Subaru is set to re-introduce a four-door Impreza to the UK; unpopular five-door hatch may be axed
17 September 2010

Subaru will launch a four-door Impreza WRX STI in the UK later this year.

First seen at the New York motor show in the spring, the saloon is designed to reverse poor demand for the cult performance classic, which switched to a five-door hatchback body style in 2007.

See pics of the four-door Impreza STi from the New York show

The saloon’s imminent arrival casts doubt over the future of the hatchback, a car that hasn’t been imported as new into the UK since the 2008 model year.

At the car’s launch, Subaru America chief operating officer Tom Doll said the saloon “will expand the appeal of the iconic performance model” and its introduction was driven by “strong, loyal and vocal support from thousands of enthusiastic owners”.

Read Autocar's first drive of the Cosworth Impreza STI CS400

The Impreza saloon has undergone extensive development work at the Nürburgring and has significant suspension upgrades for the 2011 model.

Subaru describes it as the “best-handling WRX STI ever”; changes include a lower ride height, stiffer bushes, higher-rate springs and thicker front and rear anti-roll bars. New, lightweight 18-inch alloy wheels feature alongside upgraded Brembo brakes.

Read Autocar's road test of the current 5dr Subaru Impreza WRX STI

Styling changes at the front include sharper creasing on the bumper, a new grille, a new lip spoiler and a new headlight design. Wider wheel arches also feature, as does a new rear bumper design.

Power comes from a 301bhp version of Subaru’s turbocharged 2.5-litre flat four engine, which sends power to all four wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox. Three driving modes are offered that change driving characteristics: Intelligent, Sport and Sport Sharp.

A Subaru insider wouldn’t be drawn on whether the five-door Impreza STi would now be axed.

Mark Tisshaw

Read more on Suabru's plans to bring back the 4dr Impreza WRX STI saloonSee all the latest Subaru reviews, news and video

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Comments
27

17 September 2010

Damn that looks so much better than the silly Hatchback.

The impreza should have always remained a saloon!

17 September 2010

[quote fhp11]

Damn that looks so much better than the silly Hatchback.

The impreza should have always remained a saloon!

[/quote]Agreed. And the torsional rigidity is much better - just what is needed in the original version of the current model hatch - all soft and wallowy.

17 September 2010

Ha lol I really could not care still has a horrible cheap looking front .. Ye British are funny don,t like ordinary saloons but like hatchbacks but ye do like hot saloons funny lol . Subaru realise a hatchbach and ye don,t buy it but put a saloon out and ye all want one lol funny .

17 September 2010

Oh well it has 'only' taken three years for Subaru to realise the error of their ways!!!They need to get the finger out with the whole range not just the Impreza.

17 September 2010

[quote fhp11]

Damn that looks so much better than the silly Hatchback.

The impreza should have always remained a saloon!

[/quote] Ten times better I'd say...

17 September 2010

I just wonder whether Subaru can regain the lost ground over the past few years. The five door was never as coveted as the saloon, and they have probably lost a few customers in the meantime. Indeed, Subaru seem to have fallen off the radar lately. It will be interesting to see if they can win customers back with this 4 door, or whether it is too late for that...


17 September 2010

Rallye cars are only exciting when they are hatchbacks: 205, Delta Integrale, Escort Cosworth...

17 September 2010

[quote Autocar]The saloon’s imminent arrival casts doubt over the future of the hatchback, a car that hasn’t been imported as new into the UK since the 2008 model year.[/quote] Are you sure they haven't imported any new hatchback's since the 2008 model year?

17 September 2010

Much prefer the hatchback and in the US, you can already order the new STI in... hatchback and saloon so both will come here.

Don't forget, the new STI is first built as a hatchback, modified into a saloon.

17 September 2010

Lack of a boot wasn't the only problem with the hatchback. If it was a class leading design of hatchback it would have sold, and sold well. Subaru owners would get over the lack of storage space!

As it is the hatchback has a few problems.

  1. Handling when not the limit is wooly.
  2. Driver space is smaller.
  3. Handbrake digs in to your leg!
  4. Styling is dull; not just the front grill.
  5. Standard car doesn't have 18" wheels; a £1,800 extra!

In adition to adding a boot not also that they're fixing a few of the other problems.

Will ex-Subaru owners buy back in to the brand? I would have bought a replacement to mine, I very nearly did buy the hatchback but after two test drivers decided not to. I've moved on now so won't buy again, sorry.

However, the Subaru dealer was best car dealership I've ever dealt with. A small family run dealership in Ayr, Scotland.

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