Overview & Reviews
The Subaru Impreza WRX is the high-performance version of the otherwise practical-minded Subaru Impreza sedan and hatchback. The WRX designation, which is short for World Rally Experimental, signifies the presence of a higher-horsepower turbocharged engine and a sport-tuned suspension that increases the car's performance envelope. The Impreza WRX STI model, meanwhile, is a product of the automaker's in-house tuning division, Subaru Tecnica International, and offers even more power along with a more advanced all-wheel-drive system than enhances cornering grip.
Subaru's history in rally racing has certainly influenced the design of the Impreza WRX and WRX STI, and what these all-wheel-drive performance cars lack in physical beauty they give back in the form of a thrilling driving experience. That said, performance also takes priority over cabin quality and ride comfort. Compared with other sedans and hatchbacks you might consider in this price range, the Subaru Impreza WRX and WRX STI come up short in refinement.
Current Subaru Impreza WRX Specs
Every Subaru Impreza WRX has four doors, regardless of whether you choose the sedan or hatchback body style. Essentially, the WRX comes in four trim levels: base, Premium, Limited and STI, all of which are available in either body style. A fifth trim level, the STI Limited, is only available as a sedan.
The WRX base, Premium and Limited models are powered by a 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that produces 265 horsepower and 244 pound-feet of torque. That engine is hooked up to a five-speed manual transmission that drives all four wheels through a standard AWD system. The STI and STI Limited models have a more potent version of the 2.5-liter turbocharged engine rated at 305 hp and 290 lb-ft of torque. A six speed manual is standard on the STI models, and the AWD system incorporates front and rear limited-slip differentials to help the car get the extra power to the ground.
Standard feature highlights on the Subaru Impreza WRX include 17-inch alloy wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, automatic climate control, sport front seats, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, 60/40 split-folding rear seats, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity and a six-speaker CD player with USB/iPod integration and an auxiliary audio input. The Premium trim adds foglights, a sunroof and a trunk lid spoiler (for sedan models). The Limited further adds xenon headlights and leather upholstery.
The WRX STI trim loses the sunroof, but highlights include 18-inch BBS wheels, Brembo brakes, an even more aggressively tuned suspension and a bigger hood scoop to feed more air to the engine's intercooler. The top-of-the-range STI Limited gets the sunroof back, along with different 18-inch wheels, foglights and leather upholstery.
The WRX has slightly less cargo space than the standard Subaru Impreza, but it's still capable of hauling around your stuff, especially in the hatchback configuration. Unfortunately, there's quite a bit of hard plastic in the cabin, and we've been unimpressed by the workmanship in test vehicles we've examined. In addition, the optional navigation system (available on all trim levels) has a dated interface and can be frustrating to use.
Used Subaru Impreza WRX Models
The Subaru Impreza WRX and WRX STI have been on sale in their current form since the 2008 model year. You can get additional information on these used Impreza WRXs and WRX STIs by checking out our review of the full Subaru Impreza line.
User Reviews:Showing 1 through 10 of 10.00
great value in sport compact - 2013 Subaru Impreza WRX
By ejhara - September 21 - 6:33 am
Fine car, starting with styling. Has functional hood scoop and side vents for cooling turbo and brakes. 360 tour takes you by four doors and nice spoiler plus four exhaust tips. Subarus tend to be durable (I've had five). AWD and hill-holder on manual shift are great features. Secure-feeling, nicely-handling car, even when you are not putting your foot into the throttle. When you do that, hang on! Great power for a 2.5 liter.
Good car but not great - 2014 Subaru Impreza WRX
By hookshot - March 25 - 9:43 pm
I got the 2014 hatchback STI in white. Engine: strong mid-range power, but weak top end. Some turbo lag, power comes on around 3k rims and dies off around 5.5k rpm. Redline at 7k. Fuel economy is poor even in intelligent mode which saps the power. I avg 22 mpg and I mainly drive like a grandma. Expect 18 mpg avg if you have heavy foot. Exterior: what can I say it looks aggressive. I swapped the gun metals for gold bbs and it looks good. Custom molded the base impreza mud flaps to fit. Looks great. Interior: the stock Bluetooth sucks. Seats are good not brz good. Nice overall not great. Hatchback folds down, tons of space, although u don't wanna stratch that leather.
