10 reasons we love the Subaru Impreza hatchback

By the late 1990s and through the early 2000s, the Subaru Impreza Turbo was the car of choice for delivering stunning performance at a rock-bottom price. In a position to take on the best offers from Germany at the time, the Impreza Turbo would not only survive in the dry, but would destroy all newcomers in the wet.

Like most car models, the Impreza went through a wide range of redesigns, with some of the sedans receiving a better response than other hatchback models previously. A direct rival to the mighty Volkswagen Golf GTI, the popular BMW 130 and the Honda Civic Type R, the Impreza hatchback offered all-wheel drive thrills in one compact package.

Although the revised JDM Car remains a bargain.

One version for everyone

Basic impreza

Available in a range of trim levels, the Impreza hatchback could be purchased with a variety of lower-powered, turbocharged engines, each offering a unique entry point for potential buyers looking for a reliable workhorse rather than a fiery fighter.


With a roomy 330 liters of luggage space, the Impreza hatchback was a great family tool, and on some models the addition of a low-ratio gearbox allowed for great off-road capabilities when needed.

Rally car DNA

Rally vehicle

There was no doubt that when the high-performance Impreza hatchback versions hit the market, they would bring decades of motorsport knowledge and technology that would set them apart from the more discerning competitors in the market.


From the sodden, muddy valleys of Wales to the dusty, rock-strewn slopes of Cyprus, the Impreza conquered them all, be it snow and ice, sand or earth, the boxer engine and AWD system burned out.

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The boxer engine

sti motor

Recognized as the definitive Subaru Impreza signature, fans were delighted when the prestigious boxer engine was retained for this third generation car, bringing with it a unique, edgy and aggressive soundtrack.

2017 Subaru Levorg 2.0 DIT boxer engine

Subaru engineers took the previous generation’s 2.5L unit and fitted the Legacy GT’s air intake and manifold system to increase engine engagement and response, and allow for faster absorption.

The WRX version


The 2.5-liter EJ255 unit mounted on the WRX hatchback made 227 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque 155 km / h.


The WRX interior isn’t known for offering classic cabs, but when compared to previous models, it features softer plastics, higher quality materials, and a more ergonomic approach to design.

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A sporty diesel version

Subaru Impreza Turbo Diesel Sport

For the first time in its history, the Impreza was fitted with a diesel engine and, true to the Subaru shape, also retained the popular boxer layout. The flat-four unit, known as the EE20, was available from 2009.

Boxer diesel

With 150 horsepower and a WRX with 258 lb-ft of torque, the diesel was able to pull the car to 60 mph in a respectable 9.0 seconds, top speed at 130 mph, and return a rather wallet-friendly 49 mpg on one run.

The STi version


Always known as the performance leader in its lineup, the STI returned with 296 horsepower and 300 lb-ft of torque, all of that power making for a quick 5.2 seconds from 0 to 100 mph, making it one of the fastest Hatchback models that were available at the time.

2011 Subaru Impreza WRX STi Coupe Hatchback

Equipped with the new SI drive system, the driver can adjust the throttle response as required, most drivers simply set it to super-sharp and enjoy the enormous thrust that is offered when the accelerator pedal is pressed.

The Cosworth One


What more could a Subaru Impreza fan ask for than a specially tuned, limited Cosworth edition. After pouring its mechanical magic on the STI, the CS400 delivered 395 horsepower and a whopping 400 lb-ft of torque.

Cosworth badge

The CS400 shot to 60 mph in an embarrassing 3.7 seconds and was blessed with new pistons, connecting rods, bearings, head gasket, and turbocharger. With only 75 cars ever built, the CS400 is a collectors dream.

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Fantastic base platform

Wide body-1

Extremely capable and reliable in all weather conditions, the Impreza hatchback is an excellent option for those looking to build a superb track star, impressive rally weapon, or a unique and reliable, high performing everyday driver.

Ken block

This point was proven by legendary tire destroyer Ken Block, whose own 2008 Impreza STI hatchback received a power boost to a monstrous 565 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque, giving it a 0-60 mph time of just 3.0 seconds.

The WRX-S & 330S


In response to negative feedback that the base WRX had too soft a suspension setup and lacked power, Subaru reinforced the springs, struts, and stabilizers while increasing power to a healthier 265 horsepower and time from 0-60 mph lowered to 4.7 in seconds.


Now it has to compete with its own smaller brother. The limited edition Prodrive 330S STI was only introduced in the UK and had 325 horsepower, 347 lb-ft of torque and would get 60 mph in a very believable 4.5 seconds.

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Very reliable


With a proven history of making near-bombproof mechanics in all of their cars, the Impreza hatchback remains a dependable and trustworthy companion with no major problems reported by most owners.


The Subaru interior is capable of collecting monster mileage with no hassle and lives up to its rugged reputation with only general maintenance requirements.

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