The Subaru XV is undoubtedly one of Subaru’s most important models in its current line-up, tackling key rivals like the Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3 in the thriving B-segment crossover category. We’ve already reviewed the new range-topper in detail, but is it good enough to convince owners of the older XV to upgrade?

Well, let’s start by addressing the biggest difference – pricing. At launch, the XV STI Performance Edition retailed for RM143,800 before insurance. The new XV 2.0i-P is priced at RM126,868, undercutting its predecessor by nearly RM17,000!

In terms of looks, the new XV certainly holds the upper hand. Everything from the design standpoint to the choice of rim seems more cohesive as a whole, and the more rugged fascia gives the XV a newfound sense of drama and presence. Both units of the XV ride on 17-inch wheels, but the newer model gets shod with slightly thicker 225/60 Continental ContiMax MC5 tyres. The older XV came with 225/55 profile tyres.

Dimensions-wise, the new XV is only marginally longer (4,465 mm, +15 mm) and wider (1,800 mm, +20 mm), though its wheelbase is stretched by 30 mm (2,665 mm) to make more room for the cabin. The height and ground clearance remain the same at 1,615 mm and 220 mm respectively.

While relatively similar on the outside, the interior is where the difference becomes more apparent. Where the older model had dubious traces of trim pieces found in cars from the ’90s, the new XV gets a completely reworked cabin. The result is a huge leap in perceived quality, with generous use of soft-touch plastics and buttons/switches that feel high in quality. The difference is almost night and day.

As for spaciousness, it’s very much the same as before, except rear passengers now benefit from slightly more knee room. Unfortunately, there’s still no rear air-con vents, but it’s a common predicament for most of the XV’s rivals.

Old (left) vs new (right)

Boot space remains tragically small at 345 litres, representing a five litre growth over the older XV. Nothing to shout about, then, save for the full-sized spare that’s tucked away underneath the boot floor. What’s worth noting is that the cargo opening has been widened by 100 mm, making loading and unloading a tad more convenient than before.

Mechanically, the new XV is considerably improved. It rides on the company’s new Subaru Global Platform (this will underpin all future Subaru models to come) that ups torsional rigidity by 70%. Subaru says the new platform improves the XV’s already competent dynamics and reduces NVH at the same time.

Under the bonnet is a familiar 2.0 litre horizontally-opposed (Boxer) four-cylinder engine that makes 156 PS and 196 Nm of torque. The engine is constructed from aluminium, and 80% of its components are new, according to Subaru.

Paired to the engine is the Lineartronic CVT with seven-step function. This sends drive to all four wheels through the automaker’s symmetrical all-wheel drive system. The updated powertrain and drivetrain contributes to a 20 kg weight reduction.

Interested to find out how it drives? Read our full review of the 2018 Subaru XV 2.0i-P and see how it compares to the older model. For a more detailed look at its equipment and specifications, head over to

GALLERY: 2018 Subaru XV 2.0i-P

GALLERY: 2015 Subaru XV 2.0i STI Performance Edition