New Subaru Impreza previewed with 5-door concept at Tokyo show

Could the next Impreza turn around the model's desirability?

The Subaru Impreza has long been an evo staple, with turbocharged, all-wheel drive saloons and hatchbacks redefining our expectations of cross-country pace – particularly when the weather turns.

More recently however, the Impreza – and dedicated WRX STi spin-offs no longer carrying the Impreza badge – have seemed less relevant. Regular hot hatchbacks have become more powerful and more desirable, while the Impreza and its ilk have failed to advance the performance car game.

There’s no guarantee the latest Impreza five-door hatchback will change that series of events. In concept form at least, there’s little indication an exciting turbocharged model is due, for a start.

But for the first time in a long while, the Impreza’s styling could be considered genuinely appealing, trading awkward lines, bizarre headlights and bland proportions for something a little more rakish.

There’s even a hint towards performance Imprezas of old, with the concept’s distinctive flared wheel arches and stocky proportions. Current Subaru design signatures are retained, including the hexagonal grille design and the latest iteration of the firm’s ‘hawk-eye’ headlights.

While the car’s look should point strongly towards the styling of the next-gen Impreza, Subaru says the concept also hints at the brand’s design direction as a whole.

That look was further previewed by the Viziv Future concept also on Subaru’s Tokyo stand. Further from production than the Impreza, it’s a hint at the look of the next Forester – but was largely present to demonstrate Subaru’s vision for future autonomous driving and active safety features.

Head over to our Tokyo motor show hub page for more news, images and concepts from the Tokyo show.

Recommended

Driving Colin McRae's Subaru Impreza S3 WRC 97
Subaru Impreza

Driving Colin McRae's Subaru Impreza S3 WRC 97

This Impreza and Colin McRae formed one of the most iconic pairings in World Rally Championship history. Now it’s Henry Catchpole’s turn to get behind…
10 Oct 2020
2021 Abarth 595 range detailed – subtle changes across the range
2021 Abarth 595 range - front
Abarth 595

2021 Abarth 595 range detailed – subtle changes across the range

Abarth’s aging 595 gets a nip and tuck for 2021, no sign of a hot 500e in the wings
22 Jan 2021
UK-based tuner Litchfield announces Toyota GR Yaris tuning programme
Litchfield GR Yaris test
Toyota

UK-based tuner Litchfield announces Toyota GR Yaris tuning programme

One of our favourite tuners is getting its hands on one of our favourite new cars
12 Jan 2021

Most Popular

Lotus Type 131 production confirmed for this year
Type 131 render
Lotus

Lotus Type 131 production confirmed for this year

All-new sports car to rival the iconic Porsche 911 and set the blueprint for Lotus's future models
25 Jan 2021
SSC Tuatara achieves 282.9mph average, faster than Koenigsegg’s Agera RS
SSC Tuatara
News

SSC Tuatara achieves 282.9mph average, faster than Koenigsegg’s Agera RS

It’s quite some way off 2020’s debunked 331mph claim, but 282.9mph is still enough to make the SSC Tuatara the world’s fastest production car, unoffic…
27 Jan 2021
Ferrari ‘Breadvan’ returns – Niels van Roij reveals 550-based homage
Niels Van Roij Design Breadvan hommage
Ferrari 550

Ferrari ‘Breadvan’ returns – Niels van Roij reveals 550-based homage

UK-based Niels van Roij Design has unveiled its take on the iconic 1962 racer, based on the Ferrari 550 Maranello
26 Jan 2021