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Will Subaru bring back the WRX STI hatchback in 2016?

Subaru is dropping the 5-door hatchback from the 2015 WRX and 2015 WRX STI models. Will it alienate loyal Subaru WRX STI performance enthusiasts? Will Subaru bring the 5-door back in 2016?

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Subaru has always been about offering multipurpose vehicles to their loyal fan base, but by dropping the 5-door hatch from the 2015 WRX STI lineup, it could be a big mistake. In the past, Subaru has done an excellent job of listening to their current customers and improving their vehicles with what they hear from them. But dropping the hatchback from the WRX/STI lineup is alienating performance fans.

Why is it such a big deal for Subaru to offer a 5-door hatch in addition to the sedan? For Subaru buyers, it’s all about the versatility and utility that the hatchback offers. Performance fans use their cars for everything and they love the extra functionality that the hatch offers. In addition to offering performance, it offers buyers to use the WRX STI for multi-purposes. It can be used for recreational activities like transporting mountain bikes, snowboards, and surfboards for use on the weekends.

Many Subaru owners have dogs, and the 5-door hatch is ideal for transporting their four-legged friends to the vet and taking them along for their active lifestyles on the weekends. Subaru knows this and has partnered with the Center for Pet Safety to Test Pet Car Safety Restraints to keep those animals safe while riding in a Subaru. The active lifestyle of Subaru owners has always lent itself to taking the family dog along on camping and hiking trips. Subaru recognizes that their owners love dogs and they take them along on family trips. So why would they do away with WRX/STI hatch?

Subaru has said they sell many more of the sedans over the hatchback models. This will help Subaru save on production costs. Up until now, the Subaru WRX and WRX STI have been produced at the main Subaru plant in Japan. But starting in 2016, Subaru will begin building the Impreza and WRX/STI here in the U.S. in Indiana after they end building the Toyota Camry.

There is an outcry from current Subaru owners for the Japanese automaker to bring back the 5-door hatch to the WRX/STI lineup. Right now, Subaru is struggling to keep up with the demand for the popular 2014 Forester and new VX Crosstrek. The decision to drop the hatchback is likely to add space on the production line for those new vehicles by eliminating the slower-selling Impreza 5-door. But that could change at the end of 2016.

Will Subaru bring back the hatchback when they add production capability and begin producing the WRX/STI here in the U.S. in 2016? With the Toyota pull-out of the Camry production in 2016 at the Indiana plant, it will leave Subaru lots of room to expand. Will we see a 2016 Subaru WRX STI hatch? Maybe we’ll see a WRX STI hatchback again if the backlash from Subaru 5-door fans is loud enough. Tell us what you think.

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Sicwitit (not verified)    December 13, 2013 - 2:51PM

First and foremost let’s hope they keep open source tuning! Hatch or no hatch this will be a big factor for me and could sway me to buy a 2014 STi. Waiting until January to see what SOA has in store for us is what most of us potential buyers are waiting for, and want to know things such as will DIT be applied to the new design, and if so how will the aftermarket react.

Tim (not verified)    January 23, 2015 - 10:49PM

In reply to by Quan (not verified)

I was disappointed when I went to the Seattle-area Subaru dealer to purchase an STI Hatcher last summer, only to find they had discontinued the model. I'd buy one today if Sub. told me they were releasing one for '16. (Make mine white please!)

Tampajetfl (not verified)    June 12, 2014 - 11:47PM

In reply to by Sicwitit (not verified)

Gotta have a hatch. My '12 WRX already has 56k on it. My only option looking forward will be a used Porsche Cayenne if they don't come up with a prettier sibling to the sedan. It'd be like marrying for money instead of love AND kick butt money (speed, looks and practicality). May have to stop driving my current WRX to preserve it. Now that would be a shame. Give me 5! Doors that is...

Dmitry (not verified)    December 14, 2013 - 10:37AM

Bring hatchback back!
Lower sitting position!
Make distinctive style!
Only then WRX will be the WRX we all love.

