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Subaru’s cheapest new model is finally getting an engine upgrade to match its sibling, the 2024 Crosstrek. The newly updated 2024 Subaru Impreza comes with a ream of new features, including a long-needed upgrade option under the hood. 

2024 Impreza RS catches up to Crosstrek with 2.5-liter Boxer engine

Subaru announced a new 2024 Impreza engine that improves its performance substantially. The Impreza RS will get a sporty appearance package and the trusty 2.5-liter Boxer flat-four engine. An evolution of the famous EJ25 motor, the 2.5-liter engine has found extensive use in models like the Forester and Outback, where it’s the base powertrain. A couple of years ago, Subaru added the 2.5-liter engine as an option to the Crosstrek – which shares its platform and general body style with the Impreza. 

The engine itself will add a substantial power boost to Subaru’s most affordable model. According to Kelley Blue Book, the Impreza RS models will have 182 horsepower and 178 pound-feet of torque. Those aren’t huge numbers, but they’re pretty potent for a compact hatchback. It’s welcome news for Impreza lovers who have grown tired of the model’s less powerful base engine.  

What engine does the cheapest new Subaru have?

While the 2024 Subaru Impreza RS engine is larger, the other trims will still get the familiar 2.0-liter Boxer four-cylinder engine. 

Subaru has used the current version of its 2.0-liter engine for years. It was initially the only power plant available for the Impreza and Crosstrek. While reliable and affordable, owners have often complained of the engine’s lower power output at 152 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque. It’s enough to get around in traffic ok, but the cheapest new Subaru can start to feel gutless during highway merges. 

Subaru gave the Crosstrek its 2.5-liter engine first, adding more oomph to its popular subcompact crossover. As the Impreza shares its platform and most of its body with the Crosstrek, it follows that Subaru could also fit the larger engine in its compact car. It took a couple of years, but it’s finally happening. 

How much cheaper is the Impreza than the Crosstrek?

The rear of a 2024 Subaru Crosstrek sits with a tree in the foreground and a sunset in the background.
2024 Subaru Crosstrek | Subaru of North America, Inc.

The 2024 Crosstrek is a bit more expensive than the Impreza. 

According to Kelley Blue Book, the cheapest new Subaru starts at just under $23,000, whereas the base 2024 Crosstrek starts at just under $25,000. The Impreza RS with the 2.5-liter engine commands a premium at just under $28,000. Two Crosstrek trims get the 2.5-liter engine: the Sport at about $29,000 and the Limited at about $31,000.  

Are the Impreza and Crosstrek the same?

The Impreza and Crosstrek are not the same, but they have a lot in common. They share the same platform, known as the Subaru Global Platform. The two have some striking visual similarities, too, with some going so far as to say that the Crosstrek is simply a lifted Impreza. There’s some truth to that. 

The Crosstrek generally has more all-terrain features and capabilities than the Impreza. It offers available X-Mode, higher ground clearance, and more. Plus, its black body cladding makes it easy to differentiate. Conversely, the Impreza offers slightly better handling on roads with its lower stance and center of gravity. Both are capable and well-rounded vehicles – and both are finally available with a respectably powerful engine. 


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