The Price is Right

2021 Subaru Impreza keeps its standard AWD, goes up just $100 in price

The 2021 Subaru Impreza continues to come standard with all-wheel drive.

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America Inc.

For the 2021 model year, the Subaru Impreza will continue to be the only compact passenger car in America with standard all-wheel drive (AWD). The 2021 Subaru Impreza will also only cost $100 more than the 2020 model despite a performance upgrade.

Subaru has priced the base model Impreza to start at $18,795. It is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 152 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque. Subaru has made a continuously variable transmission (CVT) available on all trim levels but a five-speed manual is standard on this model.

The base model has a good list of standard features including a 6.5-inch infotinament touch screen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, power windows with auto up/down for driver and front passenger, tilt and telescoping steering column, keyless entry, power door locks, 4.2-inch driver information screen, tire pressure monitoring system, rear seat reminder technology and EyeSigh Driver Assist Technology. The five-door version of the Impreza starts at $19,295.

Upgrading to the Impreza Premium ($22,195 for sedan, $22,695 for five-door) will get you all the features of the base model along with a standard CVT, steering wheel with paddle shifters, fog lights, All-Weather Package (heated front seats, windshield, and exterior mirrors), and roof rails. New for 2021, the Impreza Premium includes SI-Drive performance management system.

Impreza Premium
The popular Impreza Premium trim, priced at $22,195 for sedan and $22,695 for 5-door includes all features from the Base model with Lineartronic CVT and adds 7-speed manual mode function with steering wheel paddle shifters. The Premium also adds the STARLINK 6.5-inch Multimedia Plus, STARLINK Safety and Security features, fog lights and the All-Weather Package with heated front seats, windshield and exterior mirrors. The 5-door models are equipped with roof rails as standard.

New for 2021, the Impreza Premium includes SI-Drive performance management system, which allows the driver to maximize engine performance, control, and efficiency and includes two selectable drive modes. Buyers can add an option package ($1,970) to their Impreza Premium that includes a power moonroof, blind spot detection with lane change assist, rear cross-traffic alert, keyless entry, push-button start, and six-way power-adjustable driver's seat.

Impreza Sport is also available in sedan ($23,595) and five-door ($22,995) body types. It has unique suspension tuning, 18-inch machine-finish alloy wheels, and active torque vectoring. The Sport hatchback comes standard with a five-speed manual transmission but the sedan comes with the CVT and SI-Drive performance. Buyers can upgrade to the CVT in the five-door model. Both styles include a 8.0-inch infotainment touch screen, keyless entry, push-button start, aluminum pedals, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel, shift handle, and CVT shift boot.

Buyers can add an option package ($2,470) to the Impreza Sport that includes a power moonroof, blind spot detection with lane change assist and rear cross-traffic alert, a Harmon Kardon amplifier and speakers, and a six-way power-adjustable driver's seat.

Upping the ante, the Impreza Limited is priced from $25,895 for sedan and $26,395 five-door. The model builds on the Premium and Sport models. It offers standard LED headlights and daytime running lights, a leather-trimmed interior with double-stitched door armrests and instrument panel, a six-way power-adjustable driver's seat, automatic climate control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, keyless entry, and push-button start. Subaru's SI-Drive performance management system is standard.

In addition to its roster of standard EyeSight safety tech, Subaru adds reverse automatic braking, blind spot detection with lane change assist and rear cross-traffic alert, automatic high beams, and steering responsive headlights to the standard equipment list.

An option package ($2,350) includes navigation, Harmon Kardon premium audio, and a power moonroof is available.

The 2021 Impreza arrives at Subaru dealerships in October. All prices are reported without the standard $925 destination charge that applies in most states.

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What was your best car-related experience this year?

Chris Teague

This year has been a lot of things, but it hasn't been boring. Even if we focus only on the car world, there's plenty to talk about, from microchip-related new vehicle shortages to the wave of new electric vehicles hitting the market. That leaves us with a question for all of you: What was the best or most memorable car moment for you in 2021? I'll get the conversation started.

