Is this the next Subaru Legacy? According to corporate sources, the Subaru Legacy Concept - which debuted today at the 2009 Detroit auto show - is our first look at the Legacy's next design direction.
Though Subaru describes the concept's exterior theme as "Presence," we'd say it's somewhat evolutionary. The general form of the car doesn't break from the current car too much, but it is more taut - larger wheelflares and stronger body sections make the Legacy Concept appear smaller in spite of it's longer (108.3-inch) wheelbase.
Designers adopted a "high-definition" mindset when crafting the Legacy Concept's interior, and like any modern HDTV, it's packed full of technology. You may note a lack of exterior mirrors; a series of CCD cameras transmit images of what's behind the sedan to a widescreen monitor mounted in lieu of a rearview mirror. Perhaps more slick is the abolition of switchgear: not only is the infotainment system controlled via a touchscreen interface, but so too are door lock and power window controls.
Underneath the Legacy's new digs lie mechanicals that don't break with Subaru tradition. The concept does use the legendary Symmetrical All-Wheel-Drive system, and it's coupled to a horizontally-opposed six-cylinder. Interestingly, the boxer mill, a 3.6-liter unit, seems to be cull from the Tribeca SUV and trumps the Legacy's present top-end motor (a 3.0-liter H-6) in both displacement and power.
We suspect most - if not all - of the high-falutin' techno-toys won't make their way to production, but we'll wager most styling and mechanical features seen here will vary little from the next-generation Legacy due in a few years' time.
To read more about the 2009 Subaru Legacy Concept, go to our 2009 Detroit auto show blogs coverage. All the latest blogs from the Editors of Automobile Magazine can be found HERE. We've got our whole staff wandering the floor at Cobo Hall bringing back live photos and more information about all the new debuts from Detroit.
For complete coverage of the 2009 Detroit auto show, click HERE.