Levorg - not an

everyday story of

country folk

Subaru Levorg, front
Subaru Levorg, front
Subaru Levorg, rear
Subaru Levorg, interior
Subaru Levorg, interior
Subaru Levorg, boot

THE Archers has never been a programme I have particularly followed.

As a child I remember it on in the background at the farm and I must admit it was a sad day when that old Peter Gabriel popped his wellies. I had all his albums.

Ambridge; part gate leaning and part bed hopping, as the Volvo set quietly moved into old barns and furnished them from Libertry.

But then, you see, that's diversification for you. If the rain stays off there will be a good crop of car boot sales this year, the paintball is doing well in Subsidy Copse and the council is looking favourably on plans for a yurt-based swingers' club in the bottom twenty acres.

Agricultural life moves with the times. What was originally billed as an everyday story of country folk the BBC now calls ‘a drama in a rural setting'.

Time, I think, to introduce some product placement and what could be better than the odd Subaru.

Now, you may think of Subaru in the context of the high-octane bird scarer WRX but apparently it is associated most with four-wheel drive estates.

Subaru truly is the farmer's friend. At agricultural shows there will often be a local dealer sandwiched between the hessian suiting and low-mileage milk maids. The first autonomous version will surely be pre-programmed to find the nearest vet and have an infotainment system which speaks fluent auctioneer.

The Levorg carries the spirt of the Legacy Tourer into the scope of modern thinking, a car for times when big as The Dales estates are usurped by cars with a smaller footprint but similar accommodation. Hence the rise of the crossover. It also adds a pinch of about town style and sportiness.

So, that name. Not as you could be forgiven for thinking a rare breed of Belgian cow but a car crash of Legacy, revolution and grand touring. There should be a compulsory cooling off period for car naming.

Onto the nitty-gritty. I don't know if it is clever product structuring or a comment on everyday country folk but the Levorg line-up is simplicity itself, er, as in there is only one. You can have a 1.6-litre turbo petrol boxer engine, CVT gearbox, symmetrical all-wheel drive and SE trim or look elsewhere. You will need to add a cost comparison of £27,495 to your search.

None of these features detract from the car. The sensibly sized engine will hit 62mph in a shade under nine seconds while promising 39mpg. That translates as a tax bill of £185. Up to you, really.

For your money there is a good package of comforts and technical aids. Seats are heated and leather, a touchscreen houses the usual al connections plus reversing camera and sat nav.

It has cruise control, dual zone air conditioning, keyless entry, automatic lights and wipers along with four USB sockets and two 12 volt sockets for those rural adventures.

It is easy to promise big car roominess in a downsized package but one hell of a trick to pull off.

Let us be clear. Where once there was a Legacy boot which could handle a sheep you now will find clever design has resulted in plenty of carrying capacity without a big, shallow floor area.

Humans are carried in a civilised space. There is plenty of leg and head room and a continuation of Subaru's drive up-market where quality of cabin finish is concerned.

This is a good place to be and a refined long distance drive although over broken moorland surfaces handling can feel a bit edgy.

Subaru promised a good deal of space in a compact estate and delivered. It is a classy car inside, has striking looks with the bonus of all-wheel drive that allows for a bit of field work while keeping the car sure footed.

As old Walter used to say: "Roll the baby in the snow and all its aches and pains will go."

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