2022 Subaru WRX, next-generation WRX
Denis Flierl's picture

Fans Say Pump The Brakes There’s A Lot They Don’t Like About The New Subaru WRX

The all-new 2022 Subaru WRX arrives with mixed reactions from performance fans. Check out why many fans say there's a lot not to like about the next-generation WRX.
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The next-generation 2022 Subaru WRX was one of the most anticipated new car launches of 2021. Performance fans had to wait a long time, and when the all-new WRX was revealed, many fans were disappointed in the sport-tuned WRX. We polled hundreds of fans on social media and found common thoughts and opinions about the new sports sedan. Here are the results.

The number one complaint about the 2022 Subaru WRX was the exterior styling. Subaru's WRX styling language has been a complaint that began with the 2015 model change. It continues to be a disappointment with the next-generation 2022 models.

2022 Subaru WRX, next-generation WRX

What fans dislike the most is the plastic wheel arch cladding. They say it looks like a Crosstrek small SUV and call the new exterior look the "WRX Trek." Most fans think the new fenders make the wheels look tiny and out of proportion.

The number two complaint among fans is the rear tail lights. Many said they look like the Honda Civic Si and also the new second-generation 2022 Subaru BRZ. Fans wanted a unique look and also stated the rear bumper sticks out too far.

2022 Subaru WRX, next-generation WRX

The 2.4-liter Boxer engine is a good upgrade, but performance fans want to know why the new FA24 only got a three-horsepower increase and no additional torque? Reports said the WRX would have a bump in power close to 300 horsepower. Fans are disappointed it only comes with 271 horsepower and the same 258 lb-ft of torque.

A big disappointment is fans still want a WRX hatchback, and the next-generation WRX only comes in sedan body style. Fans have been asking Subaru Corporation to bring back the WRX and STI hatch since the automaker dropped it in the fourth-generation 2015 models.

2022 Subaru WRX, next-generation WRX

What fans do like about the new 2022 Subaru WRX

Performance fans like the new orange exterior color and the new FA24 2.4-liter turbocharged Boxer engine. Of course, we won't know how much the new engine and Global Platform will improve performance, driving dynamics, and ride until it arrives next year.

Fans are unsure of the new 2022 WRX GT trim level with the new "Subaru performance automatic transmission." The jury is still out until the new automatic gearbox is tested.

Overall, the fan's biggest disappointment in the all-new fifth-generation 2022 Subaru WRX is its exterior styling. Subaru Corporation will never please everyone with its design language, but they seem to have missed big with fans. Let us know what you think about the new 2022 WRX in the comment section below.

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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press. Check out Subaru Report where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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Comments

