The Subaru Impreza sedan and wagon are redesigned for 2012. This means new exterior sheet metal, with a more steeply raked windshield and longer wheelbase. While exterior dimensions remain unchanged from the outgoing version, the effect creates a larger, roomier cabin with the added benefit of improved outward visibility. <p><p>Also new is a 2.0L flat-4 "boxer" engine rated at 148 horsepower and 145 ft-lb of torque. The figures are 22 hp and 25 ft-lb less than those of the previous 2.5L boxer. The engine comes standard with a 5-speed manual transmission, and the pair returns 25 mpg city and 33 mpg highway. With a new continuously variable transmission, which replaces the tired four-speed auto, the Impreza is rated at an impressive 27 mpg city, 36 mpg highway. <p><p>The Impreza sedan is offered in 2.0i, 2.0i Premium, and 2.0i Limited trims, while Impreza wagons also include 2.0i Sport Premium and 2.0i Sport Limited trims. <p><p>Performance-oriented WRX and WRX STi models will remain on the previous Impreza platform for 2011, and include only superficial exterior changes. Navigation is now available on Premium and Limited WRX trims. On the STi, navigation is available across the range, and sedan models have new 18-inch wheels.
Subaru's popular lineup of Impreza sedans and wagons returns for 2012 with an all-new look and feel. In sedan form, the Impreza is offered in three trims: 2.0i, 2.0i Premium, and 2.0i Limited. The Impreza wagons add 2.0i Sport Premium and 2.0i Sport Limited trims to the mix. All Imprezas are all-wheel drive and all come powered by a new 2.0L flat-4 engine, which produces 148 horsepower and 145 ft-lb of torque. A 5-speed manual transmission is standard on all but the 2.0i Limited, which has Subaru's Lineartronic continuously variable transmission as standard equipment. The CVT is optional on all other Imprezas.
The new engine is down on power and torque from the previous model, but fuel efficiency has increased. With the 5-speed, the Impreza returns ann EPA estimated 25 mpg city and 33 mpg highway. With the CVT, the numbers jump to an estimated 27 mpg city, 36 mpg highway. Both sets of figures are impressive for an all-wheel-drive car.
Base Impreza 2.0i models ride on 15-inch steel wheels, while Premium Imprezas have 16-inch alloys, and the upper-level models are fitted with 17-inch alloys. Inside, cabin space has been increased thanks to a longer wheelbase and more steeply raked windshield. The result is a voluminous 43.5 inches of front legroom. All Imprezas feature a 65/35 split flat-folding rear seat, and in the wagon the result is a handy 22.5 cubic feet of cargo space when the seats are down.
The Impreza 2.0i comes standard with a 6-way adjustable driver's seat, with 4-way adjustability for the passenger. Also included are power windows with driver's side auto up/down, power mirrors, tilt/telescopic steering wheel, air conditioning, keyless entry, and a 4-speaker CD stereo system. Step up to the 2.0i Premium and you'll get six speakers, a USB port, a multifunction steering wheel with controls for Bluetooth hands-free connectivity, the stereo, and cruise control. Limited models add auto on/off headlights, fog lights, a stainless steel exhaust tip, heated front seats, leather upholstery, steering wheel and shift lever, a premium 6-speaker stereo with HD radio, 4.3-inch display, and iTunes tagging, and automatic climate control. Sport Premium and Sport Limited are equipped like Premium and Limited models, respectively, but add exterior features like a roof rack, special gunmetal finish wheels, and 2-tone exterior paint.
The performance-oriented Impreza WRX continues in 2012 in the previous model's body style, and includes either a 265-hp or 305-hp turbocharged flat-four boxer engine, wide body mouldings, a sport-tuned suspension, performance tires, quad exhausts, a premium stereo, sport front seating and automatic climate control.
Popular options in the Impreza range include a power moonroof, voice-activated GPS navigation, an alloy wheel package, and an all-weather package, which features heated front seats, heated mirrors, and a windshield wiper de-icer.
In addition to Subaru's fantastic Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, standard safety equipment includes vehicle dynamics control, traction control, four-wheel anti-lock brakes with brake assist, a tire-pressure monitor, dual-stage front airbags, front and rear side curtain airbags, seat-mounted front seat side pelvis and torso airbags, and driver's side knee airbag.