2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S Review
Price & Equipment:8.5
Performance & Economy:7
Ride & Handling:7
Interior & Practicality:8
Service & Warranty:8
What we like:
  • Good value for money
  • Quite well equipped
  • Good interior practicality
What we don't like:
  • Lethargic and thirsty drivetrain
  • Underdamped ride quality
  • Boot isn't huge
7.7DiscoverAuto Rating:

In the current automotive market, with SUV sales booming and car makers seemingly refusing to commit to future ICE products thanks to the apparent impending EV boom, it’s no shock to see many car models being shelved. Yet probably thanks to the hugely popular Crosstrek small SUV, Subaru has seen an opportunity to develop a new generation of Impreza small car and it’s recently gone on sale. Is the top-spec 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S the best small car on sale today? Let’s find out.

While Subaru might claim that the new Impreza is ‘all-new’, it’s not actually. Like the Crosstrek that it shares so much with, the platform, mechanicals and even a lot of the body is actually the same as the previous shape model with the development budget going to suspension upgrades, new technology and changes to the design. While that may disappoint some fans who wanted an all-new Impreza, we’re thankful that the Impreza is still around because some of its rivals – like the Ford Focus – are not.

How much does the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S cost to buy?

While the new Impreza range is priced from $31,490 plus on-road costs, the top-spec 2.0S we’re testing here asks $37,990 +ORC (or around $42,500 drive away, depending on location).

Impreza 2.0S standard equipment:

  • 18-inch alloy wheels with a space-saver spare wheel
  • Sunroof
  • Keyless entry with push button start
  • Dusk-sensing automatic steering-responsive LED headlights
  • Rain-sensing automatic wipers
  • Heated and electric-folding mirrors
  • Black leather upholstery
  • Leather-wrapped steering wheel and gearknob
  • 10-way electric driver’s seat
  • Heated front seats
  • Driver monitoring system with facial recognition
  • 11.6-inch touchscreen
  • Wired and wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • Satellite navigation
  • AM/FM/DAB+ digital radio
  • Bluetooth calling and audio streaming
  • 10-speaker Harman Kardon sound system
  • Wireless phone charger
  • 2x USB-C and 2x USB-A charging ports
  • Auto-dimming rear mirror

Impreza 2.0S safety equipment:

  • Nine airbags
  • Auto emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian and cyclist detection
  • Auto emergency steering
  • Lane keep assist with lane centring
  • Adaptive cruise control with stop and go functionality
  • Leading vehicle departure alert
  • Speed sign recognition with intelligent speed limiting
  • Blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert
  • Driver attention monitoring
  • Auto high beam
  • Low-speed reverse automatic braking
  • Rear parking sensors
  • 360-degree camera

The 2024 Impreza range (or its Crosstrek sibling) is yet to be tested by ANCAP, though the mechanically identical previous Impreza achieved five stars based on older ANCAP criteria in 2016.

Impreza 2.0S colour range (all no cost):

  • Oasis Blue
  • Pure Red (fitted to our test car)
  • Cystal Black
  • Sapphire Blue
  • Magnetite Grey
  • Ice Silver
  • Crystal White

Regardless of colour, black leather upholstery is the only interior colour for the Impreza 2.0S.

Despite small cars falling out of favour with new car buyers, there are still a number of rivals to the Impreza, including the Hyundai i30, Kia Cerato and Volkswagen Golf. But we consider the Toyota Corolla ZR (priced from around $43,500 drive away, depending on location) and the Mazda3 G25 GT (priced from around $43,000 drive away) to be the Impreza 2.0S’ main rivals. It’s here that the Impreza presents as good value for money, as it offers more features than its rivals.

While the Corolla is a hybrid and has rear air vents over, a head-up display, live services and a digital driver’s display over the Subaru, the cheaper Impreza is all-wheel drive and also features a larger centre screen, a 360-degree camera, a sunroof and more airbags. Compared to the Mazda3 GT, the Mazda adds a head-up display and rear air vents over the Subaru, but the Impreza adds the aforementioned all-wheel drive system and sunroof, as well as more airbags and the 360-degree camera as well.

How fuel efficient is the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S?

Under the bonnet of the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S is a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine that makes 115kW of power (at 6,000rpm) and 196Nm of torque (at 4,000rpm). It’s mated to a CVT automatic transmission and Subaru’s famed symmetrical all-wheel drive system, while the claimed 0-100km/h sprint time is 10 seconds flat. In comparison, the Corolla features a 1.8-litre hybrid drivetrain making 103kW of power, while the Mazda3 features a 139kW 2.5-litre petrol engine and both are front-wheel drive only in Australia. The Corolla uses an eCVT transmission and the Mazda a six-speed auto.

The ‘FB20’ engine is identical to the one used in the previous shape Impreza with identical outputs, though the Impreza weighs 53kg more in 2.0S spec than before, so it feels a bit slower than its predecessor. Around town, it’s fine – the CVT does its best to keep revs low – but introduce higher speeds into the equation and the Impreza can feel lethargic. Floor the throttle, the revs spike and there isn’t much action to match the higher revs and as a result, highway overtaking can take some planning.

The CVT automatic transmission in the Impreza is fairly typical for a CVT, with a rubbery dynamic when setting off, though it also has eight stepped ratios to make it feel more like a regular torque converter transmission. It feels more natural than the Corolla’s eCVT gearbox, but the six-speed torque converter auto in the Mazda3 is more intuitive and feels more natural.

