuitive and a 6.5-inch infotainment screen comes standard. We expect the practical hatchback to continue as the Impreza of choice, boasting an impressive 55.3 cubic feet of cargo capacity with the seats folded.
The Impreza will likely keep the same 2.0-liter engine for 2021, producing a pedestrian 152 horsepower. Most Imprezas will leave dealerships with CVTs, but a five-speed manual is available on some trims. Regardless of transmission, every Impreza comes with standard all-wheel drive. That’s a blessing for snow-state buyers, and even more so given the Impreza’s impressive 31-mpg combined rating with a CVT.
There’s another good reason to get the CVT: safety equipment. 2020 brought Subaru’s EyeSight suite of active safety features to all CVT-equipped Imprezas, including automatic emergency braking, active lane control, and adaptive cruise control. Those features join an impressive crash-test record, landing last year’s Impreza a Top Safety Pick award and five stars overall from the NHTSA. We don’t expect any major changes for 2021, but family buyers should rest easy.