Spend Less on the 2021 Subaru Impreza Instead of Buying the Subaru Legacy

Checking out the market for a new Subaru? The automaker offers some amazing options for someone looking to buy a sedan, including the Impreza and the Legacy. They both stand out for different reasons. 

Given how few sedans there are left on the market, the choices are rather slim, and many automakers don’t seem to be putting that much effort into design. But Subaru hasn’t fallen into this trap and recognizes there are still plenty of people who don’t think bigger is always better. Still, which should you choose?

2021 Subaru Legacy

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If you’re looking for space, the Subaru Legacy is the obvious choice. It provides more room than the Impreza and feels spacious enough that even tall passengers don’t feel cramped, MotorTrend reports. It also comes with more choices.

There are two engine options available on the Legacy. The first is a 2.5-liter flat-four that makes 182 hp and 176 lb-ft of torque. The second is a turbocharged 2.4-liter flat-four producing 260 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque. The only transmission option is a continuously variable automatic. 

The Legacy gets 27 mpg in the city and 35 mpg on the highway, which is respectable. The XT, with it’s more powerful engine, gets 24/32 mpg. 

The touchscreen is larger as well. A 7.0-inch screen comes on the base model, while all higher trims get upgraded to an 11.6-inch touchscreen. It’s large size may look great, but it falls behind the Impreza due to difficulty swiping and tapping. It’s also slow to load, which can be a pain on the best of days.

To top off the Legacy, it has earned the 2021 IIHS Top Safety Pick+. This award is not easy to achieve, proving Subaru’s commitment to safety. 

2021 Subaru Impreza

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The Subaru Impreza comes as a four-door sedan or a five-door hatchback. And it’s either a critical darling or one you should skip. It’s not uncommon for a vehicle to evoke conflicting feelings, so let’s look at some facts.

The Impreza’s gas mileage is 28 in the city and 36 on the highway. This lowers to 23/31 mpg for the sedan and 24/31 mpg for the hatchback if you opt to go with the five-speed manual. 

The Impreza offers only one engine option, a 2.0-liter flat-four producing 152 hp and 145 lb-ft of torque. It isn’t overly powerful, but it’s a blast to drive, MotorTrend reports.

The touchscreen is only 6.5 inches, but you can upgrade to an 8.0-inch screen. Its smooth controls allow you to switch between screens swiftly.

Though it didn’t achieve the IIHS Top Safety Pick+, it earned Top Safety Pick. It didn’t bring home the plus due to its headlights, which the IIHS graded as moderate.

The choice is clear

RELATED: Should I Buy a Subaru Impreza?

For anyone on a budget who isn’t looking for the extra space in a Legacy, the Subaru Impreza is your best bet. It starts at $19,720, an excellent price for all that it offers. The hatchback starts at $20,220. The Impreza tops out at $26,820 for the sedan and $27,320 for the hatchback. Despite its low price, the Impreza rides better than many luxury sedans

The Legacy starts at $23,820, which is also a fair price. It tops out at $35,370 for a fully loaded XT Limited. Though it costs more than the Impreza, if you’re looking to keep your car long-term, it holds its value better than the Impreza.

Though its low price helped the Impreza win MotorTrend’s recommendation, that wasn’t the sole reason it stood out. The Subaru Impreza is more fun to drive despite its less powerful engine. The hatchback also has more room to haul cargo, even though it’s technically smaller. It makes heading out on road trips a blast.