Subaru's Exiga is now available with seven seats for the same price.
Subaru's Exiga is now available with seven seats for the same price.

Family seventh heaven

SUBARU has added much-needed versatility to its Exiga people-mover as part of a mild mid-life makeover - a seventh seat.

The Japanese car maker said customer demand had helped it to add the missing second-row middle seat to the all-wheel drive car originally introduced in 2009 as a six-passenger vehicle - all because the Australian division did not like the seven-seat options on offer.

Company spokesman David Rowley said the original Exiga was offered with a middle second-row seat featuring either a lap seatbelt for the Japanese market or a lap-sash seatbelt that hung from the roof.

But he said neither option was deemed as acceptable for Australia.

"It's now our second seven-seat option for Australia," Rowley said.

"We've done it with Exiga because of the customer feedback that people would really appreciate that extra flexibility of the second row with three seats."

The revamp also includes three child seat anchors on the second-row seatbacks.

The only discernible exterior tweaks are door mirrors that step in line with the fresh-faced Impreza hatchback and different wheels on the Premium model.

Pricing for the seven-seat Exiga remains unchanged, starting from $37,990 before costs for the 2.5i version, powered by a 2.5-litre boxer four-cylinder engine, producing 123kW of power and 229Nm of torque.

The Premium version, which adds leather seats and trim, bigger alloy wheels, tinted windows, fog lights and some extra plastic on the body, stays at $42,490 before on-road costs.

Meanwhile, Subaru said the Exiga's bigger brother, the seven-seat Tribeca, is in the thick of Australia's 2013 model mix despite reports from overseas that production of the 3.6-litre six-cylinder boxer-engined people mover will wind up in the US at the end of this year.

According to Rowley, Australia is the second largest market worldwide for the vehicle, selling at the rate of more than 100 a month with little promotion.


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