The Jakarta Post
With bulky and brawny features, the Subaru XV 2,000 cc Premium may appeal to those who love to drive in diverse conditions, either crawling through a city traffic jam or navigating hilly roads out of town.
As a sports utility vehicle ( SUV ) crossover, the Subaru XV offers convincing, stable handling on both flat and hilly roads, allowing the driver near total safety thanks to its symmetrical all-wheel drive technology.
Exterior-wise, the Subaru XV is equipped with, among others, halogen lamps, front fog lamps and big 17-inch aluminum alloy wheels with impressive rim designs.
Riding from hilly Ubud to Denpasar, The Jakarta Post felt completely comfortable and protected in the car.
With automatic transmission, the Subaru XV has no trouble traversing hilly routes. Its responsiveness is praiseworthy thanks to the use of the famous 2.0-liter DOHC 16-valve Subaru Boxer engine.
It manages 110 kilowatts ( kw ) at 6,200 revolutions per minute ( rpm ) and 196 Newton Meter ( Nm ) of torque at 4,200 rpm, claiming a top speed of 187 kilometers per hour ( km/h ) and 1-100 km/h acceleration in 10.7 seconds.
The Subaru Boxer layout allows the engine to be positioned in-line with the drive-train for the maximum transfer of power. Many other engines are transverse, or turned perpendicular, and can require additional drive-train components to transfer power, reducing vehicle efficiency.
With pistons moving horizontally, the Subaru Boxer engine has a flat, low profile, almost perfectly symmetrical, for a well-balanced vehicle. Its low profile can provide a lower center of gravity than other designs, helping provide a quick handling response and flat, confident cornering.
Along with strong traction, vehicle dynamics control ( VDC ) — a stability control system — automatically senses steering and braking inputs to help keep the vehicle on the driver’s intended path. The VDC system also includes an all-wheel all-speed traction control system.
Combined with the horizontally-opposed Boxer engine, a symmetrical all-wheel drive delivers outstanding grip, balance and control in a variety of road conditions. It is one of the Subaru XV’s plus points, which gives no under-steer or over-steer experience during cornering, making it easy to control on hilly and curvy tracks.
“The four-wheel drive car is not only for off-road routes. We have introduced the Subaru XV for modern city driving, which offers safety for customers at all times. The four-wheel drive function is also good for cornering. It helps to control the car better, maintains the stability and you can take the road very easily,” says Marcus Lim, TC Subaru senior manager of sales and operations for Indonesia.
For those who are still fanatic about manual transmission, the SUV also has a pedal shift function to support a real driving experience with a six-speed manual mode transmission.
In D mode, or full automatic transmission, the driver can also apply the paddle shift to maximize the use of its power. The SUV also comes with a cruise control ability to add comfort when driving.
The car also provides an anti-lock braking system ( ABS ) to help prevent wheel lockup when stopping.
Another feature is EyeSight, two cameras that are mounted by the rearview mirror to monitor traffic. EyeSight will sound an alert and flash a visual warning if there’s danger of a collision and will automatically apply the brakes. It can also optimize cruise control and warn drivers when they’re swaying outside of their lane.
To complete the car’s safety features, the Subaru XV provides airbags for the driver and front passenger as well as knee airbags for driver, side-door reinforcement beams for the front and rear and on both sides, as well as child-proof rear door locking.
Although the Subaru XV is rather big for a five-seater car with it being 4,450-millimeter ( mm ) long, 1,780-mm wide, 1,615-mm high and with 220-mm off ground clearance, it has clear visibility. Its six-way manual adjustable driver’s seat is also beneficial for a petite female driver.
In the cabin, all seats and steering wheel are covered with solid leather.
Its entertainment system is complete with three LCDs — one at front and two at the headrests — and an audio system which is compatible with iPod, USB flash disks and has Bluetooth connectivity.
The steering wheel has access to entertainment system, cruise control and the pedal shift.
With a spacious cabin and maximum foot room, allowing two adults sitting comfortably in the backseat for long-distance journeys, the Subaru XV is an interesting option for family.
Its monochromatic dark colors on Subaru’s traditional dashboard layout and cabin design may not stand out in terms of luxury, but its bouncy soft-touch plastic gives the perception of more safety, as it is said to protect the driver and passengers in the event of an impact.
— Photos by Niken Prathivi