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2015 Subaru WRX


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Ever since 2011, rumors have been swirling that once the new-generation Impreza hits the market, Subaru will separate the Impreza and WRX models. Of course, both will share the same platform, but the WRX and the WRX STI versions will be radically modified and each part on it will be unique.

As no surprise, shortly after the WRX Concept was unveiled at the 2013 New York Auto Show, our spy photographers caught the production version testing around the Nürburgring race track. Now, after many testing sessions, teasers and speculations, the 2015 WRX made its world debut at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show.

The model offers a new design language, a powerful four-cylinder engine — not as powerful as hoped though, as it was rumored it will deliver more than 300 horsepower — and, for the first time, the choice of two gearboxes: a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT.

Updated 02/14/2014: Subaru announced today prices for the 2014 WRX set to be put on sale this spring. Prices for the base WRX will start from $26,295 for the base version, but it can go up to $31,195 for the WRX Limited Edition.

Hit the jump for more details on the new Subaru WRX.

Update History

Updated 12/13/2013: Subaru Subaru unveiled a new promo video today in which it showcase the amazing rallying capacities of its new WRX sedan. Enjoy!

Updated 12/18/2013: Subaru unveiled a new promo video today featuring Mr. Takatsu, "Project General Manager" whom talks about the development process of the new WRX. He also talks about the fun of driving the WRX.

Exterior

Subaru WRX
Subaru WRX
Subaru WRX

The 2015 WRX offers a more aggressive stance, thanks to a more sophisticated design theme. The front received a full revision, which making it bolder by the addition of a deep front spoiler and unique, hexagonal grille, plus a new hood specially designed for the 2015 WRX. Also unique to the model are the front fenders, rear doors and quarters, bumpers, headlights and taillight clusters.

Up front, the new WRX features new set of narrower headlights, a functional scoop that leaves a nice opening in the hood for the boosted four-pot to breathe, fog light surrounds with a carbon-fiber-like pattern and vertical front fender vents that feature a bright garnish and a mesh screen.

When viewed from the side, you will have the impression that the car is closer to the ground, thanks to new side sill spoilers. You may also notice that the A-pillar seems slightly longer, and you are not mistaken, as Subaru extended the A-pillar toward the front end by about eight inches.

Around back, the back end is updated with LED taillights, a diffuser, LED center high-mount stoplight (CHMS) and an available lip spoiler.

Concept to Reality Comparison

Subaru WRX

We understand that concepts typically are not exact examples of what the production model will look like, but Subaru’s concept really strays from the production model. The concept looked sexy, sleek and aggressive, and the production model just falls flat on its face. We were really hoping for a fully redesigned model, like the concept pointed to, but instead Subaru delivered what looks almost like a refresh of last year’s model... Blah...

TopSpeed Rendering Versus Reality

Subaru WRX

Okay, okay, we’ll take our lumps on this one, because the rendering is not much like the production model. We did, however, get it right that Subaru would not release a model that strayed far from the last-generation WRX. Despite our overall inaccuracy, we did get a few things right, like the split fog light bezel and the lower body line. The rest is, well, not very close...

2015 Subaru WRX - Exterior Dimensions:

Length180.90 inches
Width70.66 inches
Height58.07 inches
Wheelbase104.33 inches

Interior

Subaru WRX
Subaru WRX
Subaru WRX

Because the 2015 WRX features a one-inch-longer wheelbase than the previous model, the rear passengers get a nearly two inches of extra legroom. Other updates include a more raked windshield and increased trunk capacity.

The WRX’s interior also adds to the sportier feeling of the new WRX, thanks to its all-new, flat-bottom, leather-wrapped steering wheel that offers integrated switches for audio and Bluetooth control. Subaru also added in some soft-touch materials for the dashboard, door trim and center console armrest, helping rid the cabin of as much scratchy plastic as it can. For those of you who practically live in your car, Subaru has also added numerous storage compartments around the center console, so you can safely store your stuff.

New for 2015 is a 3.5-inch LCD central screen that offers details on the oil level, remaining washer fluid and selected gear ratio, while a new multi-information central display, with a 4.3-inch LCD screen, offers details on the rear camera display, a boost gauge display, audio, Bluetooth and climate-control settings. A harman/kardon audio system helps round out the interior and give you some nice sound as you rip through the gears.

The front seats are wrapped in a new high-grip fabric, with leather being offered as an alternative. They also include separate tilt- and height-adjustable head restraints.