Rick (not verified)    December 15, 2013 - 1:15PM

Would not even consider the sedan. They need to keep offering the 5 door hatch. Way more practical, and looks just as good if not better than the sedan in my opinion....I have a Volvo V70 R now. It's almost as good as having a pickup, but just a little bit more fun to drive...LOL. Bring back the hatch!!!

Ted (not verified)    January 10, 2014 - 10:59AM

I have always been a huge fan of Subaru. The rally inspiration draws me, however, in four years when I graduate college I want a STI hatch. WRC uses hot hatches, and why can't the consumer? While the sedan may look and perform better in some instances, the hatch is right for my daily life and practicality. I don't want a GTI, or a Fiesta and I don't want an Evolution competitor. I can't wait for the hatch to come back, so please Subaru come back with a bang... soon.

jared johnson (not verified)    February 26, 2014 - 1:30AM

I am not a fan of the sedan... The STI/WRX looks much better as a hatch (functional, uniform and practical). PLEASE DO NOT mount the mirrors on the doors. I personally do not like how Subaru has changed the styling of the mirrors. That extra window reminds me of a Toyota Prius (thumbsdown).

Nearly (not verified)    April 9, 2014 - 11:39PM

In reply to by jared johnson (not verified)

The mirrors are on the doors to improve the forward and side vision, reduce wind noise, and provide better rearward view via the mirror. Those are worth the styling trade-off. I wish the STI wing was less boy racer. It's a little too tall, wide, and cartoonish.

Nearly (not verified)    April 9, 2014 - 11:32PM

I hope Subaru brings a WRX wagon to market soon. I love my Crosstrek, but it simply isn't quick enough and the Forester XT is a little too big for city dwellers. The WRX wagon is the best of both Worlds.

Jonathan Roy (not verified)    April 22, 2014 - 10:02PM

I'm currently a owner of a 2011 WRX HATCH and i simply love it. However, if subaru stops making the hatchback version, i will not buy a wrx again. The 2015 sedan is not pretty to my opinion and i won't hesitate to go for the Golf R instead !

James (not verified)    May 12, 2014 - 9:53PM

I am in the market for a new car and was looking into the Subaru STI hatchback but discovered it's not going to happen. (Hatchbacks are very versatile and won't go back to a sedan!) Hopefully Subaru does bring in updated JAPANESE made hatchback STI's soon. My MKIV VW Golf TDI has 287k miles, guess I will keep it a little longer...

Push2Shv (not verified)    May 24, 2014 - 6:42PM

I just bought a 2015 Forester XT and throughout the discussion with my salesman I brought up the issue of the STI hatchback going bye-bye.He said from what he's been hearing we'll see it come back in the next couple of years so I'm holding out hope for them bringing back the hatch for when I'm in the market for another new Subaru. Perhaps production cost really is the issue and when they switch to the Indiana plant it will allow them to pump out these awesome hatchbacks again.

machorita (not verified)    June 7, 2014 - 10:28AM

I want simply to see new STI as hatch style as WRC. It should be fast and fun to drive. It's nice footwork to go camping, biking and skiing.
I want it.

james (not verified)    June 7, 2014 - 7:43PM

I am in the market for a new car and was looking into the Subaru WRX/STI hatchback but discovered it's not going to happen. I hope Subaru brings a WRX wagon to market soon. The WRX wagon is the best of both Worlds.

Jason (not verified)    June 13, 2014 - 10:33PM

My next car would be the WRX/STi hatchback. Most of my family lives in Cali. We all ski, surf and own pets. Definitely verstile and needed. Especially when hitting the back roads or heading up to a ski resort

Jean Berko Gleason (not verified)    June 20, 2014 - 3:23PM

I had a 2002 WRX that I replaced with my current 2004 WRX, both hatchbacks. I've got 98,000 miles on the 2004 and am in the market for a new car. I would buy the 2015 tomorrow if it came as a hatchback, but I'm not going try to stuff my things into a sedan. The Crosstrek is underpowered and the Forester is too big for me. If Subaru won't make a hatchback WRX I may have to turn to a BMW X1, which I really don't want to do. Please make a hatchback soon! Or put a turbo in the Crossstrek. But I'd rather have a WRX. Really.

