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Tribeca is Subaru’s Space Ace


3rd November, 2006

Subaru Tribeca

The Subaru range is taking on a new dimension with the introduction of the brand’s largest vehicle, the All-Wheel Drive Tribeca.

It adds an extra element of agility and fun driving performance to the sports utility vehicle market.

Available with five and seven-seat cabins, the Tribeca expands Subaru’s model range to five.

It has undergone extensive local testing, tailoring it to Australia’s unique roads and climate.

Subaru’s commitment to safety is underlined by Tribeca’s achievement of a five star occupant safety crashworthiness rating from the Australasian New Car Assessment Programme (ANCAP).

This means every Subaru Tribeca, Forester, Liberty and Outback now has a five-star rating.

The 3.0 litre six-cylinder Tribeca offers greater cabin width and length than any previous Subaru and is available from November in limited numbers, starting from $53,990 recommended retail price for the 3.0R five seat.

The range-topping Tribeca 3.0R Premium seven-seat is $60,990 (RRP).

Tribeca is the first Subaru vehicle to offer a 2,000 kilogramme braked towing capacity, making it ideal for small to mid-size caravans and boats.

It has a comprehensive specification list that includes standard rear view camera, Vehicle Dynamics Control and satellite navigation.

A DVD entertainment system, electric sunroof, leather trim and heated front seats feature on Premium variants.

Tribeca’s launch follows positive customer feedback received at motor shows and customer clinics over the past 18 months.

It is targeted at growing families seeking space, combined with Subaru’s reputation for safety, engineering, quality, practicality and versatility.

Innovative interior design has produced a sophisticated and spacious cabin with a huge variety of seating options, particularly in seven-seat versions.

Highlights include:

  • Five-star independent crashworthiness rating for occupant safety
  • Rollover sensor system
  • Satellite navigation system
  • Rear vision camera
  • Dual zone climate control air conditioning
  • 2000 kg braked towing capacity
  • Pricing from just $53,990 (RRP)
  • Newly developed double wishbone rear suspension
  • Vehicle Dynamics Control with Traction Control System
  • Choice of five or seven-seat cabins
  • MP3 compatible six-stack nine-speaker in-dash CD stereo system

Nick Senior, Managing Director, Subaru Australia, said: “This is the latest in a long line of Subarus that have pioneered new markets."

“Outback was the first cross-over SUV, Forester the first true compact SUV and now Tribeca targets the urban SUV market."

“Its All-Wheel Drive credentials and core Subaru safety make Tribeca a rock-solid choice for growing families."

“Tribeca has tremendous flexibility in cabin seating, it’s built to be durable and suits a wide variety of lifestyles, so it’s a natural as a family transporter.”

Mr. Senior said Tribeca was the first all-new Subaru model since the advent of Forester in 1997.

“We believe Tribeca can set an equally strong trend as Forester and Outback by appealing to an audience which hasn’t been entirely satisfied until now."

“There’s no doubt that our reliability and All-Wheel Drive safety, combined with a larger, cleverly designed cabin, will appeal to new buyers."

“Tribeca will also assist in keeping loyal customers with the brand. Until now, some people have reluctantly been forced to leave Subaru when they required something larger than Liberty or Outback.”

He added (and perhaps with tongue in cheek): “We see Tribeca competing against the likes of Nissan Murano, BMW X3, Volvo XC70, Ford Territory Ghia and Volkswagen Touareg." Yes, the comment must have been offered with tongue in cheek!

“It has been extensively tested in Australia and we are delighted with the results and with a towing capacity of 2,000 kilogrammes, we envisage it appealing to even more Australians.”


Despite its credentials as the largest vehicle in Subaru’s line-up, access to Tribeca is easy.

A sash door structure is used, enabling an increase in interior space by raising the glass angle.

Tribeca has 18 inch, seven-spoke alloy wheels with a design unique to the model.

It has chrome-plated grip door handles and tinted rear passenger and cargo area windows.

A windscreen wiper de-icer function is also standard, together with speed sensitive windscreen wipers.


  • Titanium silver metallic
  • Obsidian black pearl
  • Harvest gold metallic
  • Newport blue pearl
  • Satin white pearl


Tribeca offers the most spacious interior of any Subaru to date, with a flowing design that has a huge choice in configurations.

The second row of seats slides back up to 200 millimetres and also features a 60:40 split bench and a 40:20:40 split rear seat backrest, with fold-flat capability. There is a centre armrest with two cup holders, plus a tray table on the reverse, which can be used when the centre section is folded flat.

