New electrified flat-four could change the marque’s fortunes in Europe.
Japanese marque Subaru have cued up a pretty big show for Geneva, or at least what they would call a big show. The engineer-first brand is set to debut a new-generation of mild-hybrid powertrain at the prestigious show, and they’ve dubbed it ‘e-Boxer.’
The e-Boxer setup will pair one of Subaru’s ubiquitous flat-four petrol mills with a small electric motor, the latter of which is embedded within the Lineartronic CVT automatic. Subaru hasn’t specified the outputs we can expect from this system, but at this year’s Singapore Motor Show, they previewed a Forester e-Boxer with a claimed combined output of 116kW and 253Nm.
It’s unclear if that setup will be what’s launching in Geneva, or if it’ll go on to power e-Boxer Subarus across the globe.
Like other mild-hybrid systems, the electric motor & combustion engine work together to achieve maximum operational efficiency. At higher speeds, the combustion engine works alone and feeds power to the wheels and electricity back into the battery. And at slow speeds, that battery sends power into the electric motor to provide additional torque, like when taking off at a standstill. It can also run on electric power alone in conditions like traffic jams, or provide additional shove during overtaking.
As perhaps a testament to Subaru’s amazing packaging abilities, you lose just 11-litres of cargo space in a Forester by opting for an e-Boxer system rather than a regular Forester (going from a capacious 520L of space to a still-pretty-enormous 502L). However, it’s worth pointing out again that the prototypes driven in Singapore may not necessarily reflect the product that Australia will eventually get, or indeed other global markets.