The unveiling of the 2012 Subaru XV has been one of the slowest automotive drip feeds of the year, but finally today we have an official image of the actual production vehicle.
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It may just be a rear quarter shot, but it confirms the road car maintains the square and chunky styling of the Subaru XV Concept that debuted in Shanghai in April and brightened up the Subaru stand in Melbourne in July.

Grey plastic panels border the lower edges to give it that rough and ready look, and to protect the paintwork when taken off-road.

Those who have followed the unveiling of the Subaru XV would know it is effectively a high-riding 2012 Subaru Impreza hatch.

(rendering by Theophilus Chin)

Although the official details of the XV’s 2.0-litre four-cylinder boxer engine are still to be confirmed, we expect it to match the performance of the new Impreza. That means 110kW of power and 196Nm of torque, while transmission options are likely to include a six-speed manual and a continuously variable transmission.

Subaru Australia is yet to commit to the Subaru XV, although we expect it to join the new Impreza in the refreshed local range sometime in 2012.

With Japanese production scheduled to begin before the end of this year, an Australian launch in the first half of next year does not seem out of the question.