Nicer interior materials and upgraded driveline components are far more important than the tweaked appearance.
Subaru’s facelifted 2018 Legacy makes its debut here at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show. But more than the exterior nip/tuck, a host of interior and chassis improvements should work to make this a much nicer midsize sedan.
Higher quality materials are found throughout the cabin, and additional sound insulation ought to make it a fair bit quieter out on the road. A redesigned center stack houses a larger infotainment touchscreen, and the Starlink interface now supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
As for the powertrain, the continuously variable transmission gets some retuned software, and Subaru says this results in smoother acceleration and better overall response. We’ll reserve final impressions until we drive the updated car, but we look forward to experiencing the revised dampers and retuned electric power steering, as well. Engine choices remain the same, with four- and six-cylinder boxers underhood.
See the updated Legacy for yourself in the gallery below, and stay tuned for more updates when we drive the refreshed model later this year.
Live photos: Nathan Leach-Proffer / Motor1.com
Gallery: 2018 Subaru Legacy: Chicago 2017
SUBARU DEBUTS 2018 LEGACY AT THE CHICAGO AUTO SHOW WITH MORE ELEGANT STYLING, UPGRADED INTERIOR, NEW SAFETY FEATURES AND ADVANCED MULTIMEDIA
Revised front and rear styling for sportier look.
Redesigned interior with more premium materials.
Ride made even smoother and quieter.
Standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
New available Steering Responsive LED Headlight system.
New multimedia capabilities.
Cherry Hill, N.J. - Subaru of America, Inc., which posted its eighth consecutive year of record-breaking sales, today announced that it will debut the 2018 Legacy midsize sedan at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show on February 9th. The new Legacy features revised styling and significant upgrades to comfort, safety, and multimedia capability. In addition to major changes, myriad smaller engineering and design details throughout the 2018 Legacy enhance the driving experience. The 2018 Subaru Legacy will go on sale this summer.
The 2018 Legacy, the roomiest sedan in the midsize segment, is available in a 2.5i model with an efficient and responsive 175-hp 2.5-liter 4-cylinder BOXER engine, or, as the Legacy 3.6R with a 256-hp 3.6-liter 6-cylinder BOXER engine. Both engines come teamed as standard with the Lineartronic CVT (continuously variable transmission) with manual mode and paddle shift control switches. A retuned ECU for 2018 provides the CVT with more responsive and smoother acceleration. The 2.5i will be available in standard, Premium, and Sport trims; Limited offers a choice of 2.5i or 3.6R engines. Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive and Active Torque Vectoring are standard in all trims, making the Legacy the only midsize sedan to feature all-wheel drive as standard on all models.
Already an exemplar of passenger safety, the Legacy adds to its array of driver-assist features for 2018, including available new Steering Responsive Headlights (SRH). Available in conjunction with LED headlights, SRH aims the lights into turns as the driver steers. Also for 2018, Limited models with EyeSight utilize the systems’ cameras for High Beam Assist, which automatically turn the high beams on and off depending on traffic conditions.
Sportier, Yet More Elegant Design
The Legacy wears a sportier and more elegant look for 2018, highlighted by wider, lower grille openings and new bumper that complement the wider Subaru hexagonal grille, now with distinctive wing element. The C-shaped headlights and parking lights and new horizontal lines extending outward from the grille subtly suggest the piston motion of the BOXER engine, a Subaru core technology. The redesigned headlights now feature distinctive “Konoji” daytime LED running lights.
Available LED fog lamps lend a sophisticated image. Other design details bolster the luxury-class appearance for the 2018 Legacy, including new high-contrast wheel designs and two rich new exterior colors, Magnetite Gray Metallic and Crimson Red Pearl. From the rear, the 2018 Legacy conveys a wider, more planted stance, although the car measures the same width as before. The new tailpipe design integrated into the lower fascia adds a premium touch.
More Responsive and Quieter
Subaru went through the Legacy chassis to make the 2018 model even more comfortable to drive, while also retuning its suspension to enhance agility and steering and brake feel. Retuned dampers reduce the initial impact of bumps while also reducing body roll through turns. Smoother, more linear response from the Electric Power Steering (EPS) and a firmer, more direct brake-pedal feel also make the Legacy more engaging to drive.
Already lauded for its quiet ride, the Legacy moves another step up in cabin comfort for 2018 with further reductions from all noise sources. The Lineartronic CVT on 2.5-liter equipped cars now uses a quieter ultra-short-pitch chain, and adjustments to engine timing under acceleration further reduce powertrain noise. Reshaped exterior mirrors are among a number of enhancements that help reduce noise entering the cabin. New sound-insulating inner film glass for the front side windows makes the front seat area quieter, while thicker rear wheel well aprons reduce rear seat ambient noise.
More Comfort, More Tech
The 2018 Subaru Legacy debuts an interior with new premium materials and a redesigned center console with an available 8-inch display screen for enhanced multimedia capabilities. On Premium and higher trims, real stitching on the dash, seats and door panels along with high-gloss black trim and silver-color bezels for various controls enhance the high-quality feel of the Legacy cabin. A new gray interior is now available, in addition to black or ivory. The steering wheel is all new with a sportier look and feel.
Subaru enhanced Legacy comfort in both large and small ways for 2018. The air conditioning system cools the cabin more quickly and provides more uniform temperature throughout the cabin. Subaru moved the temperature setting indicator to inside the control dial for more intuitive operation. As an added convenience on all models, interior power is retained for a short time after the ignition has been switched off. A redesigned clock is now larger and easier to read.
