FRANKFURT – Whisking the cloth away from Subaru’s new Impreza at the Frankfurt Auto Show was Germany’s Tim Schrick – who’ll be piloting a WRX STI in Subaru’s 10th consecutive running of the 24 Hours of Nürburgring.
Now entering its fifth generation, the Impreza is all new from the ground up and is the second vehicle in Subaru’s portfolio to be built upon their new Global Platform – the architecture that will eventually underpin every one of their cars by 2025. Using high-tensile steel and structural adhesives, Subaru’s engineers have produced a body that’s 70 percent stiffer than the previous model’s and 40 percent more efficient in crash absorption – great news from both a safety and handling perspective. The new Impreza is 10 mm lower, 35 mm wider and its 40 mm longer wheelbase help increase its cargo capacity to 1,280 litres.
Outward changes are negligible, but the cabin quality takes a leap forward with stitched leather, soft-touch materials, more insulation, and better finishing throughout.
All Imprezas come with a new 2.0L four-cylinder boxer engine producing 152 hp and 145lb-ft. Subaru’s much-lauded EyeSight safety package is optional, and includes adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, lane-departure alert, pre-collision braking, high-beam assist, and new “reverse automatic braking” which senses obstacles when reversing and applies the brakes if necessary. EyeSight uses two cameras and object recognition sensors to detect vehicles, cyclists, pedestrians, lane markings, and obstacles.
Starting at $19,995 – which makes it Canada’s cheapest all-wheel-drive vehicle, the Impreza comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, LED taillights, back-up camera and 5.5 inch touchscreen.