The WRX is one of the performance cars from Subaru, along with the BRZ. Both get updated for 2022 but both retain the nimble, athletic handling they’re known for.

Base Price: $41,895
As Tested: $42,890
Horsepower: 271
Mileage: 19 mpg city/25 mpg highway/21 mpg combined

The WRX was first introduced in Japan in 1992 and became a rally car favorite. In fact, WRX stands for World Rally Experimental. It was originally part of the Impreza line-up, but when the fourth generation was launched in 2014, the WRX was no longer under the Impreza name. The fourth generation was around from 2014 to 2021, which is a long time in the vehicle world, so the WRX needed an update. For 2022, the new fifth-generation WRX is here with an updated exterior, all-new cabin including updated infotainment system, and a more powerful engine.

The 2022 WRX comes in four trims: base, Premium, Limited, and GT. Starting prices range from $29,105 to $41,895. All come standard with all-wheel-drive.

All trims get the same engine: a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder that produces 271 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed manual transmission is standard on the base, Premium and Limited trims. The Subaru Performance Transmission – a continuously variable transmission – with eight-speed manual shifting modes and steering wheel paddle shifters is standard on the GT and available on the other trims.

Yep, the WRX is a blast to drive! It’s definitely one of the most athletic cars in the class. There’s some turbo lag, which is most noticeable at slow speeds, but then you’re off. Steering is accurate, brakes are responsive, and the WRX stays planted when cornering. It all makes for a very enjoyable and exhilarating ride on twisty back roads! The suspension is rather stiff which makes for a firm ride. Road and wind noise can get loud at times. Visibility is good all the way around.

Fuel economy is poor for a small car. EPA ratings for my tester are 19 mpg city and 25 mpg highway with a combined rating of 21. I got 21 mpg during my week with a mix of city and highway driving. Models with the manual transmission do slightly better at 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway/22 mpg combined.

The cabin is attractive with an intuitive layout. However, it’s not as upscale as what you’ll find in other small cars. There are a lot of hard plastics and few soft-touch materials. The optional 11-inch infotainment system dominates the dash. Front seats are comfortable and supportive, with nice bolstering to keep you secure when you’re zipping around corners. Two average-size adults can fit ok in the back row, although headroom is limited due to the sloping roofline.

Standard features include a rearview camera, automatic climate control, cloth upholstery, two seven-inch touch screens, six-speaker audio system, Bluetooth, satellite radio, HD Radio, USB ports, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and rear-seat reminder.

Available features include push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control, suede upholstery, power-adjustable driver’s seat, heated front seats, Recaro performance front seats, 11-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, 11.6-inch touchscreen, navigation, additional USB ports, and a moonroof.

Available driver assistance technologies include forward collision warning, forward and reverse automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, lane centering assist, lane change assist, and rear cross traffic alert.

The infotainment system responds quickly to touch and voice commands. But some functions are buried in menus and submenus. The optional 11-inch screen looks great, but there’s a lot of glare in sunny weather. And when you use Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, a large portion of the screen is taken up.

Trunk space is below average for the class with 12.5 cubic feet.

The good:

Fun to drive

Nimble, sporty handling

Comfortable front seats with good bolstering

Standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay

The not-so-good:

Poor fuel efficiency

Interior not as upscale as other small cars

Below average trunk space

Pricing info:

My tester starts at $41,895. Destination fee is $995 bringing the grand total to $42,890.

Bottom line:

The redesigned 2022 Subaru WRX continues to deliver sporty, nimble handling which is the main reason why you’d want this car. It’s one of the few to come standard with a manual transmission. Yes, the cabin isn’t as upscale as other small cars, fuel economy is subpar, and there’s below average trunk space. But the WRX is a blast to drive and maintains its engaging attitude.

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