The long wait for Subaru's third-generation WRX performer could soon be over, with reports this week pointing to a debut at November's Los Angeles Auto Show.
The new WRX was teased as a muscly low-slung concept back in March, although recent spy photos have revealed the new hero will wear more conventional proportions.
Now, a new report with industry paper Automotive News suggests the new WRX and WRX STI models will appear in LA, ahead of an early 2014 showroom launch.
The report adds that Subaru will also drop the five-door hatch version of both performance models, focusing on a sedan-only approach.
Subaru shocked fans when it revealed the current-generation WRX and WRX STI models in hatch form only, although a sedan version joined the range in the following year.
What can we expect from the new models?
As our spy photos reveal, the concept's beastly proportions and mean countenance have been softened for the production model, just as the Impreza Design Concept copped a significant 'dumbing down' before hitting showrooms.
The photos highlight a narrow letterbox grille, although an insert along the bottom edge obscures a taller design - as shown in our renderings. This insert may feature on the production model, however.
The WRX's trademark pumped guards can be seen along the sedan's profile (we may have exaggerated them a little... Ed), while the rear-end will get its own unique lighting design.
The usual assortment of sports elements feature elsewhere, including a deep bonnet intake, new bumpers and skirts, and a tall wing on the rear deck.
A turbocharged version of the FA 2.0 litre boxer engine found in the BRZ/Toyota 86 twins is expected, but with a Subaru-specific direct injection system (unlike BRZ/86’s Toyota system).
The move from the current WRX’s 2.5 litre displacement is being driven by fuel economy and efficiency demands.
In WRX form, outputs will be easily maintained at or above the current model’s 195kW/343Nm by combining the direct injection with more modern turbo technology.
Global timing for the new WRX is still to be officially announced, although Subaru insiders suggest we could see the new model in Australia before the end of March next year.