Subaru Impreza

From Academic Kids

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1997 Subaru Impreza Outback Sport
For the high-performance versions of the Impreza, see Subaru Impreza WRX and Subaru Impreza WRX STi

The Subaru Impreza is a compact car that was first introduced by Subaru in 1993. In addition to filling the small-car market segment among Subaru's offerings in the Japanese, U.S., European (and various other) markets, the Impreza chassis rose to prominence in rally racing more effectively than Subaru's previous contenders. Formerly, Subaru had fielded its larger, mid-size car, the Legacy, for rally purposes. However, as rally competition shifted toward smaller and lighter chassis, Subaru needed a smaller and faster car—a role in which the Impreza was immediately successful and in which the Impreza continues to compete effectively, albeit in more powerful versions than were initially introduced.

In 1993, the Impreza was offered in either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive versions and only as a four- or five-door sedan. In later years, the two-door coup was introduced, although production of the coup ended with the introduction of the redesigned 2003 model year. The engine that came in the car initially was a naturally-aspirated 1.8  flat-4 (the EJ18), followed in successive years by larger and turbocharged engines. The basic turbocharged motor, the EJ20, produces 211 bhp.

Starting in 1994, Subaru introduced Subaru Tecnica International (STi) versions of the Impreza in the Japanese and European markets, which were upgraded in many categories, including performance-tuned engines and suspensions. The STi versions of the Impreza were immensely successful in rallies and popular among street racers. Its top speed is electronically limited at 250 km/h (155 mph) and it has a 0–100 km/h time of 4.7 seconds. In the United States, release of the basic turbocharged Impreza (the WRX) did not occur until the 2002 model year, and the Impreza WRX STi was delayed until the 2004 model year; furthermore, the U.S. version of the STi includes various departures from the Japanese and European counterparts (such as a standard-turbo 2.5 L motor in the U.S., rather than the twin-scroll turbo 2.0 L motor sold elsewhere).

The Impreza brought Subaru three consecutive World Rally Championship titles (19957) and was considered the fastest car in the championship.

The Impreza was Wheels magazine's Car of the Year for 2000.

As of late 2004, the most recent overhaul of the Impreza occurred with the 2002 model year, with controversial "bug-eyed" styling for its headlamps, and the discontinuation of the two-door coup version. Some customers' and the press's negative reaction to the look forced Subaru to facelift the car by 2003, with less unconventional, squarer headlamps.

Models offered in Australia in 2005 include the GX (2.0 L engine, this model has become the baseline Impreza in Australia), RV (2.0 L engine, styled for active lifestyles), RS (2.5 L engine, sport model) along with the WRX and STi version thereof. The RX model has been abandoned in Australia, and its position in the Impreza lineup has been subsumed by the GX (which had formerly been a sparsely outfitted budget model).

Subaru used the Impreza chassis for the mechanical underpinnings of the Subaru Forester, a small SUV designed to compete in the segment comprising the Honda CR-V and Ford Escape; also, the hatchback—or Impreza Wagon—formed the basis of the Saab 9-2X released in 2004 (given the tongue-in-cheek moniker, "Saabaru").

See also




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