Subaru Levorg, Bold New Station Wagon, Previews the Next WRX

Eric Stafford
Photo credit: Subaru

From Car and Driver

  • Subaru has unveiled the second-generation Levorg station wagon at the 2019 Tokyo auto show.
  • Although it switches to the Subaru Global Platform, the wagon will continue to bypass the U.S. market.
  • With bold design language and more sophisticated technology, the new Levorg likely previews what we'll see on future U.S. models such as the next-gen Subaru WRX.

One look at the Subaru Levorg, which debuted today at the Tokyo auto show, will have people taking notice of its heavily creased bodywork. It will also have some of them wiping away tears—at least if they live in America—because this second generation of the sporty station wagon still won't be coming to the U.S. of A.

Photo credit: Subaru

For those who have never heard of this peculiarly named Subaru, here's a quick history lesson. The company first introduced the Levorg at the 2013 Tokyo auto show. Its name was derived from the words Legacy, Revolution, and Touring, but don't ask us to how the marketing people made sense of that one. Since then, the Levorg has lived as the longroof version of the last-generation Impreza and the current WRX—exclusively sold overseas, of course.

While it's disappointing that America misses out on another enthusiast-oriented station wagon, the all-new Levorg should provide some clues about what to expect from future U.S.-bound Subaru models, especially the highly anticipated next-gen WRX. Most notably, the Levorg now rides on the Subaru Global Platform, which currently underpins the Impreza as well as several other, newer Subaru models. Since the WRX still sits on an obsolete architecture, it's only a matter of time until that transition happens. When it does, we hope it includes the Levorg's bold design language.

Clearly drawing inspiration from its Viziv Tourer wagon and Viziv Adrenaline concepts, Subaru appropriately tones down their aggressive aesthetics for production while still making the Levorg look mean as hell. Its hexagonal grille bears the company's iconic Pleiades star cluster and is outlined by an angular surround that protrudes into a pair of recognizable headlights. Its attention-grabbing face also features a prominent hood scoop and menacing lower fascia that flow into boxed front fenders and more gently folded side surfacing. The Levorg's rear-three-quarter view reveals bulging fenders and a hard shoulder line that meets a raked rear window, which in turn is stacked above a pumped-up bumper complete with dual exhaust tips.

Photo credit: Subaru

Subaru hasn't divulged many specific details, but it has confirmed that the upcoming Levorg will be powered by a newly developed four-cylinder engine. Following tradition, this new turbocharged 1.8-liter mill will continue to be a horizontally opposed flat-four—also known as a boxer. With direct injection and fuel-saving technology, Subaru says the torquey four will balance acceleration and efficiency. The company didn't mention what transmission will feed its standard all-wheel-drive system, but a continuously variable automatic (CVT) was the only gearbox available on the outgoing Levorg.

The station wagon we saw was also outfitted with the next generation of Subaru's EyeSight driver-assistance technology. Its camera system is said to have a wider viewing angle that combines with radar-based front and rear sensors to deliver improved automated emergency braking and better detection of low-visibility objects. The Levorg also features new tech that can assist the driver during cornering and in heavy traffic.

The second-gen Levorg will hit the Japan market in the second half of 2020, so we westerners will have to wait with bated breath until Subaru decides to reveal the next-gen WRX. At least its station-wagon counterpart has given us a tantalizing look at what could be in store.

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