Dare to be Impreza’d

Dare to be Impreza’d

Subaru 2017 Impreza

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Subaru has been on what can only be described as an extended sales hot streak, posting eight consecutive years of record-breaking numbers. Demand for the new Impreza was up 33 percent in the first quarter of 2017 compared with sales of the previous generation a year ago. So it is perfectly understandable that for 2017, Subaru saw fit to completely redesign its Impreza sedan and hatchback.

Now underpinned by the new global architecture, the Impreza is safer, with the structure’s rigidity up 70 percent thanks to the use of high-strength steel. The new Impreza has sleeker and crisper styling, a nicer interior, and more standard and optional features, including active-safety systems. The new Impreza comes in four trim levels this year: the base 2.0i, the mid-level Premium, the more driver-oriented Sport, and the luxurious Limited.

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The drive

The heavily rethought, electrically assisted power steering combined with refined damping clips off body roll whilst soaking up the impacts. Just proves that Subaru’s people sure know how to tune a suspension. Steering response was clearly a heavy focus point for the platform’s development and it feels good in your hands, helping you draw tight, clean lines through apexes. This is mainly due to the Symmetrical All Wheel Drive System that Subaru have in place. The AWD is laid out in a horizontally symmetrical plane, which gives the car a well balanced, low centre of gravity for a more stable ride.

The Luxury

The cabin is larger then its predecessors. Actually 1.1 inches wider at the front seats, and 1.3 inches wider at the rear seat, with the wheelbase growing an inch to increase legroom in the back. The rear shock towers have been pushed further apart to open up more room in the boot, while the rear doors have larger gaps for easier access.

The cockpit layout is typical Subaru, with a 4.2 inch full colour meter display, which mean larger dials for the speedo and tach as well as a third display in the cluster.

If you move up to the Sport and Limited trim levels, the upholstery gets noticeably fancier, with French stitching on the seats (leather is an option) with dashes of carbon-fiber-like trim on the Sport.

‘EyeSight’, Subaru’s own suite of automated safety systems including adaptive cruise control and pre-collision braking, is featured prominently within the vehicle.

The infotainment system see’s a new 6.3 inch full colour LCD multifunctioning touch screen display at the top of the instrument panel. We loved the fact that it was very easy to use and fairly self explanatory, unlike competitors that love complex mazes and sub-mazes to add unnecessary drama and intrigue.

Technologically the Impreza is as up to date as you would expect featuring both Apple car play and Android Auto system, benefitting all users, with both voice recognition and hands free.

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The Exterior

The Impreza is new from head to toe this year. Even the bones are different, as this is the first car to use Subaru’s new Global Platform architecture, enhanced chassis rigidity, suspension and stabilisers efficiently absorbing shock from the road. The Lineartronic system adjusts to any ratio, and comes paired with Subaru’s active torque split AWD system. Not only this but Subaru’s design team has fashioned a new look for the Impreza, adding more character lines, redesigned taillights which appear slightly over sized now, and give the hatchback a wider opening. The new Impreza is roughly 1.5 inches longer and wider, and about half an inch lower than before. Its got a more “sculptural” design for the body which translates to a lower nose, capped off with its trademark hexagonal grille.

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The Verdict

Despite all its upgrades, the Impreza could do with a bit more power. However with the entirely new underpinnings, this car is more agile, fun and comfortable to drive then ever before, whilst also providing better safety and crash protection. Over all we give the 2017 Impreza a massive thumbs up and a ‘Yes’ to it being the perfect daily driver.

© COPYRIGHT ARABIA MOTORS JUNE 2017

 

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