The third-row in seven-seat models includes a 50:50 split backrest. A shoulder-level lever allows the seat to be folded down to provide flat luggage space.

When the third row is in use, there is sufficient cargo space for a golf bag. When using the second row-only, four suitcases or four golf bags can be carried.

There is space for two mountain bikes when only the front seats are used.

Cargo boxes are also located below the floor – two in five-seat models and one in seven-seaters.

Both front seats are powered and are eight-way adjustable. Premium models add heating for both front seats and dual memory function driver’s seat.

For passenger convenience, front and second row seats have foot lamps and rear doors include red courtesy lights.

The instrument cluster features dual electro-luminescent gauges and two smaller gauges for engine temperature and fuel.

A liquid crystal multi-function display in the dashboard centre houses the satellite navigation system. It also indicates a wide variety of information including audio, seatbelt warning, time, fuel, outside temperature and open door warning.

Tribeca has fully automatic dual zone air-conditioning, allowing people to set different temperatures either side of the cabin.

In the seven-seat Tribeca, a rear seat cooler with four settings is standard, plus ceiling vents, aiding air conditioning in second and third-row seats.

Tribeca’s glovebox includes a light for passenger convenience.

The centre console is multi-functional and includes two large cup-holders, a shallow tray immediately beneath the armrest and openings for power cords connected to the two power outlets inside the main box. Even with the outlets in use, there is room to store 15 compact discs.

An auxiliary jack next to the power outlets is suitable for portable music devices, so they can be played through the in-car speakers. Once “RSE AUX” is selected on the system, volume can be adjusted either from portable devices such as iPods or the main system.

A pullout box at the back of the console can be used by rear seat passengers for storage of small items, including DVDs.

Leather trim is available in charcoal or ivory.

Tribeca has 10 cup holders.


Tribeca 3.0R Premium variants have a DVD entertainment system with a 22.8 centimetre-wide screen, which stores in the ceiling.

The system includes two sets of infrared wireless headphones, enabling rear passengers to enjoy the DVD system while front seat passengers can use the audio entertainment separately.

Additional headsets are available as accessories.

All DVD operations can be performed using a remote control.

Tribeca’s six-stack nine-speaker in-dash CD stereo system is MP3 compatible.


Tribeca is powered by a 3.0 litre six cylinder horizontally opposed boxer engine that produces 180 Kilowatts of power at 6,600 rpm and 297 Newton metres of torque at 4,200 rpm.

It offers a braked towing capacity of 2,000 kg (this means the new Tribeca doesn't compete at all with vehicles such as the Volkswagen Touareg despite Subaru's desires, because the Touareg has 3,500 tonne capacity for 'braked' trailers).

Tribeca features Subaru’s Active Valve Control System (AVCS) and Variable Valve Lift, ensuring optimum power and torque output, complemented by improved fuel consumption and low exhaust emissions.

It is available exclusively with a responsive five-speed Sportshift automatic transmission, which is among the lightest of its type.

Tribeca’s engine runs on 95 RON fuel.

Electronic Throttle Control System (ETCS)

Known as “drive by wire” technology, the throttle control system provides a linear acceleration/deceleration feeling that corresponds naturally to the driver’s expectation.

It is achieved by providing a programmed “relationship” between throttle pedal and throttle valve.

This means the driver’s intentions are conveyed from the throttle pedal to the engine electronically rather than via a cable. This provides optimum throttle opening for any given operating condition.

Drivers feel no difference between the ETCS and a traditional throttle control.

AVCS and Variable Valve Lift

The Active Valve Control System (AVCS) in Tribeca includes Variable Valve Lift, to increase engine power and torque output while at the same time gaining improvements in fuel consumption, exhaust emissions and idling stability.

By controlling the intake valve timing and lift to suit the engine load and speed conditions, AVCS optimises the engine volumetric efficiency and combustion process. Active variable valve timing is achieved by rotating the intake camshaft relative to the camshaft sprocket, within a maximum range of 50 crankshaft degrees.

Variable lift is achieved through the use of two different sets of cam profiles - low and high lift cams.

The Engine Control Module (ECM) calculates the optimum valve timing and lift, based on input signals from the airflow sensor, engine coolant temperature sensor, throttle position sensor and camshaft position sensors.

The ECM then generates a signal to an Oil Control Valve (OCV) positioned at each intake camshaft sprocket. This controls engine oil pressure, which is supplied to advance and retard chambers within the AVCS actuator.

