Subaru Outback
Subaru Outback
Subaru Outback

2021 Subaru Outback

Pros: Carlike ride and handling in an SUV-like package; standard all-wheel drive; impressive cargo room

Cons: Otherwise peppy turbocharged engine exhibits some turbo lag; interior small-items storage is not particularly generous

CG Says: The 2021 Subaru Outback is little changed after last year’s redesign.  This year Outback gains standard steering-linked LED headlights, rear seatbelt reminder, and rear-seat occupant reminder. Although the current sixth-generation Outback doesn’t look much different than the previous model, it has improved rear-seat room and cargo space. A DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System sounds an alert if an instrument panel camera senses the driver isn’t looking at the road. Other available safety features are reverse automatic braking, a head-up instrument display, and a 180-degree front-mounted camera. Comfort and convenience features include a hands-free power liftgate, heated/ventilated front seats, adjustable driver-seat cushion, heated steering wheel, and heated rear seats. The base engine is a 182-horsepower 2.5-liter “flat four. A 260-hp turbocharged 2.4-liter flat four is found in XT models. All engines are paired with a CVT automatic transmission, and all-wheel drive is standard. The Subaru Outback has long offered the attributes of both a midsize station wagon and an SUV. The current Outback continues this winning tradition, with the added benefit of some welcome new features and a bit more room. The Outback looks rugged, but its ride and handling are more carlike than the typical crossover. We consider the Outback a midsize car, but many crossover SUV shoppers will be well served by an Outback.

The Facts
Class Midsize Car
Body Style(s) 4-door wagon
Passenger Count 5
Drive Wheels all-wheel drive
Manufacturer Subaru
Nation of Manufacture USA
Base Prices Base: $27,845
Premium: $30,095
Limited: $34,645
Touring: $38,545
XT Onyx Edition: $36,195
XT Limited: $39,045
XT Touring: $40,995

Base Engine
2.5-liter 4-cylinder
Horsepower
182
Std. Transmission
CVT
Avail. Transmission
other trans.
EPA City Range (mpg)
26
EPA Hwy Range (mpg)
33

Optional Engine
turbocharged 2.5-liter 4-cylinder (XT)
Horsepower
260
Std. Transmission
CVT
Avail. Transmission
NA
EPA City Range (mpg)
23
EPA Hwy Range (mpg)
30