For decades, it was pretty much impossible to imagine a Subaru without a boxer engine and all-wheel drive (except for the sporty BRZ that feats an RWD layout). However, these are different times that bring to us an all-electric car under this badge. Yes, we are talking about the brand-new 2023 Subaru Solterra, which has just debuted and which is the company’s first-ever EV. It was co-developed with Toyota, which also launched the bZ4X, and the two models share most of their parts.
Of course, the Solterra comes in the form of a crossover, so typical for today’s market. It is compact in size and it has a lot of great things to offer. We like its design, along with a pretty capable drivetrain that even provides pretty decent off-road performance. Furthermore, the list of standard and available equipment is pretty decent, and the battery is large enough to provide competitive autonomy. Subaru’s new EV has several trump cards to compete in this highly demanding segment.
2023 Subaru Solterra Design
The 2023 Subaru Solterra is a brand-new model, the company’s first-ever all-electric vehicle. As we already mentioned, the model was co-developed with Toyota, and it rides on the company’s e-TNGA platform. Mechanically, things are pretty much the same in the two models, while the key differences are in terms of exterior design. Both models feature the same size but Solterra looks a little bit more elegant and more conventional.
The ride quality is good. This SUV offers a great balance because it’s easy to drive but at the same time, it also offers pretty decent off-road potential. It features a pretty decent 8.7 inches of ground clearance, while all-wheel drive is standard, as we already mentioned. Furthermore, there are also things like grip control, hill ascent, hill descent assist and X-Mode selector, which offers various traction control modes like Snow, Dirt and Deep Snow, and Mud.
On the inside, the Solterra follows the brand’s philosophy, which is pretty much all about simplicity and functionality. Like most ICE models from the lineup, this SUV also features a relatively simplistic and quite conservative dashboard design, though there are some details that accentuate the model’s all-electric nature. That particularly refers to the highly positioned digital instrument cluster, while the optional 12.3-inch infotainment screen also makes the cabin look pretty nice.
The 2023 Subaru Solterra features a similar size to Forester but the wheelbase is significantly longer (112.2 inches). For that reason, there is actually more legroom in both rows. The Soltera accommodates five passengers with ease, while you may also count on about 30 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats, which is a decent volume for the class.
Another thing to like about this all-electric crossover is a pretty decent list of standard equipment. Base models come with goodies like automatic climate control, a 7-inch instrument cluster, an 8-inch touch screen, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Bluetooth and five USB ports. Additionally, you can opt for goodies like a 12.3-inch touch screen, wireless device charging, a Wi-Fi hotspot, navigation and a Harman Kardon stereo.
When it comes to safety features, some of the highlights are goodies like a rearview camera, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, intersection collision avoidance, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, emergency steering assist, rear-seat reminder etc. All these things are part of the standard equipment, while you can also get options like a surround-view camera system, park assist, rear cross-traffic alert, rain-sensing windshield wiper etc.
2023 Subaru Solterra Drivetrain, Battery, Range, Performance
The new 2023 Subaru Solterra comes in just one configuration. That version features a dual-motor setup, which includes two 80-kW electric motors, for a total output of 215 horsepower and 249 pound-feet of torque. That’s not too much by the standards of electric cars, but the actual performance is more than decent. The Solterra needs around 6.5 seconds to hit 60 mph, which makes it notably faster than Forester.
The battery is good for about 72.8 kWh, which is enough for 228 miles of range. That’s quite OK, though many rivals offer better autonomy. Still, the bigger issue of this SUV is the charging speed. The Level 2 charger is good for 6.6 kW, which is enough to fully recharge the battery in about 9 hours. The DC fast charger is good for 100 kW, which is subpar compared to most rivals. With this charger, you can charge from 10 to 80 percent of the battery in about 56 minutes, while most rivals can do the same in about 30-40 minutes.
2023 Subaru Solterra Price
The 2023 Subaru Solterra features a starting price of around 46.200 dollars. The mid-range Limited trim costs around $50.000, while the range-topping Touring would cost you around 53.500 dollars.