Similarly, the ECM controls Variable Valve Lift. This is via a solenoid valve, which supplies oil pressure to a switchable tappet that alternates between the low and high cam lobes, depending on engine load and speed conditions.

In simple terms, the engine runs at low lift below 2,000 rpm, then switches between low and high between 2,000 and 4,000 rpm, depending upon load.

Above 4,000 rpm, valve lift is high, irrespective of engine load.

Valve timing is continuously and infinitely variable within the 50 crank degree range. It is controlled according to engine speed and load conditions.

Computer mapping is programmed for optimum valve timing, producing stable idling, improved fuel consumption and low emissions in the medium speed range, and maximum power at high engine speed and load.


Tribeca’s exhaust pipes are doubled skinned, with an air gap to maintain gas temperature for more rapid activation of the catalyst. This improves exhaust gas emissions, particularly during the warm-up phase.

The exhaust system features an independent three-port manifold for improved engine output and emission performance.

The length of the first exhaust section is increased for optimum efficiency.


Tribeca is available with a responsive five-speed Sportshift automatic transmission, which is among the lightest of its type.

The close-ratio direct control type transmission was developed to achieve high quality, smooth speed changes.

Gear ratios

- 3.0R auto
First 3.841
Second 2.352
Third 1.529
Fourth 1
Fifth 0.839
Reverse 2.764
Final reduction ratio 3.583


Tribeca’s rear suspension is newly developed, ensuring the optimum drivability for which Subaru is renowned.

The double wishbone rear suspension design benefits cabin roominess and ride comfort while reducing vibration.

Strut-type front suspension is adopted for its ideal suitability to Tribeca’s horizontally opposed boxer engine.


All Tribecas are equipped with the latest advanced engine immobilisers and DataDot theft protection.

For added security, Tribeca has only one barrel lock, located in the driver’s door and remote tailgate unlocking.


Tribeca has a five star crashworthiness rating for occupant safety from the Australasian New Car Assessment Programme (ANCAP).

Tribeca shares the same ring-shaped reinforcements around the passenger cabin as all Subarus.

Diagonal cross-members are used in the car’s rear, enhancing energy absorption in the event of a rear offset collision.

Dual front, side and curtain airbags are standard equipment together with front seatbelt pretensioners and load limiters, seatbelt indicator lights and a three-point A/ELR rear centre seatbelt.

Driver and front passenger seats have active head restraints. In a rear-end collision, the head restraint tilts forward to immediately protect the head, minimising the possibility of whiplash.

The low centre of gravity and All-Wheel Drive handling aid safety as well as comfort and agility, resulting in the type of nimble and stable ride normally associated with mid-sized vehicles.

Tribeca is equipped with a Rollover Sensor system that detects a potential vehicle rollover and deploys the standard side curtain airbags.

The system also sets the seatbelt pretensioners in anticipation of a rollover.

Large capacity 2-pot front ventilated disc brakes are used, with an external diameter of 316 mm and thickness of 30 mm.

Rear brakes include high rigidity fist-type aluminium calipers. The brake rotor has a 320 mm external diameter and is 18 mm thick.

The parking brake is a foot operated type.

All Tribecas feature Brake Assist. The ECU detects panic braking and automatically applies optimum force by assisting driver operation in a linear fashion, in minimal time.

Aiding all-round visibility in winter, Tribeca has heated wing mirrors.

Vehicle Dynamics Control with Traction Control System

All Tribecas have Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC). The electronic control unit (ECU) uses information from sensors tracking wheel speed, steering position, front/back and lateral (sideways) G force and yaw rate to monitor forces that could destabilise vehicle running.

A new feature of VDC is the Traction Control System (TCS). It helps limit traction loss during acceleration on slippery surfaces. The TCS detects loss of traction by measuring the difference in rotational speed of each wheel. When traction loss is detected, brakes are applied to reduce wheel speed and spin. Engine power is also reduced to assist in regaining traction.

In extreme situations, such as when swerving, sideslipping or entering a spin, VDC activates to control each wheel individually, via braking, engine output and the All-Wheel Drive system. This improves stability by using the car’s most stable wheels.

In cases of extreme oversteer, VDC activates, applying brakes to the front and rear outside turning wheels, producing yaw – a force that opposes the oversteering tendency. With understeer, VDC applies brakes to the inside rear wheels to counteract the effect.

Both the VDC and ABS Anti-Lock Braking systems are controlled from the one digital ECU.

VDC is designed for a “driver’s vehicle.” In normal conditions it is purely a monitoring system and applies no control.

But near the car’s performance limits it gives the driver more control – resulting in safer and more comfortable driving.