Porsche Cayenne GTS My SoCal Cayenne śaw snow for the first time in its nearly 200k-mile life last week.Chris Teague

I'd spent a good portion of 2021 wanting a new-old car to drive when I wasn't testing a new vehicle. That's harder than you'd think for someone who thinks, talks, and writes about cars all day, because there are so many interesting, risky, and downright funky options out there in every price range. The added headache for me was that I'd chosen to shop for a "fun" car in one of the most volatile car markets ever seen. Even the extremely high-mileage "untouchable" European cars I wanted to buy were commanding ridiculous prices.

After a solid few months of waffling between various rattletrap Mercedes-AMG, BMW M, and Audi S/RS cars, I landed on an option that had escaped me before: The Porsche Cayenne. First-generation Cayennes are a real bargain now, but the 955/957 (Porsche's internal code for the SUVs) can experience major problems that occur with or without regular maintenance and care. I was determined to buy one, and wasn't overly concerned about mileage, as long as I could count the number of owners on one hand. There was a beautiful 2009 Cayenne GTS with 90,000 miles but nine owners, a gorgeous 2004 Cayenne Turbo with a concerning engine tick, and many more just like them. Finally, I decided to risky-click a 196,000-mile Cayenne GTS in Southern California. It had one owner and one dealer-owner for a month or two prior to sale, its condition looked decent in photos, and I was able to negotiate a reasonable enough price that shipping it from San Diego to Maine wasn't a huge problem.

Porsche Cayenne GTS The pics look great, but hands-on tells another story.Chris Teague

I had two traveling Euro mechanics check the car out, and both confirmed that it was well-worn but mechanically sound, so I jumped. Ten days later, on a snowy, icy, dark Maine afternoon, the Cayenne arrived. Cosmetically, there were a few things the dealer and mechanics failed to mention, but overall, it looked good. The SUV passed Maine safety and emissions testing without problem, got a new set of Michelins, and I was on my way.

Porsche Cayenne GTS I'm in danger, but thankfully this should be a reasonable fix.Chris Teague

A few days of driving revealed what I was really in for. A check engine light revealed a camshaft position sensor error and the Cayenne displayed a nasty vibration at idle. A new sensor and motor mounts, and I'm on my way. I'll update you as more things break or miraculously work, but I want to hear your memories from 2021.

Email me at chris@automotivemap.com, and I will compile the best and most interesting stories for a story on New Year's Day. May you all have a wonderful 2022.

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The Solterra is Subaru's first EV.

Subaru

Months of teases and rumors are over, as Subaru has just taken wraps off of its Solterra electric SUV. The EV was developed in conjunction with Toyota, whose own electrified SUV debuted earlier this year. Subaru unveiled the SUV at an event in Japan, and while the U.S. version won't be shown until next week, this international reveal gives us a great idea of what we'll see.

Subaru Solterra The Solterra is nearly identical to the Toyota bZ4X in several key areas.Subaru

Since Subaru worked jointly with Toyota on the EV program, the Solterra is more than a close relative of Toyota's bZ4X – it's nearly identical, down to the powertrain. Up front, the Subaru EV splits from its Toyota counterpart with fake grille panels, but the vehicle's sides and overall shape are practically interchangeable. The Solterra's interior is almost a mirror image of the bZ4X, but there's no yoke steering wheel.

The Japanese specs aren't remarkable, but they're nothing to sneeze at, either. The crossover comes with a 71.4 kWh battery that should deliver a 250-mile range by EPA standards. Two drivetrains are offered, including a front-wheel drive version with a 150-kW motor and an all-wheel drive model with two 80-kW motors.

Subaru Solterra Subaru will show the Solterra at the LA Auto Show next week.Subaru

Subaru will announce the North American version of the Solterra next week at the Los Angeles Auto Show. There may be minor differences in equipment and appearance, but the Subaru EV we see here should be close to the vehicle shown off in Japan. Subaru says that Solterra deliveries will start in mid-2022.

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