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Old 10-03-2011, 09:00 AM   #1
ricochet
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Default 2012 Subaru Impreza Reviewed


2012 Subaru Impreza Review
By Ryan Douthit, Driving Sports TV

Click here to watch the full review | Download from iTunes (HD)

Driving Sports TV travels to the Northeast to test Subaru's all-new 2012 Impreza. This all-new car features a smaller 2.0-liter motor, but also claims to have the best MPG of any AWD car in America. Note: the WRX and STI will not be in this new chassis until MY2013 at the earliest, so this review only applies to the naturally-aspirated Impreza. Those turbo models will remain in their current bodies until the next revisions.

Facts: 27/36 MPG city/highway with the CVT, 25/34 MPG with the 5MT (as tested). The car weighs 2911 lbs and has 148hp @ 6200rpm, 145 lb-ft at 4200 from an all-new 2.0-liter flat 4. This motor is a smaller version of the 2.5 that made its debut in the Forester last year. Suspension is also revised with the addition of a rebound spring.

What we liked best: the new suspension is a huge improvement and the chassis overall has a lot of potential. What we didn't like: 3rd, 4th, and 5th gears compromised mileage over driving fun. We also have concerns about the new 'low rolling resistance' tires and Subaru's inability to keep up with the Koreans in terms of in-car tech.
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Last edited by ricochet; 10-03-2011 at 10:43 AM.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:01 AM   #2
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Last edited by ricochet; 10-03-2011 at 09:22 AM.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:59 AM   #3
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eh... imo Subaru messed up with the '08
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:22 AM   #4
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He made a good point when he mentioned the fan base for these boosted, fuel guzzling sports cars is shrinking. Many people around me are ditching their fast cars and going for something more practical because of all the savings down the road.
I like what Subaru is doing with this high MPG car. Now the real question is(even though it may be early), how will they improve on this one if they'll continue this economical trend.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:29 AM   #5
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I want one for the wife....can't wait for them to arrive at my local dealership. Hopefully she'll like it and we'll get one. She drives an hour each way for work and she needs awd for winter not to mention good hwy mpgs.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:54 AM   #6
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i have a feeling, here on NASIOC, the enthusiasts will more likely dislike than like.... however, if Subaru continues to do well, there is hope for continuation of the WRX/STi. We sure dont want the STi gone like Mitsu did to the Evo.
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:06 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curiousfish
i have a feeling, here on NASIOC, the enthusiasts will more likely dislike than like.... however, if Subaru continues to do well, there is hope for continuation of the WRX/STi. We sure dont want the STi gone like Mitsu did to the Evo.
If that happens we will just have to protest.
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:31 AM   #8
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Did anyone catch the oil filter is IN the engine bay?
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:44 AM   #9
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isnt the up coming WRX supose to come with a 1.6L possible twin turbo/bi turbo. and still make about 270hp?


i personally dont like the impreza styling anymore. looks like another kia/hyundia/suzuki..

the oil filter feature is nice. prob geared more for the DIY that save $$ on oil changes. vs going to jiffy lube
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Old 10-03-2011, 12:34 PM   #10
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Now assuming the 2.0 liter is a semi closed deck lol switch up that ECU and slap boost at it and its a fun ride..forget that MPG lol sure it would still be up there with a boosted 2.0 though nothing wasted from exhaust.. Intrested in finding weight and specs of engine..are there a set different of new EJ2.0 that say differ than that of the Toyota FE86..??? and if not tranny swap hmmm...Lots of ideas...and cost may not be as bad though spare parts would be likely kept of new condition which still props for a good buy..actually fun buy depending on asking price..unlike Mitsu's subies all love each other to the point nothing has to be altered to fit really..Why they keep it simple and just down right...Keep what works @ Fuji Ind seems to be paying off..unlike so many other companys on the verge of CHAO's.
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Old 10-03-2011, 12:49 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VIsubi View Post
Now assuming the 2.0 liter is a semi closed deck lol switch up that ECU and slap boost at it and its a fun ride..forget that MPG lol sure it would still be up there with a boosted 2.0 though nothing wasted from exhaust..
This 2.0 is not built for turbo applications. As Subaru told us, (paraphrasing) "the 2.0 has been optimized to be naturally aspirated." and they went on to say that parts of the motor are as "strong as they need to be for the given power output." i.e.: if you put a turbo onto it, you're just asking for a world of hurt.
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Old 10-03-2011, 12:53 PM   #12
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Is it just me or did the engine temp gauge get replaced by an active MPG thing???
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:00 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curiousfish View Post
i have a feeling, here on NASIOC, the enthusiasts will more likely dislike than like.... however, if Subaru continues to do well, there is hope for continuation of the WRX/STi. We sure dont want the STi gone like Mitsu did to the Evo.
There would either be protest or value on imprezas period..body's all shared to tranny's and etc. would all become very rare parts if they stop making parts which really doesn't really happen after 10 years rarely. But I still think my 2.5i first of the i's was best year and just strong tranny,best gearing..sure i've totally gone crazy with it but motor and parts are still holding up to 10 psi of Supercharged boost to say the least. Though the 06' wasn't really geared to MPG but for $$$ those that couldn't afford, yet swaps on every part was a dime a dozen haha..
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:06 PM   #14
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so they reduced power by reducing liters and they get better millage? sure its has more tech, but come on... btw who else has a 140hp awd car thats competing with the impreza?
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:43 PM   #15
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Looks great.

If there is any doubt about the 2012...drive a 2011 and a 2012 back to back.

I had a 2011 base impreza sedan as a loaner and wow, did it feel cheap. Can't wait to test drive a 2012.