Rear vision camera

All Tribecas have a rear vision camera.

When the driver moves the transmission shift handle into reverse, the centre LCD display shows what the colour camera detects within its field of vision behind the vehicle.

Reference lines showing 0.5, 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0 metre increments, as well as vehicle width, (including outside mirrors) help guide drivers as they reverse.

Standard features at a glance

Tribeca 3.0R:

  • ABS brakes with four-wheel discs and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD)
  • Brake assist
  • Child seat anchor points
  • Dual front, side and curtain airbags
  • Front seatbelts with pretensioners and load limiters
  • Heated wing mirrors
  • Rear door child lock
  • Rollover sensor
  • Seatbelt indicator lights – all seats
  • Side intrusion bars
  • Speed sensitive wipers
  • Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive
  • Three-point A/ELR rear centre seatbelt
  • VDC – Vehicle Dynamics Control with Traction Control System
  • Windscreen wiper de-icer


  • AM/FM radio/six stack CD player – MP3 compatible - with nine speakers and steering wheel controls
  • Auxiliary RSE/AUX jack for portable music devices
  • Cargo area light
  • Cargo security blind (five seater)
  • Cloth trim
  • Cruise control
  • Cup holders x 10
  • Dual zone climate control air conditioning – dual rear air vents on five seater, four rear air vents on seven seater
  • Eight-way adjustable power driver and front passenger seats
  • Height adjustable steering column
  • Immobiliser security system
  • Intermittent wiper control
  • Leather steering wheel with audio and cruise controls
  • Leather gear shifter
  • Map lights (5)
  • Multi-function trip computer
  • Power steering, mirrors and windows
  • Two remote central locking keys
  • Remote fuel lid release
  • Satellite navigation and reversing camera
  • Seat back storage pockets
  • Second row seats centre armrest
  • Seven seat (third row) option
  • Sportshift automatic transmission
  • Vanity mirrors (illuminated)
  • 40/20/40 split/fold second row seat


  • 18 inch alloy wheels – space-saver spare
  • Colour-coded mirrors
  • Chrome finish door handles
  • Dual exhaust
  • Fog lamps - front
  • Headlights auto off
  • Rear roof spoiler
  • Rear wiper – control with intermittent

Other features

  • Auto tailgate unlock
  • DataDot security technology
  • Electronic throttle control
  • Three-year unlimited kilometre warranty
  • 3.0 litre horizontally opposed boxer engine

Tribeca 3.0R Premium adds:

  • Dual memory function for the eight-way adjustable power driver’s seat
  • Heated front seats
  • Leather trim – choice of ivory or charcoal
  • Dual electric sun-roof
  • Rear seat DVD entertainment system with two sets of wireless headphones and remote controller
  • Seven seat (third row) option

Subaru Tribeca

MY07 Tribeca highlights


  • Comprehensively equipped yet competitively priced from $53,990 – $60,990


  • Choice of five or seven-seat cabins
  • Satellite navigation
  • Premium variants with DVD entertainment system + wireless headphones and remote control, electric sunroof and heated front seats
  • Dual zone climate control air conditioning
  • MP3 compatible six-stack nine-speaker in-dash CD stereo system
  • Space for two mountain bikes with second and third row seats flat
  • Under-floor cargo boxes
  • Powered, eight-way adjustable front seats – Premium models add heating, plus dual memory function driver’s seat


  • First Subaru to offer 2,000 kg braked towing capacity
  • Sportshift automatic five-speed transmission
  • 3.0 litre six cylinder horizontally opposed boxer engine produces 180 kW/6,600 rpm, 297 Nm/4,200 rpm
  • Electronic Throttle Control
  • Active Valve Control System (AVCS) and Variable Valve Lift, ensures optimum power and torque output
  • Dual exhaust system for optimum efficiency
  • Newly developed double wishbone rear suspension ensures optimum drivability


  • ANCAP five-star crashworthiness rating for occupant safety
  • Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive
  • Standard rear view camera
  • Active head restraints
  • Rollover sensor
  • Dual front, side and curtain airbags
  • Ring-shaped reinforcements around the cabin
  • Brake Assist
  • Vehicle Dynamics Control

Tribeca MY07 pricing

These are retail recommended prices and do not include dealer and statutory charges.

Tribeca 3.0R – five seater - $53,990
Tribeca 3.0R – seven seater - $55,990
Tribeca 3.0R Premium – five seater - $58,990
Tribeca 3.0R Premium – seven seater - $60,990

Other Subaru news: here.

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