All-new Outback now comes with X-Mode
By Angel Rivero
Late last November, the 31st Thailand International Motor Expo 2014 opened its doors to waves of both international and local spectators, at the Impact Challenger Convention Center in Muang Thong Thani, Bangkok. The exhibit was organized by Thai family-owned company Inter-Media Consultant Co. Ltd., and showcased the biggest automotive brands and the corresponding reveals of some of their latest locally-available products. The show is also testimony to the fact that Thailand wishes to put things back to its paces, despite the recent challenges in growth of the Thai automotive industry. The Motor show ran until December 10, and continued to break visitor records, as historically the Expo gets over a million spectators over a period of 2 weeks.
This year, the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB – a public organization) has shown its support for the Motor Show by inviting foreign media to come over and immerse themselves in the extensive exhibit, in order for them to locally cascade Thailand’s capacity to become a world-class convention center, and to publicize Thailand’s good image to operators both in the public and private sectors, especially in the ASEAN region.
“TCEB is a public organization under the Prime Minister’s Office, established with a mission to support, promote, and develop the potential of Thailand’s MICE industry,” explained Mr. Nopparat Maythaveekulchai, President of the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau. Furthering that “Anthat“An international tradeshow is considered to be a MICE activity that plays a key role in driving the economy and developing the industrial sector of Thailand through trade and investment. TCEB has given support to ‘The 31st Thailand International Motor Expo 2014’ which is an event that assembles and arrays sophisticated automotive technologies, contributing towards promoting awareness and acceptance of Thailand’s automotive industry at the regional level which is an important strategic plan of the Government for the manufacturing industry.”
Furthermore, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry or UFI (Union des Foires Internationales) has since 2012, consistently given its seal of approval to the Motor Expo – testament to the fact that the event is organized to international standards.
Among the biggest highlights of the Motor Expo was the regional launch of the latest-generation Subaru Outback. Revisiting its history, it was Subaru who had first popularized the concept of a Crossover production vehicle; and last November the Japanese brand unveiled its latest, more premium rendition of its flagship crossover – the all-new 2015 Outback. The regional launch of the latest-generation Subaru Legacy was likewise held at the Impact Arena premises for international media correspondents to behold during this time, but the latter was not on exhibit at the Subaru stage in the Motor Expo.
The all-new Outback is now more premium than ever before, boasting of a posh interior that greets you with a three-spoke steering wheel enriched with shortcut buttons, and now equipped with a premium new sound system destined to deliver high quality audio presence to its discerning owners. Niceties such as a power rear gate and more luxurious seats combined with a huge increase in vehicle size cumulatively make the ownership experience more luxurious. Carried over into this model is its great reputation for passenger comfort, with the added convenience of top-notch safety systems – which include SRS front, side & curtain airbags + a knee airbag for the driver; active torque vectoring (for the 3.6L variant); ring-shaped reinforcement frames; and controlled deformation in key areas to intelligently manage impact forces.
The all-new Outback now comes with a delightful X-Mode button – that once engaged, intelligently optimizes the vehicle’s settings (throttle control, braking, AWD, etc.) to deliver the best off-road vehicle performance appropriate for the situation. It exploits either a 2.5i-S 4-cylinder or 3.6R 6-cylinder boxer engine, churning out a healthy 175HP at 5,800rpm and an impressive 260HP at 6,000rpm, respectively. Mated to a Lineartronic CVT transmission that has been enhanced with a reinforced transfer case and torque converter, it promises agreeable fuel efficiency for those epic long drives and off-road adventures that the vehicle begs for. After all, its rugged capabilities are an immediate giveaway once you stare at its bolder stance, larger tires (225/60 R18) and generous ground clearance.