2024 Subaru Solterra: First Fully Electric AWD SUV

2024 Subaru Solterra First Fully Electric AWD SUV

2024 Subaru Solterra – The Solterra SUV is Subaru’s first global electric vehicle entering America’s bustling small-to-medium crossover market.

Its size and its Toyota-badged and less coherent counterpart, the bZ4X, slots between the smaller Volkswagen ID4 and the larger Ford Mustang Mach-E in an all-electric slice that’s evolving from the compact SUV landscape.

2024 Subaru Solterra

2024 Subaru Solterra
2024 Subaru Solterra

Subaru said the Solterra, which crawls over medium-sized obstacles and wades through deep dirt, is not equipped with all-terrain tires but rubber all seasons that are common and can be used on the roads.

In other words, it’s pretty much equipped like the Solterra Touring model positioned in front of us on the vehicle’s debut at the L.A. auto show, right down to 20-inch wheels with 235-wide tires. It’s no ordinary off-road fixture.

In addition to featuring Subaru’s standard Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive branded system, the Solterra also features standard “StarDrive” power delivery controls (also found in the Crosstrek Hybrid), X-Mode traction management, and 8.3-inch ground clearance, which is the exact clearance found in the 2022 Toyota RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid.

2024 Subaru Solterra Performance

Subaru pegs Solterra’s total power output at 215 horsepower and 248 lb.-ft. Torque between two motors, one in front and one at the back.

That’s more than the 201 hp and 229 lb.-ft. REAR-wheel drive. From his single motor but trailing the 266 hp and 317 lb.-ft Mustang Mach-E of the Mustang Mach-E. Basic powertrain.

Power comes from lithium-ion batteries that can be recharged via Level 2 A.C. charging or D.C. fast charging. The EPA hasn’t assessed the E.V.’s range yet, but Subaru estimates you’ll be able to travel about 220 miles per charge.

That trails the VW ID4’s 250-260-mile range, along with most versions of the Mustang Mach-E except the AWD, and comes with a smaller of the two batteries available, which gets an estimated range of 211 miles.

Toyota BZ4X Vs. Subaru Solterra

The Solterra and Toyota BZ4X have the same body-in-white. Of Subaru’s existing SUVs, the Solterra is the closest size to the Forester—a kind of plus-size compact.

Several glimpses of the Subaru style appear among all Toyota styles, including C-shaped walking lights inside the house’s thin, wide headlights as well as a hexagonal lattice line at the front. The fog lights on the bumper are also unique to Subie.

Most will see plastic wheel arch molds on the front and rear fenders, also on the BZ4X but bear a strong resemblance to the pieces in Subaru’s smaller and popular Crosstrek. Solterra’s 20-inch wheels are pushed into corners for short front and rear overhangs. Designers also provide:

  • A low hood and thin A-pillar.
  • Sloping rear glass.
  • A rear spoiler comes out of the roof and in the middle of the elevator door.

The Solterra will be available in two-tone exterior colors with a black roof like the example shown here.

Off-road use is one of the significant differences in Toyota and Subaru’s focus on designing the bZ4X and Solterra.

While the Toyota team works on batteries and powertrains, Subaru handles the chassis, AWD, and collision system.

The resulting car will have different driving qualities, with different Subaru suspension and throttle mapping settings than Toyota.

Solterra also comes to the U.S. market only as an AWD and without the yoke option. The Solterra comes with an X-mode, which controls each wheel individually to provide better traction on uneven or slippery surfaces.

Subaru Grip Control acts like cruise control even in off-road situations. There are three driving modes: Eco, Normal, and Power, and regenerative braking can be adjusted to the steering wheel paddle.

2024 Subaru Solterra Exterior Design

The overall shape of the Subaru and Toyota twins is the same, the long-wheelbase broken down by various angles and body lines in sheet metal ending with short overhangs in the nose and tail.