Gear Shift Detail

Subaru WRX

Gauge Detail

Subaru WRX

Drivetrain

Subaru WRX

Under the hood the 2015 WRX gets a new 2.0-liter, four-cylinder boxer engine that delivers a total of 268 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and 258 pound-feet of torque delivered between 2,000 and 5,200 rpm. This hot 2-liter is mated to a six-speed manual transmission — a first for this engine — as standard, but those who prefer not to row their own gear, Suby is also offering a Sport Lineartronic CVT as an alternative. Models equipped with the CVT also get Subaru Intelligent Drive (SI-DRIVE), which allows the driver to tailor the vehicle’s driving characteristics through three selectable modes: "Intelligent," "Sport" and "Sport Sharp". You can also select whether you want the CVT to behave like a six-speed or eight-speed transmission.

Of course, both transmissions deliver power out to all four wheels via Suby’s Symmetrical All-Wheel-Drive System.

2015 Subaru WRX - Drivetrain Specifications

Engine2.0-liter Horizontally-Opposed direct injection turbo DIT engine
Displacement1,998 cc
Transmission optionssix-speed manual or Sport Lineartronic
Max output (HP @ RPM)268 @ 5,600 rpm
Max torque (LB-FT @ RPM)258 @ 2,000-5,200 rpm

Suspension and Brakes

Subaru WRX

The new WRX is offered with standard 17-inch wheels wrapped in 235/45R17 94W Dunlop SP Sport Maxx RT tires. Doing the stopping duties is a high-performance braking system, while a specially tuned suspension keep the tires stuck to the road.

Models equipped with the six-speed manual will come with the traditional Continuous AWD version of Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, which constantly delivers a 50:50 split between the front and rear axles until it feels slippage. Models with the CVT will get the more advanced Variable Torque Distribution (VTD) version of Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive that delivers a 45:55 rear-biased torque distribution and it continuously modifies this split based on the style of driving.

Prices

Model/Trim Transmission MSRP MSRP + destination and delivery
WRX6MT$26,295$27,090
WRX Premium6MT$28,495$29,290
WRX PremiumCVT$29,695$30,490
WRX Limited6MT$29,995$30,790
WRX LimitedCVT$31,195$31,990

Options

Navigation +Audio w/ Harman/Kardon® Amplifier and speakers$2,000
Navi System + Audio w/ Harman/Kardon® Amplifier and speakers +Keyless Access and Start$2,500
Navigation System +Keyless Access andStart$1,500

Competition

Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution XI

Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution XI

Just like the WRX, its biggest competitor – the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution - is about to receive major updates. Rumors have been circulating that the future Evo XI will be a diesel-electric hybrid that will combine a 1.6-liter gasoline engine with an electric motor that will take its power from a set of lithium-ion batteries. The hybrid system will be combined with Mitsubishi’s S-AWC all-wheel-drive system and will help net the sedan a 0-to-60 mph sprint time of less than five seconds. It will also deliver improved fuel economy when compared to the current generation.

Conclusion

Subaru WRX

The 2015 Subaru WRX is a nice step forward from the model it replaces. The fact that Subaru dropped the Impreza name from the nomenclature will help customers to further distinguish it from the rest of the lineup and the new additions will make it even more popular. Unfortunately, the 02015 WRX does not inherit as bold a design as its concept, but it is still nice to see the old girl get a facelift.

LOVE IT
  • Updated exterior look
  • Two transmission options
  • Powerful four-cylinder engine
LEAVE IT
  • Not a revolutionary redesign
  • Maybe it was better to see a few more horsepower under the hood

Update History

Updated 05/27/2013: Today we have a new rendering for you revealing how the new WRX could look like. We hope you like it!

Updated 11/11/2013: Subaru officially confirmed today that the new generation WRX will be officially unveiled at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show on November 20. The first teaser image was also unveiled and it shows a futuristic design language, with a large scoop on the hood and a new set of headlights.

Updated 11/13/13: A few images of what is being touted as possible leak from Subaru showing the 2015 WRX uncovered have hit the web. We are uncertain on just how legit they are, but we are leaning toward them being fan renderings, giving they came from a Subaru fanboy Facebook page. (Autoweek)

Updated 11/14/2013: With the every day we’re getting closer to the official debut of the 2015 Impreza WRX we will learn more and more details about the new sports sedan. Today Jalopnik came into the possession of a leak document that reveal part of the elements to be featured in the next WRX. According to this document, the base WRX will be powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with 268 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, and it will rocket to 60 mph in 5.4 seconds. An optional CVT will raise this time to 5.9 seconds. The WRX STi will have a slightly larger 2.5-liter unit. The engines will be mated to either a CVT or a manual transmission.

