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Motoring: Subaru Legacy GT improves with 2007 model

Nauman Farooq | Interrobang | Sports | March 5th, 2007

Anyone who knows me will verify that I love the Subaru Legacy GT. I often compare cars to it and often put it right at the very top. In other words, I think it is the best in its category and could hardly be improved on.

Well Subaru sure thought it could be improved, and those improvements make their way onto the 2007 model.

Essentially it is the same car as before, with the same engine (2.5-liter turbo four cylinder producing 243 hp) and gearbox (five speed auto or manual), and there isn't much to tell you that things have changed from looking at it either.

However going deep into its skin, you'll notice that some tiny changes have made a notable difference to this car. Things like the brakes. They were not a strong point in the past, but the new brakes stop as well as it always should have.

Then there is the ultra clever new engine management switch. Subaru calls it the “SI-drive” and what this allows you to do is change the demeanor of the engine.

If you are just cruising on the highway, you might want to put it in “I” mode so it'll be very fuel-efficient (you can monitor this also from the neat new dial in the dash, which shows you what you're pulling in litres/100km). However in this mode the car is not exactly fun to drive and if you drive it in this mode through town, you'll get very annoyed, very quickly. To do any sort of average pace, you need to have it in “Sport” mode. This certainly makes a difference and most of the time will be sufficient in your day-to-day driving in all sorts of traffic and roads.

But if you want even more, twist the dial clockwise and you will be in “Sport Sharp” mode. This mode makes a huge difference by sharpening up the throttle response and letting the turbo spool up for a longer period, so you'll be going much faster.

At first I thought this would be a gimmick, but after using it, I am totally convinced of its effectiveness and this has now allowed the Legacy GT to be even better than it already was.

Prices are about the same too, so you're now getting a better car for the same amount, which is about $38,000 starting.

I will now be raving about the Legacy GT for years to come. Good job Subaru.
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