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LA 2017: Subaru Ascent enters three-row crossover fray


Subaru debuts Ascent with first 2.4-liter turbo boxer engine

After weeks of teasers, Subaru has officially revealed the Ascent to take on the seven-seat crossover market. This is the brand's second attempt in the large crossover market after the Tribeca, which was sold from 2006 to 2014. Subaru marks it as a 2019 model and is set to go against the likes of the Ford Explorer, Honda Pilot and Mazda CX-9.

The Ascent takes its styling cues from its smaller stablemate, the Forester. At the same time, it remains faithful to the concept which premiered during the 2017 New York Auto Show. At the front is the signature hexagonal grill, complemented by long, upswept headlights.


On to its side, it sees tall, upright windows along with a window line that kinks upwards towards the back. Black cladding then surrounds the lower half of the crossover. As for the rear, it comes with wraparound tail lights in the shape of an inverted 'L', as well as an integrated tailgate spoiler.

Inside, it retains the center stack design seen in the newest Subarus. It also incorporates a sweeping cabin design with a multi-information display on the top center of the dash, as well as in the instrument cluster. Also available is a variety of interior color choices, as well as a panoramic sunroof.

It also features smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay™ and Android® Auto 6.5-inch Multimedia System. Higher trim levels, on the other hand, feature an 8-inch Multimedia Plus and 8-inch Multimedia Navigation systems. There is also a Wi-fi connectivity option in the new crossover.

Two seating arrangements can be chosen in specifying the Ascent. There's the standard eight-seat variant and also a seven-seat version which replaces the second-row bench with a pair of captain's chairs. The third row then folds flat with a pull of a lever or, on higher-spec models, with a push of a button.

Powering the Ascent is a new, turbocharged, 2.4-liter flat-four engine; a first from the brand. It produces 260 PS and 375 Nm of torque. Being a Subaru, Symmetrical All-wheel Drive is standard with the bonus of torque vectoring. A first in its segment is the use of a continuously variable transmission in a non-hybrid application, which Subaru calls Lineartronic.

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