The Subaru Impreza has been on sale in the US since 1993. In its quarter-century existence, it's been through five generations, with the most recent generation arriving for the 2017 model year.
For 2019, not much is new for the compact, all-wheel drive sedan except for optional adaptive safety tech being offered across the entire model range and a $100 base price bump compared with the 2018 model.
Powertrain and specs
Subaru offers only one engine for the Impreza: a 2.0-liter horizontally opposed four-cylinder producing 152 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque. This is about average for the compact class, although competitors offer optional engines that are more powerful. However, unlike any other stablemate, the Impreza comes with all-wheel drive standard.
The Impreza sedan with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) is the most efficient, returning an EPA-estimated 28 miles per gallon in the city and 38 mpg highway. The hatchback is less miserly at 28/36 mpg with the CVT, while the best five-speed manual sedan and hatch can muster are 24/32 and 24/31 mpg, respectively.
Despite the economy-sapping all-wheel drive, the Impreza offers segment-competitive fuel economy, with the CVT sedan matching the Chevrolet Cruze sedan's 28/38 mpg while beating the base Toyota Corolla's 28/36 mpg.
Imprezas offer plenty of room inside for up to five occupants, but at 12.3 cubic feet, the sedan's trunk space falls on the lower end of the class. The Chevy Cruze (14.8 cubic feet), Honda Civic and Nissan Sentra (15.1), Toyota Corolla (13) and Volkswagen Jetta (14.1) are all more capacious out back.
Standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is becoming more common in the compact segment, and the Impreza flows with that trend, sitting with the Chevy Cruze, Toyota Corolla Hatchback and VW Jetta in offering that level of smartphone mirroring right out of the gate.
But the Impreza falls slightly behind when it comes to offering a standard suite of driver-assistance technology. Adaptive cruise control, collision-mitigation braking and lane-keep assist are optional, part of Subaru's EyeSight package. Those driver aids come standard with the Corolla and Civic.
Options and pricing
The Subaru Impreza is offered in four trims with base prices ranging from $18,595 to $25,690 plus $885 for destination. The base Impreza 2.0i comes standard with 16-inch steel wheels, power windows and mirrors, a 6.5-inch touchscreen that supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a four-speaker audio system and cloth upholstery.
The $21,595 Impreza Premium comes with 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, automatic headlights, embedded telematics, satellite radio with six speakers and an all-weather package that includes a windshield wiper de-icer, heated mirrors and heated front seats.
Stepping up to the $22,195 Impreza Sport adds 18-inch wheels, brake-based torque vectoring, larger front brake rotors, keyless access plus sporty appearance pieces like larger rocker panel moldings and a rear spoiler. Inside, there's a leather-wrapped steering wheel, red contrast stitching for the cloth upholstery, aluminum pedal covers, a 6.3-inch color instrument cluster display, and an 8-inch touchscreen.
Finally, the $25,190 Impreza Limited adds Subaru's EyeSight suite of driver-assistance tech, which includes adaptive cruise control, collision-mitigation braking and lane-keep assist. The Limited also includes 17-inch wheels in dark gray with a machine finish, pivot-beam LED headlights, fog lights, automatic high beams, leather upholstery with a power driver's seat and automatic climate control.
Notable options include a sunroof, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, embedded navigation and an eight-speaker, 432-watt Harman Kardon, all of which can be bundled as a $2,750 option package. An auto-dimming mirror with HomeLink and a compass will add another $365, which all told, can push an Impreza's price close to $30,000.
The 2019 Subaru Impreza is on sale nationwide now.