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Subaru debuts Final Edition Liberty send-off

Last call: Brandishing a bunch of STI cosmetic bits, the Liberty Final Edition marks the end of a 31-year chapter.

Subaru launches an exclusive Final Edition of its retiring Liberty mid-sizer

25 Nov 2020

SUBARU Australia has unveiled its farewell tribute to the departing Liberty mid-sized sedan in the form of a limited-run Final Edition, a car the brand says offers $6,400 worth of added value for just an extra $1990.


Based on the regular Liberty 2.5i Premium, the Final Edition has been adorned with a series of STI cosmetic enhancements and will be limited strictly to just 31 units – one example for every year the Liberty has been offered Down Under.


Priced from $39,930 plus on-road costs, the Final Edition’s cosmetic enhancements consist of 18-inch STI alloy wheels, STI front lip spoiler, rear boot lip spoiler, mesh pattern front grille, individual Final Edition number badging as well as black foglight surrounds, side skirt garnishes, door mirror covers and rear exterior badges.


Things have been stepped up inside the cabin too with Ultrasuede inserts on the seat upholstery and interior trim, blue stitching on the seats, armrests and dash, and black accents including the air vents, dash, door trim and steering wheel.


A Harman Kardon sound system pinched from the flagship 3.6R has also been fitted as standard.


With less than three-dozen examples to be available, the Final Edition will be available in just three different colour schemes with a varying number of units available in each colour.


15 examples will be finished in Magnetite Grey with black wheels, 10 will be Crystal Black with silver wheels and six will be Crystal White with gunmetal wheels.


Despite the obvious go-faster styling, which appears to hark back to the fourth-generation GT tuned by STi flagship, Subaru has not gifted the Final Edition any extra firepower or dynamic prowess over its donor car.


This means power and torque from the 2.5-litre flat-four-cylinder engine remain pegged at 129kW/235Nm, still sent symmetrically to all four wheels via a continuously variable transmission.


When asked as to why the 2.5i Premium was chosen as the basis for the Final Edition rather than the more potent 3.6R, Subaru Australia national corporate affairs manager David Rowley said the decision was made based on the “combination of production availability and likely customer interest” given “the 2.5 variants have long been the most popular”.


According to Subaru Australia general manager Blair Read, the local arm wanted to mark the end of Liberty’s history “in a truly exclusive way”.


“These individually numbered vehicles are a tribute to what it has contributed to Subaru over more than three decades,” he said.


As previously reported by GoAuto, the brand expects stock to last until early 2021 with the final production order currently being fulfilled.


The decision to retire the Liberty came after years of declining sales with the fan-favourite mid-sizer being outsold more than five times over by the high-riding Outback SUV.


According to the October round of VFacts data, the Liberty is the slowest selling model of Subaru Australia’s mainstream line-up – discounting the niche BRZ coupe and Levorg wagon – with just 760 units shifted all year as of the end of last month.


When news first broke of the Liberty’s retirement in September, Subaru Australia managing director Christian Dinsdale assured both prospective and returning customers that Subaru still had and would continue to offer sedans.


“For those customers still seeking a Subaru sedan, we remind them that current generation Impreza closely mimics the physical size of third-generation Liberty sedan and, of course, offers the same symmetrical all-wheel drive attributes,” he said.


“Equally, WRX is a performance sedan option that is probably the closest relative to the various turbocharged Liberty variants, such as the RS, GT and tuned by STI, which captured the hearts of so many enthusiastic drivers in their heyday.”


The current-generation WRX is also due to be put out to pasture in the near future as indicated by the recent release of the Club Spec, a nameplate which traditionally lands around 12-18 months ahead of the next generation.


2020 Subaru Liberty pricing*

2.5i (a) $31,440
2.5i Premium (a) $37,940
Final Edition (a) $39,930
3.6r (a) $44,440

*Excludes on-road costs

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