Subaru Legacy Tourer

2.0 D S

Subaru Legacy Tourer 2.0i ES Nav
Subaru Legacy Sports Tourer, rear
Subaru Legacy Sports Tourer, side
Subaru Legacy Sports Tourer, interior
Subaru Legacy Tourer
Subaru Legacy Tourer
Subaru Legacy Tourer interior
Subaru Legacy Tourer rear
Subaru Legacy Sports Tourer, front

SUBARU'S Legacy has probably been fairly anonymous for the most part, which seems slightly at odds with the fact it's a more than capable competitor for similar-sized estates in the premium segment.

It might also have something to do with the fact Subaru is still associated by and large with the rally-inspired Impreza and not a lot else.

It could even be down to the fact the Legacy's claims to fame have revolved around its prowess as a vehicle to tow caravans.

In short the Legacy has been somewhat overlooked, despite Subaru's best efforts to persuade a wider audience of its appeal.

Oddly these days there's only an estate version to speak of, Subaru having dispensed with the saloon version altogether for reasons known only to themselves.

So, what's it got going for it? For a start it's good looking - but in a rather understated way. You won't find crowds of automotive enthusiasts flocking around it if you park up in the supermarket car park but it has a simple elegance that's endearing.

Interestingly I think it has much to do with simple but imaginative use of chrome trim around the windows. Most manufacturers tend to favour black plastic or coated metal these days but chrome looks far better and works wonderfully well.

The good looks continue on the inside too which makes a refreshing change as far as Subaru is concerned.

The Legacy's trim, facia and switchgear look and feel suitably upmarket, if not quite up to German levels of refinement and sophistication.

With winter on the way the Legacy might also be able to steal a march on some of its German rivals, given one of its main engineering strengths.

Think back to last year's severe winter and the sight of seemingly all-conquering BMW and Mercedes cars being stuck on driveways or halfway up steep inclines and you'll probably get the picture.

Subaru has always been a manufacturer that's synonymous with four-wheel-drive, meaning come the ice and snow you'll be able to travel here, there and everywhere without much trouble.

While I'm a big fan of Subaru's 2.5-litre petrol engine in the Legacy, from an economic point of view it makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Indeed the only sensible option is the 2.0-litre diesel.

For a long time a Legacy was probably a no-no for a lot of people as there was no diesel option but Subaru finally relented with a diesel version of the horizontally opposed Boxer engine.

It's smooth, refined and relatively potent, even if at times you probably wish it had just a little bit more grunt.

This flat four diesel delivers 150bhp and overall does a good job.

The fact it has such a low centre of gravity contributes much to the Legacy's handling, aided considerably by that four-wheel-drive.

It makes for a reassuring feel when being chucked around the bends with the kind of grip you'd pay an awful lot more for in an Audi quattro.

Economy is good too, with a combined fuel economy figure in the mid-40s it helps make the Legacy relatively cheap to run.

One of my Legacy bugbears - a heavy clutch - seems to have been corrected in the latest version - this one didn't leave my left foot numb after a long time at the wheel.

Subaru generally excels when it comes to suspension and the Legacy's system aids both handling and ride quality, offering an overall set-up that combines agile handling with a high level of comfort.

There's no doubt if you're in the market for a decent-sized estate that won't cost the earth but has enough of an upmarket feel, while being a little bit different too - then the latest Legacy is well worth a look.

FAST FACTS

Subaru Legacy Tourer 2.0 D S

Price: £24,865

Mechanical: 150bhp, 1,998cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving four wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 120mph

0-62mph: 9.6 seconds

Combined MPG: 46.3

Insurance Group: 11

C02 emissions: 161g/km

Bik rating: 25%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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