Oct 13 2009 Maurice Glover
Subaru's boxer goes hybrid
A CAR company famous for building boxer engines is set to incorporate the feature in a unique new hybrid model.
Subaru is using its stand at the Tokyo motor show this month to unveil the world's first hybrid powertrain to use a motor with cylinders that are horizontally opposed - known as "boxer" engines in the car business.
With the familiar two-litre turbocharged petrol boxer unit under its bonnet to cope with the demands of normal motoring, the firm's concept also uses two electric motors - one to drive the car at start-up and lower speeds and the other to provide extra power and performance when tackling inclines.
The all-drive model comes with automatic transmission and is being used to showcase what the company believes is an innovative approach toward environmental friendliness, luxury, driving performance and safety.
Says Subaru UK managing director Paul Tunnicliffe: "We've married the features we are famous for with an opulent and spacious body that uses elongated gullwing-style doors. An absence of B-pillars provides a heightened sense of light and space inside.
'The hybrid tourer concept demonstrates our commitment to environmentaly-friendly innovation. Our engineers are capable of developing something that is both technically advanced and stylish, hinting at our future design direction,' added Mr Tunnicliffe.