The popular Subaru Legacy sedan has been totally redesigned for 2020, offering better performance, more technology, elevated refinement, and even a much-improved interior.
This re-engineered four-door is one of the Windy City’s most significant reveals here at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show.
Appealing to a wide range of buyers, the 2020 Subaru Legacy will be offered in six different trims: Base, Premium, Sport, Limited, Limited XT and Touring XT. Unfortunately, pricing details have not been released at this time.
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The seventh-generation Legacy is built on the Subaru Global Platform, a vehicle architecture that was introduced in 2017. It provides 70 percent greater torsional rigidity than its predecessor, something that should provide better driving dynamics and safety. Delivering this enhanced stiffness, engineers employed 13 percent more ultra-high-strength steel and nearly 400 percent more structural adhesive.
New construction methods further improve the strength of this Legacy’s body. Modern Subarus are known for their exceptional safety ratings and this 2020 version should perform even better in crash tests. Its structure can absorb 40 percent more energy than the current model’s can.
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Two engines will be offered in this latest Legacy, including a spicy turbo four. Both powerplants are of the boxer variety and mounted to an improved continuously variable automatic transmission, one that reduces parasitic losses by 32 percent, improving efficiency. As you might have guessed, all-wheel-drive is standard across the board.
The Legacy’s base powerplant displaces a suspiciously familiar 2.5-liters, though more than 90 percent of its components have been reworked to enhance performance and refinement. This engine cranks out a respectable 182 horsepower and 176 pound-feet of torque. That’s enough to deliver a zero-to-60 time of 8.4 seconds. As for fuel economy, Legacy models equipped with this engine are estimated to return 27 miles per gallon in city driving and 35 on the highway.
For drivers that want more giddy-up, a 2.4-liter turbo is also offered. It’s the performance option, cranking out an impressive 260 ponies with 277 pound-feet of twist, figures that enable the Legacy to blitz to mile-a-minute velocity in a sports car-like 6.1 seconds. As for efficiency, expect 24 miles per gallon around town and 32 on interstate drives with this engine.
Matching its improved powertrains and new body structure, this Subaru family-sedan gains a host of fresh features. And the one most customers are sure to notice almost immediately is the available 11.6-inch screen, home to Subaru’s latest-generation Starlink infotainment system. This is standard on Premium, Sport and Limited models. With so much real estate, this display allows access two different functions at once, such as the navigation and audio systems.
Less fancy Subaru Legacy variants feature a pair of seven-inch displays that allow operation of the multimedia and climate controls. In-car Wi-Fi is available for the first time in this nameplate’s history, keeping road warriors connected with high-speed LTE data service. As expected, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are baked into all available Starlink infotainment systems.
EyeSight, the firm’s suite of advanced driver aids is now standard. This includes things like adaptive cruise control with lane centering technology and many other helpful amenities.
For added protection, adaptive LED headlamps, reverse automatic braking, rear cross-traffic alert and blind spot monitoring with lane-change assist are all available, as is a driver-focus and distraction-mitigation system. Using a dedicated camera with facial recognition, it can identify whether a driver is fatigued or not paying attention and alert them to take a break or put their phone down.
The Legacy’s interior has been improved markedly for the latest model year. Higher-end models will coddle customers with available Nappa-leather trimmings. More soft plastics and improved heated seats with greater coverage and three levels of temperature adjustability are offered as well.
Thanks to new door seals, laminated windshield and front-door glass as well as numerous other tweaks reduce interior racket by almost three decibels, which doesn’t sound like much but should make a big difference.
Further improving functionality, the Legacy’s trunk has grown. The floor length has been increased by nearly an inch and a half, yielding more than 15 cubic feet of storage space, enough for four full-size roller-boards, at least according to Subaru.
Topside you’ll find standard mounting brackets on the roof. These make it a snap to mount a luggage rack, cargo box or bike rack for greatly improved versatility.
The all-new 2020 Subaru Legacy is slated to arrive at dealerships this fall. Expect pricing details to be released closer to its on-sale date, though it will probably be very comparable to the outgoing model, which starts at around $23,000 ($27,000 CDN).
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