Updated 11/19/2013: The folks over at Edmunds.com released the first official glimpse of the 2015 WRX in an accidentally released video from the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show — oops. Of course, they removed the video, but an image (above) taken from the video has already surfaced on the mighty Internet, and we’ve got it. By looking at this image, the ones below from Clubrz are obviously the real deal, which is a little disappointing. A good find before the car’s official debut, which will take place tomorrow, so stay tuned! (Carscoops)

Updated 11/20/2013: This review was updated with the official details, images and specs.

Updated 11/27/2013: Subaru unveiled a new promo video (above) that gives you a little more info on the totally redesigned, completely reimagined WRX. The video offers an in-depth explanation of everything that makes the 2015 WRX the sharpest-handling, best-performing WRX ever. Enjoy!

Possible Leaked Images

Subaru WRX

The above and below images slipped onto the Clubrz Facebook page, then slowly circulated the Interwebz. We are not too sure if these are "official" images that leaked or if they are simply fan renderings. Judging from the so-so quality of the renderings, we are leaning toward them being just fan mockups. Clubrz has since deleted them from its page, adding more fuel to the fire.

Subaru WRX

Spy shots

Subaru WRX

Subaru tried to hide the fact that we are looking at the new WRX STI, but it didn’t managed to do such a good job. The spy shots reveal new headlights, which are not as sharp as the ones seen in the concept, but still different from the current generation. The hood also seems redesigned, while the grille gets the same three-dimensional-mesh pattern as the concept.

Subaru WRX

However, you’ll have to look from the rear to see that we are indeed looking at the new model. Subaru tried to hide it under the camouflage, but it is pretty clear that we are going to see similar design language we have seen on the concept. Unlike the concept, the prototype caught testing here is wearing a huge rear wing to provide stability at high speeds, which is precisely why we know this is the STI model.

Press Release

Subaru of America, Inc. today introduced the 2015 WRX, a more powerful and better handling version of the brand’s iconic high-performance model, at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Powered by a new 268-horsepower 2.0-liter direct-injection turbo BOXER engine, the 2015 WRX debuts the model’s first six-speed manual transmission and a new, optional performance automatic transmission, the Sport Lineartronic CVT with two manual modes.

Subaru WRX

With its bold new wide-body sedan design and expanded performance envelope, the 2015 WRX marks a major evolutionary step for the rally-bred performance car that has become a global automotive legend. For 2015, the Subaru WRX employs a new torque-vectoring system that supplements the standard Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system. Torque vectoring allows for improved cornering speeds and handling. The new and stiffer chassis, larger brakes, performance-tuned suspension and a driver-focused interior remain integral to the WRX performance character. The new powertrain also yields higher fuel efficiency than the previous model.

At the same time, a roomier interior, upgraded cabin comfort and materials and a wide array of new user technologies give the new WRX a more refined feel. A harman/kardon® premium audio system is offered for the first time in a WRX.
The 2015 WRX design deftly blends an aggressive stance with a sophisticated sport sedan theme. The new WRX features a much bolder front design with a deep front spoiler and unique grille. The wide-body stance seen on the previous model is enhanced with new, standard 17-inch wheels. The hood, front fenders, rear doors and quarters, bumpers, headlights and taillight clusters are all unique to the 2015 WRX.

Subaru WRX

Specially designed for the 2015 WRX, the rear doors and fenders continue the model’s wide-body stance in a rakish new profile. The Subaru hexagonal grille is flanked by narrower headlights designed to evoke a raptor’s stare. The functional hood scoop, which supplies the intercooler with fresh air, is now set more deeply into the hood to provide better forward visibility.

Other new performance-oriented details include foglight surrounds with a carbon fiber-like pattern and vertical front fender vents that feature a bright garnish and a mesh screen. Higher-grade models use new LED low-beam headlights; halogen lights are used on other models. The side sill spoilers that help to visually lower the car also help protect the doors from rock chips.

New standard 17-inch wheels feature a more aerodynamic design. At the rear, LED taillights, a diffuser, LED center high-mount stoplight (CHMS) and an available lip spoiler leave a distinctive signature.

Subaru WRX

The new WRX body structure makes greater use of high-tensile strength steel than the previous model and features special stiffening elements at key locations. Combined with the new Electronic Power Steering system, specially tuned suspension and 235/45 R17 94W Dunlop SP Sport Maxx RT tires, the stiffer chassis yields steering response that was benchmarked against top-handling sports cars.

