RAC Cars News


Subaru WRX Details Emerging

By raccars Published

Positioned as a replacement for the cult favourite Impreza, Subaru has released pictures of its latest WRX sports car. The company has yet to confirm its distribution plans for the car, which is currently described in its US specification, but industry rumour suggests it could be brought to the UK, to fit in above the racy BRZ coupe, as the company's flagship vehicle.

The newest WRX follows a blueprint set by its predecessors with a four wheel drive, four cylinder boxer turbo engine layout, accompanied by six speed manual or CVT gearboxes - not that the WRX is dragging out past glories, as this engine is an all new model, simply based upon a format used successfully in the past. The previous 2.5 litre unit has been replaced by a modern 2.0 litre version, offering superior power delivery combined with improved fuel economy. Statistics include a power output of 268bhp at 5,600rpm versus the previous model's 265bhp at 6,000rpm.

What the new engine really gains over the old one, however, is access to torque on demand. The old model relied upon some serious right foot crunching to get the best out of it, whereas its successor offers VW Golf Gti levels balanced power delivery from the lower all the way through to higher levels on the rev counter.

So far, so good. However, as the Subaru WRX will be priced above the BRZ in the Subaru line up, its handling will have to be pretty spectacular to justify a premium over the junior model. Subaru has taken this on board and is claiming upgrades to the electric steering system and a lighter but more rigid body shell, among other improvements, will have the desired effect. The new WRX has also been treated to some upgraded suspension to make the most of its new features.

The US specification model shown online wears a set of 17 inch alloy wheels but UK buyers are unlikely to be impressed with such a puny offering compared to the bigger versions, worn by the similar competition this side of the pond. Rally style 19 inchers would be far more suited to UK and European sensibilities.

Subaru has also made claims for an improved interior for the new WRX but, fortunately, appears not to have forgotten its roots in a shower of soft touch plastics. There are appropriately sporting touches in the form of a steering wheel with a racing style flat bottom, carbon trim with red stitching and shiny pedals, but the WRX's characteristically robust switchgear and bullet proof feel remain intact. Improved cabin space is a welcome extra.

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