The 2016 Subaru Impreza is available as a 5-door hatchback in base 2.0i, Premium, Limited, Sport Premium and Sport Limited trims; or in base 2.0i, Premium and Limited models as a 4-door sedan.
No matter the trim, the Impreza is powered by a 148-horsepower, 2.0L horizontally opposed 4-cylinder engine, along with either a 5-speed manual gearbox or Subaru's Lineartronic continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT).
The Impreza features Subaru's symmetrical all-wheel drive system, which works especially well in snowy conditions and adds handling confidence in wet, inclement weather. For all Impreza versions, electric power steering provides crisp steering response and helps save fuel, while the low center of gravity for Subaru's boxer engine further aids handling. Four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes are also included across the model line.
The Impreza benefits from an aerodynamic yet sharply detailed look on the outside, plus high-quality interior trims and cabin appointments. Seating affords a good, upright driving position, with visibility aided by mirrors placed back along the doors plus smaller side windows in front. In back, seating is ample for two adults, and hatch and trunk room in either body style features low, flat cargo floors. In either version, split seatbacks fold forward to expand space.
Over the past several years, Subaru has made great strides in adding value for the money -- beyond its all-wheel-drive advantages. Base 2.0i models include Bluetooth hands-free calling, Bluetooth audio streaming, a USB port with iPod connectivity, steering-wheel controls, a trip computer, air conditioning, keyless entry, hill start assist and power steering, locks and mirrors. Step up to the Premium and it comes with a windshield wiper de-icer, 16-inch silver-finish alloy wheels, cruise control, heated front seats, a center console with armrest lid, six speakers and chrome door handles, as well as a rear stabilizer bar that helps improve handling with the larger wheels.
At the top of the lineup, Limited models are only offered with the CVT automatic and add 17-inch alloys, a chrome grille and accents, fog lamps, heated mirrors, leather upholstery, automatic climate control, a rearview camera, and a dual center console and rear armrest, plus a display audio system with 4.3-inch screen, HD Radio and iTunes tagging capability.
The options list on the Impreza is quite limited, with the only factory options being a moonroof or a package pairing the moonroof with a navigation system -- including a 6.1-inch screen, XM satellite radio, XM NavTraffic, a rear camera, voice commands and smartphone app integration with Aha Internet radio.
It may not look like it, but yes, that's an Impreza up there, the 2017 edition of Subaru's long-running compact sedan and hatchback. If it doesn't look familiar to you, you're not alone. Other than the token fog-lights and those Pleiades on a field of blue on the nose, it'd be easy to mistake this car for something from, say, Mazda.
But the real reason why this car looks unfamiliar is because it's all new. And that's not the sort of "all new" label that's too often lifted from the auto press release jargon pile. The new Impreza has seen a raft of changes from nose to tail that make it a fundamentally different car than before.
More importantly, though, it's shaping up to be really, really good.
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Only 500 examples of each model will be built.
Only 1,000 of these cars -- 500 of each model -- will be produced.
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