Subaru revives Impreza 5-door hatchback on new platform
Subaru debuts 2017 Impreza sedan and hatchback (Photo: Nadine Filion/Autofocus.ca)
Dan Heyman, Autofocus.ca
Published Thursday, March 24, 2016 11:40AM EDT
Subaru has unveiled the forthcoming 2017 Impreza model in both sedan and hatchback forms.
With global platforms being all the rage in the automotive world today, Subaru chose the New York Auto Show to launch not only the latest versions of their most popular model, but also an all-new global platform that’s set to underpin all models going forward. The new platform provides better chassis stiffness for better response, as well as more ride comfort and better safety.
As for the car itself, the release of the 2017 Impreza also marks the return of the five-door variant, a popular model that should never have been scrapped in the first place. A sedan version will be released at the same time. The hatch will likely be the winner on the sales front.
Both cars get a new fascia featuring new, more aggressive headlight lenses and hexagonal grille, which does well to compliment the more sculpted body panels of the new car. It’s not all just for looks, either; there’s more room inside the cabin thanks to a longer and wider body, but also one that sits lower than previous, providing better aerodynamics.
The center of gravity has also been lowered, which works in concert with the new chassis tech to reduce body roll by 50 percent. Subaru fans will also be happy to learn that the trademark 2.0-litre Boxer engine returns, this time with more power (152 hp) thanks to direct fuel injection. It comes mated to either a six-speed manual or continuously variable automatic transmission that features a manual mode with seven “virtual” ratios. That’s because Subaru maintains that many buyers – even those that opt for the automatic – still like the sensation of gears being shifted.
If the power boost isn’t enough to whet your appetite, Subaru will also be releasing a Sport-tech Package that provides active torque vectoring to help reduce over- and understeer. Styling tweaks include special wheels, body-coloured rocker panels and blacked-out grille. The Sport-tech package will be available in both sedan and hatch configurations.
If safety features are priority number one, then the return of Subaru’s EyeSight assist tech (lane-keep assist, automatic braking, more) should satisfy. In addition, the headlights can swivel with steering inputs, and high-beams can automatically be deactivated when they sense oncoming traffic.
Available later this year, the 2017 comes in four trims: 2.0i, Touring, Sport and Sport-tech. Expect pricing information closer to release.