2018 Subaru Impreza Driving Impressions

Among everyday compacts, the Impreza stands out for its balance and handling. That’s largely due to the design of the horizontally opposed engine that can be mounted lower and farther back in the chassis than an inline four-cylinder. The suspension changes in 2017 help keep the new Impreza at the top of the handling heap, with 50 percent less body roll than the previous generation.

Active torque vectoring helps make the Sport model the choice for more enthusiastic drivers. Low-profile tires yield a relatively comfortable ride, while enhancing roadholding.

We just wish it had more power. You really have to keep your foot down to pass other cars on the highway. Although many Impreza buyers might not notice. The engine is at least quiet, and is certainly able to keep up a cruising pace. It gets louder as it works harder.

The ride is comfortable and satisfying.

The CVT is just about the best, and with the manual mode on top models, it can be paddle-shifted through seven simulated gears. The all-wheel drive is seamless. It’s always there but you never know it, until you hit snow or ice, at which time you praise yourself for being smart in buying a Subaru.

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