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Subaru enthusiasts can now choose Impreza diesel

  • Impreza gains 150bhp diesel
  • All-wheel drive, well equipped
  • 155g/km and priced from £20k

Subaru has launched a diesel version of the Impreza in the UK - but at a price.

The well-equipped entry-level model the 2.0D RC is priced at £20,000 on the road, while the range-topping RX model is £22,225 on the road.

It puts the range-topping model at about the same price as an Audi A3 Sportback 2.0 TDI Quattro SE, but the Audi, with lower CO2 emissions, offers drivers lower benefit-in-kind tax liability.

The Impreza diesel uses a 150bhp 2.0-litre engine with 258lb-ft of torque launched in the Legacy and Forester in 2008. Fuel consumption is 47.9mpg on the combined cycle, and it will sprint from 0-62mph in nine seconds.

Standard equipment includes all-wheel drive electronic climate control, xenon headlamps, 17-inch alloy wheels and sports seats, while the RX version also has leather trim with electrically adjustable driver's seat, and an electric sunroof.

An annual company car tax bill for 2009/10 for a 40 per cent tax payer for the RX, with emissions of  155g/km works out at £1940, compared with £1771 for the Audi A3 Sportback 2.0 TDI Quattro SE, and £1621 for the two-wheel drive-only BMW 120d SE five-door.

Most equivalent mainstream hatchbacks are even less of a tax burden, although none are available with four-wheel drive, so it seems the Impreza diesel is one for the Subaru enthusiasts.