VITALS

The Courier-Mail - Motoring - - Road Test -

com­fort­ably. A cou­ple of USB charge ports are pro­vided, plus two Isofix re­straint an­chors and three tether strap an­chors on the seat back. Ride com­fort, though hardly plush, is tol­er­a­ble in town. In the Spec B, com­pli­ance im­proves as speed in­creases — if it’s too rugged for you, you’ll find the GT more for­giv­ing. Push the Sport or Sport Sharp mode but­tons on the wheel and Levorg lights up as the ECU primes the en­gine with more revs, adds re­spon­sive­ness to the ac­cel­er­a­tor and, in the lat­ter mode, fixes eight de­fined shift points into the CVT.

The solid 350Nm of torque is avail­able from 2500rp­m5200rpm, so when you pop the ques­tion at any speed the Levorg takes off with that sig­na­ture in­tox­i­cat­ing Rex rush.

Subaru claims 0-100km/h in 6.6 sec­onds, which seat of the pants says is pretty right. Most SUVs won’t see which way you went.

The CVT is as im­pres­sive in go-fast mode as it is in town — it reads your right foot more in­tu­itively than most au­to­mat­ics and you’re never caught in the wrong gear. There can be a mo­ment’s de­lay in hook­ing up when ac­cel­er­at­ing out of slow cor­ners, where the pad­dles are more ef­fec­tive.

At 100km/h in cruise mode, you’ll get 7-8L/100km.

On a tight, twist­ing road the Spec B is planted, ag­ile and flows beau­ti­fully through strings of cor­ners, where you can get on the gas as hard as you like, con­fi­dent that all-wheel drive, ac­tive torque vec­tor­ing and sticky (and noisy) Dun­lop Sport Maxx tyres will keep the power com­ing and the car glued to the bi­tu­men.

How­ever, the Levorg also has a few char­ac­ter­is­tic WRX flaws. The steer­ing, though ac­cu­rate, is in­con­sis­tently weighted and not par­tic­u­larly com­mu­nica­tive, while brakes are un­der­done for a per­for­mance ma­chine.

The lon­gi­tu­di­nally mounted boxer en­gine hangs for­ward of the axle line, so un­der pres­sure the car can feel nose heavy and the Spec B’s Bil­steins can’t pre­vent some pitch and bounce on large bumps.

Ma­jor hits can also cause the front sus­pen­sion to bot­tom out with a bang. You have to be SUBARU LEVORG 2.0GT-S SPEC B PRICE $52,890 WAR­RANTY 3 years/un­lim­ited km CAPPED SER­VIC­ING $2255 over 75,000km SER­VICE IN­TER­VAL 6 months/12,500km SAFETY 5 stars EN­GINE 2.0-litre 4-cyl turbo; 197kW/350Nm TRANS­MIS­SION CVT; AWD THIRST 8.7L/100km DI­MEN­SIONS 4690mm (L), 1780mm (W), 1490mm (H), 2650mm (WB) clos­ing in on Levorg’s far reach­ing dy­namic lim­its for these is­sues to arise, though. As a safe, ver­sa­tile, high-qual­ity fam­ily wagon that’s also a de­light to drive, the Levorg is more en­gag­ing and ca­pa­ble than any com­pa­ra­bly sized or priced SUV. It is, af­ter all, a WRX.

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