2018 Subaru Model Changes
This update coincides with the happy news that Subaru sales in the US are up 12% for June, year-over-year in a down market. All without the holy grail: a 3-row SUV that is on its way next year.
As we get new information on all of the 2018 Subarus, this article will be updated. So bookmark it!
7-20-2017: Added Impreza, edited Outback.
8-11-2017: Edited for stabilizer bar on Impreza Premium. Impreza wipers on with headlights only with auto headlights. Auto Reverse Braking standard on Forester Touring.
A new BRZ tS is offered for the performance enthusiast... WITHOUT A TURBO! New shocks and springs and braces under the hood help to tighten handling, while a ridiculously huge spoiler on the back makes sure you can find it in the strip mall, across from the AT&T store.
18-inch wheels are offered (for the first time, we are told) with sticky 215/40R18 Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tires. It also comes with the larger Brembo brakes from last year's performance package.
Heated mirrros are now standard across the board. Headlights come on automatically when the windshield wipers are on. Tapping the turn signal will automatically blink the signal three times.
Navigation is no longer on Premium, but includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto on tS and Limited where it is standard.
All-new, with a longer wheelbase, a stiffer, more modern chassis, better suspension mounts and Active Torque Vectoring, the Crosstrek is still offered as 2.0i, 2.0i Premium and 2.0i Limited. The Premium SE trim is gone.
The Crosstrek gets the new direct-injection 2.0 4 cyl. from the Impreza with 152 horsepower (up 4); torque is unchaged at 145 pound-feet. The Crosstrek gets a six-speed manual, replacing its previous 5-speed, which the Impreza still uses. Also on the mechanical side, hill descent control is offered, allowing a set slow speed to help safely go down hills.
A slightly longer wheelbase (104.9 inches vs. 103.7 inches) nets almost three-and-a-half cubic feet more passenger room and over three cubic feet more maximum cargo room (rear seats folded).
The exterior is billed as a "new design language," but even parked next to each other, laypeople will have trouble telling them apart. The assymetric wheel arches, swooping greenhouse, subtle body cladding and angular foglight fascias are pretty similar to 2017.
Inside, its a whole new ballpark. The interior is seriously nice. A page from Mazda and Volkswagen's playbooks, with soft-touch materials, touches of aluminum and even tasteful carbon fiber (fake of course) trim. Premium and Limited models offer contrasting color stitching that really pops.
Some new driver assist technologies are now available: Lane Keep Assist is added to the Adaptive Cruise Control and Lane Departure Warning systems, helping to actively keep the driver in the middle of the lane to reduce fatigue. Reverse Automatic Braking optional in Crosstrek Limited will automatically apply the brakes if it detects the driver might back over something or someone. Crosstrek Limited also gets steering responsive headlights that will point in the direction the driver steers. Automatic high beams are optional on Limited.
To make listening to tunes and staying connected easier, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are standard, making it easier to control your smartphone without being distracted from the road (too much!).
Both front windows now have automatic one-touch up/down operation, compared to just the driver's window on 2017 models.
A 2.5i Black Edition is now offered. The package includes paddle shifters, which otherwise are only available with the turbo engine. It also includes hill descent control and adaptive headlamps that turn with the steering to help visibility in corners.
Active Torque Vectoring is standard on the Forester 2.0XT Touring, a system which directs more power to the outside rear wheel in order to help cornering.
High-beam assist is added to the EyeSight® package, enabling automatic dimming of the high beams when oncoming traffic is visible to the system. Reverse Automatic Braking previously optional on Touring and Premium is now standard on Touring (still optional on Premium): if the system detects an obstacle about to be hit while reversing, it will apply the brakes.
Touring models get more standard equipment, including LED adaqptive headlights, adaptive cruise control, Pre-collision braking, reverse automatic braking and Lane Departure Warning.
Automatic Climate control now standard on Premium models in addition to Limited and Touring.
With auto headlights, they come on when you turn on wipers (premium, Sport and Limited). Rear stabilizer bar is now also included on Premium models, in addition to Limited and Sport.
The 2018 Legacy gets a significant refresh: new front lower fascias are much more aggressive and interesting. Altogether, bumpers, grilles, lights and headlights all get restyled. Like the Crosstrek, the interior is more luxurious and very well executed.
Changes to the programming promise smoother and more responsive acceleration from the standard CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission). Several tweaks undertake to reduce noise in the cabin, including changes to the transmission, outside mirrors and sound-insulating front window glass.
Steering responsive LED headlights are also added to the Legacy, optional on Limited models. Doors now lock automatically.
The Outback, like the Legacy, receives a thorough refresh. In the Outback's case refinement and ruggedness both get increased. The Outback receive the same transmission tweaks and improvements in quietness. The Outback Limited also offers the option of LED steering responsive headlights. All models receive automatic locking doors.
Outback Touring now have auto up/down windows on all four doors.
The biggest news for the WRX is the much larger Brembo brakes for the STI: 13.4" front rotors and 12.8" rear, compared to 12.8/12.4 on 2017 STI models. These new rotors are cross-drilled, now also, for better cooling under extreme conditions. 19" wheels replace 18" ones on the STI, including a lower 35-series profile.
Other performance changes include a new Performance Package for the WRX Premium (not STI) that includes high-performance brake pads (same size brakes) with red calipers, 8-way power Recaro seats and deletes the moonroof.
Navigation is available on fewer models: standard on WRX Limited and standard on STI Limited. Steering responsive headlights are standard on Limited and all STI models; they turn with the car as the driver steers, responsive to cornering and vehicle speed to allow better visibility through corners.
Interior noise levels should be down with thicker door glass, better door seals and a foam-filled windshield header.
A larger touch-screen interface (5.9" vs. 4.3") makes using the radio, navigation and other controls easier.
Limited Auto models (so not the STI) now offer automatic high beams. Heated mirrors are now standard on all models.
Rear seat passengers gain a standard center armrest.
STI Limited gets a power lumbar adjuster for the driver's seat.
All of these improvements only increase weight an average of 14 pounds.
WRX STI RA
Still another special addition, the WRX STI RA (Record Attack) has 5 more horsepower due to a cool-air intake and a better exhaust. Other changes: incredibly large rear spoiler. No Spare.