The Subaru Levorg is a hybrid of sorts; not in petrol-electric power terms but in character. Its part sports machine, part sensible family station wagon. A combination that’s likely to appeal to many who enjoy their driving.
Levorg is powered by the 197 kW four-cylinder turbocharged engine found in the sporty WRX and in practicality and size is a descendent of the Liberty GT wagon.
Available exclusively with Subaru’s Lineartronic continuously variable transmission, it comes basically in two variants – 2.0GT and 2.0GT-S.
In Australia, however, a third version – the 2.0GT-S Spec B – is a local-fit option adding performance parts from the Subaru Tecnica International stable. These include an STI shift knob; front, side and rear side under spoilers; STI 18-inch black alloy wheels; front tower bar; red push-button start and roof rear spoiler.
Levorg, is priced from $42,990 for the 2.0GT, $48,890 for the 2.0GT-S, and $52,890 for the 2.0GT-S Spec B, the last being the test vehicle.
Levorg exhibits the automobile equivalent of human body piercing, its craggy face showing off with bright bits poking out all over the place – from silver headlamp surrounds to front indicators and foglight chrome-style openings.
The low-set wagon profile harks back to the Liberty GT wagon, while the WRX chips in with the instantly recognisable bonnet scoop. Side sills also impart a sporty character, as do a rear spoiler, colour-coded shark-fin antenna, matte-black rear diffuser and dual exhausts.
Large door mirrors reduce make it easy to cut driver blind spots, their shape helps minimise wind noise.
Levorg 2.0GT-S and 2.0GT-S Spec B are available with a choice of leather colour, Black or Bright Pearl, both with blue stitching. Soft-touch trim features throughout the cabin, adding to a prestige feel.
The upper part of the instrument panel is set low, without sacrificing access to switches and visibility, the latter helping create a good field-of-vision and reduces blind spots when turning.
Two instrument gauges directly in front of the driver feature a sporty design with a 3D effect, satin rings and cool blue illumination highlighting their precision.
Separating the gauges is a colour LCD offering the driver useful stats including those from the odometer, trip meter, EyeSight operating status, ECO gauge and SI-Drive and High Beam Assist status, plus warnings. Drivers can toggle between functions using steering wheel-mounted switches.
Subaru Levorg has as many screens – four – as a suburban multiplex, so there’s always a mass of information on hand. There is also a plethora of switches to flick, knobs to twiddle and buttons to press. It’s all a bit intimidating at first.
However, the tech savvy will feel right at home; the rest of us are left to catch up through familiarity. A 4.3-inch multifunction display in the central dashboard offers a wide variety of information including passenger seatbelt warning, air-con operation, calendar, fuel economy screen, eco assessment screen, preventative safety, clock and outside temperature. Settings can be changed from both front passenger and driver’s seats.
For the mechanically curious, above this is a boost display showing positive/negative pressure, accelerator angle, boost pressure, boost pressure peak value in analogue or digital formats.
Other screens display help driving economy via the Eco-driving assist display. A safety drive display showing how the Vehicle Dynamics Control is operating, a Self-check display indicating the status of car maintenance and Information display warnings on external conditions to support safe driving.
There is even the ability to set reminders for anniversaries, birthdays and maintenance timing. The displays can be changed or turned off as preferred.
Levorg 2.0GT-S audio system is Bluetooth and Siri compatible, supporting voice recognition, while a 7.0-inch touch display operates audio, phone, factory-fitted satellite navigation, apps, information and settings. Navigation allows smartphone-style pinch / zoom / flick functions.
ENGINES / TRANSMISSIONS
Levorg is powered by Subaru’s high performance 2.0-litre turbocharged direct injection Boxer engine, producing 197 kW of power at 5600 rpm and 350 Nm of torque from 2400 to 5200 rpm.
Levorg’s CVT incorporates the Subaru Intelligent Drive (SI-Drive) system that includes three options: Sports Sharp (S#), Sport (S) and Intelligent (I) modes, to suit all driving styles.
