Subaru Axes WRX, Impreza From British Lineup, Report Says

If you're a gearhead and a Subaru enthusiast, two of the names that arouse the most interest, aside from the recently-launched BRZ rear-drive sport coupe, are Impreza and WRX. Sadly, for customers in the United Kingdom, those models will no longer be available in the coming year. Autoexpress is reporting Subaru's UK dealers will sell down remaining inventory, and will not bring the new Impreza, which recently when on-sale in Japan and the U.S. to the UK market in 2013.

Although not altogether shocking considering the niche status of the WRX relative to the broader Subaru Impreza lineup, as well as it being a generation older than the new Impreza, the C-segment class is one of the largest in Britain and Europe, so the Impreza's absence moving forward is surprising.

The company says it will focus on the XV, Forester and Outback models moving forward, and has added the BRZ to its UK lineup to have a performance-oriented model in the lineup. The XV, sold as the XV CrossTrek in the U.S., is closely-related to the Impreza, so Subaru will continue to have a C-segment sized model in its British product portfolio.

Also facing an uncertain future is the Legacy D-segment sedan, which a spokesperson said "could not confirm what happens to the Legacy after 2013."

Source: Autoexpress

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I'm afraid it's worse than it looks.  The last generation Impreza bombed in the UK; whereas before the car had appealed to petrolheads and was much admired even by those who wouldn't be seen dead in one, Subaru's attempt to broaden the appeal of the car put it into contention with ordinary but superior cars such as the Golf and  Focus - there really is no market for AWD C segment cars in the UK.  The New Legacy and Outback were only made available as estates (wagons?) whereas previously the Legacy had also been available as a saloon (sedan). They were also only made available with very limited engine and trim options.  As in the US, the styling polarised opinion, but the real problem is that the once excellent ride handling compromise has been pushed too far towards comfort and, because all Subarus are now relatively expensive here, Subaru pitches them  against premium cars like Audis, Mercedes and  BMWs where their perceived quality won't cut it.  Those of us who live out in the country  and have long been Legacy, Forester and Outback fans  are very disappointed about this turn of events and are hanging on to our old cars. The irony is that in broadening the appeal of its range and focusing on greater share of the US and Australian markets, Subaru has alienated most of its previously very loyal European fans and achieved no conquest sales, indeed many people here would be surprised to hear of Subaru's impressive performance elsewhere and would regard it as a failing brand. The XV has not been well-received either and the new Impreza has not, and now will not, be introduced.  There is some faint hope with the BRZ but this may not do much for the brand as most sold will be badged as Toyotas.  If things don't change, Subaru might be forced to abandon the UK and European market altogether. 

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