It seems with every new Outback, Subaru are upping the ante where they are consistently trying to make their cars have a more premium feel. However, they are careful note to overindulge as if the interior becomes too plush the price might become inflated, leaving out some of its targeted customers. The balancing act away this is a very able off roader especially those who want an all-wheel drive car at an affordable price.
What’s in a Name?
This car is named after the large and arid outback regions of Australia. Its moniker helps supplement its image as a moderate off-road capable vehicle.
The Outback started out as a variant of the Impreza and Legacy back in 1994. It remained as a variant, until 2000 where it broke off and assumed its own model line. It’s important to note that the variant derived from the Impreza was known as the Outback Sport, which was discontinued later in 2011 and replaced by the Subaru XV. The Outbacks were raised versions of both the Legacy and the Impreza, and this led to Subaru claiming that they were the first to introduce crossovers.
Currently, we have reached the sixth generation of the Outback, which has been around since 2009. It still shares its underpinnings with the Legacy but it has managed to develop its own character.
This station wagon is available in a number of trims mainly depending on your locale:
- 5i SE, 2.5i SE Premium
- 0D SE, 2.0D SE Premium
- 5i Limited
- 6R Limited
The Outback doesn’t have as much variety, as it only offers two engines a four cylinder and six cylinder. These engines are all “boxer” units where the cylinders are horizontally paired in two rows. If you are looking for a diesel you’ll have to contend only with the 2L turbo four that delivers 148 hp. As for the most powerful engine it is the 256 hp 3.6L six cylinder petrol. Depending on the trim you can either settle for CVT, 5-speed auto or 6-speed manual.
More plush than before but not yet upmarket, still bland to some. To be honest the cabin hasn’t been what Subaru traditionally sell, as they have always marketed the ride performance.
Subaru’s design team have really worked hard to make the car carry a little more panache to it. However, it looks more like a station wagon than a SUV to me, probably I guess that’s one of the niches they are selling. I will admit it has a contemporary design, but sometimes it can seem really bland, next to a Cherokee for example.
The Outback really has its merits especially with its renewed styling and great off road performance. However, on road it can be a little discomforting, the only silver lining to this is that they have improved the handling immensely. With the limited number of engines to choose from and considering that Subaru have made every model of the Outback in an all-wheel configuration, fuel efficiency seemingly goes out the window. However, if you want a car that will serve you well, come rain, snow or sunshine, then the Outback is quite an affordable and reliable option.
If you are thinking of buying an Outback you’ll be able to purchase it from $ 24,995 upwards.
Do cars like the Outback still have relevancy in today’s market especially with the production of so many different SUVS, like the Cherokee and Escape? Have your say, leave a comment.
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