We love: handsome exterior, extensive equipment, Eyesight, single drivetrain option

Not so much: stupid menus, difficult to access USB

MY17 Subaru ImprezaKISS, aka Keep It Simple Stupid, is exactly what Subaru did with the new Impreza. They took the new Global Platform, glued a 2.0L boxer engine in, attached all 4 wheels to the road via a CVT transmission and symmetrical AWD system. Subaru is the only one in class with AWD making it unique. To top it off, the Subaru Corporation, nee Fuji Heavy Industries, wrapped a glamorous exterior around a classy cabin, and hey presto, Impreza is reborn.

We were impressed with the new Subaru when we took a turn in it at the local launch (read about it here), but what feels great at launch can often feel different when you’re driving it for a week, or three. This is one of the most thorough tests we’ve done and spent a week in each of the three grades.

Not only were our initial impressions confirmed, but Impreza excelled.

The body comes in sedan or hatch form. The hatch implies a coupe form with a sweeping roof meeting the nipped up waistline at a kink on the “D” pillar. As handsome as this profile is, the sedan does it for me. The pert rump sports a smart set of tail lights with LED running lights up front. It is hard to get across in words, but the car looks solid and expensive, and premium. It feels like it costs far more than it actually does.

We listed the price and trim level details in our launch article.

On the top models, you can expect lots of goodies like: Adaptive Cruise Control with queue assist, Lane departure warning, Lane sway warning, Lead vehicle start alert, Pre-collision braking system, MY17 Subaru ImprezaPre-collision brake assist, Pre-collision throttle management, Pre-collision steering assist, Brake-light recognition, to name but a few.

Many of these features are provided by Subaru’s stereo cameras Eyesight system. Subaru have every right to be proud of this innovation. Even high-end Euro brands use radar-like sensors, with very few having cameras. Try finding another brand with stereo cameras.

The system sits above the rear-view mirror in the top centre of the windscreen and monitors the road ahead. This lofty perch affords good views of the way ahead and will see brake lights and pedestrians, and slam on the anchors if needed. The smart cruise also uses the cameras to keep a respectful distance from the car in front and will slow you all the way down to a stop in traffic, all without fuss. If you don’t move off in a few seconds the system goes to stand-by mode which requires the driver to blip the throttle or the cruise control button in order to move off again. A MY17 Subaru Impreza