The Subaru Impreza Sport Hybrid has been introduced in Japan, representing the next step towards a full-blown hybrid sports car for the brand, potentially wearing a WRX badge.
Based on the regular Impreza and only Subaru’s second hybrid model after the XV Crosstrek Hybrid released in Japan in 2013, the Impreza Sport Hybrid features a 2.0-litre boxer engine coupled with a small electric motor to help propel the car, increasing power while reducing fuel consumption.
Subaru Japan cites fuel consumption of around 5.0L/100km when hooked up exclusively to a continuously variable transmission (CVT) — down from the 6.8L/100km the non-hybrids are claimed to use.
The Subaru Impreza Sport Hybrid also gets a more athletic look than standard models, riding on motorsport-inspired 17-inch alloy wheels and featuring an eye-catching body kit, with contrasting pinstripes around the lower edges of the bumpers and side skirts.
Top-shelf variants also boast metallic accents and faux suede seat trim in the cabin.
Although nothing has been confirmed, there’s the possibility that Subaru will go one step further with its next Impreza and introduce a higher-output turbo version of its petrol-electric hybrid powertrain as emissions regulations tighten dramatically towards 2020 – perhaps based on the Levorg or WRX.