2009 OUT­BACK re­vealed

The Weekend Post - Motoring - - Front Page -

OF­FI­CIAL pho­tos of the Subaru Lib­erty and Out­back have sur­faced with the model’s launch in Ja­pan this week.

The Ja­panese ver­sions will go on sale there mid-year, while the Lib­erty will be launched on the Aus­tralian mar­ket in Septem­ber.

The fifth-gen­er­a­tion of the pop­u­lar Lib­erty, known as the Subaru Legacy in over­seas mar­kets, is built on a new plat­form and will ar­rive with a raft of tech­ni­cal im­prove­ments, in­clud­ing the choices of a 3.6-litre six­cylin­der hor­i­zon­tally op­posed boxer en­gine and a six-speed man­ual or con­tin­u­ous­ly­vari­able trans­mis­sions.

The two other en­gines are both 2.5-litre four-cylin­der box­ers, one of which gets a boost from tur­bocharg­ing.

Aus­tralia will get a sixspeed man­ual diesel Out­back in Novem­ber, with the en­gine that has al­ready gone on sale in the cur­rent model Out­back in Europe de­vel­op­ing 108kW at 3600rpm and 350Nm from 1800rpm. Fuel econ­omy is said to come in un­der 7 litres/100km.

Both 2.5-litre four cylin­der and 3.0-litre six cylin­der boxer en­gines are ex­pected to carry over and diesel buy­ers will be pleased with the ar­rival of Subaru’s first 2.0-litre turbo-diesel.

The Lib­erty is wider and longer than the cur­rent model and should of­fer a large in­crease in both passenger and cargo area.

Safety gets a big kick-up in the new mod­els, with equip­ment on of­fer in­clud­ing an en­gine cra­dle that folds to iso­late the block from the cabin in a crash, knee airbags and a rev­ers­ing cam­era with fac­tory-fit­ted sat-nav. There are also rain­sens­ing wipers, au­to­matic head­lights and push-but­ton start op­tions.

Of course, both name­plates get Subaru’s all-wheel drive sys­tem and the dy­namic chas­sis con­cept from the new Im­preza and Forester.

Subaru Aus­tralia manag­ing di­rec­tor Nick Se­nior said the new Lib­erty had all the right in­gre­di­ents to make a strong play in the mar­ket.

“Safety, per­for­mance and style are all key in­gre­di­ents in the new gen­er­a­tion Lib­erty mix. Com­bined with the high qual­ity en­gi­neer­ing for which Subaru is renowned, it rep­re­sents a for­mi­da­ble pack­age,” he said.

“Lib­erty and Out­back will build strongly on the re­spected records of the cur­rent cars, at the same time main­tain­ing the fun driv­ing that’s at the heart of ev­ery Subaru.”

Pric­ing will be re­vealed at the Lib­erty’s Aus­tralian launch in Septem­ber.

Of­fi­cial: Subaru has re­leased the first im­age of the 2009 Out­back wagon.

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