Subaru’s current design language from the plastic-clad side extends beyond the wheel arches to the front fenders to flank the hexagonal grille whose blocked design clearly defines the Solterra as an electric vehicle at first glance.

At the rear is an awning protruding from the double roof wing—which seems more for appearance than aero, leaving actual air management duties to a sleek ducktail at the base of the rear glass.

Intricate multi-element taillights flank the tailgate with dark surrounds that stretch along the edges of the rear profile. The current style trend in SUVs seems to be an action-packed design with many surfaces changing, and the Solterra reflects this. 

The current style trend in SUVs seems to be an action-packed design with many surfaces changing, and the Solterra reflects this.

His overall attitude is attractive, with 8.3-inch ground clearance and tucked nose and back, making him look ready for at least some camping runs if not crawling all out.

2024 Subaru Solterra Interior

2024 Subaru Solterra Interior
2024 Subaru Solterra Interior

Subaru promises up to 30.0 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second row of Solterra seats, which is negligible over the 29.7 cubic feet of Mustang Mach-E and less than 30.3 ID4 hair.

The breadth emphasizes Solterra cabin design, which offers a flat floor at the back and no glovebox at the front for space inside and under the center console, which is further opened using a rotary shift knob instead of the traditional lever.

The entire dashboard doesn’t seem to protrude into the cabin like other cars, and the unsalted and reassembled gauge cluster only adds to the minimized feeling.

Another thoughtful touch that will please parents with kids the age of a car seat is a rear-door passenger that opens about 80 degrees and a 41.3-inch truck tub opening.

Inside Solterra, you will find good material quality and build execution. The infotainment system features standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, as well as a wireless charging phone dock in the center console and a 12.3-inch touchscreen is available. Rear heated chairs and panoramic sunroofs are also options.

Smartphone-based digital keys are also available. With it, users can unlock doors, open windows, remotely power vehicles, and even condition HVAC crossovers. Solterra’s auto parking assistance function is also accessed through the essential digital app.

Each Solterra comes with a standard set of driver assistance features, such as automatic emergency braking, automatic high lights, lane departure warnings, and point and rear traffic monitoring.

It was the first Subaru to get a 360-degree view camera and the first Subie to get a standard Safety Exit Alert, which alerts passengers before exiting the vehicle from obstacles and pedestrians.

Like the BZ4X, the Solterra has a digital gauge cluster and a 12.3-inch touchscreen running a new infotainment system (probably designed by Toyota) that supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Fortunately, the Solterra has a traditional round steering wheel instead of a yoke like the Chinese-spec Toyota BZ4X. And to give an idea of its size, Subaru says the Solterra has a total passenger and cargo volume of 126 cubic feet, which is slightly more than the Forester SUV.

2024 Subaru Solterra Powertrain

Powertrain details are in line with those announced for the bZ4X: a 71.4-kWh lithium-ion battery pack and a total output of 215 hp/246 lb-ft. Subaru’s estimated range is more than 220 miles, and the Solterra will feature D.C. fast charging, although details are minimal.

If it matches the capabilities of the announced Toyota model, it means a fast-charging capability of up to 150 kw with the ability to reach 80% capacity in 30 minutes.

2024 Subaru Solterra Safety

Subaru packs the Solterra with many active safety technologies, including pre-collision braking, lane departure warnings, blind-spot monitoring, and rear traffic alerts.

Solterra also got a new Subaru Safety Exit Alert, an increasingly common feature that alerts passengers if they open doors to obstacles or pedestrians when parking parallel.

2023 Toyota BZ4X arrives in the U.S. with a Modern look

2023 Toyota BZ4X
2023 Toyota BZ4X

Toyota invented the modern hybrid drivetrain, but the giant Japanese automaker is well behind the curve of pure E.V.s. However, that changes next year when the 2023 BZ4X all-electric crossover goes on sale.

