Subaru's Advanced Tourer Concept for Tokyo
By Jack Martin
November 6, 2011
Subaru's biggest announcement for next month's Tokyo Motor Show was expected to be the BRZ sports car, but now news has arrived that it will also show an "Advanced Tourer Concept" powered by its trademark horizontally-opposed engine and Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive (AWD), but with turbocharging and direct fuel injection, plus a single-motor hybrid system, all driving through a Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT).
Paradoxically Subaru has fitted the car with its EyeSight driver assist system, and a steering wheel which incorporates a "large monitor" for access to "maps, television and internet services." Perhaps news about the carnage resulting from distracted driving hasn't reached Japan yet.
Subaru says the direct fuel injection turbo engine is "one of the main technologies that will guide Subaru's future engine strategy", noting its quick, smooth acceleration and environmental friendliness.
The turbocharged 1600cc engine and single electric motor are combined into a hybrid system that offers continuous all-wheel-drive even when it is in electric-only mode and manages to use all four wheels to regenerate electricity during deceleration.
Subaru's proprietary EyeSight™ driver assist system will be showcased on the vehicle, with the system now offering greater range and width. The steering wheel monitor will also be interesting to see. Distracted driving is one of the major trends associated with new technology, and putting it on the steering wheel seems like a recipe for encouraging taking your eyes off the road, but we don't know the full story just yet.