The claimed combined fuel consumption for the Impreza 2.0S is 7.5L/100km with CO2 emissions rated at 170g/km versus just 4.0L/100km for the Corolla and 6.6L/100km for the Mazda3. We returned a disappointing 10.4L/100km in purely urban driving, though our test car had less than 2,000km on the clock. Helping running costs is that the Impreza can run on 91RON regular unleaded, though its 50-litre fuel tank is 13L less than the Crosstrek.

How comfortable is the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S?

As we’ve come to expect from modern regular Subaru products, the driving experience of the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S is relaxed and comfortable. Despite the large sporty-looking 18-inch wheels, there’s no sporting pretensions with it and for those just wanting a comfortable driving experience, it’s great. Having said that, both the Corolla and Mazda3 offer up a more involving driving experience, while the Corolla in particular rides better – it’s firmer than the Subaru, but its body control is much better.

Elsewhere in the driving experience, the Impreza’s road noise levels are lower than the Corolla – though not the impressively hushed Mazda3 – and its visibility is a lot better than both of its rivals here. Subaru’s ‘EyeSight’ active safety equipment is also some of the most comprehensive on the market with a long list of standard inclusions. Of particular highlight is its adaptive cruise control system, which isn’t too cautious and its traffic jam assist works a treat.

How practical is the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S?

Anybody who’s sat in a recent Subaru product will find the cabin of the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S instantly familiar thanks to a shared layout with other other Subaru products like the Forester and Outback. The quality inside the Impreza doesn’t hit the same highs as those cars, however, with the only soft touch materials in the cabin smattered atop the dashboard and faux leather covering the front doors. In typical Subaru fashion, the Impreza’s cabin feels built to last, but both the Corolla and particularly the Mazda3 offer up better quality insides.

Centre of the cabin is an 11.6-inch touchscreen with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, satellite navigation and digital radio, though no live services for features like over-the-air updates and live traffic for the navigation, which the Corolla features. It’s identical to the system used in the Outback and Forester, so screen quality is good but it can be a bit slow to react to touch. The Impreza features a proper 360-degree camera and unlike the Crosstrek that it’s almost identical to, it features both the reversing camera and the 360-degree camera image on the screen at the same time but they’re both quite small.

The 10-speaker Harman Kardon sound system is nicely punchy – if you’re a sound lover, definitely choose the Impreza 2.0S for it. The front cabin also features a – fairly useless in our experience – wireless phone charger, as well as USB-C and USB-A charging ports, an AUX port and even a 12V socket for lots of charging options. What would improve the cabin further would be a digital instrument cluster, which is currently offered in Japan-spec Outbacks. The current dials set up is fine, though looks almost identical to the unit used in the previous Impreza and makes the cabin feel a bit dated.

As you’d expect for a Subaru, the cabin of the Impreza is practical with reasonable door bins, a big glovebox, a big box underneath the centre armrest, a handy slot ahead of the centre box which can fit a wallet or pair of sunglasses, big cup holders in the centre console and a big tray underneath where the wireless phone charger lives. The Impreza’s cabin is definitely more practical than its main rivals.

The back seat of the Impreza is not huge, but will fit two adults fine and is roomier – and less claustrophobic – than the Corolla and Mazda3. As for features, there are some door pockets, one map pocket, a centre armrest with cup holders and two USB charging ports – but no air vents, heated seats or a second map pocket. Annoyingly too, unlike the Mazda, the soft plastics from the front of the Impreza don’t continue into the rear.

The boot of the Subaru Impreza is not its strongpoint at just 291-litres with the seats up and 1,261L with the seats folded – that’s 38L less than the Corolla (which doesn’t have a spare wheel) but 4L larger than the Mazda3 with the seats up. Underneath the boot floor lies a space saver spare wheel, while there is also some side storage, including two cup holders, and a few hooks and mounting points.

How much does the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S cost to run?

Like other new Subaru products, the 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S is covered by a five-year/unlimited km warranty with 12 months of roadside assistance. Its service intervals are once-yearly/every 15,000km (whichever comes first) and five years/75,000km of servicing costs $2,373.19 ($474 per service).

Both Toyota and Mazda match Subaru’s five-year warranty term, though Toyota gives no roadside assistance and Mazda gives five years’ worth. If you service your Corolla through a Toyota dealership, the mechanical warranty will be extended up to seven years in total, while the warranty for the battery and hybrid system can be extended to 10 years in total if annual health checks are undertaken. Five years/75,000km of servicing costs $1,225 for the Corolla and $2,168 for the Mazda3.

Should I buy a 2024 Subaru Impreza 2.0S?

Overall, unlike some other manufacturers, we’re happy that Subaru found a way to justify another generation of Impreza small car because it offers the typical Subaru qualities – practicality, safety, good value for money and all-wheel drive security – in a smaller package, which will no doubt appeal to some small car buyers. It’s also quite well equipped across the range – you don’t need to step up to the Impreza 2.0S for the best value, in our opinion – and the company’s aftersales support keeps improving.

Counting against the Impreza are its old drivetrain, too soft ride quality, small boot and that the interior quality isn’t the best. Plus, a Corolla ZR runs rings around it for fuel economy – whilst offering better performance – and the Mazda3 G25 will both use less fuel and offer much more grunt. But of course, the Impreza offers all-wheel drive as standard and that’s something that neither rival offers in Australia. The Subaru Impreza 2.0S offers up lots for a new car buyer, but as it’s always done, does things a little bit differently to most rivals and that alone will find it many new friends.

About The Author

Jake is the veteran automotive journalist in the DiscoverAuto team having been in the industry since 2017. His first word was Volvo, he nitpicks every piece of practical design and has an unhealthy obsession for cars that feature rain-activated headlights.

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