Four reasons why 2015 WRX will outperform 2014 model
We can see the new changes made to the exterior of the new 2015 Subaru WRX, but what changes did Subaru make underneath that will give us reason to believe the new-generation version will outperform the outgoing model? While most performance enthusiasts are familiar with the new engine and transmission upgrades, we’ll focus on the chassis and interior upgrades that will make a difference in driving dynamics.
It starts with the newly redesigned chassis that will be stiffer. WRX gets a new body structure that makes greater use of high-tensile strength steel than the previous model and features special stiffening elements at key locations. Let’s be honest, those who buy the new WRX will be driving the car hard and many will take it to the track on weekends. The new body structure will keep the frame from twisting during high-speed cornering.
A much stiffer chassis should pay dividends in sportier handling over the previous model. The springs, dampers, crossmembers, subframe bushings, and front control-arm bushings and attachments are all stiffer. The front suspension struts feature thicker outer tubes, and the aluminum alloy lower control arms use pillow ball-type joint bushings and pillow ball-type joint mounts. Likewise, the rear suspension lateral links also use the same type of bushing.
Torsional rigidity has been increased 41 percent compared to the previous WRX. The front stabilizer bar thickness is increased by 3 mm. Front spring rates were increased by 39 percent, and rear spring rates increased by 62 percent. All this should add up to better handling and driving dynamics under extreme driving conditions that WRX owners will subject the car to.
The 2015 WRX gets a one inch longer wheelbase that will give the performance car better stability. The added length has added just 60 pounds to the curb weight. Part of the increase comes from a new six-speed manual transmission, standard rear camera, larger brakes and improved interior. WRX also comes with a new lower steering ratio and response.
The front brake discs on the new WRX are now 12.4 inches in diameter (up from 11.6 inches) that provide greater surface area and should improve fade resistance under heavy use on the track. There is also a new master cylinder. Another thing that won’t show up in the specs sheet is Subaru’s proven Ring-shaped Reinforcement Frame body structure. In the event of a crash, the driver and occupants will be safer. WRX has been shown to excel in the new small overlap test by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
The driver of the new WRX should see improved ability to handle the car with the upgrades to the cabin. One inch doesn’t sound like a lot, but the longer wheelbase will give the driver more room in the cabin to maneuver. The all-new aluminum hood features the integral scoop to provide fresh air to intercooler, but it now is set more deeply into the hood which will provide better forward visibility. The windshield is more raked than before, with the A-pillar pulled forward nearly eight inches at the base, which will also help aide in better forward visibility.
Also inside the new WRX, it will feature a lower dashboard and narrower A-pillars for better outward visibility. It will also feature new whiplash-reducing front sport seats, covered in new high-grip fabric to keep the driver firmly planted in the seat. The new Multi-Function display with 4.3-in. LCD screen provides rear camera display, boost gauge display, VDC screen showing traction control operation and a vehicle self-check and maintenance reminder.
Overall, the upgrades made underneath and in the cabin will make the new 2015 Subaru WRX a better performing car over the outgoing model. It features a new stiffer chassis, a longer wheelbase, improved brakes and better driver visibility. Sometimes it’s the intangibles that we can’t see that make the biggest difference.