2010 Subaru Legacy Estate 2.5 (GB)

This is the latest (Generation V) incarnation of the Legacy, and one which was met with widespread distaste regarding styling when first released. In the metal, though, the car is not as bulky or ungainly looking as it appears in photographs, and indeed seems quite well integrated in its overall packaging.

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Coming from my own Gen. IV Spec B. the overriding first impression of the car was of height. Not only does the car ride higher on its suspension, the body itself seems taller than on the Gen. IV with corresponding increase in perceived (and probably actual) interior space. Unfortunately, I did not have the car long enough to be able to measure it!

Interior:

The interior will be familiar to most Subaru owners, albeit in a slightly more modernised format and layout. Most of the minor controls are now touch-sensitive buttons as opposed to rotary knobs, the electric seat memory buttons are now on the door rather than the seat side itself and, wonder of wonders, the front interior/reading lights now come on when the doors are opened – which they don’t on the Gen. IV!

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There’s also a “hill assist” button down on the lower right dashboard; more use on an Outback or Forester than a road-biased car like this. The instruments are clear and easy to read, with a “faux depth” to them that I found quite pleasant; sadly, the red-lit ‘sweep’ of the needles over the clock faces when switching on is missing.

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The negative elements of the changes, for me, are the electronic handbrake (why?), shorter sunroof, and door mirrors that would look more at home on a bus – they’re huge, in comparison to those on my car, and give excellent views of the sky in addition to all of the road behind you.

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Driving the 2.5-litre, normally aspirated engine is fairly responsive, and gives a reasonable shove in the back when really flooring the throttle, but falls down on refinement when compared to the ‘six in the Spec B; there is also a lack of choice in the drivers’ ability to adjust the engine mapping via SI-Drive – this car doesn’t have it. The engine can get quite raucous towards the top of the rev range, but this is quite bearable for the short times you’d be using this amount of revs. Once the car reaches a reasonable cruising speed, in common with most autos, the noise abates to more pleasant levels, aided by a new six-speed automatic ‘box.

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Initial impressions of the ride were good, as it is much more compliant and comfortable over the horribly pot-holed roads of my commute than the Spec B; however, when pressing on later in the day, body roll was quite noticeable as was more understeer than I’d have expected and a worsening in overall refinement.

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Turn in on this car is, as you’d expect by now, less crisp than I’m used to, but still very impressive for the physical size of the car. Grip level is quite adequate for the power levels, and the brakes slow the car quickly and without fuss or fade (not always a characteristic of the Spec B!).  Overall mpg, according to the trip computer, is round about 29 to the gallon.

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Accommodation:

The leather on the five full-size seats is not particularly soft to touch, although the seats themselves are well-shaped and sufficiently supportive to cope with most elements of journeys in the car.  Leg- and arm-room is good, especially in the rear, where it is possible for 6’ me to “sit behind myself” with no discomfort – an activity impossible in my own car. One element of access and egress to this car is the seeming necessity for the drivers’ door to be open in order to allow the passenger and rear doors to open – a bizarre set-up I didn’t have time to investigate further.

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Access to the boot area is also blighted by a bizarre system of plipper button and touch-sensitive button on the underside of the tailgate handle – an area that gets filthy very quickly on my car and, on quick appraisal, appears to do exactly the same on this car, hence leading to muddy fingers very quickly.

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Equipment:

Usual equipment levels apply to this model, including full electric windows, Bluetooth phone connection and audio inputs, in addition to full MP3 and USB connections. Factory sat-nav is almost identical to that in my own car, with the addition of a reversing camera to aid your squeeze into those tight spaces! One item that appeared to be missing was the windscreen wiper blade heating element, which has been a feature of Legacies since their earliest incarnations. Climate control air-con is standard, I believe, and, as stated earlier, now works by easy-touch buttons rather than rotary dials.

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Summary;

Overall I was quite impressed by this car. It was a fairly involving drive on the few occasions I was able to open it up a bit, (though unsurprisingly never to the same extent as my Spec B.) I enjoyed the familiar comfort of the seat(s) and although slightly disappointed by the consumption figures as displayed on the trip computer, I think mid-thirties would be easily achievable, if unrewarding in the driving needed to obtain it. I believe that, if I’d come to this car straight from my diesel CR-V, I would be feeling a lot more positive towards it than I do; however, from the perspective of driving a 3.0R Spec B, the car doesn’t quite cut the mustard. In saying that, it would be a good “first Legacy” for someone younger and/or less experienced although, as with most Scoobies, it may be seen as a tad over-priced at a bit over £25,000 O.T.R. You pays your money……… Some people have commented that they feel the rear of the car looks very Volvo-esque ~ can’t really argue with that…

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And one last thing that Subaru have added that really, REALLY does the car no favours (IMHO):

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2010-02-10 19:33:14

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Home Forums 2010 Subaru Legacy Estate 2.5 (GB)

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    zAppiDev
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    This is the latest (Generation V) incarnation of the Legacy, and one which was met with widespread distaste regarding styling when first released. In
    [See the full post at: 2010 Subaru Legacy Estate 2.5 (GB)]

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