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Subaru Liberty 2018 pricing and specs confirmed

Subtle styling adjustments hide a much broader adjustment to the Liberty, with tweaks to drivetrains, dynamics and the cabin.

The updated Subaru Liberty 2018 model has arrived on sale in Australia, sporting revised styling refinements to its drivetrain and equipment enhancements across the range.

It may look startlingly similar to its predecessor, but the 2018 Subaru Liberty has a number of subtle adjustments to its styling, including a new, wider grille with different styling elements, new bumpers front and rear (including a rear diffuser), new headlights (including adaptive LEDs and auto high-beam on mid and high-spec models), and there are redesigned wing mirrors to help cut noise. There’s a new 'Crimson Red' colour option, too.

  • It may look startlingly similar to its predecessor, but the 2018 Subaru Liberty has a number of subtle adjustments to its styling. It may look startlingly similar to its predecessor, but the 2018 Subaru Liberty has a number of subtle adjustments to its styling.
  • The 2018 Liberty gets a new rear bumper and diffuser. The 2018 Liberty gets a new rear bumper and diffuser.

The two drivetrain options go unchanged. There’s a 2.5-litre four-cylinder ‘boxer’ horizontally-opposed engine which has seen a number of refinement enhancements, but retains the same outputs of 129kW of power and 235Nm of torque. 

It can only be had with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) auto which has been tweaked for improved response from a standstill. Fuel use for that engine is rated at an identical 7.3 litres per 100km.

The other engine in the range is the 3.6-litre six-cylinder ‘boxer’ horizontally-opposed unit in the flagship 3.6R model. It still produces 191kW of power and 350N of torque, and it still has claimed fuel use of 9.9L/100km.

The entire Liberty range has been adjusted to steer with more precision, and the suspension has been fettled as well, with Subaru claiming its aim was to improve ride comfort.

The entire Liberty range has been adjusted to steer with more precision, and the suspension has been fettled as well. The entire Liberty range has been adjusted to steer with more precision, and the suspension has been fettled as well.

Inside there have been changes to the materials used, including new stitching on the dashboard and an improved dash layout with better climate controls and new media systems. More on those new multimedia units below.

The price list for the 2018 Subaru Liberty looks fairly similar to before, as well. There are still three variants available: the 2.5i, the mid-spec 2.5i Premium, and the flagship 3.6R.

Opening the range, the 2.5i has a list price identical to its predecessor: $30,240 (plus on-road costs).

The 2.5i has a 6.5-inch touchscreen without satellite navigation, but it has Bluetooth phone and audio streaming, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto (so you can use your phone as your navigation system), CD player, a sound system with six speakers, dual front USB ports and a pair of rear USBs for backseat passengers - ultra handy for keeping devices charged up on long road trips.

The Liberty 2.5i has a 6.5-inch touchscreen without satellite navigation, but it has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The Liberty 2.5i has a 6.5-inch touchscreen without satellite navigation, but it has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Other specification highlights include dual-zone climate control, a leather-trimmed steering wheel with paddle-shifters, auto headlights and auto wipers, front fog-lights, seven airbags (dual front, front side, curtain and driver’s knee) and rear tinted windows. The wheels are 18-inch alloys on this spec, and every one in the range, and the Liberty 2.5i models have two drive models - 'Sport' and 'Intelligent'. 

The next step up is the 2.5i Premium, a fairly sizeable jump up the money ladder at $36,640 (plus on-road costs). But you get quite a bit more stuff for the extra expenditure.

The 2.5i Premium adds LED headlights with steering responsiveness and adaptive high-beam lights, as well as LED daytime running lights (DRLs). Those LED DRLs are on the entry-grade models too, but the main headlights are halogen units. 

In the 2.5i Premium you get an 8.0-inch screen with integrated GPS/navigation (and still with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto), plus leather seats, heated front seats, electric front seat adjustment (driver’s seat with adjustable lumbar), an electric sunroof, powered and heated folding side mirrors, front wipers with de-icing function, keyless entry with push-button start, electric boot opening and closing and piano black interior trim highlights. 

The flagship model is the 3.6R, which is listed at $43,140. As well as getting a bigger six-cylinder engine, the 3.6R has a few unique items when compared to the 2.5i Premium.

The 3.6R model includes a three-mode drive select system (Sport# - sport sharp – mode added), and it also gets chrome side sill garnishes and a 12-speaker haman/kardon sound system with subwoofer, but the engine doesn’t have start-stop like the 2.5i models.

Stay tuned for our review on the 2018 Subaru Liberty.

Have these tweaks kept Subaru's Liberty on the pace? Tell us what you think in the comments below.

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