Subaru Outback quick drive

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I was always curious about the Outback.

It looks really nice and I think the interior is one of the best around.

So here are my thoughts after a short drive.

-The car feels really solid.
-I was pretty amazed how smooth the engine is. The car I drove was a base 2.5 Liter and it felt and sounded almost like a V6
-The transmission is super smooth. Although only a 4 speed. Which would hurt highway mileage.
-Suspension is very comfortable and the car handles very well at the same time.
-A pretty roomy back seat and a big trunk.

I was actually very impressed with the Subaru Outback.
The one I drove retails for $23 600 but carsdirect has it for just under $21 000.
I think this is a great deal for a family car. And much better than any SUV/crossover I’ve driven so far….

Conversation 19 comments

  1. Who would ever buy this? Only losers buy wagon versions of good sedans.

    The trunk on the Legacy is at least as big as this.
    Plus you don’t have to deal with kids making fun of you because you drive a wagon.

  2. Plus you don’t have to deal with kids making fun of you because you drive a wagon.

    Adults don’t care what kids think about cars.

    Anyway, Vince, the price you quoted for the Outback sounds like a fantastic deal in this post-SUV world.

  3. What makes a wagon driver a loser? I fail to see the non-existant connection.

    I hate trunks and having one seems like such a waste of space, especially if a wagon variant is available. I remember for once ran an ad for the Taurus Sedan and Wagon. They were the SAME PRICE. So that’s pretty much a no brainer. I bet I can get one hell of a deal on an IS 300 SportCross.

  4. Burlapp,
    What do you think is a better machine, the CR-V or
    new Forester (non-turbo)?


  5. I haven’t driven the Forester or the CRV.
    But after driving the Outback, I just love Subaru’s boxer engine.
    Plus the Forester offers a giant sunroof. Which I love.
    The CRVs are everywhere. I guess many people don’t mind that, but I do , a bit.

    And I don’t like to seat too high when driving.
    So for my taste, I would probably prefer the Forester.

    But keep in mind that it is only just a bit less expensive than the Outback.

  6. Count me in as a loser then. I have a small SUV and at $82 a fill up I would trade it for a wagon in a second. Like someone else said, I couldn’t care less what kids think. If I can have utility, good looks and fuel economy for $23 grand, sign me up! I am definitely considering Subaru as my next car later this year.

  7. Maybe next month you should test drive
    1. Subaru Forester
    2. Nissan Rouge
    3. Honda Cr-V
    4. Toyota Rav4
    …and give us your take.

    Thanks for the info and link.

  8. I never drove a Subaru until we tested some in 2006 when looking for an alternative to a gas-hog high-riding barge of an SUV. We really liked the Outback wagon but loved the Legacy wagon, which is the same thing only not as much ground clearance and no plastic cladding around the bottom. As I understand it, they’ve stopped making the non-Outback wagon which is a shame — it’s smooth and solid and a great ride. Plus, I just used it to bring home 20 bags of mulch.

  9. Yes, they are great cars, but get little respect. I had a 2005 Legacy Wagon with the turbo. It was a great car. Too bad they stopped making the Legacy wagon.

  10. It’s the best sport utility (it has a lot of utility for the various sports I do) with a $50 fill-up (in eastern Pennsylvania) and 90 cubic feet of interior space.

    Best car i’ve ever had.

  11. I test drove the new Forest 2.5x and was amazed how smooth it was for a 4 cylinder. It went up hills with little problems and accelerated nicely.
    The only problem I have with the brand is that it is hard to chose which model I really want. I can’t wait for the small sporty coupe (or 3 door) that is being co-developed with Toyota. I think Subaru should make it look very sophisticated, smooth and AWD
    as standard. They have many hits on their hand…

  12. we had one of these for years and LOVED it. great gas mileage, plus 4WD is essentially required in wisconsin. then baby #3 came along & we had to get a bigger car…(honda pilot, which we also love. a minivan would be easier to load in all the damn kids, but i still have a miniscule amount of hipster dignity. i wish they still made the eurovan. sigh.)

  13. What Subaru should REALLY DO is bring back the FWD versions of their vehicles as an option. I’m sorry, but with $4 plus a gallon gasoline, us people driving in Florida, Texas, Southern California, Arizona, New Mexico [even Maryland, the Carolinas, etc.] don’t need to be carrying around the added weight of an extra axle, differential, cv joints, etc. 100% of the time at the expense of 2-3 mpg. It’s not as if Subaru drivers are racing up Pikes Peak and need a quatro system for every day dry driving. Sub used to offer FWD as well. IMHO, it’s time for the company to change its marketing strategy and be more environmentally correct.

  14. To all of you ‘post SUV’ snobs claiming this is a great alternative because of its superior mileage. The Outback is a fine car, but… It get’s a combined: 20mpg.

    That’s the V-6. Vince’s post is about the 2.5 liter four.

  15. It was actually for the 2.5 liter motor.

    Year 2008
    Make SUBARU
    Fuel system Premium Gasoline
    Engine Size 152.559 cubic inches (2.5 litres)
    Transmission Manual Five-Speed
    Drive 4-wheel or all-wheel drive
    Class S.U.V. – 4WD
    Fuel type Premium Gasoline
    Cylinders 4
    Mileage (city) 18 mpg (13.1 litres/100km)
    Mileage (hwy) 24 mpg (9.8 litres/100km)
    Mileage (combined) 20 mpg (11.8 litres/100km)
    Unadj city mpg 22.3
    Unadj hwy mpg 33.5
    Unadj combined mpg 26.2491
    Average annual fuel $2250

  16. Cylinders 4
    Mileage (city) 18 mpg (13.1 litres/100km)
    Mileage (hwy) 24 mpg (9.8 litres/100km)
    Mileage (combined) 20 mpg (11.8 litres/100km)
    Unadj city mpg 22.3
    Unadj hwy mpg 33.5
    Unadj combined mpg 26.2491
    Average annual fuel $2250

    Still an improvement over a V-8 Chevy Tahoe…which was the point to begin with.

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