Subaru Tribeca to soldier on until new model arrives in 2016

Subaru\'s three-row SUV is still three years out.

Subaru's aging Tribeca SUV could live on until the Japanese automaker introduces an all-new three-row crossover in 2016, a new report claims.

Introduced in 2005 as a 2006 model, the Tribeca never managed to set the sales charts on fire, even during the early days when it was still a fresh product. Now creeping up on its 9th birthday, the Tribeca may be forced to linger on dealer lots until its replacement arrives sometime in 2016.

Not much is known about the Tribeca's replacement, but it will likely address the SUV's biggest shortcomings - space and fuel economy. The Tribeca successor -- which will boast three rows of seating, according to Automotive News -- will aim to compete with vehicles like the Ford Explorer and Chevrolet Traverse.

The current Tribeca is based on the Subaru Legacy/Outback, and that could continue for the second-generation of the utility vehicle. Subaru is expected to launch an all-new version of the Legacy/Outback for 2015.

The launch of a three-row crossover would also help Subaru with its goal of becoming a more mainstream automaker.

Tribeca sales fell by more than 25 percent to just 2,075 units in 2012. Despite those paltry sales figures, Subaru says it has no immediate plans to pull the plug on the Tribeca.

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