Subaru last offered a turbo-petrol four-cylinder engine in Liberty's previous fifth generation, when the GT model was fitted with a 184kW/339Nm 2.5-litre engine, and this new one looks as if it will replace the current 191kW/350Nm 3.6-litre six-cylinder boxer engine used in the 3.6R. Eight standard airbags are included, and Subaru is predicting a IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating after testing later this year.
Up-spec U.S. models feature a huge 11.6-inch full-HD central tablet touchscreen, which brings some Tesla-style visual glamour and incorporates the multimedia, heating/ventilation controls and other vehicles settings into one slick unit. Depending on the model, the new Liberty rides on either 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels. That includes the naturally aspirated 2.5-liter Boxer-four engine standard on the rest of the line. So far, we've been impressed with Subarus based on this platform, which bodes well for the new Legacy. The result, according to Subaru, is a zero to 60 miles per hour (97/ km/h) time of an "estimated 6,1 seconds". It makes 182 hp and 176 lb-ft of torque and can propel the 2020 Legacy from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 8.6 seconds.
Subaru said that it is targeting 27 mpg city, 35 highway for the base engine and 24 mpg city, 34 highway for the turbo.
Subaru Australia says the current Liberty still has a "considerable time to run", so the company is unable to comment on when the new model may arrive Down Under. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto phone mirroring are supported, and while numerous car's functions are accessed through the screen, it's great to see physical volume controls and easy-to-access climate control switches outside the main screen. Items such as seat heaters and a 12-speaker Harman Kardon sound system will also be available.
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The rest of the cabin gets an upgrade, too. Limited and Touring trims get 10-way power front seats and seat heating front and rear.
Another first for the 2020 Legacy is the Front View Monitor, standard on the Touring XT. European buyers will have to wait longer for the Subaru Legacy arrival.
All models come standard with all-wheel drive and a handful of driver safety tech like EyeSight Driver Assist. New is a lane centering function with the adaptive cruise control that makes small steering inputs to keep the vehicle centered in the lane. There's also a DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation system (optional on Limited and standard on both XT trims), a Front View Monitor, LED Steering Responsive headlights, Reverse Automatic Braking and Blind Spot Detection with Lane Change Assist and Rear Cross Traffic Alert. The all-new seventh-generation 2020 Legacy XT models will go on sale at U.S. Subaru dealers this fall. Pricing for the new AWD sedan will be confirmed closer to that point.