A SPORTY fresh face for Subaru’s all-wheel drive Impreza, together with the addition of Subaru Intelligent (SI) Drive in every variant, will add extra spice to the brand’s 2020 small car range.
Every Impreza has a re-profiled grille, front bumper and front fog light design, while for the first time dual mode SI-Drive offers the choice between frugal efficiency in I mode and sportier performance in S mode, adding greater responsiveness.
The suspension has also been revised, delivering even better ride comfort, steering response and handling agility. An updated interior will also be seen in Impreza 2.0i-L, 2.0i Premium and 2.0i-S variants.
Also added to the range are new design alloy wheels, and automatic door locking, while all hatch variants will also gain smoked-finish rear combination lights. For the Impreza 2.0i Premium and Impreza 2.0i-S models, there more too.
Both now feature blind spot monitoring, lane change assist, rear cross traffic alert, reverse automatic braking, front view monitor, updated LED headlight design, and auto power folding mirrors, with auto dipping on the passenger side mirror.
Side view monitor, a memory function driver’s seat, stitched MFD visor and piano black air conditioning controls surrounds have also been included, while an updated premium cloth trim has also been introduced in the Impreza 2.0i-L and 2.0i Premium.
A new colour has been added too, in the form of Magnetite Grey Metallic. The Impreza maintains its 5-star ANCAP safety rating. Prices start from $23,740 plus on-roads
At the same time as launching the new look Impreza, Subaru has also entered the hybrid market, with the launch of the all-wheel drive hybrid Forester and XV, adding greater choice to the brand’s top selling models.
The hybrids are the first steps in a long term strategy that will produce a variety of next generation power plants and technologies in the coming years, with both models running the same petrol-electric engine.
Under the hood is a a 2.0-litre horizontally opposed Boxer engine linked via motor assist to a high voltage lithium ion battery, with the power sources producing 110kW of power and 196Nm of torque, and 12.3kW of power and 66Nm of torque respectively.
The battery unit is self-charging via kinetic energy captured by regenerative braking and coasting. The direct injection petrol engine, motor assist and battery combination produce smooth, linear and responsive acceleration.
The e-Boxer logic adjusts the power split between petrol and electric to match driving conditions. It automatically changes between three modes; motor assist EV, motor assist electric (EV) + petrol engine, and petrol engine driving.
The Subaru XV and Forester hybrid models have a potential pure electric range of up to 40km. One XV Hybrid AWD variant and two Foresters, the Hybrid L AWD and Hybrid S AWD, are available.
All hybrid variants have a 5-star ANCAP safety rating. Signficantly, when driving in full electric mode (both forward and reverse), the pedestrian alert system emits a sound at speeds below 24km/h, to alert people in close proximity.
At medium speeds, combined power from both the electric and petrol engine produce responsive, linear and more fuel efficient acceleration. At high speed, the Boxer petrol engine exclusively powers the vehicle.
Subaru’s smooth and efficient Lineartronic CVT transmission is mated to the e-Boxer system for ultra-smooth power delivery and torque. Motor assist enhances X-Mode off-road capability, through better low speed torque control.
X-Mode makes it easier for drivers to safely navigate bad roads, slippery surfaces and steep hills, with just one switch. It’s status is indicated visually on the multi-function display (MFD) screen.
Hybrid models purchased for private use have a 5-year unlimited kilometre warranty, plus an eight year 160,000km lithium ion battery warranty.
The Subaru Forester Hybrid AWD launches priced from $39,990 (plus on-roads), while XV Hybrid AWD, with an exclusive new Lagoon Blue Pearl colour option, is priced from $35,580 (plus on-roads).