Every Levorg has seven airbags: dual front, side, curtain and driver’s knee airbags and features the third generation of Subaru’s innovative EyeSight driver assist system. It has a five-star ANCAP rating.
EyeSight stereo camera images are in colour and recognition has been expanded, enabling vision of more than one object at a time. Length and width of camera view are extended approximately 40 per cent over the previous EyeSight.
Other refinements include improved enhanced pedestrian avoidance, pre-collision braking assist, pre-collision steering assist improved tracking performance and better performance of adaptive cruise control, including brake light recognition.
Additional systems on call are blind spot detection, lane change assist, rear cross traffic alert, side view monitor, high beam assist, EyeSight assist monitor and Emergency Stop Signal.
Occupants’ wellbeing is to the fore in the Levorg, with noise, vibration and harshness around the cabin muted to impressively low levels.
Premium sports-style leather upholstered front seats are laterally supportive without being cramped. The 2.0GT-S adds two driver’s seat memory functions, plus heated front seats. Every Levorg has dual zone automatic: climate control. Passengers in the back have reclining split / fold rear seats.
The 2.0-litre WRX engine offers spirited acceleration, and with its well-tuned CVT transmission and all-wheel drive, copes well with overtaking, even in tight spots.
Body rigidity, supple suspension and highly efficient brakes stand the Levorg in good stead, while steering response is inherited from other iconic turbocharged Subarus.
Unlike some of the ilk, the auto dimming headlights in the test vehicle worked with a high level of efficiency.
According to Subaru, the name Levorg is a mash-up of Japanese words meaning Legacy / revolution / touring. There’s no doubt the vehicle has an outstanding pedigree; is a very different creature; is versatile and goes like the clappers. All bases appear to be covered.
AT A GLANCE
Subaru Levorg 2.0GT: $42,990
Subaru Levorg 2.0GT-S: $48,890
Subaru Levorg 2.0GT-S Spec B (local fit option): $52,890
Note: These prices do not include government or dealer delivery charges. Contact your local Subaru dealer for drive-away prices.
FEATURES (Levorg 2.0GT-S Spec B)
18-inch alloy wheels
Daytime halogen running lights
Front fog lights
Headlights – self-levelling LED low beam, high beam assist
Rear LED combination lights
Rear LED stop light
Vehicle Dynamics Control system with electronic stability control, anti-lock braking, electronic brake-force distribution, brake assist, traction control, active torque vectoring
Hill start assist, hill hold
Electronic parking brake
Vision Assist featuring EyeSight Assist monitor, side view monitor, blind spot monitor, lane change assist, rear cross traffic alert
Subaru Intelligent Drive
EyeSight Driver Assist, featuring adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane sway warning, lead vehicle start alert, pre-collision braking system, pre-collision brake assist, pre-collision throttle management, pre-collision steering assist, brake light recognition
Multi-Information Display featuring 3.5in LCD screen
Multi-Function Display featuring 4.3in LCD screen
VDC operating information display
7in touchscreen. Pandora and Siri compatibility
Audio streaming, voice command recognition, Aux jack – front centre console, USB connections – front centre console
USB charge port – rear (x2)
SPECIFICATIONS (Subaru Levorg 2-litre direct Injection turbocharged horizontally-opposed Boxer 4-cylinder petrol five-door wagon)
Capacity: 1.998 litres
Configuration: Four cylinders, horizontally opposed
Maximum Power: 197 kW @ 5600 rpm
Maximum Torque: 350 Nm @ 2400-5200 rpm
Fuel Type: Petrol 95 RON
Combined Fuel Cycle (ADR 81/02): 8.7 L/100km
CO2 Emissions: 201 g/km
DRIVELINE: CVT automatic, variable torque distribution AWD
DIMENSIONS, WEIGHT AND CAPACITIES:
Length: 4690 mm
Wheelbase: 2650 mm
Width: 1780 mm
Height: 1490 mm
Turning Circle: 10.8 metres
Kerb Mass: 1622 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 60 litres
Front: Ventilated disc
Rear: Ventilated disc
Three years / unlimited kilometres