I think with the 2012 people really need to go in eyes wide open. It's a car designed for a different demographic in mind then the past.
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:54 PM   #16
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im debating to sell my suby now... so disapointed with this company. but hey just makes the resale value of my 04 sti go up
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Old 10-03-2011, 02:03 PM   #17
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No WRX or STi, no care. I however, do like the fact that they are making the non-turbo Impreza more ergonomical. I mean, that's what the car is for. I hope these upgrades in the right direction on the Impreza will mean upgrades in the right direction on the performance based models.
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Old 10-03-2011, 03:47 PM   #18
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The only quote of noting from that whole review

'SUBARU WHAT ARE YOU DOING!!!!!"

Sums it up for me, this isnt a terrible turd it will appeal to Urbanites, older couples and fleet managers.

I really fear that the only model worth getting happy about in the "new" Subaru lineup is the WRX and STi and even those two for maybe one more year Over in Legacy world we have been heartbroken since the '10s showed up.
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Old 10-03-2011, 03:50 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ricochet View Post
This 2.0 is not built for turbo applications. As Subaru told us, (paraphrasing) "the 2.0 has been optimized to be naturally aspirated." and they went on to say that parts of the motor are as "strong as they need to be for the given power output." i.e.: if you put a turbo onto it, you're just asking for a world of hurt.

If the FB20 is the horse SOA wants to ride into the N/A sunset what will they select for the F/I journey?? Besides the, i guess, phase 3 EJ255 found in the '10+ LGT ??
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Old 10-03-2011, 06:04 PM   #20
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My .02 cents - Seems to me like a great improvement and model;

IMO the 2012 impreza looks sharper than the 11, improves gas mileage dramatically (gears 1 and 2 seem to be short enough to still get a little "get up" for needed city driving and that gears 4 and 5 are long for good highway style driving/mileage), a little more leg room in the rear, improved strut dampening, an easy to reach oil filter location, and a clean overall look to it than what's wrong with it? IMO, there's nothing wrong with this car FROM FIRST IMPRESSION - AWD with good mileage sells to many who wanted the AWD but didn't want to give up the mileage. I think many chose to do so and that this model will make many buyers rethink their decision to buy elsewhere.

However, when I start thinking about a car that I would be more interested in buying ..... I like many enthusiasts on this forum will pray that both the wrx and sti stay on the lineup and continue to improve. I do think that the amount of total "enthusiasts" or performance based buyers is lowering but I think that this feeling is stemmed from many "now enthusaists" getting older and looking into vehicles that will be better for their families and easier on their pocketbooks. Furthermore, the prices of gas and the economy's condition are certainly making a large impact on the decisions of enthusiast buyers as well. How long it takes for our economy to "turn around" and the prices of gas to lower will have a large impact on what Subaru and other companies will do with their future lineups not to mention new advances in technology-electric, solar energy, etc.

There will always be a market for enthusiasts and there will always be choices to buy an "enthusiast vehicle" but we may have to go to another company-hopefully not. However, I don't this will be happening real soon though. There is still a large fanbase out there that want to buy an enthusiast's version - wrx and/or sti. That being said, I hope that Subaru has something up their sleeve for 2013 WRX and STi as I believe they do (I'm an optimist ). With manufacturers like Ford for example making a 30mpg 300hp mustang, gt, and other models with much more power (strictly enthusiast based obviously not caring a great deal for great mileage) Subaru had better come out with with something that has more than 305hp and 24 rated hwy mpg to drive more sales. I'm no expert, mechanic, or engineer but if thousands of enthusiasts (like many of us on here and elsewhere) can do it at modest prices, and still follow much needed environmentally safe emission laws, than I have a hard time thinking that Subaru can't figure out a way either. I love my Subaru and I can't wait to see what they come out with next...For the record, I'm 26, I just got married, and my plan is to buy a newer wrx sti in a few years.
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Old 10-03-2011, 06:45 PM   #21
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I can't believe they got the car to sub-3000lbs. with awd.

That's pretty impressive with the mileage to boot. Price is right and the mileage is definitely a plus.

Take this car for what it is. At $20k it's competing with a ton of other cars on the market and it looks like Subaru hit it right with this one.
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:28 PM   #22
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I am glad they made some improvements...especially to the interior...I thought the GR interior may have been more modern but was a step back from the GD in terms of quality materials. However this car just doesn't scream Impreza. I am too used to the Impreza standing out on its own. This looks like a baby Legacy...which isn't totally bad. I like the current Legacy...but I am just more accustomed to them having their own identities. The front overhang looks lengthier...but that may just be the pictures. I can't wait to see the WRX and STi models but I am just not sure Subaru did what comes natural to them in terms of the vehicles appearance more than they just attempted to make the vehicle fit in with other Economy vehicles. Subaru's designs although at times a bit quirky help the Impreza brand to stand out amongst other vehicles. I am sure it will grow on me but the last 3 generations and their refreshes didn't need to grow on me.

Last edited by Gixhost; 10-03-2011 at 07:34 PM.
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:33 PM   #23
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For second I thought this was the new body style... phew.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:46 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ricochet View Post
This 2.0 is not built for turbo applications. As Subaru told us, (paraphrasing) "the 2.0 has been optimized to be naturally aspirated." and they went on to say that parts of the motor are as "strong as they need to be for the given power output." i.e.: if you put a turbo onto it, you're just asking for a world of hurt.
The fuel cut at 3500 was pretty telling. I'm wondering if this is because they went to a chain versus a timing belt?
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:48 PM   #25
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very dissapointed, ugly
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