Subaru WRX and Legacy Concept at the LA Motor Show

New Subaru WRX unveiled and could be coming to the UK. Legacy Concept previews next Legacy saloon

Subaru has unveiled a pair of new saloons at the LA Motor Show. The first to be revealed was the Subaru WRX, which is powered by an all-new direct-injection 2.0-litre boxer engine that produces 264bhp and 350Nm of torque and sits on a heavily tweaked chassis that is longer than before.

A source within the company told us that all the money for the new car "has been put into improving the suspension and handling - the new torque vectoring system makes a huge difference in corners"

LA Motor Show

Symmetrical four-wheel drive is fitted as standard with a 50:50 torque split, but the new CVT auto has a slight rear-bias and either a six or eight-speed manual mode for a more involving drive. The automatic also gets the Subaru Intelligent Drive (SI-DRIVE) system with three modes - Intelligent, Sport and Sports Sharp, using a switch mounted on the flat-bottomed steering wheel.

Apparently all the major suspension components are much stiffer than before with stiffer joint, struts and bushes - which in some cases are 200 per cent stiffer than on the previous car. A new electronic power steering system, bigger brakes and 17-inch alloys should improve the handling and efficiency of the new car and the wheelbase has been stretched by 25mm to improve rear leg room.

Inside, the interior now gets a 3.5-inch LCD screen and digital turbo boost gauge mounted in the centre of the dashboard. The cabin still features the same hard plastics as the current car but heavily bolstered seats, a chunkier sports steering wheel and new dials do all help lift the feel of perceived quality. There are no official performance figures yet but a hotter 300bhp + STi version is already in the works, and is likely to appear at the Geneva motor show in March.

Subaru UK has not yet confirmed if the new WRX will be sold in the UK but ongoing negotiations on the final price of under £30,000 could secure the new turbocharged special a place in showrooms.

Subaru Legacy Concept

The Subaru Legacy Concept is a preview of the new Legacy production car, however a spokesman for the company who has seen the finished model told us that the road car would be "significantly smaller" than the show car with hints of the concept's design but with heavily watered down detailing.

Again there is no word yet if there is a place for the new Legacy in the slimmed-down British Subaru range but the production version is likely to make its debut late in 2014, with a launch to follow early in 2015.

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