Subaru took a giant leap forward in Europe earlier this year with the introduction of the 2008 Subaru Legacy and Outback with an all-new—and industry-first—boxer diesel engine.

The rollout continues with plans to show a Forester and an Impreza with the same powertrain at the 2008 Paris auto show.

The Japanese automaker offers a 2.0-liter four-cylinder diesel engine in Europe. It will be another few years before the distinctive powertrain becomes available in North America.

The powertrain is a horizontally opposed diesel engine with Subaru’s symmetrical all-wheel-drive system, squeezed into vehicles with restricted space. Compared with the 2.0-liter gasoline-fired four in Subaru’s stable—but not available in the U.S.—the diesel has a decreased bore and an increased stroke, and the turbo has been mounted under the engine directly to the catalytic converters. Everything is beefed up to withstand the higher pressures of direct-injection diesel power.

A five-speed manual transmission was designed specifically for use with the diesel in Europe but is not likely to be offered in North America. Rather, the U.S. must wait for an automatic transmission

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