Subaru has unveiled the all-new 2020 Legacy at this year’s Chicago Auto Show, and will combat the likes of the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord and Mazda6 with a car that’s technically superior to its predecessor.
Among its highlights, we count the new XT models with a 260 HP 2.4-liter turbocharged boxer engine, an upgraded 182 HP 2.5-liter boxer, an 11.6-inch tablet-style infotainment display, higher quality interior and new active safety tech.
Even though the 2020 Legacy doesn’t look all that different to its predecessor, it is actually a brand new car. For starters, it has wider fenders and a higher trunk surface for a more dynamic stance. There are also new side mirrors, in case anyone noticed. Overall, though, this new model is recognizable as a Legacy, which could be a good or a bad thing, depending on perspective and sense of style.
It is, however, more practical than before, with 15.1 cu.ft (427 liters) of cargo capacity and 1.4 inches (3.55 cm) of additional cargo floor length.
Perhaps more important than its minor styling updates are the new Touring and updated Sport models. The Touring comes standard with the new 2.4-liter turbo, boasts genuine Nappa leather (a Subaru first), high-gloss black molding for the pillars, chrome for the door handles and satin tone plated side mirrors. Meanwhile, the Sport has the 2.5-liter unit as standard and features an exclusive rear bumper, front grille with high-gloss black bar, high-gloss black side mirrors, a trunk lid spoiler and dark metallic 18-inch alloy wheels.
Inside, there are aluminum pedals and red stitching on the instrument panel, door trim, seats, shift lever boot and on the leather-wrapped steering wheel.
The most advanced Legacy ever
Not only is the interior of the 2020 Legacy more upscale than in any other iteration of the mid-size sedan, but it also features loads of safety and connectivity systems that are accessible through a large tablet-style 11.6-inch full HD touchscreen display, which comes standard on Premium, Sport and Limited spec models.
Buyers will also enjoy Subaru Starlink in-vehicle tech, which comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Autoa connectivity, new Starlink SmartDeviceLink apps, Bluetooth, audio streaming, AM/FM stereo, Rear Vision Camera, Sirius XM radio and Travel Link, HD Radio and over-the-air updates as standard. There’s also available in-car Wi-Fi connectivity, which you’ll need in order to utilize features such as the Starlink Concierge package, allowing you to make restaurant and hotel reservations, purchase tickets, schedule appointments and so on.
In terms of specs, the Limited and Touring grades come with 10-way power front seats with lumbar support, and seat heaters with three levels of temperature adjustment. Touring models add ventilated front seats and a heated steering wheel (optional on Limited), while a 12-speaker Harman Kardon premium sound system makes good use of the 3 dB quieter cabin, which has grown to boast more shoulder room, front/rear hip room and rear legroom.
Keeping you safe
The all-new 2020 Subaru Legacy doesn’t just feature a wide range of active safety systems, it’s also much improved compared to its predecessor when it comes to passive safety. Its new platform is 70% stiffer in both torsional and front-suspension rigidity, and 100% stiffer in both front lateral flex and rear subframe rigidity. The car also has a lower center of gravity, and the body is said to absorb over 40% more energy in front and side crashes than before.
Moreover, systems such as EyeSight Driver Assist with Lane Centering Function are now standard. There’s also a DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation system (optional on Limited and standard on both XT trims), a Front View Monitor, LED Steering Responsive headlights, Reverse Automatic Braking and Blind Spot Detection with Lane Change Assist and Rear Cross Traffic Alert.
Subaru expects the new Legacy to receive a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) when it’s tested later this year.
Turbo power is very welcome
The new turbocharged engine has a displacement of 2.4-liters and produces 260 HP and 277 lb-ft (375 Nm) of torque. It’s paired to a Lineartronic CVT transmission and can take you from zero to 60 mph (96 km/h) in an estimated 6.1 seconds. As for fuel economy, Subaru expects around 24/32 mpg (9.8 / 7.3 l/100 km) in the city and highway respectively.
You can still get a non-turbo Legacy, of course, if you opt for the revised 2.5-liter boxer engine that debuted on the 2019 Forester. It puts down 182 HP and 176 lb-ft (238 Nm) of torque for a 0-60 acceleration time of 8.4 seconds and a 27/35 mpg (8.7 / 6.7 l/100 km) city/highway rating.
The 2020 Subaru Legacy will arrive at retailers this fall, with pricing to be announced at a later date.
Update: Live photos from the Chicago Auto Show added to the gallery