When you think of a base compact sedan, you’re probably imagining a car with a base price of around $16,000. That’s about what a Civic, a Corolla or a Mazda3 cost in their birthday suits, and at that price, none of them includes air conditioning.
Subaru has another approach. Their compact-car offering, the Impreza, starts at $20,995. It might scare off people who think Subarus are too expensive, but it does come with a fair amount of standard features.
As such, even the base version called the 2.5i includes A/C, power windows, cruise control, power mirrors, remote keyless entry, a CD player with MP3 file playback, four-wheel disc brakes with ABS, traction and stability control systems, six airbags and a 60/40-split folding rear seat.
It also comes with a feature that very few compact sedans offer: all-wheel drive. In fact, the only one besides the Impreza that has AWD is the Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart, which costs almost $35,000. Subaru’s full-time system constantly monitors all four wheels and distributes the engine’s torque to the ones that have the most traction.
The Impreza also features a 2.5-litre engine that develops 170 horsepower and 170 pound-feet of torque and which makes the Subie one of the most powerful in its segment. The all-wheel drive hardware means a higher curb weight than the competition, though, which is noticeable during full-throttle acceleration: 0 to 100 km takes 8.9 seconds.
Subaru’s flat-4 engines benefit from a near-bulletproof reputation, but high performance isn’t exactly this base unit’s cup of tea. It doesn’t rev as quickly as some other 4-cylinder engines; step out of a Civic Si and try out this Impreza, and you’ll have the feeling that its oil was replaced with molasses. I’m exaggerating.
With a big 4-cylinder engine and the all-wheel drive’s extra friction, you can’t expect fuel economy to be as low as in a Honda Civic. We’re averaging 9.4 L/100 km, but we didn’t go on any long-distance highway trips, so we could’ve done better.
Other Reviews Available For The 2010 Subaru Impreza 4-door
Auto journalist & Consumer Ratings
Editor's Review Highlights
2010 Subaru Impreza 4-door Specifications
Similar to 2010 Subaru Impreza 4-door