A carnival of folds and cladding, the BZ4X is like a 1980s vision of cars in the 21st century. A lot is going on with this design, and you’ll either love it or hate it, but you won’t be able to ignore it.

Dimensionally, the BZ4X is 184.6 inches long, slightly longer than the RAV4, and its wheelbase is 112.2 inches, which is identical to the Highlander.

2023 Toyota BZ4X Interior

Inside, the cabin is not at all expressive, although quite spacious. The back seat has plenty of legroom and a nearly flat floor, which is good news for passengers.

The interior of the BZ4X also features a standard 12.3-inch touchscreen that’s home to a super-responsive infotainment system. What’s missing, however, is the yoke-style steering wheel we see in the concept. We’re not going to get it in the U.S.

It is the first Toyota in a global series of vehicles to be sold under the B.Z. umbrella, which stands for “beyond zero.” Globally, the automaker aims to offer 70 different electrified models by 2025 – these include hybrids, plug-in hybrids, pure E.V.s, and even hydrogen fuel cell-powered vehicles. Of those 70, 15 will be pure E.V.s, and seven of them will carry some B.Z. Name.

The BZ4X is built on a new dedicated electric vehicle architecture. The-TNGA platform was developed in partnership with Subaru and is partly made of high-pull steel for extra strength.

As you probably know, based on its proportions and overall design, this structure also sustains the Solterra SUV. As expected, the vehicle’s battery pack is installed under the floor for a low center of gravity.

The 2023 BZ4X will be offered with a front-wheel drive, although, not surprisingly, models with a four-wheel drive will also be available.

The previous configuration featured a single 150-kilowatt electric motor (201 horsepower), but the latter had a pair of 80-kW dynamos that provided a total power of 160-kW (215 hp).

The front-drive BZ4Xs have a 71.4-kilowatt-hour battery pack, but surprisingly, the all-wheel-drive example has a slightly larger package, at a speed of 72.8 kWh.

This difference is because two companies assemble the batteries; Panasonic makes one, the other by CATL. In addition, each is tuned to work best with a front or all-wheel-drive powertrain.

As for the range, the XLE trim, the BZ4X front-drive is expected to offer about 250 miles at an additional cost. The range for the all-wheel-drive version hasn’t been shared yet, but Subaru released forecast figures for its Solterra, and doing a little calculation, we can guess what Toyota might offer.

Subaru is expected to offer a range of 330 miles with front-drive and 285 when equipped with all-wheel drive on the Japanese test cycle.

Smashing the numbers, the all-wheel-drive BZ4X might offer a range of about 216 miles, but then again, this is just an educated guess.

Providing additional peace of mind for owners, the SUV’s liquid-cooled battery must maintain up to 90% of its capacity after ten years of ownership.

The specifics haven’t been shared yet, but when connected to a high-output charger, the BZ4X can be judged 80% in just one hour.

A vehicle’s HVAC system works through a heat pump, which is more efficient, for example, than a resistive heater, which is like a hairdryer.

Toyota also offers heated front seats and heated steering wheels in this SUV, as well as glowing leg and leg warmers for those in front.

These small additions help reduce energy consumption in cold weather without affecting passenger comfort.

2023 Toyota BZ4X Safety

Toyota Safety Sense 3.0 is the main feature of this E.V. This includes millimeter-wave radar sensors and edged cameras.

Thanks to this advanced hardware, the BZ4X can detect cyclists in low-light conditions as well as motorcyclists during the day.

It has also improved lane recognition and guardrail detection. BZ4X’s cloud-connected navigation system can track parking availability in real-time. The vehicle also supports over-the-air software updates and digital keys that you can access via smartphone.

2023 Toyota BZ4X Release date

The 2023 Toyota BZ4X is scheduled to arrive at dealerships in all 50 states next spring. The price hasn’t been released yet, but it should be competitive with other rival E.V.s such as the Ford Mustang Mach-E and Tesla Model Y.

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