Subaru Debuts its First BEV SUV

Subaru has unveiled its first BEV, unsurprisingly for the brand beloved of the rural farming community, as a SUV.

The Solterra is squarely aimed at the loyal band of the brand’s followers promising “an authentic SUV in an environmentally friendly package that can be used with peace of mind like the existing Subaru SUV models”. Offered both in front-wheel and all-wheel drive, the model uses high capacity battery packs placed under the floor and, by employing that battery as a part of the structure, a low center of gravity and high body strength and rigidity can be achieved.

The two-wheel drive version offers 198bhp from its axle mounted motor while the 4×4 produces 210bhp split equally between motors on both front and rear axles. So far, no performance or range claims have yet been made by the Japanese automaker.

Like the other Subaru SUV models, Solterra features the X-MODE AWD control system for rough roads and dirt driving. It also features the new Grip Control function, which enables the vehicle to run at a constant speed while stabilizing the vehicle on mixed terrain.

The vehicle also reflects Subaru’s continuing cooperation with Toyota by using the e-Subaru Global Platform jointly developed together with Toyota as a BEV-dedicated platform.

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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