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Subaru XV models in Britain have been significantly updated for 2014. The slew of changes are aimed at improving the quality, refinement, ride, handling and safety of the Impreza-based crossover.

The biggest improvements are on the 2.0 litre petrol models, which receive suspension modifications for better ride quality, as well as new valvetrain components to reduce engine noise. No matter which model you choose, however, the XV features additional sound-proofing in the bulkhead to reduce NVH levels still further.

Also standard on all Subaru XVs is a revised electric power steering system, which is claimed to reduce steering wheel and column vibrations and has been tuned to provide more weight, better feel and a more linear response. In addition, thicker suspension lower arms and reinforcements around the base of the A-pillar improve the car’s safety performance, which has already netted it five stars in its Euro NCAP test.

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Elsewhere, the Subaru logo on the steering wheel is now in its traditional shade of blue instead of black, the steering wheel button and heater control surrounds are in a higher-quality silver finish, the switches controlling the air-conditioning system are now gloss black and a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) and a gear shift indicator in the instrument cluster are now standard on all XV models.

The reshuffling of model trims sees the base 1.6 litre petrol model dropped from the UK range, leaving the 2.0 litre petrol and diesel engines as the sole engine choices. A new top trim level, the SE Premium, replaces the Lux Premium and adds satellite navigation and leather interior. Equipment levels elsewhere remain unchanged.

Two new colour choices have been added: Venetian Red Pearl and Quartz Blue Pearl, alongside the existing five colour choices. As with other models in the Subaru UK range, the XV gets a five-year, 100,000 mile (160,000 km) warranty.

We drove the XV in Bali last year – read our impressions of it here.