The new WRX 2.0-liter, 4-cylinder BOXER engine uses a combination of direct fuel injection, high compression (10.6:1), Subaru Dual Active Valve Control System (D-AVCS), a twin-scroll turbocharger and an intercooler to achieve outstanding performance and high efficiency. The engine produces 268 horsepower at 5,600 rpm, accompanied by a broad torque curve that peaks at 258 lb.-ft. over a 2,000-5,200 rpm engine speed range.

Based on the engine used in the new 2014 Forester 2.0 XT, the WRX version uses different cams and higher-rate valve springs, among other enhancements, to extend the performance envelope. The new 6-speed manual transmission provides a wider ratio spread than the previous 5-speed and incorporates several performance and durability improvements for this high-performance application, including carbon synchronizers on first and second gears.

Subaru WRX

New Sport Lineartronic CVT
The 2015 WRX introduces the option of a new automatic transmission engineered to enrich the performance-driving experience. The new Sport Lineartronic CVT combines the benefits of a continuously variable transmission (high fuel efficiency, ultra-smooth driving character) with the choice of stepped automatic shifting eight pre-selected ratios (when in Sport Sharp mode) and also 6-speed and 8-speed manual shifting modes using steering wheel paddle switches.

Models with the Sport Lineartronic CVT also feature Subaru Intelligent Drive (SI-DRIVE), a powertrain performance management system that allows the driver to tailor the vehicle’s driving characteristics by choosing from among three selectable modes – “Intelligent,” “Sport” and “Sport Sharp” – using a switch on the flat-bottom steering wheel.

Two Versions of Symmetrical AWD
When equipped with the 6-speed manual transmission, the 2015 Subaru WRX uses the brand’s Continuous AWD version of Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive. A viscous coupling locking center differential nominally distributes torque 50:50 front to rear, and Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC) provides stability and traction control. Should slippage occur, this system transfers more power to the wheels with the best traction.

Subaru WRX

The new Sport Lineartronic CVT is teamed exclusively with the Variable Torque Distribution (VTD) version of Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive. A planetary gear-type center differential and an electronically controlled hydraulic transfer clutch control torque distribution between the front and rear wheels. Under most conditions, VTD splits the torque 45:55, with the rearward torque bias contributing to handling agility. The VTD system continually optimizes torque distribution in response to driving conditions and input from steering wheel angle, yaw and lateral g-force sensors.

Premium Cabin
A one-inch longer wheelbase than the previous WRX is a factor in providing a markedly roomier cabin in the new model. The windshield is more raked than before, with the A-pillar pulled forward nearly eight inches at the base for better forward visibility, aided by a lower dashboard and narrower A-pillars. Higher seating hip points, lower side sills and wider-opening doors make ingress/egress easier. Rear seat passengers gain nearly two inches of legroom, and trunk capacity is increased. A standard 60/40-split fold-down rear seat extends the WRX sedan’s versatility.

Subaru WRX

The high-performance feel starts as soon as the driver enters the 2015 WRX and grips the new flat-bottom, leather-wrapped steering wheel, which offers tilt and telescoping adjustments. The wheel integrates switches for audio and Bluetooth® control.

Rich-looking appointments and details abound, including soft-touch materials for the dashboard, door trim and center console armrest. Numerous compartments located in and around the center console hold all manner of personal items, such as phones, USB drives and MP3 players. The available power sunroof opens one inch farther than on the previous WRX.

The dual gauge instrument layout features a 3.5-in. LCD central screen to display various functions, including oil level, remaining washer fluid and selected gear ratio. A new multi-information central display with 4.3-in. LCD screen provides a multitude of vehicle system functions, including a rear camera display, a boost gauge display, audio, Bluetooth and climate control settings, and a VDC screen showing traction control operation. The display can provide a vehicle self-check and maintenance reminder.

Subaru WRX

Whiplash-reducing front sport seats, covered in a new high-grip fabric, feature separate tilt- and height-adjustable head restraints, a change from the seats with integrated head restraints used before. Leather is available, as is an 8-way power driver’s seat.

Amenities that reflect the 2015 WRX’s refined sport sedan positioning include standard automatic climate control and available Keyless Access with Push-button Start, heated front seats, power driver’s seat, and a 440-watt, 9-speaker harman/kardon premium audio system and navigation with Aha® smartphone integration.

Subaru Safety
Subaru’s renowned safety package uses the brand’s proven Ring Shaped Frame Reinforcement body structure, which has been shown to excel in the new small overlap test by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). In the cabin, a driver’s knee airbag is added to the roster of safety features that includes front side pelvis/torso airbags and side curtain airbags that offer front and rear outboard seat coverage.

Subaru produces a full line of all-wheel drive sedans, crossovers and SUVs, along with the rear-wheel drive BRZ sports car.



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