Which to Buy? Kia Cerato Sport MY22 Vs Subaru Impreza 2.0i-L MY22

Hi All,

I am looking to buy a new car for the first time. Currently looking for a reliable hatchback with good boot size with 26-30 K budget for a couple with 3 yrs kid for mainly city commute.

Both variant cars are 1 step upgraded than their base model option. Upon checking prices on their websites I found

Subaru Impreza 2.0i-L AWD Hatch - $ 29,960 Driveaway with 5 yrs warranty

Kia Cerato Sport - $27,990 Drive Away with 7 yrs Warranty

I am just confused about which car to go for. Both cars seem similar in shape and size in the hatch version with decent boot size. Kia 7 yrs warranty seems attractive over Subaru's 5 yrs warranty and I guess Kia Cerato is loaded with much more new features than Impreza whereas I found Impreza is AWD and is more fuel-efficient than Kia Cerato. I haven't tested both cars yet. I am based in Melbourne and don't know when lockdown opens. I need some suggestions if someone has tried these cars. How's the overall driving experience for both cars ??

Have anyone bought these cars recently how much have you paid, Is the Price the same as indicated on the website or any discounts at the moment ?? Which car would you recommend ??

Thank you


  • I personally prefer the Impreza but i think the Kia offers better value

    I have driven both (older models) they are both good to drive light steering wheel which is typical with Asian cars

  • +4

    I would go with the Subaru. Better support if you need to get in contact

    Warranty means nothing when the Consumer Law is in place. As long as you have the car serviced on time and everything is logged.

    I’ve always found the Kia to be under powered for the weight of the car.

    When buying any car, look at the resale value or red book for trade in estimates for previous years.

    Get long term reviews rather than the standard reviews you read. They usually give better pros and cons

    Lastly, look at the servicing cost that’s not included in any capped priced servicing. It might be a bit hard, may need to ask around or other owners

    Good luck on deciding.

  • +1

    Have you looked at the Corolla, i30 and Mazda3 as well?

    • I found cerato and impreza bigger than other cars so I excluded them and narrowed to 2 cars within same price range.

  • Drive. Buy the one you like. Both are from reputable brand, similar otherwise.

    AWD doesn’t make any significant difference unless you regularly go to the snow or drive gravel roads.

    Sticker price is pretty much it right now, supply is less than demand. However, if you compromise on colour choice or something you may find a vehicle in stock that you can get a little discount on.

    • +1

      AWD doesn’t make any significant difference unless you regularly go to the snow or drive gravel roads.

      I disagree. Especially compared to FWD cars they have a heap more grip, even just taking off at the lights or going around corners in the wet. You'll see much less tyre wear on AWD cars because of this.

      • +1

        If you ‘need’ the extra grip from AWD, you are driving too fast for the conditions.

        Don’t get me wrong, I loved the grip in my forester in the wet. What it meant though that was if it let go you were going a lot faster which was more of a problem.

        As for tyre wear, with a full time AWD system (as opposed to FWD biased) you need to buy a full set of tyres at the same time lest wearing the centre diff out early and you need to ensure the tyres are rotated often and alignment is good.

      • they have a heap more grip

        They have more traction, not more grip.

  • +1

    Subi all the way!

  • I'd go for the car that gives me the best bang for my buck and the one I enjoy driving and at your early stage would be looking at other brands also rather than locking myself into just 2.

    I prefer the Kia, with lots of features to play with, especially if you are willing to spend a little more and upgrade to the Sport +.

    Discounts are currently a thing of the past, you may get mats and a full tank of petrol. Be prepared for a long wait if the car you want isn't in stock.

  • +1

    We test drove the Impreza 2 years ago when shopping for a new car for my wife. It was mostly pretty good, except for the transmission. That CVT was just hideous. Not sure if it's still the same on the current model. We ended up going for the Mazda 3 which has been excellent, although probably more expensive than the Impreza or Cerato that you've listed here.

