Latest WRX is excitement in motion
Subaru is refining the sport compact
I’m driving along Kaslo Bay in southwest British Columbia when it hits me. A smile. It’s infectious and followed by giggles and wide-eyed excitement.
It’s a result of this route, this scenery and a car that feels right at home navigating roads that swing side to side like a pendulum. Despite all the new sport compact cars on the scene, it’s the WRX they have to beat.
The 2018 Subaru WRX may not seem very new. It still has the same turbo 2.0-litre boxer engine. It’s still only available as a sedan. It’s still pretty light at around 1,500 kilograms. It still has a slow infotainment system and no Apple CarPlay or Android Auto support. The interior also won’t give you the impression you’re in something higher end.
That list of complaints is quickly forgotten once you take the WRX on the road — and glance at the $29,995 asking price. But let’s get to what’s changed. The front bumper has been revised and the car gets an option for full LED headlights.
Cars equipped with the CVT transmission can get Subaru’s EyeSight suite of safety and driv- er assistance features. These vehicles also can be equipped with an automatic rear braking system.
In terms of performance upgrades, the changes to suspension and steering feel are subtle. The manual transmission and steering have been tweaked as well to be smoother. Additionally, Subaru has revised the mount points for roof racks. The automaker is also offering new performance goodies in the RS Package. There’s also a moonroof delete option.
The interior gets new gauges and there are more soft-touch materials in the cabin. The rear armrest now has a cupholder and the front power windows have a power off delay. Finally, Subaru has reduced a significant amount of cabin noise.
The rest of the car is the same old stuff we’ve liked before and there are no changes here that will upset loyal fans.