Lots of Toyota DNA is slowly creeping into Subaru, looking at the new Subaru Legacy here, which reeks of the Lexus GS when viewed from the rear. It’s different from the concept version shown at the NAIAS earlier this year which featured sharper lines.
The new Legacy sits on a longer platform than the outgoing model, in line with customer demands for more metal for their money these days, but it’s still not grown to over 2,800mm, instead keeping to 2,751mm, and that is only 80mm longer than before.
Despite a longer wheelbase it only grows only 35mm, which means Subaru is getting better at packaging their cars, as the overhangs are shorter now and more space is dedicated to the interior room. The car is also 90mm wider and 80mm taller than the outgoing car.
The Legacy uses a MacPherson strut at the front and a double wishbone for the rear suspension, mounted to the rear subframe. The front suspension is mounted to the new engine cradle, and Subaru says this improves steering response and adds to overall rigidity.
The new Subaru Legacy now comes with the option for a CVT transmission that Subaru calls the Lineartronic CVT, mated to Subaru’s traditional boxer engine and symmetrical all-wheel drive. It uses a chain-type system which Subaru says has higher torque capacity and lower friction, thus is more efficient than belt CVTs. There is a manual mode with 6 pre-defined virtual gear ratios, swappable via paddle shifters on the steering wheel.
A few engine options are available. The baseline Legacy 2.5i uses a 2.5 litre single cam boxer putting out 170 horses at 5,600rpm and 230Nm of torque at 4,000rpm. You can have this in either a 6-speed manual or the CVT. Subaru’s baseline engine uses a resin intake and has some better cooling design in the head to help improve fuel economy. The catalyst has also been improved to reduce emissions and the engine is now lighter.
In the middle is the 2.5GT, also featuring a 2.5 litre engine but this is turbocharged to produce 265 horses and 350Nm of torque between 2,000 to 5,200rpm. This is only available with the 6-speed manual. The turbocharger system has been updated to raise performance and reduce emissions. The torque curve is smooth and flat, while it doesn’t start kicking you back into your seat at 1,xxx rpm ranges it’s pretty close at 2,000rpm. The turbo is placed directly under the forward part of the crank to shorten the distance that the exhaust gas must travel, and lower the vehicle’s center of gravity.
For those who prefer normally aspirated power and an automatic gearbox, there is the Legacy 3.6R, featuring a boxer-6 3.6 litre engine with 256 horsepower at 6,000rpm and 335Nm of torque at 4,400rpm. It is only available with a 5-speed automatic transmission. The 3.6 litre engine is said to be packaged in the same dimensions as the earlier 3.0 litre.
Last but not least, for those looking to have a bit of fun with the new Legacy, the absence of a real parking brake that’s been replaced by a new electronic parking brake will be kinda disappointing. What’s with car manufacturers these days, heck even the Z4 doesn’t have one. Oh well.
Check out a full photo gallery after the jump.
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