First drive: 2016 Subaru Levorg

First drive: 2016 Subaru Levorg image

Text: Vince Pornelos / Photos: Vince Pornelos | posted October 30, 2015 12:38

Eager to deliver

Out of the many brands in the market, Subaru is undoubtedly one of the leaders when it comes to 5 door wagons. The Impreza and Legacy both have had their wagon versions through the years, and some were even developed into crossovers like the XV, Forester, and Outback.

Now, however, Subaru has decided to introduce an entirely new wagon nameplate — one that will bridge the gap between the Impreza and Legacy — and they called it the Levorg.

2016 Subaru Levorg

To witness the launch of the new nameplate, MotorImage, the distributor of Subaru in ASEAN, brought us over to Taipei to see and get a sample of what the Levorg is capable of.

The all-new Levorg was named by combining Legacy (LE), Revolution (VO) and Touring (RG). The name is unusual, yes, but it does sound quite cool. Looking at the car for the first time, there are clear similarities to the Impre -err- just WRX, as the Levorg does make use of the Impreza platform. Move toward the side and rear, and then the view changes to that of a Legacy wagon.

2016 Subaru Levorg interior

The 2016 Levorg may be based on the Impreza but the platform has been stretched, though it's still a 5-seater. Thus the new wagon measures in at 4690mm long, 1780mm wide and 1490mm. With the extended boot space generated by the Levorg, the boot is capable of handling 522 liters of volume in the back with the seats still up.

2016 Subaru Levorg dashboard

Step inside and it's familiar territory for Subaru owners as the dashboard and the layout is essentially the same as the current Impreza, XV and Forester. In the middle of the console is the multimedia system surrounded by a variety of controls for the many functions of the vehicle. The D-shaped steering wheel is a nice touch, and the flat bottom makes for easier entry and exit. What's interesting is the SI-Drive selector, as it allows for a variety of settings for the powertrain.

2016 Subaru Levorg engine

At the heart of the Levorg is a newly developed 1.6-liter boxer engine that has been turbocharged and intercooled. The result is a powerplant that makes 170 PS and 250 Nm of torque. The new engine is matched with a Lineartronic CVT and Subaru's signature Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive.

To sample the abilities of the Levorg, MotorImage had set up a challenging test course for the car, one that incorporated a few high speed turns, a tight slalom, a few hard braking points and even a high speed lane change.

It's no WRX but the acceleration of the 1.6L GT-S was good, considering it's a much heavier car than the Impreza. The Levorg afforded the driver plenty of braking on demand which is good for a car this heavy, and the same can be said for the turn in. Agility around the slalom was also better than expected; something unusual for an all-wheel drive car, not to mention that it had three of us inside.

2016 Subaru Levorg

Stability is key for any road car, and the Levorg has it in spades. All throughout the course, the Levorg exhibited the true traits of the Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system, and that's with the bumpy tarmac surface that kept trying to toss the car every which way but straight and level.

There really was only so much that can be learned from a very brief drive, but the Levorg showed its capabilities very well. Only a full test drive can reveal how the Levorg is in terms of comfort, fuel economy and many other important factors, but it's hard to doubt a car built by Subaru. Their models of late have taken the hallmarks of the brand, like performance, driving thrill and versatility, and have been further combined with efficiency, improved designs and other aspects.

Much can be expected of the new 2016 Subaru Levorg and — based on our brief sample — it is more than ready (eager, even) to deliver.