Subaru has pulled the wraps from its new Viziv concept ("vision for innovation"), showcasing new styling and a brand-new hybrid all-wheel-drive system.
In western markets, Subaru has famously built its reputation on the all-wheel-drive system offered almost exclusively across its range.
Now, with a combined diesel-electric hybrid system, Subaru promises a more efficient all-wheel-drive system for its future models.
In the Viziv, the front wheels are driven by a pairing of Subaru's 2.0 litre Boxer diesel engine and an electric motor, matched with its continuously variable automatic transmission.
While the front-mounted electric motor contributes to both drive and battery charging, another pair of electric motors is positioned at the rear axle to provide drive only.
Subaru describes the system as "independent rear motor-driven All-Wheel-Drive", with the rear motors increasing power when the steering wheel is turned, sending more torque to the outside wheel for improved cornering.
In stop-start city traffic, all-electric power is used, with all wheels driven by the motors from stationary starts.
Subaru has confirmed plans to develop the new system for future production models, promising the same "outstanding handling stability, secure feel and confident driving" it is known for.
Whether the Viziv itself previews a future production model is unclear however, although it could reveal a glimpse of a next-generation replacement for the current XV.
If the Viziv does reach showrooms, don't expect to see it before 2016.
Don't be surprised, however, if elements of its styling feature in the next-generation WRX sports car.
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