Subaru Outback 2.5 i-Touring Eyesight CVT Review
The Outback Is Our Playground

Words and Photos by Clifford Chow
24 Aug 2021
 

As an estate, the Outback boasts a generous 522 litre boot, which increases to 1,726 litres with the rear seats folded. There are also roof rails, which are great, especially if you are the kind who feeds a bike habit.

Japanese automotive manufacturer Subaru, is known for two things. For one, being builders of one of the most recognisable rally-inspired cars the world has recently known, and on the other hand, building oddball cars that are either hits and misses.

Of late, Subaru has not been having a good run of success in moving their cars, especially ever since they essentially threw turbocharging out of the window, in-favour of improved refinement.

But there is one model that truly stands out from the pack. The Outback is essentially a jacked-up wagon variant of the Legacy (interestingly, Subaru does not have an actual Legacy Wagon this round) with a little more protective cladding; and we think that this  could be just quite brilliant.

The Outback combines the spaciousness and luxurious trappings of the Legacy in wagon form, with literally a heightened sense of adventure. The formula for the Outback, while unique, is not a new one. Luxury brands, Volvo and Audi are also well known for going down this road. 

Inside

The Outback has one of the better-built Japanese car interiors to date. Taking centre stage of the dash is a 11.6” portrait-oriented touchscreen (similar to those found in Volvo and Renault), which incorporates settings for your preferred drive mode, toggles for your safety systems, seat position, climate control, and support for both Android and Apple devices.

One of the most nifty functions is the Driver Monitoring System, that not only checks if you are dozing off while you are on the road, it also scans and recognises you, and in-turn adjusts your seat and wing mirrors to your prefered-set position.

As the flagship Subaru in Singapore, the Outback comes equipped with supple Nappa leather seats, which are very comfortable to be in, and a premium Harman Kardon audio system. The cabin also has heaps of soft-touch surfaces, adding to more comfort (that you can lean on… well, literally).

As an estate, the Outback boasts a generous 522 litre boot, which increases to 1,726 litres with the rear seats folded. There are also roof rails, which are great, especially if you are the kind who feeds a bike habit. 

The Drive

The Outback is powered by a four-cylinder natural-breathing 2.5 litre boxer engine which produces 185bhp and 245Nm, is mated to a CVT, delivering a creamy-smooth drive.

The Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system, which is a signature feature on most Subaru cars, provides neutral handling characteristics around corners, and improved bite. With the added height, the Outback will naturally roll a little more around the bends at speed as compared to a regular car, but everything is predictable.  

Overall, there is plenty to like in the Outback. Bring it to cruise, and you will enjoy how well-insulated the interior is, while the comfortable seats will remind you that speed is not everything. 

Take the Outback off the beaten path, the Subaru Global Platform (SGP), which all current Subaru cars are built upon, begins to shine even more. While working my way through one of the last few rural areas left over here, I took advantage of the long suspension travel to maintain wheel contact while moving over taller bits of terrain. Very quickly, I also could tell that there was very little flex in the chassis when doing this. The adjustable X-Mode allows you to milk the most out of the Outback’s AWD system, giving you a better traction advantage over varying terrain situations.

Safety-wise, the Outback utilises a newer variant of their EyeSight technology, that features adaptive cruise control, with lead vehicle start alert. According to Subaru, the frontal sensors now have a wider sweep angle, meaning that it is able to anticipate and react better to things happening in-front.

Our Thoughts

The Subaru Outback is as capable on-road as it is off the beaten path. A competent crossover, that is more car-like than your average SUV, and probably among the most comfortable in its price-point to live with.

 

Find out more about the Subaru Outback.

In Summary

We Like

Comfortable and easy to live with. Capable off-road as it is on tarmac. Loaded with safety features. Well-built.

We Don't

Can get a little boring.á

Verdict

If you are looking for something a little more capable off-road, and versatile, the Outback does all this, while still delivering a very refined experience. It can seem pricey, but you do get a very capable AWD system.

Car Loan Calculator - Subaru Outback 2.5

SGD 157,800 (19 Aug 2021)

Based on OMV, this car is eligible for minimum 40% down payment

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