    Guy I work with bought a Cerato a year or two back and is pretty happy with it, for what that's worth.

    But unless you develop strong feelings about one or the other after test driving them (like I did with the Subaru), I don't think you'll go wrong with either of these cars.

  • If you will sale the car within the warranty, buy whatever feels best. But if you want to keep it for long time think carefully. I bought a new Subaru Forester and kept it for 12 years. At the time warranty was 3 years only. When the car eventually developed faults, Subaru parts were super expensive, servicing was expensive, after 7 years I just got is done at local kmart.

    I traded it and now own a Kia.

  • +1


    Subaru is well designed, well built but will be expensive when out of warranty, it's also underpowered with a nasty gearbox.

    Kia is well designed, well built, longer warranty, decent engine and gearbox and you won't have expensive nasty surprises when out of warranty.

    • +3

      'nasty gearbox'

      Have you owned or driven one? Subaru's CVT is the best in the business. Even car reviewers (who almost always hate on CVTs) have barely anything to say about Subaru CVTs. They build them in house (unlike Nissan's exploding outsourced ones).

      I'm a manual driver by nature, I now own a Subaru CVT. It's great. Quiet, efficient, pretty much always does what you want it to do.

      edit: I just thought as well it was worth comparing to 'traditional' autos. I haven't driven a whole lot of them, and I have driven zero DCTs. But I would take a Subaru CVT over any of the conventional autos I have ever driven (2000s Commodore/Falcons, 2007 Honda Civic, various vans, various 2010s Japanese rentals).

      • fyi, nissan uses jatco

        jatco is wholy owned by nissan

        make of that what you will

        to most people a cvt is just an automatic

        • Yeah, I know re Jatco - it's still not the same as it being 'in house' even if they have a lot of oversight. With Subaru, it's all designed as one.

          And yeah totally agree re CVT = auto. Most people have no idea.

  • +1

    I have driven the Subaru Impreza over a long period (2013) model which seems much the same as the current model.

    It is reliable and efficient. Used more oil than most cars, but that seems to be normal for Subaru. The thing that annoyed me the most were the front seats.

    Next to that the CVT was annoying, but I have a preference for manual vehicles. I found it jerky and unresponsive at times.

    - Reliable
    - Good on fuel
    - Handling is excellent

    - CVT
    - Seats are too small and don't offer enough adjustment.

    I agree with comments above, look at some long-term reviews, but I suspect that the Kia would be nicer and probably just as reliable.

  • +3

    I would tend to lean more to the Subaru. However, the Kia wont be a bad choice as well

    Benefits on the Subaru
    - Made in Japan
    - Better build quality over the Kia
    - Better resale value
    - Load of safety tech. With the Kia you need to spend extra money to get more advanced safety features (i.e. Rear cross traffic alert)
    - Fuel Economy is better between the two
    - Proximity Key
    - Cheaper servicing cost from memory

    Benefit of the Kia
    - Better Warranty
    - Bigger infotainment screen
    - Front and Rear parking sensors. The impreza doesn't even get them in the rear, unless you pay Subaru to have them fitted, which is $900 accessory (yes you read that right!). Thankfully aftermarket option exist.
    - More spacious
    - Can get better deals on if you shop around
    - Looks better out of the two imo

    Driving experiencing won't be anything sensational but should be both solid commuters. Best to test both and see which one you prefer.

  • +1

    Subaru heart, Kia head.. go the Kia

  • Have a look at the Cerato Sport+ - Boring engine but extremely well equipped interior.
    I haven't driven the Impreza but it has AWD which is great if you need that.

  • +2

    I have a WRX STI and Kia Proceed GT as a daily (same engine as Cerato GT).

    Test drive both and see what you think. Cant really go wrong with either tbh, I love both cars. When it rains you will be glad you're driving a Subaru though

  • If only one has a proximity key, take that one.
    They're amazing. Never buying a car without one now.