The 2016 New York International Auto Show is almost here and bits of news is starting to trickle in. The next company to have a big reveal in the New York show is Subaru, and they are revealing the all new 2017 Subaru Impreza! There’s only a single teaser picture so far and it’s of the headlight and front fascia, which looks to be more edgy and sculpted than the current model. According to the press release:
The Impreza has been completely redesigned inside and out, from upgraded in-car technology and a more spacious interior to its sleek new body design. The updated model will include signature Subaru features such as Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive and award-winning safety technology.
Both the sedan and the 5-door hatchback variant will be unveiled at the Jacob K Javits Center on March 23rd, 2016. Expect the 5th iteration of the Impreza to be based off Subaru’s modular architecture, the Subaru Global Platform, which will be used across much of Subaru’s lineup, such as the Outback and the Forester. This modular architecture is part of the “Prominence 2020” management vision, and will join the other core design tenets of the Subaru brand such as the boxer engine, symmetrical all-wheel drive, and EyeSight (sensor based technologies).
There are no details yet about the powerplant for the new platform, but we don’t expect anything out of the ordinary. It will probably be the 2.0 liter boxer four that’s used for the current generation of Imprezas. If we were to gamble as to what the WRX and WRX STi variants would have, we’d bet our lifesavings on them having some sort of turbocharged horizontally-opposed four cylinder engines. However, there’s a slight possibility that it might have something different. Bear with us here…
The Subaru Global Platform, being a modular architecture, has been designed to support various models and will be capable of supporting other non-gasoline platforms such as hybrids and pure electric vehicles. There’s a potential here that the WRX STi can become a hybrid utilizing electric motors to drive one of the axles, most likely the rear. This is not out of the realm of possibility as there are credible rumors of Subaru testing a mid-engined hybrid vehicle in BRZ guise. Supplementing the potent turbocharged boxer engine with torquey electric motors will surely make for an incredibly fun all-wheel-drive vehicle.
Whatever Subaru does, we are certain someone has given them the brochure to the new Ford Focus RS, which will produce 350 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. Ford has designed the Focus RS solely to reign as the Hatchback King. If Subaru cares about holding the keys to the Hatchback realm, they NEED to make the next STi a hybrid, and it needs to make more power than the Focus RS.