Automotive & Aftermarket News

Subaru Unveils All-New 2022 WRX AWD Performance Sedan

From rally stages to autocross courses, the Subaru WRX is well-known by race fans worldwide. (Image/Subaru)

Subaru just pulled the wraps off the latest version of its rally-bred performance sedan, the WRX. Continuing Subaru’s long line of popular all-wheel drive sport compacts based on the Impreza, this new WRX gets a handful of key upgrades from the outgoing generation.

For starters, this ‘Rex gets a new 2.4L turbocharged Boxer engine making 271 horsepower, which is just a tad more than the previous model’s 2.0L. The new motor’s got a broader torque curve too, delivering 258 lb.-ft. of torque from 2,000 to 5,200 rpm.

While horsepower and torque numbers are pretty on-par with last year’s 2021 WRX, Subaru says this new engine will boast improved responsiveness and acceleration, thanks to an electronically-controlled wastegate and bypass valves.

The 2022 Subaru WRX gets a lot of enhancements, starting with a new 2.4L turbocharged Boxer engine making 271 horsepower. (Image/Subaru)

Performance purists can breathe a sigh of relief too, because the reveal confirms that the 2022 Subaru WRX will keep its six-speed manual transmission option.

But Subaru also mentions that the 2022 WRX will come standard with an all-new automatic transmission that it’s calling the “Subaru Performance Transmission.”

Subaru explains that this new transmission boasts up to 30 percent faster upshifts and 50 percent faster downshifts. And it’ll also have a fancy adaptive shift control that’ll rev-match on downshifts too.

The initial press release only included pictures of a four-door sedan with a traditional trunk, so it looks like we’ll still have to wait for the return of a WRX hatchback. (Image/Subaru)

Of course, the biggest part of the WRX recipe has always been its all-wheel drive setup. And the 2022 WRX will certainly maintain that tradition with Subaru’s Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive and active torque vectoring.

The automatic transmission (CVT) can be switched into a paddle-shifted eight-speed “manual” mode too. (Image/Subaru)

Subaru explains that the fifth-generation WRX is underpinned by an all-new chassis that’s stiffer and features a lower center of gravity than the last, which should improve handling capability. In fact, the release describes how new construction methods and adhesives have delivered a 28 percent increase in overall torsional rigidity and a 75 percent increase in suspension mounting point rigidity.

Yes, it’s still got the signature (and dare we say obligatory?) WRX hood scoop to feed air across the top-mounted intercooler. (Image/Subaru)

While all ‘Rexes get tweaked suspension geometry for better track performance, there’s a new WRX GT trim that includes new, electronically controlled dampers that adjust the suspension characteristics to one of three pre-set modes: Comfort, Normal, and Sport.

The 2022 Subaru WRX also gets electric assist steering.

Over the years, the WRX’s all-wheel drive system has helped many rally drivers ascend to podium finishes. (Image/Subaru)

Outside, this new 2022 WRX features some slick functional aero bits and boasts a wide body design. The front bumper is now made from aluminum to shed weight. There’s a low profile spoiler on the rear decklid too. It comes standard with 17 inch alloy wheels, but stepping up to the WRX GT trim nets you 18 inch wheels. As you’d expect, there are ventilated disc brakes all the way around.

Subaru says the new WRX will be appearing in dealer showrooms in early 2022. Get more details at Subaru’s website.

While the interior is obviously packed with the latest touchscreen doodads and fancy tech stuff, we’re just glad to see that third pedal down in the footwell. (Image/Subaru)
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