What will it take for Subaru to pay attention to the buyer segment for the WRX/STi. We don't give a sh#t about the Crosstrek or the outback looks, those already have legions of their own respective fans. No WRX fan wants a turbo Crosstrek pretending to be an off-roader. This styling is our puke. And the CVT is a complete POS for a car that many will want to tune. 2.0 to 2.4 is 20% more displacement for only 3 more meager HP. PATHETIC. Bigger block more weight, more understeer, poorer MPG and for what? 3 hp. Who the FU&k gave to the OK to this. I am on my 4th Subaru (wife #1) and presently on my 2nd STi Hatch (2014). HERE THIS SOA: I WILL NEVER BUY A CVT WRX OR STI. Fortunately, I am able to afford luxury brands, and this design direction is making me look at the Audi Allroad, the Audi RS Wagon, the Mercedes E Wagon and AMG Wagon, all of which have VASTLY superior automatics. The CVT is where performance cars go to die a long slow and painful death. For GOD's sake give us a real automatic. And this new WRX design is a TURD warmed up and dressed for the opera only this will only take you to a dive bar, as no one will want to be seen in it.
I agree. I often wonder what kind of people design these cars and lead this company. Don't they ever look around and see what auto makers like Hyundai are doing? Subaru had an opportunity here to reset their design direction but instead ploughed ahead, unseeing and seemingly deaf to the preferences of their loyal customers. I own a 2002 WRX STi and a 2007 Legacy GT. Both have common defects. Over 5 years, Subaru did not bother to fix these. Many of which are relatively minor and, in my view, easy to rectify. The fact that model after model, year after year continue to show up with the same issues points to the type of arrogance that breeds what has showed up as the new 2022 WRX. I am not interested.
I feel compelled - somewhat reluctantly - to "fight back" against these old, old, old complaints. Remember when everyone thought Japanese cars were "ricegrinders", even when Z cars were kicking arse. Give me V8 or give me death! TIMES CHANGE. Listen? I'm old enough to have waited for nearly a decade for the WRX and Evo to arrive, and when they did? Disappointed. Evo 5 was peak. GC8 was peak. Like all cars, they got bigger and bigger, heavier, and all the "fans" became a group Subaru couldn't please. But guess what? The "fans" - like Marvel comic fans - make a small portion of sales. We've owned many Subarus since the 90's and right now an immaculate tuned, slightly lowered 2006 Outback, a 550hp 2011 STI (selling), and wife drives a 2017 Crosstrek I've done tasteful mods to. Every damn one of these cars in there own way didn't please "fans"...immaculate Subaru NUT and I love them to death. The CVT in particular...give it a rest! Subaru "fans" hated the 4EAT, then hated the 5EAT I have. "Sportshift sucks!". No, it doesn't if you own it a while and learn to compensate for the delay. But most "fans"? They didn't own one. Probably never drove one. Went by articles by wishy-washy guys in the magazines who loved the 2002 and bitches about every version since. Back to the CVT. Um, ever heard about "progress"? There have been test drives...look around. People say it's a stellar leap forward. Manual? Sure, OK, you get your man card for proclaiming your love. But if you drive anywhere with traffic congestion, your man card will be taken away the moment you complain. And you will complain. Shit, I have a slight inclined driveway & the concrete is uneven entering the garage. The stage 2 clutch is heavy and to squeeze the car in, I annoy my neighbors gently (but revving and managing the clutch engagement.) Me? DSG! They are the best, but the CVT coming is an inexpensive alternative. Oh, anyone have a wife that cannot drive manual? Yes, you do. A teenager? Yes. This means the STI can never be driven by the two other drivers in my household. The styling? Again NO Impreza has pleased fans...bugeyes gross, blob eyes gross, hawkers withe the Tribeca grill gross. 2008? Hatch only? Where's my wing?? Sedan? That wing is ridiculous...I'm a grown up (but no fan - it's pays homage to the rally days. But no, "fans" worry the WRC legit, functional spoiler looks like a vaping teen owns it. (I heard this from my wife, when I went from a 2001 Audi S4 "grown-up car" to the STI she's embarrassed to be seen in. Ok, I'm not a fan of the Outback wheel arches. But you can do this thing...it's called painting. I'm lucky with my all-black Outback. Dropped, it looks widebody. A two-tone looks like shit dropped. The aftermarket, I hear, supports these cars. Mod things, paint things, learn how to paint, learn how to vinyl wrap. I bet a company will bring rounded wheel arches, even. My Crosstrek and Outback have removable arches. Last thing. "Fans" griped about JDM STI's getting Recaros. Now you can get a mere WRX with Recaros, but apparently "fans" didn't notice. Subaru heard "fans" but "fans" just find something else to whine about. I wanted Recaros in my STI, and got Evo SE seats (rare, expensive so I lucked out) and put the STI seats in my "Legacy/Outback", and sold the OEM Outback seats which covered 50% of the Evo Recaros. Win, win, win! Seriously, stop complaing. Be glad Subaru isn't going the way Mitsubishi went...holy hell. Or "Only trucks" Ford, save the Mustang. Killed ST hatches, RS Focus. I respect opinioa, but poorly stated opinions based on almost nil evidence or perspective is highly annoying. I'm not sure how old all the "fans" are but I'm no teen or millennial. I dropped my Mustang obsession in 1992 when I saw the Ford Escort Cosworth. I knew about Skylines, Evo's and STi's before Grand Turismo. I'm a super-fan with a load of experience, history and appreciation for what Subaru gives us even when it might not be everything I wanted, either.
Subaru needs to offer a rally-capable hatch. I like my Crosstrek, but the acceleration is glacial, and the CVT (that is tolerable for me) is hated by many people. A 2.4T/6spd Crosstrek (WRX, or even STI) with the roofrails and a hidden 2" hitch would check all the boxes for me. Install some aluminum skids, a rear lunchbox locker, and adjustable coilovers. Then lower it to rally...or...Lift it, install mudders, and disco the anti-swaybars to offroad. Uncover the hitch to tow the quads, waverunners, snowmobiles, small boat, dirtbikes, etc...or insert a multi-mount winch to do recovery. (The 1st-gen Crosstrek could have handled all this with just a better powertrain.) Commute to work at 30MPG+ during the week. Subaru can either offer a turbo hatch or I can buy a Wrangler 4xE or a crewcab pickup that gets 30MPG+. The Ridgeline and Maverick are versatile almost like that. Where's the ballsy turbo Crosstrek, or updated turbo Baja?
Very disappointed in the new 2022 WRX. The exterior design continues to get worse, the base model infotainment system belongs in the early '90s and has only 271 horsepower. Most of all, the apparent push for CVT in the top trim was a huge mistake. I was looking forward to getting my hands on the new WRX but unfortunately, I will have to settle with a different brand entirely. Subaru has lost its way.
Paint the wheel arches body color.
I'm very disappointed with all the black plastics everywhere, wheel arches, rear bumpers looks awful on a sports sedan. There is way too much space between the tire and the wheel arch. Looks ok on a SUV not a WRX. Only 5kw and no extra Nm from 2.4l engine, really!!! I believe the WRX is heading the same way as EVO. Very sad, RIP I'm replacing my 2017 WRX with a Hyundai i30N DCT or Golf R.
Really disappointed with the styling and very minor increase in engine output. Also, I’m sure the rumors of 400hp for the STI are as far fetched as the 300hp WRX rumors. Most likely will leave Subaru for a different brand until they give us another aggressive WRX.
The '22 WRX is a complete disappointment. It is so totally disappointing that I just ordered a '21 WRX to replace my '17. What I'd really like to have is a Levorg. Subaru squandered an opportunity with the fifth generation WRX.
You guys complain too much. Just move on to a different brand. They stopped making the hatch and the Fxt, only two vehicle I will buy. I've had a Forester (oil consumption), WRX hatch (oil & block issues), Legacy(oil consumption) and current Forester XT to replace the WRX cause I think i'm all grown up now (cvt issues, cause Subaru decided that a CVT would be fine). I've moved and moving on with other brands that are more reliable, powerful, and just as good AWD with hybrid. 4Runner to replace WRX. Now I'm just looking for the Rav4 Prime to replace my FXT.