Skip to main content

Subaru WRX SPT Automatic Is The Best? See Why It Proves Everyone Wrong

Is the 2022 Subaru WRX SPT automatic transmission worth buying? See why the performance car’s new automatic gearbox proves everyone wrong.

Does Subaru’s new 2022 WRX Subaru Performance automatic Transmission (SPT) belong in a sports car? Performance enthusiasts have criticized the SPT, and it’s still called a CVT, disliked by driving enthusiasts.

The 6-speed manual transmission is still the best option in the next-generation WRX, but Jason Fenske from Engineering Explained says Subaru’s SPT is faster shifting than the manual gearbox.

2022 Subaru WRX 6-speed manual

Subaru says the 2022 WRX Subaru GT’s Performance Transmission offers up to 30 percent faster upshifts (2nd to 3rd) and 50 percent faster downshifts (3rd to 2nd). But is it true? “The SPT automatic transmission incorporates adaptive shift control that can quickly respond to perform rev-matching downshifts under braking, maintain the ideal ratio through corners, and respond faster on corner exit,” says Subaru.

The SPT belongs in a sports car

The gap between the 6-speed manual and CVT in the past was far apart. The previous generation WRX 6-speed trim levels cost less than the CVT; it is lighter and faster from 0-60 mph. The next-generation 2022 WRX 6-speed trims are still cheaper, more lightweight, and get better fuel mileage, but Jason says the 0-60 mph times are not just the same; the SPT is quicker. From 5-60 mph, the SPT (6.3 seconds) vs. the 6-speed manual (6.7 seconds).

We are surprised because the WRX with the 6-speed manual is 130 lbs lighter than SPT-equipped models. Because of the weight difference, the 6-speed manual trim levels should be quicker and faster than SPT automatic models.

2022 Subaru WRX SPT

You can get the SPT in the 2002 WRX Base, Premium, and Limited trim levels, and it comes standard in the new GT trim. Exclusive to the GT trim is a new Drive Mode Select that allows the driver to configure up to 430 customization options for steering feel, damper settings, and SI-Drive settings.

The advantage of the SPT is it combines the convenience of an automatic with fingertip paddle shifting and an 8-speed manual mode. The Subaru Performance Transmission with automatic downshift blipping control is new for 2022.

What is the price difference between the 6-speed manual vs. the WRX SPT?

The 2023 WRX 6-speed manual trim level starts at $31,625. The WRX with Subaru Performance Transmission (SPT) is $33,475, the WRX Premium 6-speed manual is $34,125, the WRX Premium SPT is $36,175, the WRX Limited 6-speed manual is $38,515, WRX Limited SPT is $40,765, and WRX GT is $44,415. Pricing includes destination and delivery fees ($1,020).

Subaru says nearly 90 percent of WRX performance shoppers will choose the 6-speed manual over the SPT automatic. But for sports car buyers who want an automatic, the WRX SPT is an exceptional transmission, according to Engineering Explained, and belongs in a sports car. Check out the video below for more details.

Have you purchased the 2022 Subaru WRX with the SPT automatic transmission? Let us know your experience with it and if you would buy it again in the comment section below.

You Might Also Like: The Next-Gen Subaru WRX Is Up 488 Percent This Year - Don’t Throw A Party Yet

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.

Subaru Report - We’ve got you covered! Check back tomorrow for more unique, informative SUBARU news, reviews, and previews you can trust.

Leave your comments below, share the article with friends and tweet it out to your followers!

Photo credit: Subaru USA