A modern motoring legend is dead – the iconic WRX/STi, aka Impreza – at least for now, in the UK. So, to pay our respects in this second Subaru special of ROAD magazine, we test drive the last of the line, the WRX STi 340R in the Lake District.

Subaru says they may bring it back – with “sufficient support” – so make sure you buy a 340R if you can afford it!

Despite the UK’s WRX sorry tale, 2012 was a record year for Subaru globally – showing strong growth in US, China, Canada and Australia. They sold 706,000 units globally (the biggest markets now being the US, China & Japan), with 50,000 sales in Europe, and 2,100 in the UK. Come on Brits!

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Sadly, the UK market has proven challenging during the past 2-3 years, hampered by a strong Yen. But Subaru say: “This is currently improving in the UK’s favour and with the new Forester to launch and now greater supply of BRZ, we have renewed optimism for 2013 and beyond.”

And so they should: The BRZ is brilliant. As are the other two cars we have on test this month – the class-leading XV SUV and the dependable, unstoppable, under-rated Outback, which we take on an epic 1,555 mile Alpine adventure.

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A new Forester will launch in May, which we also detail in this issue, and will be testing soon.

Subaru have some great finance offers right now, plus 3-year free servicing on the Legacy. So, there’s never been a better time to get into a Subaru… and do your part to ‘bring back’ the WRX STi.