Introducing the closest look yet at the next-generation Subaru WRX – the Impreza Sedan Concept unveiled overnight in Los Angeles.
At this point Subaru fans may be cynical, recalling the sexy WRX Concept unveiled at the 2013 New York motor show and how it morphed into the, erm, rather less sexy production Rex the following year.
However although it doesn’t wear the famous three-letter badge, this Impreza Concept actually points to the WRX Concept of two years back in several ways. It all but confirms that the 2013 show car was a very early look further ahead to the 2017 model – we just didn’t know it at the time.
Note the similarities between the 2013 WRX Concept and 2015 Impreza Concept: the C-shaped headlights blades and rear tail-lights; the way the bonnet line morphs into the A-pillar; the side character crease that crests from the tail-lights into the rear door; and the rear bootlid with an integrated lip spoiler.
What Subaru now confirms is that this ruby-red sedan “is a design concept car previewing the next-generation Impreza.”
“Its compact body features a blend of bold expressions of Subaru’s Dynamic & Solid design elements and a quality feel beyond its class – hinting at the design direction not only of the new Impreza but of Subaru’s future models as a whole,” the company adds in a statement.
Compared with the current WRX, the Impreza Concept sports a 20mm longer wheelbase over a body reduced in length by 40mm. The low and wide stance is shown by the 85mm extra body width and height reduced by 22mm.
Guard-filling 40-aspect 19-inch alloy wheels certainly help its stance.
The next generation Impreza is expected to lob in 2017, but us enthusiasts may have to wait until 2019 for the WRX and STI performance variants given usual Subaru timelines.
It will certainly arrive before the year indicated in the brand’s ‘Prominence 2020’ mid-term management vision plan announced in May 2014, the next Impreza being tagged as “the first of Subaru’s next-generation strategic vehicles”.