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The 2020 Subaru WRX Will Have Some Big Changes

Design / 11 Comments

Subaru may do away with one (supposedly) critical element.

It's been decided, not only by Subaru but also thanks to positive public reception of the Viziv Performance concept from the Tokyo Auto Show. According to Autocar, that concept's overall styling will serve as the direct inspiration to the next-generation WRX performance sedan, due in 2020. The UK publication spoke to Subaru's design chief, Mamoru Ishii, who confirmed the news. "Such a car brings lots of expectation," Ishii said. "What we know is that our customers' lifestyles are changing and we have to respond to that.

"The question was whether we have done that in a correct way with this concept." Built on Subaru's new Global Platform, the Viziv Performance concept was styled "to look fast even when it is parked." Specific styling elements on the concept, like the wheel arches and hood scoop, are part of Subaru DNA, claims Ishii. That all being said, the next WRX and WRX STI will no doubt be somewhat controversial, technically speaking. Expect familiar elements like the boxer engine and all-wheel drive, but Ishii indicated that only the latter was truly critical. What does this mean? Subaru is apparently exploring various powertrain possibilities, specifically electrification, that could deviate from the typical boxer engine layout.

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That new platform was designed from the get-go, for example, to accommodate a plug-in hybrid setup. "Four-wheel drive is critical to the power and performance levels our customers expect, but on the engine we have more freedom," Ishii summarized.