New Car Review: 2012 Subaru Impreza 2.0i Premium

Front 3/4 view of 2012 Subaru Impreza on rural road
The 2012 Subaru Impreza 2.0i Premium.

It's the #1 question asked by someone meeting an automotive journalist:

"What's the best car?"

Now, of course, that can only be answered with a question (or more accurately, a series of questions).

"What for?"

"What kind of driving do you do?"

"How many people do you need to carry?"

"How much stuff do you need to carry?"

"What's your budget?"

Occasionally, I'll find myself talking to someone who's really trying to choose between the Audi R8 and a Porsche 911. But 9 times out of 10, it's someone who's looking for something reliable to get to and from work that gets good gas mileage, although sometimes, they'll take their spouse and 1.7 kids on a road trip for a few days.

For many years (a couple of decades, in fact) the Honda Civic was my default, no-risk recommendation. More recently, it's been the Mazda 3. But for the past seven days (and likely for some time to come), there's a new favorite compact car here at TireKicker World Headquarters.