Subaru has unveiled their second-generation XV at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, showing the Japanese marque fresh crossover to rival equally new contenders with an all-new platform and a design that borrows, like its predecessor, quite a bit from the Impreza.
The official outing of Subaru’s all-new XV probably won’t come as much of a surprise to most people as a replacement was known to be nearing prime time for a good chunk of the past year. And following the release fifth-generation Impreza, it didn’t really take much effort to imagine a ‘jacked-up’ version of it, especially as it’s now (again) offered as a 5-door hatch.
That’s just what we got, too, as Subaru plays the safe game by delivering a consistently improved version over the outgoing XV, blending many of the same design cues from its predecessor as well as the new Impreza hatch. That said, it should benefit from that car’s same generational leap, which is significant.
It sits atop a new platform, first of all, which is 70 percent more rigid than before - the Subaru Global Platform - that also aids to lower the centre of gravity even more but maintaining the same 220mm ground clearance.
Overall the exterior can be characterised as a more subdued design over the first-generation XV’s angular panels. This aesthetic ‘toning down’ is motif that’s spreading to all Subaru models. As is standard with crossovers, the protective matte black cladding surrounds the new XV’s lower perimeter while new design wheels feature on all four corners, though they clearly have been penned to emulate the five-spoke pattern we’re used to.
Inside lies what is arguably the most pronounced difference between the new and older 2012 model. Naturally, it’s been carried over from the new Impreza, and gives it an air of sophistication that the older car just couldn’t muster.
Sure, it’s still outclassed by other marques for flair, but it’s big step forward. Notably, the infotainment screen is more integrated into the centre stack and flanked by two air conditioning vents while the vehicle information screen still hovers over the dashboard. Elsewhere, the the leather seats have the same orange contrast stitching that the original car is known for.
Under the bonnet is a 2.0-litre naturally aspirated flat-four petrol engine that produces 116kW and 196Nm. That may seem familiar but Subaru says that nearly 80 percent of all engine components are new, and amounts to a weight saving of 12kg.
It’s the same case with the Lineartronic Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) that it’s mated to in that, though it might seem old hat, it has undergone a reworking to deliver smoother operation, faster acceleration, and improved fuel economy.
As before, power is delivered to all four wheels via Subaru’s standard-fit Symmetric All-Wheel Drive system that makes it one of the new crossovers in this space be capable of actual off-roading when roads don’t take you close enough to your destination.
Subaru is also outfitting the new XV with the latest in its EyeSight safety suite, which will come as standard in the specifications seen for the European market. These include active safety and pre-collision systems such as autonomous emergency braking (AEB), lane keep assist, and adaptive cruise control.