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by Tim Beissmann

Subaru Australia has added the high-riding Subaru Impreza XV to its local line-up after the car made a strong first impression at the Geneva Motor Show in March.

Based on the Impreza hatch and sharing the 2.0-litre Boxer engine with the R, RX and RS models, the RV sits 30mm higher and features retuned suspension settings to complement the added ride height.

The grille is new, as are the front and rear bumpers, rear spoiler and roof rails, but it is the black plastic protective flared wheel arches that truly make the XV stand out from the rest of the range.

Under the arches sit 16in alloys and standard fog lamps light the way up front.

Inside is a mix of sport and luxury with bucket seats; leather-trimmed steering wheel, handbrake and gearstick; climate control; Bluetooth and a 10-speaker MP3/CD stereo with iPod and USB connectivity.

The XV is available in five colours and can be ordered with a factory-fitted sunroof for an additional $1500.

Subaru Australia managing director, Nick Senior, said the Impreza XV carries the spirit of Sportswagons and RVs of the past and is aimed at a younger, “go your own way” section of the market.

“By using Impreza hatch as the donor car, Subaru has created a vehicle that enables people to mix five day a week commuting with an active weekend adventure lifestyle,” Mr Senior said.

Sales of the Impreza have dropped by 15 percent year-to-date this year compared with the total small car market which has gained almost 20 percent. Subaru is hoping its latest adventure-focused addition can turn the tide and push the Impreza back towards 2009 numbers.

“[The] current Impreza is already our best-selling generation of the car and XV will only add to that success, appealing to customers looking for something that stands out and represents a fun package, all with the essential Subaru ingredients of great engineering, safety and retained value,” Mr Senior said.

The Subaru Impreza XV is on sale now and is priced from $27,490* for the five-speed manual and $29,490* for the four-speed automatic.

*Manufacturer’s List Pricing includes GST but excludes dealer delivery charges and all other government and statutory charges.




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