2014 SUBARU WRX AUSTRALIA
Subaru's new WRX performer will make its Australian debut early next year, folllowing a global debut next month.
Speaking with TMR this week, Subaru Australia Managing Director Nick Senior confirmed a first quarter launch for the next-generation hero.
The all-new 2014 WRX was first previewed as a low-slung and muscular concept earlier this year, although our recent spy photos reveal that the production model will share the proportions of Subaru's regular Impreza sedan.
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, 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.
Speaking at a media lunch yesterday, Mr Senior said that a key goal with developing the new WRX was to win brand-new buyers without deterring existing fans.
The market for powerful small cars continues to grow, but Mr Senior said he is confident of winning customers to the WRX.
"I have driven the new car and I am confident it will not disappoint fans. I won't go into details today, but I also know that the changes and features in the new model will also win over new buyers," he said.
"We don't want to 'dumb down' its performance edge. It will impress the fans."
Mr Senior added that the success of the BRZ coupe also played a major role in establishing local plans for the new WRX, although a final price point has not been locked in.
He said that while he initially wavered at the idea of bringing the rear-wheel-drive BRZ into Subaru Australia's otherwise exclusively all-wheel-drive range, it has successfully attracted new and younger buyers to the brand - buyers who could eventually need a larger and more practical car.
A turbocharged version of of the BRZ's FA 2.0 litre boxer engine will likely greet those buyers when they move up to a five-seater, 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.