Without breaking the house, the first XV made an honourable career on the European market, becoming the most popular Subaru model. A career enough in any case to consider the launch of the second generation, which was presented last month in Geneva as a world premiere. Don’t rely on the general line of this elevated compact, as it is a new car.
Promise kept, but…
Let’s recognize a real talent in Subaru: that of offering very successful concept cars. A year ago, the XV concept was presented and prefigured the new XV. We were rather thrilled by his dynamic and sharpened drawing. Today, not to mention disappointment, it has to be said that everything that made the originality of the XV concept (front lights, taillights, body line, rims, roof bars, etc…) has disappeared from the XV 2, even if the general line is vaguely preserved. The car is not ugly or ordinary, but we would have liked a more marked difference with the first generation. An untrained eye will not notice anything.
In any case, renewing the XV in Europe is not only necessary, but vital. As the best-selling product in the range, Subaru’s life would be much less simple without him on the old continent. In any case, the brand will remain there a little bit longer until it adapts its offer to our market. On the other hand, in the USA, it beats sales records every year (613,000 copies in 2016).
In any case, the small Japanese manufacturer had his nose in the sand when, as early as 2012, he offered us this high, welded version of the Impreza 5-door. Well, let’s face it, some European states are fonder of the philosophy of the 15th century than we are, French, atmospheric boxer engine, all-wheel drive, simple range, sufficient equipment, no technical overkill.
The new XV was therefore designed on the new Subaru Global Platform modular platform. A much stiffer platform (Subaru drops a number: +70 to 100%), combined with a single direct injection petrol engine: the 156 hp 2.0L atmospheric Boxer (torque 196 Nm), 80% of the parts have changed. There is also only one gearbox: a CVT Lineartronic continuously variable transmission, which nevertheless offers
a 7-speed manual transmission simulation. The mass is therefore said: the XV seems to make a cross on the small 1.6L 115 hp petrol engine of its predecessor, but especially on the 147 hp 2.0L diesel engine. Let’s summarize: a Boxer engine (certainly malfunctioning), a CVT gearbox, no diesel… good luck to the Subaru France salespeople! This is more worrying as the XV has so far accounted for almost half of French registrations. The possibility of a hybrid version is not yet confirmed, but it would be beneficial.