New 2022 Subaru Solterra electric SUV: prices, specs and first-look video

Subaru’s first electric car is set to launch in July, featuring permanent all-wheel-drive and 289 miles of range; prices from £49,995

Subaru has revealed some new UK-specific details about its first electric car: the Solterra. The zero-emissions SUV shares its underpinnings with the Toyota bZ4X and the recently unveiled Lexus RZ, with the Subaru’s long list of rivals including the Audi Q4 e-tron, Ford Mustang Mach-E, Kia EV6 and Tesla Model Y. Prices start from £49,995.

Like its Lexus and Toyota counterparts, the Solterra is only available with a 71.4kWh battery, and has a range of up to 289 miles in entry-level Limited trim, which is on par with similarly priced versions of the Mustang Mach-E and Q4 e-tron. Upgrade to flashier Touring spec, and the Subaru’s maximum range decreases to 257 miles.

Subaru has opted to only bring the dual-motor version of the Solterra to the UK, but that means all-wheel-drive is standard, and every car gets 215bhp and 336Nm of torque. The 0-62mph sprint takes 6.9 seconds, while the top speed stands at 100mph.

The Solterra also features an 'X-Mode AWD' setting for the electric drivetrain, which Subaru says has been designed for use on rougher roads, while a new 'Grip Control' function allows the car to maintain a constant speed and remain stable off-road. The EV also has 210mm of ground clearance, which is only slightly less than the latest Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The Solterra is around the same size as the current Subaru Forester SUV and is built on the new e-Subaru Global Platform, dedicated to electric vehicles. The platform was co-developed with Toyota; as mentioned above, it also underpins the bZ4X and will be used for several other Subaru, Toyota and Lexus EVs in the near future. Notably, the battery serves as a part of the structure in cars that use it, which promises a low centre of gravity and strong rigidity.

In terms of styling, the Solterra's black wheelarches, angular styling and sharp headlights are all shared with its Toyota sister car, with the Subaru set apart only by a different front grille and rear light arrangement. The same is true inside, with the Solterra also featuring a digital gauge cluster and large central touchscreen for the infotainment. 

Up front, there’s a floating centre console that houses the gear selector and physical controls for the drive modes and parking cameras. The steering wheel itself also features an array of physical buttons and paddles for adjusting the strength of the Solterra’s regenerative braking. Rear passengers benefit from a flat floor and “best-in-class legroom” according to Subaru, plus there’s up to 452 litres of boot space on offer.

The family EV is capable of the same 150kW rapid charging speed as the bZ4X, with Subaru claiming a 20-80% recharge of the 71.4kWh battery takes 19 minutes using an ultra-rapid charger. Meanwhile, the same top-up from a regular 7kW wallbox will take a little under seven hours.

Safety kit on the Solterra includes front and rear parking sensors, LED headlights with adaptive high beam, a 360-degree camera, and safe-exit assist that warns you if there’s a vehicle or object coming towards you when you open the door. The car is also compatible with the ‘Subaru Car App’ that lets you check the amount of remaining charge, remotely lock the car and even find the car when parked.

Prices for the Subaru Solterra in Limited spec start from £49,995, which gets you 18-inch alloy wheels, a power tailgate, adaptive cruise control, heated front and rear seats and a heated steering wheel, that 360-degree parking camera, a digital rear-view mirror and a heat pump to more efficiently warm the battery. 

Upgrading to Touring trim adds leather upholstery, 20-inch alloy wheels, a panoramic sunroof, a Harman/Kardon sound system, wireless smartphone charger and an electric passenger seat. Prices for this version of the Solterra start from £52,995. 

Subaru Solterra STI concept

Subaru gave a look at what could become a high-performance version of its new electric SUV with the Solterra STI Concept. Unveiled at the 2022 Tokyo Auto Salonm, it's strictly a concept car for now, but a production version could rival the Volkswagen ID.4 GTX, as well as top-of-the-range versions of the Ford Mustang Mach-E and Kia EV6.

The STI Concept features an eye-catching cherry-red front splitter, side skirts and accents behind the rear wheels, as well as a gloss-black roof spoiler wearing the brand’s famous STI logo, plus black alloy wheels with a cheery-red accent spoke. 

A performance-focused version of the Solterra’s sister car, the Toyota bZ4X, called the 'GR Sport Concept' also made its debut at the 2022 Tokyo Auto Salon.

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