Overview: Can the 2020 Subaru Outback Compete With SUV Performance?


The Outback has impressed imitators, however none has ever come near this wagon/quasi-SUV’s success. After a pair months with the 2020 Subaru Outback Onyx 2.four XT we’re driving for a 12 months, now we have a greater concept of the way it compares to the midsize two-row SUVs it competes in opposition to. So how good is that this SUV-ified wagon’s inside practicality in contrast with an SUV? Hold studying to search out out.

How the Outback Is a Match for SUVs

A part of why MotorTrend has persistently favored Subaru Outbacks for years is their mixture of SUV practicality provided at a cheaper price than some rivals. That’s nonetheless principally true for the 2020 Outback, together with our one-year Onyx 2.four XT tester. Let’s begin with the Outback’s cargo space. Each Outback beginning with the $31,305 Premium trim with a bundle will get an influence liftgate. Open it up, and you’ve got 32.5 cubic toes of house. That’s extra spacious than the Chevrolet Blazer and Nissan Murano however falls wanting the Ford Edge and Honda Passport.

The Subaru’s cargo flooring is conveniently low, after all, due to the truth that it is a lifted wagon. There’s no underfloor storage, sadly, however two levers simply fold down the rear seats from the cargo space. One of many cargo space’s finest options is a sliding cargo privateness cowl that gives a taller detent—excellent for these highway journeys when somebody inevitably overpacks. Rear visibility is decreased on this setting, however the setup would nonetheless be manageable whilst you drive from dwelling to lodge/campsite. And as you press the liftgate’s close-and-lock button to move for a pit cease, the characteristic gives peace of thoughts that your stuff can be out of sight.

Within the again seat, the Outback feels spacious for 2. There’s even a ton of headroom, a reality presumably helped by the truth that a panoramic roof isn’t out there on this Subaru at any worth. The seat recline latch is positioned on the backside of the outboard seat backs, and each Outback aside from the bottom mannequin will get two rear-seat USB ports. Spring for the $34,455 Outback Restricted 2.5 and better so as to add heated rear seats, once more talking to the Subaru’s worth argument in comparison with a few of its competitors.

We’re specializing in inside practicality right here, however two of the Subaru’s largest strengths are its easy-to-use retractable crossbars and the usual AWD, which we’ve discovered efficient off-road.

How SUVs Beat the Outback in Performance

Regardless of all the outside styling particulars Subaru has added to make the Outback look rugged, the automaker can solely achieve this a lot to vary experience peak. And though the Outback has a extra commanding seating place than a automotive, it doesn’t sit as excessive as an SUV. If a better experience peak is a part of an SUV’s enchantment for you, although, the Outback does a satisfactory job.

Past becoming into the midsize “carlike SUV” phase, the Outback is a crossover in one other sense, too. The pricing is so affordable that Subaru’s shopper web site compares the wagon to compact and midsize SUVs. No matter what you evaluate the midsize Outback in opposition to, some SUVs do a greater job of creating room for the middle-seat passenger with a flatter drivetrain hump.

































































































The Outback can be longer than most of its rivals. For those who’re contemplating a Forester, that spacious Subaru is 9.2 inches shorter, which ought to make it simpler to park. Although the Outback’s rear visibility is best than that of a lot of its rivals, rear-seat headrests that fold down out of the way in which (as they do on a Volvo V60, Chevrolet Blazer, and some different automobiles) would make it that significantly better.

Picture, after all, is arguably the largest purpose some may nonetheless stick to an SUV over the Outback, a lifted wagon that outperforms some SUVs off-road. During the last couple a long time, wagons have transitioned from the go-to alternative for households to a distinct segment alternative for individuals who need to be completely different. Thus far, though I want the Outback had a better seating place, the Subaru greater than earns its place within the midsize two-row SUV phase. Consumers courageous sufficient to do that lifted wagon ought to principally be happy with how its inside performance compares to an SUV.

Learn extra about our long-term 2020 Subaru Outback Onyx:

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