2020 Subaru Legacy moving to new global platform

A stiffer chassis, revamped interior and the return of turbocharging for Subaru’s next-generation flagship sedan.

For 2020, the Subaru Legacy moves to the automaker’s Global Platform, introduced in 2017 via the C-segment Impreza. Compared to the prior architecture, the new unitized body construction is 70% stiffer in torsional and front suspension rigidity, and 100% stiffer in front lateral flexural and rear subframe rigidity. That improved body rigidity reflects a 13% uptick in ultra-high-strength-steel usage.

For the first time, a Subaru vehicle has a floor crossmember that is filled with a two-part foam material. The 2020 Legacy’s inner frame, in another Subaru-first, is constructed with the outer panels welded to the structure after the assembly of the body framework.

A turbocharged Boxer engine, last seen in the nameplate in 2012, returns in 2020. “With stricter greenhouse gas emissions and CAFE requirements, it forces us to go with turbocharging to get the efficiency from the engine with better fuel economy than the 3.6 L it replaces,” said Tom Doll, president and CEO for Subaru of America during the 7th-generation car’s global debut (above) at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show.

Standard on the 2020 Legacy XT trim, the 2.4-L turbocharged Boxer 4-cylinder will produce 260 hp/277 lb·ft (194 kW/376 N·m), and will be mated to a Lineartronic CVT. The combination is expected to achieve an EPA-estimated mpg rating of 24 city/32 highway. A revised 2.5-L naturally aspirated 4-cylinder base engine will produce 182 hp/176 lb·ft (136 kW/239 N·m) and net an estimated mpg rating of 27 city/35 highway.

The new cabin features the largest infotainment screen on any Subaru – an 11.6-in HD display that will include touch controls for HVAC and other settings – and the 2020 Legacy will also be available with in-car Wi-Fi connectivity for the first time. “Even though the sedan segment is contracting, we believe the 2020 Legacy will carve out a nice little niche,” said Doll. The 2020 Legacy arrives in North American showrooms in the fall of 2019, with pricing expected closer to launch.

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