Once upon a time, we owned a 2002 Subaru Impreza TS wagon. Back then, we still referred to these vehicles as wagons, but the “five-door sports hatch” has become the much more common vernacular these days. The navy blue wagon was essentially the base model and didn’t come with much in terms of bells and whistles. It had power windows and a CD player, and that’s about it. More importantly, the thing was built like a beast and the symmetrical AWD handled just about anything like a champ.

We were not particularly gentle with the “bugeye,” putting it through a couple of road trips, getting it to lug a small trailer, and forcing it to endure some rather harsh starts and less than ideal driving conditions. But it took all that abuse and survived to tell the tale. That’s why it was with a tear in my eye that we sold that car a few years ago. And that’s why I was especially overjoyed with Subaru Canada invited us out to try out the all-new 2017 Subaru Impreza.

2017 Subaru Impreza

Needless to say, a lot has changed over the course of the last fifteen years. The most recent iteration of Subaru’s compact car, available as a 4-door sedan or as a 5-door hatch, can come equipped with all sorts of technology and creature comforts. Given the recent weather conditions here in Vancouver with Snowpocalypse 2016 (Snowmageddon? SnOMG?), the heated seats and steering wheel are certainly welcome. Plus it’s got Android Auto and Apple CarPlay support too.

Built on the new Subaru Global Platform (SGP) that will underpin all of the company’s vehicles moving forward, the new Impreza gets a new direct-injection engine that maintains their signature boxer design. The rigid chassis, as we learned while whipping around the test track one frozen December evening, allows the car to corner very flat. It just grips and grips for days with minimal body roll or chassis twist. I was thoroughly impressed.

Topping the list of safety features is the EyeSight Advanced Driver Assist System. Leveraging a series of cameras and sensors, the system includes such features as adaptive cruise control and lane departure warnings. During our Subaru VIP night on the test track, we also got to experience first hand how this system can slam on the brakes for you in an emergency situation, both while driving forward and while avoiding objects hiding behind you.

The vlog below runs though some highlights from our night.

After flying across the country the previous week, cruising around in the new Impreza was a welcome treat. We were lucky enough to have the event fall right in between the two epic snow storms that devastated Vancouver traffic. And now with two vlogs in the bag, maybe I will continue with vlogging on a more consistent basis.

In any case, no matter where you are in the country, when the temperatures drop and the white stuff falls from the sky, remember to stay safe. If you’re not so sure about driving in the snow, then stay off the roads, both for your sake and for everyone else out there.

Canadian pricing on the 2017 Subaru Impreza starts at $19,995 and goes up to just over $30,000 for the top-level trim with the optional technology package, before PDI, freight, taxes and other fees. Check the Subaru Canada website for more information.

2017 Subaru Impreza

2017 Subaru Impreza

2017 Subaru Impreza

Disclosure: This post and my attendance at the event were sponsored by Subaru Canada. Opinions are my own.