Safety up­grades for Soo­bies

NZ Autocar - - New Car Market -

Subaru has boosted the safety pack­age of its Legacy 3.6RS and Out­back Pre­mium mod­els with the ad­di­tion of blind spot mon­i­tor­ing, lane change as­sist, auto high beams, and rear cross traf­fic alert. Also added is an auto dim­ming rear view mir­ror while sat nav equipped cars will now re­ceive free map up­dates for three years. Out­back diesel mod­els have been up­graded with Subaru’s Eye­sight sys­tem too, while all mod­els get in­te­grated halo­gen day­time run­ning lights. The en­try-level Out­back 2.5i and 2.0D add elec­tric fold­ing door mir­rors, and the 2.0D also gets auto lights and wipers. Subaru has taken the op­por­tu­nity to re­tune the dampers on the Legacy for bet­ter roll con­trol and im­proved ab­sorp­tion of sharp bumps.

Prices re­main un­changed for the petrol mod­els, though Out­back diesel mod­els have in­creased by a few thou­sand, the 2.0D at $49,990 and the Pre­mium now $57,990.

On the global front, Subaru is busy de­vel­op­ing a new com­mon plat­form for use on its nextgen­er­a­tion mod­els. It will be en­gi­neered around the com­pany’s hor­i­zon­tally-op­posed en­gine and AWD phi­los­o­phy and prom­ises to de­liver emo­tion­ally en­gag­ing dy­nam­ics while of­fer­ing ex­cel­lent ride qual­ity and the high­est safest lev­els. Key points are im­proved rigid­ity, a 5mm lower cen­tre of grav­ity and im­proved sus­pen­sion sys­tems. The rear set-up will be mounted di­rectly to the body for im­proved roll con­trol, more re­spon­sive steer­ing and en­hanced straight-line sta­bil­ity. Im­prove­ments in rigid­ity will also de­liver added com­fort via re­duced vi­bra­tion and harsh­ness lev­els.

The scal­able plat­form will be used for all fu­ture mod­els and takes into ac­count petrol en­gines but also plug-in hy­brids and elec­tric propul­sion sys­tems. The sin­gle plat­form will help in­crease pro­duc­tion ef­fi­ciency for Subaru. Ex­pect the first model off the new plat­form in 2017.

And it could look some­thing like the XV con­cept car, pic­tured above, which was shown at the Geneva Mo­tor Show. It’s the em­bod­i­ment of the Dy­namic X Solid design di­rec­tion with Subaru’s hexag­o­nal grille, hawk-eye head­lights, dis­tinc­tive char­ac­ter lines and mat­te­black cladding to em­pha­sise its cross­over na­ture. The con­cept is just over 4.5m long and rides on a 2670mm wheel­base, mak­ing it slightly big­ger than the cur­rent XV model.

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