Paul (not verified)    June 25, 2014 - 11:07PM

I have been waiting for my third new WRX hatchback for the past two years. Without the certainty of a 2016 hatchback model by Spring of 2015, I will be forced to reluctantly switch allegiance to VW and their new Golf R.

cpc233 (not verified)    July 24, 2014 - 10:07AM

Objective: Better visibility, more functional, more practical, more aerodynamic, better handling, better balance.
Subjective: A personal choice, but I think the hatchback is better looking. However, why would anyone trade all the objective benefits for a subjective question of looks? The main reason to buy a WRX STI is for handling.
The average US car buyer is schizophrenic, they love hatchbacks, but only if referred to as SUV’s. If it is called a car, they want a sedan.
I have owned a 2004 WRX hatchback and a 2008 WRX STI, and 8 Foresters (5 as company vehicles). Like a previous post, I recently, and reluctantly, bought a 2014 Forester XT, but will be looking for a faster, better handling, smaller hatchback. If Subaru does not supply one, the Volkswagen Golf R will be my choice. Lose a customer once, maybe lose a customer forever...

mikehattie9@gm… (not verified)    July 27, 2014 - 6:25PM

I will not buy/lease/drive the sedan.....I need an new STI in
12 months....If no hatch I my have to go back to VW or
maybe even Mazda 2xdrive :0( That would suck...

D Hickok (not verified)    September 3, 2014 - 3:25PM

YES!!!! Pease bring back the 5-door. I have been watching the WRX and STI for over 20 years, the evolution from the mid 90’s to the 2014 sedans and 5-doors has been more than I could have ever imagined. Every change I’ve seen holds its own place in my heart, but the 2015 model is lacking in appearance, in my opinion. The first problem is Subaru not offering the 5-door. I can understand why from a business aspect, but from a consumer aspect, it really shows how much Subaru respects the opinions of their loyal customers. In closing, please offer a 5-door in the near future.

cakkus (not verified)    September 8, 2014 - 4:10PM

I sold my WRX Wagon 2010 due to an international assignment. Now, I am back in US and on the market to buy a new one and guess what! it is not available.

Hatch back WRX has to come back. I will never buy the sedan and if I end up buying another car I am planning to keep it for minimum 4-5 years. I bet Subaru lost a lot of loyal WRX customers for a good amount of years because of their decision.

Matt (not verified)    September 29, 2014 - 12:43AM

I NEED the versatility of a hatchback so the sedan is just not an option, which seems to be a common theme amongst most of the Subaru enthusiasts... what were they thinking!? Subaru, you can have my money as soon as you bring in the hatchback.

joe (not verified)    October 11, 2014 - 3:10AM

I just want them to bring the wrx hatchback back i finally have the ability to buy a new one and i want to get the latest model and all its upgrades and all to waste for them to cancel it in 2015 hope its back for next year

Richard E Sack… (not verified)    October 11, 2014 - 3:27PM

I cannot fathom why Subaru has abandoned so many of it's loyal buyers. First by never offering a stick on the Turbo Forester XT - my wife has the very last one, a 2008.
I have a 2010 WRX STi WAGON & will not even consider a sedan. I live in the middle of nowhere ( a very pretty nowhere on the northern California coast) and need the wagon for its hauling capacities. Mine is also probably the only STi with a trailer hitch. If they don't offer a wagon I may have to go with a BMW, Audi or other AWD wagon. I just don't get it - where is S.O.A. when it comes to changing Subaru of Japan's inexplicable decisions??

tim watley (not verified)    November 13, 2014 - 3:05PM

Wanted a 2015 hatchback sti, found out they were no longer offered. Had to settle for a 2011. I'm bumming. I hope they bring the 5 door back.

Jeff (not verified)    November 24, 2014 - 1:30PM

I have a 2005 Legacy GT wagon that will need replacing soon, and would like another legacy wagon or a WRX wagon - but Subaru don't make either anymore! (And I refuse to buy a bloated, pastic clad Outback.) Sorry, Subaru, but the Volvo V60 is looking good to me right now.