The Boxer engine and symmetrical all-wheel drive system have long been cruxes of the Subaru brand. It’s the maverick in an industry that largely favours the straight engine and front-wheel drive setup. But as progress would have it, things are about to be a lot more generic in the electric age, making it a lot more challenging to stand out.
Subaru won’t go down without a fight. Say hello to the Solterra, its first ever battery-electric vehicle. It’s jointly developed with Toyota (bZ4X is its twin sibling), and the Solterra sits on a new dedicated EV platform called e-Subaru Global Platform (e-SGP; e-TNGA for Toyota).
In terms of size, it’s slightly larger than the C-segment Forester, measuring in at 4,690 mm long, 1,860 mm wide and 1,650 mm tall, with a wheelbase of 2,850 mm. It also has a minimum ground clearance of 210 mm and turning radius of 5.7 metres. There are many clever design details that are functional, so we’ll let David Dello Stritto take you on a comprehensive walk-around tour of the sleek new SUV.
For now, just know that the Solterra will go on sale starting mid next year, and it will be available with either a front- or all-wheel drive setup. A 71.4 kWh lithium-ion battery (operates at 355 volts) is standard, and it can be charged at a maximum of rate of 6.6 kW (AC), or 150 kW for DC fast-charging up to 150 kW. There’s also the option of a solar roof, if you so fancy.
The FWD model gets a single AC synchronous motor that makes 150 kW (204 PS), while the AWD gets two motors – each rated at 80 kW (109 PS) – for a total of 160 kW (218 PS, 336 Nm). Maximum range for the FWD is 530 km, while the AWD sees this reduced to approximately 460 km.
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