Pricing, Extensive Details Released for 2012 Subaru Impreza
The 2012 Subaru Impreza, which has standard all-wheel drive, will start at the base price of $17,495, which is what the 2011 Subaru Impreza sold for. The next most expensive Impreza is the 2.0 Premium at $18,795, which is $710 less than a Honda Civic EX. The Impreza 2.0 Limited four-door sedan starts at $21,595. The 2.0 Sport Premium five-door hatchback starts at $20,295. The hatchback in Limited trim with a continuously variable transmission starts at $22,595.
Driving impressions of the 2012 Subaru Impreza are embargoed until Monday, Oct. 3rd. Subaru will let automotive journalists drive the Impreza today from Manhattan north to the Berkshires in Massachusetts, finally ending up on the campus of Yale in New Haven, Conn.
Akihide Takeuchi, project general manager, has the unique perspective of working on both the third generation Subaru Impreza and the current 2012 model. He said Subaru recognized deficiencies in the Impreza that were addressed: styling and fuel efficiency. “We want enhancements to be visible to our customers,” he said.
Impreza is going to be offered in all-wheel drive in both the four-door sedan and five-door hatchback trim levels. The most staggering detail of the Impreza is its fuel economy: 36-mpg highway and 27-mpg city for a combined rating of 30 mpg overall. As Subaru points out, it gets better city fuel economy than the much smaller Fiat 500. The 2012 Subaru Impreza is the most fuel-efficient all-wheel drive on the market including smaller vehicles like the Suzuki SX4.
Cruising range for the Subaru Impreza is 523 miles, up 67 miles from the 2011 Impreza, in spite of a smaller gas tank. That gives the current Impreza a better range than the Chevrolet Cruze, Honda Civic, Mazda3 and Hyundai Elantra – none of which offer all-wheel drive.
Subaru Impreza is going to be initially powered by the 2.0-liter engine first introduced in the 2011 Subaru Forrester. It was Subaru’s first new engine in 20 years. Subaru says it has contributed to a 10 percent enhancement in fuel efficiency with better acceleration.
OK, so the Subaru Impreza is never going to be accused of being a sports sedan but it at long last has a 0-60 time in the single digits – just barely. Subaru said the 2012 Impreza with a continuously variable transmission designed for the Impreza can jump to 60 in 9.8 seconds, an improvement from the previous 10.3 seconds. (Subaru said it has not tested the five-speed manual.) The 2.0-liter engine is rated at 148 horsepower at 6200 rpm and 145 lb. ft. of torque at 4200 rpm.
On the styling front, Subaru has moved the A-pillar (where the windshield meets the side of your vehicle) forward eight inches. The hood is shorter and the wheelbase is one-inch longer, which contributes to the rear legroom increasing two inches (thanks to scalloped front seats that add another inch). The door openings are also wider for easier entry and exit, as well as making it simpler to load cargo in the backseat (such as televisions). The shoulder line has also been lowered for better visibility.
Takeuchi addressed what has become common wisdom in the industry, “Compact cars with convenient body sizes and fuel efficiency have gained traction in this economy,” he said.
Subaru admitted something few manufacturers do – it is targeting older customers with the 2012 Impreza. Companies like Scion claim they’re going for the hip, twenty-somethings but end up selling a greater percentage of their vehicles to AARP members. Subaru still claims Generation Y and the Millennials will buy the Impreza but it’s refreshing to see a company admit older consumers exist.
Back on the technical side, the 2012 Subaru Impreza comes with four-wheel disc brakes with return springs added to the front brake pads for drag reduction. The vehicle also has brake override to prevent unintended acceleration. The roof crush strength rating is four times the vehicle’s weight, which is better than the federal standards of three times a vehicle’s weight. Also on the safety front, driver’s side knee airbags have been added.