Subaru WRX (March)
The fourth-generation WRX becomes the first to fully break away from the compact Impreza to become a standalone model. On sale in Australia – the third-biggest WRX market globally after Japan and the US – in March, 2014 marks 20 years since the launch of the original WRX. The new model will be offered exclusively as a sedan and is tipped to start slightly above the old car’s $39,990 entry price. Its turbocharged 2.0-litre flat four-cylinder engine produces 199kW and 349Nm, giving it a modest 4kW/6Nm advantage over its predecessor’s 2.5-litre unit. Subaru says the sprint from 0-100km/h will take “just over five seconds”, making it the quickest WRX ever. The standard manual transmission gains an extra gear over its predecessor, taking the ratio count to six, and for the first time the WRX will also be available with a CVT. Subaru says the new car’s stiffer body and suspension, and the addition of multi-mode electronic stability control and active torque vectoring, contribute to a more capable, predictable and comfortable dynamic package, with its cabin promising higher material quality and more tech, including a large central display screen.
Subaru WRX STI (April)
Based on the all-new fourth-generation Subaru WRX, the next-generation WRX STI will raise the performance marker another notch with more power and torque, upgraded handling hardware and more aggressive styling. On sale in Australia from April, the new STI will use an uprated version of the base car's turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine (replacing the 2.5-litre unit used by the outgoing models) to power all four wheels via a six-speed manual transmission. With the standard WRX already claiming a 0-100km/h time around 0.2 seconds quicker than its predecessor, the STI’s extra grunt should help the new model better the 4.9sec sprint of the outgoing $54,990 STI.