2014 Subaru Outback review

14 Nov 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on 2014 Subaru Outback review

2013 Subaru Outback

it first hit the market at the height of the SUV craze, there wasn’t quite like the Subaru . With rugged cues body cladding and brush fog lights, its styling said SUV to while its car-derived underpinnings it nimbler and more fuel than traditional body-on-frame

That basic formula, now by the catchall crossover descriptor, has become a recipe for success for trucklets and soft-roaders. While the didn’t invent the crossover (that distinction goes to the AMC the Subie does deserve as the first model to popularize it.

model generations and nearly two after its debut, does the still have anything to offer? To find out, we a week getting to know the version of Subaru’s mid-size hauler.

Completely redesigned in 2010, the Outback continues to be a tall-riding Legacy wagon (a sold in most markets of ours) underneath the sheetmetal. It a mid-cycle refresh for the 2013 year that included revised styling, several tweaks and a more efficient of the entry-level four-cylinder.

Though a quick-but-thirsty 3.6-liter six available, most Outback opt for the 2.5-liter flat-four. Newly with dual-overhead camshafts, the output is up incrementally to 173 horsepower and 174 of torque. More significantly, has improved by 2 mpg in the city and a single mpg on the to 24/30 mpg with Subaru’s CVT.

For those who prefer three pedals, a less-efficient manual is available on the low- and 2.5i and 2.5i Premium levels.

As with all Subarus the rear-drive BRZ, all-wheel-drive standard. Each of the Outback’s combinations use a slightly different – the four-cylinder, CVT-equipped we spent time with an active torque split AWD with an electronic continuously hydraulic transfer clutch that five times that aids in slippery by sending up to 100 percent of engine to whichever pair of wheels has the traction.

The refresh also a suite of active safety dubbed EyeSight, which several technologies that a few years back were exclusively on luxury vehicles. as part of a $4,000 package also includes navigation and a EyeSight uses two stereoscopic located above the rearview to monitor vehicles, pedestrians, lanes and other potential

At speeds under 19 mph, the can bring the Outback to a complete if it detects a pedestrian entering the path. Above 19 mph, it can the brakes to reduce the severity of an collision.

In addition to that technology, which is known as braking assistance, EyeSight adaptive cruise control helps drivers maintain a set from other vehicles on a Also part of the package is departure and sway warning, alerts drivers if they begin to drift into lane.

Our tester, a 2.5i with the EyeSight package, was as as a four-cylinder Outback can be, stickering at above $34,000.

What’s it up

Rivals to the Outback include five-passenger crossovers like the Venza. Ford Edge and Crosstour. In addition, we’d that buyers could cross-shop compact CUVs the Honda CR-V and Toyota which have actually to be nearly as large as the Subaru

If it were our money, we’d consider the Acura TSX Sport which lacks the Outback’s space and all-wheel-drive traction but has a refined cabin and a more demeanor on curvy roads.

How it look?

Subaru’s designers on the front of the crossover for the mid-cycle adding a restyled grille and tough-looking black plastic the reshaped fog lights.

Despite the the Outback is still one of those best appreciated for its inner That’s not to say the exterior is offensive; just decidedly frumpy due to like the tall, blunt end, lengthy overhangs and wheel arches. While to maintain its off-roading pretensions, the ride height doesn’t do its any favors, either, giving it an perched-on-stilts look.

Still, we the sleek new grille a step in the direction, and the body cladding a good job of dressing up the flanks going overboard in the manner of the Chevrolet Avalanche .

Crack a door, and it’ll soon clear why so many buyers are to look past the ho-hum The cabin feels big . bigger than the far-from-insubstantial exterior and measurements would suggest. passengers are treated to full-size and hip-room, and the 34.3-cubic-foot cargo has enough stowage space to all but the most overambitious Costco

The leather-covered seats were in terms of comfort and left us fresh even after traffic-filled road trips.

the interior could best be as simple and conservative, but our top trim-level did manage to feel suitably The surfaces that passengers are to interact with on a regular like the door tops and are composed of soft-touch materials. The does a good job of conveying the that it’s made the same premium component, dash fondlers will that it’s actually a plastic surface.

We found the and intuitive buttons on the center to be above reproach, and the infotainment was similarly user-friendly even if its felt a few years behind

But does it go?

With just 173 pitted against over lbs. of mass, the Outback is no WRX. However, the CVT does an job of making the most of the available – there’s virtually no band delay while the selects the ideal ratio, seamless acceleration. Our main with the powertrain is a common CVT – anything more a smidgen of throttle incurs engine drone.

The steering is a tad slow off-center but generous with road information, and excellent sightlines another level of driver However, the Outback’s family-car is revealed in the suspension, which as Dixon sang, is built for – not for speed. The ride is over even the most roads, with the trade-off coming in the form of a fair bit of movement in turns.

For some we couldn’t seem to find any to help us test the pre-collision system, but we can attest that the cruise control component of works just fine.

Departure Warning also as intended, which is good and bad it’s a useful tool on the especially at night, but we found the can be a headache on tight two-lane where parked cars or necessitate frequent excursions the double yellow lines. it can be turned off without shutting the other Eyesight-based technologies.

Why you would buy it:

Sensible, spacious and the Outback is a solid choice for an family vehicle.

Why you wouldn’t:

because you have kids mean you’re ready to excitement just yet.

bottom line

With the of the well-executed EyeSight system, the refreshed Outback doesn’t bring anything novel to the or stand out like the original

However, it’s an excellent of a popular and proven concept, and for reason it should continue to to a broad swath of buyers.

Subaru Outback 2.5i base price, $29,800. As $34,130

Moonroof + Navigation + EyeSight System package, Partial Zero Emissions Package, $300.

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