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Star of its corporate display at the LA Auto Show, the Subaru Impreza Design Concept offers a semi-veiled preview of a dramatic styling direction the automaker plans to incorporate on future offerings. Created under Subaru's new "Confidence in Motion" design and brand strategy, this futuristic one-off also showcases Subaru's latest technology advances on the high-volume model line that serves as its global compact platform. While not confirming that it directly portends the next generation Impreza, Subaru execs do admit that it hints at a future model.
To transform the guiding conceptual mantra of "dynamic flow and confident stance" into a production feasible package, the Subaru design team started with a shape that melds aggressive edge with aerodynamic contours. Finished in a likely production color called Sky Silver, the four-door Impreza Design Concept complements its sweeping coupe-like roofline with more intensely evocative character lines and bolder overall detailing most evident in its dramatic body sculpting and fender arches.
Highlighting this more aggressive flair is a new take on key fascia elements designed to yield a more three-dimensional form. Up front, it's realized using a prominent hexagonal grille with a central badge flanked by trim accent "wings," hawkeye headlamps, fin-shaped foglamps and oversize outboard air intakes. The rear reprises the hexagon theme in an integrated garnish element and wraparound taillamps that simulate the illision of depth using layering and tonal gradation. Special under-bumper and decklid diffusers add interest while aiding the overall aero count. As a final touch, high-luster five-spoke alloy wheels are fitted with carbon fins that help channel air for better brake cooling.
Inside, the Subaru Impreza Design Concept offers seating for four and relies on multi-tone platinum leather with dark blue piping and contrast stitching to extend the 3D design theme. Complementing the look is a multi-function steering wheel that features piano-black accents and a large central touch-screen display that integrates operation of the audio, navigation and climate controls. The Impreza Design Concept also showcases the latest Subaru safety innovations, including its most advanced form of its EyeSight system. It employs a pair of cameras located in the leading edge of the roof to help detect and warn the driver of potential pedestrian impacts, and is now Interlinked with the automaker's pre-collision brake-assist/brake-control as well as with the adaptive cruise control.
Motivating the Impreza Design Concept is the latest take on the automaker's boxer-four engine. Subaru's third-generation H-4 is smaller, lighter and about 10 percent more fuel-efficient than its current counterpart. First seen here in 2.5-liter displacement in the 2011 Forester, the Design Concept variant is fitted with a 2.0-liter naturally aspirated version paired with Subaru's latest Lineartronic Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) that sends power to all four wheels via the firm's well-proven Symetrical All-Wheel Drive System.