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It’s Time To Have The Subaru WRX Hatch Discussion Again

The 2022 Subaru WRX arrives this spring with a sedan body style. With no next-generation STI coming, here’s why Subaru needs to bring back the WRX hatch in 2023.

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The 2022 Subaru WRX gets a redesign, but Subaru Corporation left out a significant upgrade. Subaru would be wise to return the WRX hatch because the Japanese automaker killed the performance-tuned STI model. The next-generation WRX needs a hatchback body style.

Subaru needs to keep interest in the WRX high after they dashed performance enthusiasts’ hopes by dropping the WRX STI. A new 2023 Subaru WRX with a hatchback body style would generate new hunger for the sport-tuned sports car.

2023 Subaru WRX hatchback
photo credit: Subaru Corporation

Performance fans have asked for a WRX hatch since the Japanese automaker discontinued the body style in 2015.

Why did Subaru drop the popular hatchback WRX/STI in 2015? If you ask Subaru, it was because of slow sales. Mamoru Ishii, the head of Subaru’s design department, told Digital Trends at the Geneva Motor Show, “We don’t have plans to bring back a WRX hatch to the market.”

But according to Subaru’s sales numbers, sixty percent of WRX and STI sales were hatchback models before they dropped the model.

2023 Subaru WRX hatchback

Will Subaru offer the japan-spec 2022 WRX hatch in the U.S.?

Subaru of America will likely not bring the 2022 WRX hatch to the U.S. that launched in Japan and Australia. It’s the Levorg with a WRX badge, and it only comes with a CVT automatic transmission. The 6-speed manual gearbox is a must for the WRX in North America.

Over the CVT automatic, a full 90 percent of WRX buyers opt for the 6-speed manual transmission. It’s no surprise because Subaru uses a Continuously Variable automatic transmission (CVT) which is not a popular choice with performance enthusiasts.

The next-generation WRX would benefit from a hatch body style to compete with the Honda Civic Type R and new 2022 Volkswagen Golf R hot hatches. It does have its place in the performance car lineup and offers improved utility and cargo-carrying ability. Subaru has not said whether they will bring back the 5-door hatch, and it’s a perfect time after dropping the STI.

In the comments below, let Subaru know if you want them to bring back the WRX hatch in 2023. We will pass on your comments to Subaru of America.

You Might Also Like: What Killed The Next-Generation Subaru STI And Why It’s Not Coming Back

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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Photo credit: Subaru

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Phillip Harris (not verified)    March 24, 2022 - 6:23PM

Forget the hatchback. Just make the Levorg available if only by customer order. Call it the WRW(World Rally Wagon). It’s Already being made and sold elsewhere.

Kazie (not verified)    March 25, 2022 - 11:55AM

I waited enough for a WRX wagon. Demise of ICE & MT looming, I decided rather getting what's available and enjoy it. I don't think Subaru makes Levorg with MT for any market. And I don't expect it will change. So, I'm done.

Joshua (not verified)    March 25, 2022 - 9:22PM

I currently have an Impreza hatchback with the 5-speed manual. If they offered the WRX as a hatch with a manual I would trade my car in without a second thought

Jim (not verified)    June 5, 2022 - 3:42PM

Need wrx hatch. Dropping the hatch was stupid. Maybe as stupid as attacking pearl harbor. People with dogs need a hatch. I ordered a corrolla gr

Larry Baker (not verified)    June 15, 2022 - 5:00PM

If Subaru offers the WRX in a hatch, I will buy it.
I own a 2022 Subaru Impreza Sport with a five speed manual transmission.
It needs a 6 speed manual and more power.
It has cloth seats. So did the 1947 DeSoto.

Al (not verified)    July 8, 2022 - 8:18PM

My mind was made up about a year ago to go with the 2023 Onyx Xt refresh. Having owned a 12 focus and thought of the Focus RS I’m glad I waited - Fords suck ass - I’d gladly go for a new WRX Hatch with a cvt but I think Subaru feels they’d loose to much - if enuf ask they may change their mind