Retro Cars Wiki

As a very limited-production car, the SVX was designed to showcase technology, innovation and the advantages of all-wheel drive. Though priced at the lower reaches of the touring coupe market, its virtues have been enjoyed by relatively few customers compared to its competition: Dodge Stealth, Lexus SC 300/400, Mitsubishi 3000GT and Nissan 300ZX.

The SVX's most distinguishing feature was the side window arrangement. Radically curved glass wraps around the front and rear of the car, with smaller opening glass panels that don't reach up to the roof.

Styling, in general, was pushed toward the leading edge. The SVX made a love-it-or-hate it impression, a distinct advantage over its wedge-shaped XT6 predecessor, which seemed only to attract hate.

Year-to-year changes[]


In 1994, Subaru introduced a mid-$20,000 front-wheel-drive version to join the more expensive all-wheel-drive original. For this model year, there were three versions of the SVX: LSi with AWD, and L and LS with front-drive.

The L had tattersall-chenille upholstery fabric. AWD models got ABS and a rear spoiler. The LS--available with front-drive only--had ABS, power sunroof, rear spoiler, suedelike upholstery, and two additional speakers (for a total of six). The LSi had AWD, ABS, leather upholstery, 50/50 split fold-down rear seat, 8-way power driver's seat, heated outside mirrors, antitheft system, CD player, carpeted floor mats and an under seat storage tray.


The LS was dropped, and the L now had all-wheel drive as an option. All cars had the same horizontally opposed dohc 4-valve Six with 230 hp, the same electronically controlled 4-speed automatic, dual airbags, automatic climate control, speed sensitive variable assist power steering, power windows/mirrors/locks, cruise control, an 80-watt stereo and 4-wheel disc brakes.


For 1996, SVX was available in only two all-wheel-drive models, L and LSi. All that separated the two was the amount of standard equipment. The L used engine-speed-sensitive, variable-assist power steering, while the LSi employed a road-speed-sensitive version. In the L, the driver's seat had manual adjustment and the seats were fabric instead of leather, floor mats were optional, the stereo employed four speakers instead of six and the heated mirrors, passenger's-seat storage box and woodgrain trim were not included.

The equipment list continued with dual airbags, height-adjustable seatbelt shoulder mounts, automatic climate control, intermittent front and rear wipers, rear spoiler, power door locks, mirrors and windows, tinted solar-control glass, rear-window defogger, cruise control, tilt/telescopic steering column with memory and sunroof (LSi only). Both SVXs were powered by a 3.3-liter flat 6-cylinder engine (which allowed for the car's low hoodline) coupled to a 4-speed automatic transmission. A limited-slip rear differential and antilock brakes are standard equipment. The AWD system provided a secure, locked-on-rails feel on the road, regardless of weather conditions.

Retail prices[]

  • $23,900 (1994 Subaru SVX L)
  • $28,550 (1994 Subaru SVX LS)
  • $33,850 (1994 Subaru SVX LSi)

As of October 28, 1994:

  • $26,800 (1995 Subaru SVX L)
  • $28,300 (1995 Subaru SVX L with all-wheel drive)
  • $34,350 (1995 Subaru SVX LSi)

As of June 1, 1995:

  • $27,250 (1995 Subaru SVX L)
  • $28,750 (1995 Subaru SVX L with all-wheel drive)
  • $34,800 (1995 Subaru SVX LSi)