Subaru followed up on its darkened teaser photo with a Shanghai motor show debut of the XV concept. Though the company calls it a crossover, we think the XV looks more like a tall station wagon, and we hope it will evolve into a production Impreza wagon at a later date. It’s not especially large, measuring a few inches smaller in height and length than the current Subaru Forester.
Subaru says the XV offers SUV practicality in a “fashionable” body. We’d say fanciful is a more apt description of this concept, what with the Electro Yellowgreen paint and alloy wheels with five polygonal spokes. The front fascia resembles most current Subarus, with the brand’s signature trapezoidal grille opening and “hawk-eye” headlights; the lights wear blue and orange highlights that recall those on the Chevrolet Volt.
Chrome roof rails and accents align with the car’s urban-chic premise, yet the black fender liners, side skirts, and bumpers hint at rough-and-tumble off-road capability. A blocky rear bumper is topped by darkened, hexagonal taillights. The hatch features a subtle roof spoiler and large chrome license-plate surround.
Inside, the center console is home to a large touchscreen system, and white leather seats feature funky yellow-green accents. There’s a large panoramic glass roof that extends the entire length of the roof. The car features Subaru’s EyeSight system, which uses two cameras to provide adaptive cruise control and apply the brakes if the XV is about to rear-end another vehicle. It debuted on Japanese-market Subarus last year.
The powertrain setup is no real surprise for a Subaru, with a 2.0-liter flat-four engine mated to all-wheel drive, with a continuously-variable transmission. There are rumblings a Subaru wagon like this could come to the U.S. in the future. In fact, the XV name is already in use for the Outback Sport in certain countries. We expect to learn more when the 2012 Impreza sedan debuts at the New York auto show this week.