The 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show allowed Subaru to unveil the Impreza Design Concept, a preview version of the next generation Impreza. Details for the vehicle have been sparse since then, but we decided to dream up what the WRX STI version would look like anyway.
The concept’s design is defined by a theme of "Dynamic, Enticing, Secure." Starting with this theme, the WRX STI version adds requisite fender flares, a top-mount intercooler, and, that massive wing on the back.
The standard Impreza is expected to be revealed in early 2011. It will continue offering the same 2.5 liter Boxer engine, but rumors are also circulating that a hybrid version will also be available, a first for Subaru. The WRX STI model will follow a few months later with sales beginning in early 2012.
UPDATE 07/14/2011: New details about the future generation Subaru Impreza WRX suggest that, starting 2014, the Impreza and the WRX will go their separate ways. What this means is that the car will simply be called the Subaru WRX and will be a totally different vehicle. According to a MotorTrend source: "Apart from a few nuts and bolts, every part on the WRX will be unique. Even the engine and body. Obviously the WRX’s platform will be inherited from the new Impreza, but it will be radically modified and significantly shortened."
UPDATE 11/18/2011: During their presence at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show, Subaru has offered new details on the next WRX STI model. The car will continue to be turbocharged and will use a forced-induction version of the carmaker’s new 2.0-liter "FB" boxer four engine with an output of about 300 HP. (CarAndDriver)
UPDATE 12/08/2011: The Subaru WRX has been rumored to deliver up to 300 HP, but new details are suggesting that the standard model will actually use a turbocharged version of the BRZ 2.0-liter boxer engine with an output of about 270 HP. That’s 30 HP we’ll probably never see again.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2012 Subaru WRX STI model.
Exterior and Interior
Taking a good look at the Impreza Design Concept will provide a pretty good idea of what the production version will look like. Add a little sportiness and aggressiveness and the result will be the WRX STI version.
There will be a a hexagonal grille with spread wings in the center and hawk eye-style headlights, while the rear gets a garnish that radiates outward from the center, sharp-edged rear lights, and a new taillamp. The STI version will be distinguished by fender flares, a top-mount intercooler, and a massive wing on the back. Some cool points are added with a carbon fiber hood and blacked-out fog lamps.
The interior will offer sports seats covered in leather, aluminum inserts, three-spoke wheels, and a long list of technologies, including Bluetooth, a Navigation system, iPod capability, and an XM/Sirius radio.
The concept is powered by a 2.0-liter naturally aspirated Boxer engine mated to a Lineartronic Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT). However, for the STI version, expect to see a turbocharged version of the 2.5 liter boxer engine with more than 305 HP. The engine will be mated to a fully synchronized close-ratio 6-speed manual transmission.
Of course, the closest competitor for the Subaru Impreza WRX STI is the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X. If we had to pick between the two, we’d choose the Impreza. It’s more aerodynamic, delivers better performance, it’s all-wheel-drive, and looks better.
When Can I Buy One?
Expect the new Subaru Impreza WRX to debut in late 2011, with sales beginning in early 2012.