Speculation that began swirling around its recent Frankfurt debut has now been resolved: the new Subaru XV crossover will indeed join the firm's U.S. product offerings sometime in 2013 as part of the Impreza lineup, which itself, was completely redesigned for 2012. While the arrival of this 5-passenger compact SUV is no longer in doubt, Subaru of America's National Manager, Product Public Relations, Dominick Infante, told KBB.com that the name of the vehicle has still not been finalized and very likely will change for this market. Whether it ultimately turns up wearing the recently retired "Outback Sport" badge, supplants the latest Impreza Sport variant or gets an entirely different tag remains to be seen.
While Subaru has not confirmed any other details about the Americanized version of the XV, it's expected to receive a few minor cosmetic tweaks, largely in its front fascia as part of the federalization process. With its slightly elevated ride height, the XV is designed to offer better light-duty off-road potential than the new-for-2012 Impreza Sport model. Mechanically, this smartly-styled multi-faceted extension of the Impreza family will likely share the same all-new and far more fuel-efficient 2.0-liter/148-horsepower flat-4 Boxer engine, Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive (AWD), a sophisticated Vehicle Dynamics Control system and offer the choice of a 5-speed manual transmission or optional Lineartronic CVT (continuously variable transmission). The mileage-maxing start/stop system that will be part of the Euro-spec Subaru XV package also could be fitted to its American cousin-to-be.