2017 Subaru XV: off-road-capable SUV fielded at Geneva

Four-wheel-drive Subaru XV compact SUV has all-terrain capability

Subaru has revealed its new XV SUV at the Geneva Motor Show, ahead of UK sales commencing this year

The new model was previewed by the Subaru XV Concept at Geneva a year ago and the production model is little changed from the look of the concept. It’ll compete with compact SUVs such as the Nissan Qashqai, Honda CR-V and Mazda CX-3, but has more rugged appeal.

Where front-wheel-drive SUV-styled rivals struggle off the beaten track, the Subaru XV has genuine all-terrain capability to back up its looks, with high ground clearance and four-wheel drive as standard on all models.

New Subaru XV design

The Subaru XV SUV is new from the ground up, being based on the Japanese company’s latest global vehicle platform. It looks every inch a Subaru, with a prominent grille and swept-back headlights, while interest is added to its flanks by a triangular valley running along the upper door surfaces, giving the impression of a lower height. The overall profile of the car is less traditional, boxy SUV and more sporty hatchback.

Meanwhile, the car’s four-wheel-drive nature is emphasised by huge wheelarches, which are capped by no-nonsense black plastic mouldings, signifying that the XV isn’t afraid to tackle the rough stuff. This is further borne out by the new platform, which is said to be considerably stiffer than that of the previous XV, while a high ground clearance bodes well for off-road agility.

The interior design hasn’t yet been revealed, but we’re promised lots of space and a real improvement on perceived quality compared to Subaru’s present line-up. An eight-inch touchscreen controls an infotainment system with up-to-date connectivity features.

Engines

The engines in the new Subaru XV stay true to the brand’s loyalty to the ‘boxer’ format, with a 154bhp flat-four 2.0-litre petrol offered as the entry-level model. It’s a revised version of that used in the previous XV, with claimed improvements in fuel efficiency and lightness. It runs through a standard CVT automatic gearbox, which has a manual mode that sees it behave like a seven-speed clutchless manual.

In 2016, Subaru’s UK marketing director Chris Hawken told our sister title Auto Express that Subaru is unlikely to move away from the boxer engine. He also mentioned that the next generation of XV "will have electrification in the range”. This means it’s a safe assumption that there’ll be a hybrid version of the new car. Rumours that Subaru is developing a mid-engined hybrid sports car using a 1.6-litre boxer engine fuel the possibility of that engine making its way into the XV.

The new XV employs a four-wheel-drive system with X-MODE, which can individually brake wheels that aren’t able to grip – a boon when crossing rough or slippery terrain. On-road handling is also said to have been tweaked, thanks to torque-vectoring and a lower centre of gravity than the outgoing model.

New Subaru XV: price & on-sale date

The latest XV has a longer list of safety features than before, with lane-keeping assistance, adaptive cruise control and pre-collision braking all available. It arrives in UK showrooms later this year and although pricing has yet to be confirmed, we don’t expect a big change from the outgoing model, which started at £22,180.

Recommended

New Subaru Crosstrek arrives in the UK with £34k price tag
2023 Subaru Crosstrek front near side
News
16 Jan 2024

New Subaru Crosstrek arrives in the UK with £34k price tag

New 2024 Fiat Panda: latest details
2023 fiat panda render
News
15 Aug 2023

New 2024 Fiat Panda: latest details

Most Popular

Hot car deal: sporty Skoda Octavia vRS Estate for £278 a month
octavia vrs hot deal
Deals
19 Feb 2024

Hot car deal: sporty Skoda Octavia vRS Estate for £278 a month

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s top car offers
Carbuyer best new car deals hero
Deals
23 Feb 2024

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s top car offers

Hot car deal: racy Cupra Ateca SUV for just £234 a month
cupra ateca
Deals
16 Feb 2024

Hot car deal: racy Cupra Ateca SUV for just £234 a month

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
19 Dec 2023

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Public EV charge point
Tips and advice
11 Jan 2023

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Tips and advice
17 May 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
12 Apr 2023

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors

Top 10 best electric cars 2024
The best electric cars 2023
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

Top 10 best electric cars 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024
The best cheap-to-run cars 2023
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024
Fastest hot hatchbacks hero
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024