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D-day for Subaru Levorg delayed

Levorg lag: Subaru Australia is still deliberating over the sporty mid-sized Levorg wagon but a decision won't happen until next year now.

Subaru's decision date to bring Levorg Down Under pushed out until Q1 2015


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19 Dec 2014

SUBARU Australia will have to wait longer to hear if the sporty Levorg wagon will make it Down Under, with the originally predicted decision date now expired and a new date planned for next year.

The new date extends the wait until March next year when Subaru's parent company Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI) gives the final word on the fate of its new turbocharged Skoda Octavia RS rival.

Series production of the Levorg model was confirmed for Japan in November last year when the model broke cover at the Tokyo motor show, but the Impreza-based wagon has yet to be chalked for other global regions, including Australia.

Despite the delay on the decision, Subaru Australia is still keen to add the Levorg to its wagon line-up alongside the Impreza wagon, XV, Outback and Forester but only if the business case stacks up.

Speaking at the launch of the 2015 Liberty and Outback ranges, Subaru Australia managing director Nick Senior told GoAuto a decision would not be made until the FHI factory could confirm availability for Australia.

“The critical time for Levorg will be in March next year,” he said. “That's when the feasibility studies and business cases all come together so we will get an indication from the factory if it's available.

“It ticks all the right boxes so it's probably a yes but there is a lot of work to do before.”

Mr Senior said that even if an Australian spec Levorg was a possibility, Subaru Australia would not automatically accept it unlike some rival manufacturers who grab every model they can.

“We don't want too many cars,” he said. “A lot of people (other brands) get in the habit of if there's something available they’ve got to bring it in, so they bring it in and sell five a month.

“I don't want to get caught in the trap of bringing in cars for the sake of it.

Part of rationale is if we bring it in it has to add value to the Subaru brand and the stakeholders.

“We will see quarter one next year.”

With the WRX hatchback and wagon no longer available here, a Levorg could potentially serve as a more fizzy alternative to the Impreza wagon as well as providing a more car-like alternative to the high-riding XV.

Its boxer four-cylinder engine is expected to be available as either a 1.6-litre version with 125kW/250Nm, or a larger 2.0-litre packing a 221kW/400Nm punch, which would sit comfortably between the WRX and WRX STI power outputs.

Despite its Impreza underpinnings the Levorg has more generous proportions that the hatch model with length stretched by 110mm, which would likely translate to more interior space broadening its appeal as a practical solution.

With a larger footprint than the Impreza the Levorg could also fill the gap left by the Liberty wagon after its exclusion from the 2015 range.

If the Levorg is given the go-ahead for Australia, the belated decision date will push its arrival from a previously predicted mid-2015 date to the latter half of the year.

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