2012-2017 Subaru XV
Engine: 2.0-liter DOHC H4 Transmission: continuously variable Power: 148hp @ 6,000rpm Torque: 196Nm @ 4,200rpm Estimated economy: 6-7km/L (city); 7-8km/L (highway) Price new: P1,398,000 Price now: P700,000 to P800,000
The Subaru XV was first unveiled at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show, and designed to be a raised version of the five-door Impreza hatchback. It arrived on our shores the following year at the Manila International Auto Show, and has since become a popular choice for drivers looking for a bit more performance from a crossover.
Value and costs
When it launched, the XV was priced at P1.398 million for the 2.0is Premium and P1.288 million for the 2.0i. The unit seen here is a pre-facelift version purchased in 2016, and was one of the last remaining at the Motor Image Pilipinas showroom on EDSA-Greenhills. Even four years after its Philippine launch and with a facelifted version out on the market, the purchase price still stood at roughly P1 million.
A quick scan of the used-car market sees units selling around P700,000 to P800,000, so the XV retains its value quite well. If you’re purchasing a facelifted unit, take note that the refresh came out only in 2016, so most examples will likely still fall under the manufacturer’s warranty. Things to watch for include minor electrical issues (particularly warning lights) and potential problems with the CVT.
Exterior and interior
Even in this base variant, the old XV stood out among its crossover rivals for its sporty looks. Its overarching slope is tinged with sharp lines here and there, giving you the impression that it can handle any city or country road you throw at it. The athleticism is also present down below, with the flashy bi-color alloy wheels. The front fascia, however, looks a bit dated when you compare it to today’s standards.
This sporty look continues on the inside, which features a nice mix of circles and straight edges that blend seamlessly together. Even with the pictured model’s old head unit, the design works as it mixes the monotone color of the dash with the amber backlight of the controls. Steeringwheel controls and cruise control come as standard. For you techies out there, the refreshed version comes with a touchscreen monitor. Trunk space, meanwhile, is much smaller than you’d first expect.
The XV’s powertrain is a 2.0-liter version of Subaru’s patented boxer engine mated to a Lineartronic CVT. Output is a respectable 148hp and 196Nm. Nil to 100kph can be reached in 10.5sec, which
is decent given the crossover’s size.
That said, those two factors contribute to the Subaru’s biggest flaw as a utility vehicle. The fuel economy here is average; our past test drives of the car netted just 6.5km/L in the city and 7.4km/L on the highway. As a user of this car, I find myself refueling more frequently compared to when I regularly drive a front-wheel-drive (and lighter) Mitsubishi ASX.
Versus other crossovers, the XV’s edge is that it comes in all-wheel drive, making it more versatile and better-handling than its front-driven rivals. Despite the added weight, it moves quickly from launch with an agility you don’t initially expect. Acceleration is steady even when you feather the throttle. This is a crossover that drives better with increasing familiarity of its capabilities and dimensions.
Though it sits higher than a sedan, you don’t get that impression when you take corners. The suspension keeps you planted, while the Vehicle Dynamics Control system and Symmetrical AWD distribute power where it’s needed across the four tires. On the down side, there is noticeable body roll, and while steering is precise, the wheel gets more weighted the further it gets from the center. The suspension can be a bit soft on harsh roads, too. All these shortcomings are expected to be improved .
This XV was marketed as the perfect spirited companion to an active lifestyle. For the most part, it delivers. The engine offers ample power, handling is fun and sporty, and the looks are in keeping with the vehicle’s overall demeanor. If you’re the camping or road-trip type, however, you’ll have to make do with the relatively small storage nooks and the average fuel economy. Given that the changes on the all-new version are mostly to do with its drivability, you may want to wait it out if you’re an eager enthusiast driver looking to experience Subaru’s new global platform.
We appreciate the looks of the versatile XV