SUBARU STARLINK Multimedia
The 2018 Legacy gains the brand’s latest SUBARU STARLINK Multimedia system with Bluetooth wireless capability, iPod control, smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and more. The top-level system includes TomTom navigation with 3 years of free map updates. Two USB power ports are added to the back of the center console for rear seat passengers’ convenience.
The standard STARLINK 6.5” Multimedia system is an upgrade from the previous STARLINK 6.2” system and offers quicker performance. The available STARLINK 8.0” system debuts a new 8-inch central display that uses a faster CPU to greatly increase startup speed, giving the touch screen a more smartphone-like operation and feel. More smartphone-linked operations improve the multimedia experience while reducing the need to divert eyes from the road or hands from the steering wheel.
The use of two microphones and Technology by Nuance (maker of Dragon Dictation apps for PCs and other devices) significantly improves the voice recognition capabilities. The driver can more easily use Apple Siri or OK Google voice commands. The system is also compatible with multiple languages.
Among standard features on all SUBARU STARLINK systems are Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity and audio streaming, iPod control, a USB port and auxiliary input jack. High-line trims add more features, including dual USB ports. Smartphone integration features Aha and Pandora, along with STARLINK cloud applications iHeartRadio, Stitcher, Calendar, Music Player, News and Weather.
Apps added for 2018 include:
Magellan NAVI offers advanced cloud-based mapping
eBird advises of local bird sightings and locations
Best Parking locates and compares parking rates
YELP delivers crowd sourced reviews of businesses
Glympse provides real-time location sharing
RightTrack monitors driving habits and recommends improvements
Quick Guide is a digital reference guide for the vehicle
eventseeker provides information on local events
The new Legacy STARLINK Multimedia systems are also compatible with OTA (Over the Air) updates using WiFi.
Safety Leader with EyeSight Driver Assist Technology
The Subaru Legacy builds on its long record as a safety standout for 2018, with Reverse Automatic Braking (RAB) and newly available Steering Responsive Headlight (SRH) system. RAB can detect objects in vehicle’s path and convey audible warnings to the driver, including showing distance and position of the object in the center display screen.
Also new for 2018, the tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) now detects pressure changes at each tire. The Blind Spot Detection/Rear Cross Traffic Alert indicator lamp is larger and has been moved from the mirror surface to the side of the mirror. In highline trims, redesigned LED turn signals in the mirrors are easier for other drivers to see.
All Legacy trim lines come standard with a rear-view camera. New for 2018, when reversing, the guidelines displayed on the screen move in sync with the steering to provide more accurate vehicle positioning.
The brand’s available award-winning EyeSight Driver Assist Technology, available on most trims, includes Adaptive Cruise Control, Pre-Collision Braking, Vehicle Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keep Assist. Models with EyeSight also come with Blind Spot Detection/Rear Cross Traffic Alert, which includes Lane Change Assist. For 2018, all Legacy models are equipped with Incline Start Assist and the electronic Hill Holder System that holds the vehicle in place until the driver applies the throttle.
The 2018 Subaru Legacy also helps take care of personal security. Standard Welcome Lighting automatically operates cabin illumination and exterior lights as the driver approaches or departs the vehicle. New for 2018 are automatic locking doors. Subaru also made child seat installation easier in the 2018 Legacy with improved LATCH anchors.
Two Levels of SUBARU BOXER Power
The Legacy 2.5i is powered by a 175-hp double overhead cam (DOHC) 2.5-liter BOXER engine that produces 174 lb-ft peak torque. The Active Grille Shutter system helps to improve fuel economy by reducing wind resistance. The DOHC 3.6-liter 6-cylinder BOXER engine in the Legacy 3.6R produces 256 hp and 247 lb-ft of peak torque, sustaining 90 percent of peak torque from 2,000-6,000 rpm for exceptional response at all vehicle speeds.
In all Legacy models, Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive is an active AWD system that uses an electronically managed continuously variable transfer clutch to actively manage torque distribution based on acceleration, deceleration and available traction. The system automatically directs up to 100 percent of available torque to the wheels with the best grip.
SUBARU STARLINK Connected Services
Two SUBARU STARLINK packages are available and are among the most affordable in the industry. The STARLINK Safety Plus package, which is complimentary for the first year and $99 per year after that, includes SOS Emergency Assistance, Enhanced Roadside Assistance, Automatic Collision Notification, Maintenance Notifications, Monthly Vehicle Health Report and Diagnostic Alerts. For even greater peace of mind, the STARLINK Safety Plus & Security Plus Package adds Stolen Vehicle Recovery Service, Vehicle Security Alarm Notification, Remote Lock/Unlock, Remote Horn and Lights and Remote Vehicle Locator.
Subaru of America, Inc. offers a full line of all-wheel drive sedans, crossovers and SUVs, along with the rear-wheel drive BRZ sports car. The Impreza, Legacy and Outback are built at Subaru of Indiana Automotive (SIA).
About Subaru of America, Inc.
Subaru of America, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan. Headquartered at a zero-landfill office in Cherry Hill, N.J., the company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of more than 620 retailers across the United States. All Subaru products are manufactured in zero-landfill production plants and Subaru of Indiana Automotive Inc. is the only U.S. automobile production plant to be designated a backyard wildlife habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. For additional information, visit media.subaru.com.