Im­preza a plat­form for the fu­ture

Pilbara News - - Motoring - Derek Og­den

You don’t need a crys­tal ball to see what will be go­ing on at Subaru over the next 10 years.

The fifth gen­er­a­tion all-wheeldrive Im­preza is based on a new global plat­form that will un­der­pin all mod­els for the com­ing decade.

The plat­form is 95 per cent new, so it is a big step up for a com­pany famed for en­gi­neer­ing ex­cel­lence.

The global plat­form, Subaru says, of­fers new lev­els of agility, crash pro­tec­tion, ef­fi­ciency and en­joy­able driv­ing in a ve­hi­cle that marks the big­gest step-change in the Im­preza since the orig­i­nal launched in Aus­tralia in 1994.

Also de­but­ing with the new Im­preza is a 12,500km/12-month capped-price ser­vice pro­gram.

Avail­able as a sedan or hatch­back ex­clu­sively with a con­tin­u­ously vari­able trans­mis­sion, the Im­preza 2.0i sedan is priced from $22,400, plus on-road costs, with con­sid­er­able up­grades in spec­i­fi­ca­tion.

The Im­preza 2.0i-S hatch, the test ve­hi­cle, tops the range at $29,190.

The new Im­preza is 10mm lower than the su­per­seded model and 35mm wider, and main­tains the Subaru fam­ily fea­tures, in­clud­ing the clas­sic hexag­o­nal grille and hawk-eye head­lights high­light­ing its wide and low stance.

A fur­ther nod to the car’s her­itage is a bold bar across the front grille rep­re­sent­ing a hor­i­zon­tally op­posed engine, un­der­lin­ing Subaru’s boxer engine his­tory. Slim and sharp head­lamps with a C-shaped mo­tif boost Im­preza’s sporty ap­pear­ance.

LED lights in the range-top­ping 2.0i-S in­clude the lat­est func­tions, such as steer­ing re­spon­sive lamps and LED day­time run­ning lights.

A style line dubbed the “dy­namic blade” runs the length of the doors, pro­duc­ing a sculp­tured pro­file, while the wind­screen an­gle aids aero­dy­nam­ics, high­lighted in the hatch­back by a large rear spoiler.

Ev­ery vari­ant fea­tures an ac­tive shut­ter grille in the cen­tre of the lower front bumper, which opens and closes to con­trol air­flow through the engine bay and un­der the cabin floor, re­duc­ing air re­sis­tance and aid­ing fuel ef­fi­ciency.

An ac­cen­tu­ated hor­i­zon­tal rear light set-up boosts the Im­preza’s wide and low ap­pear­ance, and matches other new Subaru mod­els.

In the hatch, a lip is added to the outer lens in­di­ca­tor cor­ner as part of the aero­dy­namic pack­age.

The lat­est Subaru Im­preza has greater in­te­rior width and height.

Wheel­base is in­creased 25mm for greater legroom. Cabin width is up 29mm at the front and 34mm at the rear, and dis­tance between seat cen­tres is up 21mm. Rear legroom is up 26mm. Tex­tured stitch­ing pat­terns, soft tex­ture arm­rests and ex­ten­sive sound-dead­en­ing ap­plied to al­most ev­ery sec­tion make for quiet sur­round­ings.

At first the pres­ence of three screens of in­for­ma­tion may seem daunt­ing, but fa­mil­iar­ity takes away the fears, and co-or­di­nated con­trol and con­nec­tiv­ity between the multi-in­for­ma­tion dis­play and multi-func­tion dis­play en­hance op­er­a­tion and im­prove safety.

The sim­ple lay­out makes gauges and con­trols easy and in­tu­itive.

In the Im­preza 2.0i-S, the widescreen full-colour MFD, sit­u­ated in the top of the cen­tral dash­board, pro­vides a stack of in­for­ma­tion, in­clud­ing ve­hi­cle dy­nam­ics con­trol and fuel ef­fi­ciency, ad­di­tional nav­i­ga­tion in­for­ma­tion and an au­to­matic dis­play of es­sen­tial in­for­ma­tion in pop-up screens.

The LCD in the in­stru­ment clus­ter, between the gauges, in­cludes graph­i­cal in­for­ma­tion for driv­ing and con­trol, with­out the need to read, while the in­fo­tain­ment unit shows in­for­ma­tion, in­clud­ing rear view cam­era dis­play and en­ter­tain­ment. Smart­phone con­nec­tiv­ity is via Ap­ple CarPlay and An­droid Auto.

All Im­prezas are pow­ered by a 2.0-litre di­rect-in­jec­tion flat-four engine, pro­duc­ing 115kW of power at 6000rpm, and 196Nm of torque at 4000rpm.

Ma­jor im­prove­ments have been made through­out the engine, in­clud­ing higher power out­put in the most use­ful range.

It has a higher com­pres­sion ra­tio, bet­ter gas flow and high-flow ex­haust gas sys­tem. Weight sav­ings through­out the driv­e­train also help.

It uses a CVT with what Subaru calls auto stepped speed con­trol, which gives it a pseudo sev­en­speed man­ual mode.

The Subaru Im­preza has earned a five-star rating for oc­cu­pant safety from the Aus­tralasian New Car As­sess­ment Pro­gram.

Subaru is confident its new plat­form will en­able Im­preza to gain the high­est safety rat­ings out to the year 2025.

Wider range within the CVT helps pro­duce a pleas­ant feel.

Vi­bra­tion and noise char­ac­ter­is­tics are im­proved.

The Im­preza’s brak­ing ben­e­fits from new-gen­er­a­tion cal­lipers and high-strength brake pads.

Fuel con­sump­tion on our test car was up to 12 litres per 100km in dayto-day city run­ning — not par­tic­u­larly good, but the 5.7 litres per 100km on the mo­tor­way made up for the thirst around town.

Subaru’s award-win­ning for­ward-fac­ing Eye­Sight, us­ing the third-gen­er­a­tion driver as­sist sys­tem, in­cludes stereo cam­era im­ages in colour and vi­sion of mul­ti­ple items at the same time.

Other Eye­Sight fea­tures in­clude en­hanced pedes­trian avoid­ance, pre-col­li­sion brak­ing as­sist and pre-col­li­sion steer­ing as­sist, plus ad­vanced per­for­mance of adap­tive cruise con­trol (brake light recog­ni­tion etc.). It all gives added con­fi­dence to the driver and pas­sen­gers.

Day­dream­ing at the traf­fic lights? The Im­preza gives a warn­ing ding and the info screen gives a mes­sage say­ing: “The ve­hi­cle ahead has moved away.”

Au­di­ble warn­ings in­clude rear cross traf­fic alert and blind spot ve­hi­cle alert via a flash­ing light in the ex­te­rior mir­ror hous­ings.

The Subaru Im­preza is a star per­former, re­cently named Ja­pan’s car of the year, and is al­ready show­ing the way, with 962 Aus­tralian sales in Fe­bru­ary.

Pic­tures: War­ren Kirby

The fifth gen­er­a­tion all-wheel-drive Im­preza is based on a new global plat­form that will un­der­pin all mod­els for the com­ing decade.

Ex­ten­sive sound-dead­en­ing ap­plied to al­most ev­ery sec­tion make for quiet sur­round­ings.

The lat­est ex­am­ple of the Im­preza holds the key to Subaru’s fu­ture.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.