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Tokyo show: Subaru Australia wants Levorg

Levorg fills the void: In the absence of a new WRX wagon, Australia will gladly take the performance focused Levorg.

Subaru Australia hot to trot on Levorg as potential WRX wagon replacement

Subaru logo20 Nov 2013

By BARRY PARK and MIKE COSTELLO in JAPAN

SUBARU Australia has its hand in the air to be among the first markets to offer the new Levorg performance tourer as a replacement for the axed WRX wagon, if its Japanese parent gives the green light to exports beyond its domestic market.

Revealed this morning as a prototype in Tokyo, the Levorg offers one of two punchy new turbo engines and a practical wagon body. With the new WRX to be a sedan-only proposition, its potential in Subaru’s global line-up is obvious.

Developed to merge Subaru’s “unique approach to sport and touring performance cars”, the all-wheel-drive Levorg will be offered with the choice of either a 1.6-litre or 2.0-litre direct-injection turbocharged four-cylinder boxer engine.

Production will commence soon, with Japanese sales to commence in the new year.

Speaking to GoAuto from the show stand, Subaru Australia managing director Nick Senior said the company’s local arm would soon enter discussions to bring it Down Under, provided it could prove it would add incremental volume.

“We’ve put our hand up for it,” he said. “Discussions stars early next year, it’s not clear if it will be available for export.”

Mr Senior said the issue would be canvassed at a Subaru world distributor conference to be held this week, with Australia and other likely export destinations all pushing the case.

“From a market perspective I think it’s unique,” said Mr Senior. “It’s true to Subaru, in terms of opening up another segment of the market.

“Look at it a if it is designed as a while new model in the Subaru lineup, that’s where it has got to sit, it has to add incremental volume. We want to keep our lineup simple.”

Meantime, at the Tokyo reveal, Subaru thanked its loyal following in Australia by branding them in film with a familiar name — Subarists.

The Japanese car-maker’s president and chief executive, Yasuyuki Yoshinaga, said at the unveiling that the car-maker’s strong global growth in recent years was all down to its customers.

“In Japan we respectfully call our Subaru fans and enthusiasts who support our brand ‘Subarists’,” he said.

“Subarists know how to enjoy life and how to enjoy a good drive. Subarists are those who love cars, who devote time and passion into their hobbies, and devote time to their families and friends.”

He said the car-maker had made the movie, titled ‘I’m a Subarist’, to thank all Subaru owners.

The short three-minute film features a number of Australian owners declaring to the camera “I’m a Subarist, too” before moving on to owners form other nationalities.

“As I said before , Subarists means those who love Subaru,” Mr Yoshinaga said.

“We are very proud to have such people and such a name.”

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