Awesome Ride! Won't Let you down! - 2014 Subaru Impreza WRX
By Jeremy Doss - September 10 - 4:13 am
This car is pretty much awesome in every aspect, especially with Subaru's awesome drive train and other warranties. It's super reliable and he'll a fast! Not to mention it's got a huge community for modding. The only drawbacks were the stereo head unit and some interior rattle. If that bugs you do what I did and get a new head unit and it'll sound great!
Subaru Sti - 2013 Subaru Impreza WRX
By lucas14 - June 12 - 1:57 am
The Subaru WRX Sti limited was about what I expected. I bought the care to be my daily driver. It is very fun to drive and more comfortable than I would have expected. Paying the extra money for the limited package was well worth it. Heated seats adds some extra comfort in the winter time, and the sunroof will be nice in the summer. I'm not impressed with the stereo system, but I can easily be remedied with some aftermarket additions.
Up North Performance Car - 2013 Subaru Impreza WRX
By ejhara - June 6 - 10:37 pm
If you want an awd performance car for year-round use in snowy climates--one that is affordable--this is one of few out there. Just returned from a 1000 mile trip: close to 30 mpg, with no particular gas-saving driving. Always power easily available; handling is quite quick and good. Premium package an attractive choice: can't beat a sunroof, and the short-throw shifter seems desirable. WR blue is a great color. Spoiler gets in the way sometimes as far as backing up, but it looks better than STI version. One negative: exhaust noise/rumble. (I had 2007 Forester turbo, which had a more-pleasant sound.) 20 somethings love this car: Fast and Furious influence. Hill holder good. Good purchase!
2013 STI Limited - 2013 Subaru Impreza WRX
By aggarcia - September 16 - 11:55 am
Most hard core performance buyers are not looking at Edmunds, but I did not like several things they said in their review. In the performance category, not much besides a supercar offers as much performance for the dollar than the STI. The AWD, SI Drive, and adjustable differentials, and 6 speed transmission are world class. The interior uses cheaper materials, but this is based in the Impreza platform. You buy a STI for the performance not to impress any one. Right now Subaru has a 4 month waiting period to get a STI or WRX, so someone must be wanting them. I enjoy everyday I hop into my STI and get to make going places and experience. The factroy NAV/SAt system sounds pretty good to me.
It's my dream car - 2013 Subaru Impreza WRX
By Jason LaMar - May 12 - 12:29 pm
For years all I wanted was a WRX. When I finally got mine it didn't disappoint. Stock the car is amazing, but if you start upgrading, there's nothing better. My 18 month old loves the car, when he sees it, he goes, vroom vroom.
2013 WRX Hatchback - 2013 Subaru Impreza WRX
By leob1 - September 7 - 3:55 am
This is a very practical, fun, AWD performance car with outstanding value for the money. A 0-60 time of 4.7 and ability to surpass 60 easily in second gear gives lots of confidence merging into traffic. The whine of the turbo is intoxicating combined with the rumble of the flat four boxer engine. It is super practical with the hatchback and can accommodate large items easily (seats fold down); big screen TV's, large boxes, mountain bike, etc. The hatch also works as excellent rain protection when you are loading (unexpected surprise). The AWD is incredible for inclement weather, but be sure to get at least all season tires so you can stop and turn in easier in snow (had stock summer tires).
gas miliage - 2013 Subaru Impreza WRX
By davebclawson - April 21 - 11:10 am
This car gets 36 to 40 mpg at 55 miles per hour At 60 miles per hour it gets 33.3 to 37 mpg. At 75 miles per hour it only gets 26 to 29 mpg.
Last of it's kind - 2014 Subaru Impreza WRX
By bnewton_xp - January 2 - 7:55 pm
After owning a 2007 STI, I consider the 2014 STI a great improvement. Much improved seats and lower road noise over 2007 STI. 2014 STI is a bit more refined than 2007 STI, however the 2007 STI car was a bit more raw and in-your-face. I chose the hatchback over the sedan as it offers the best of both worlds in performance and utility. Plus the hatchback does not appear to draw as much attention as the sedan with the big wing. While I could've waited for the new 2015 STI, but with the next STI/WRX being more road focus I felt like the next car would lose little bit of it's rally heritage and that what makes STI unique.