Design and Engineering

Design and Engineering

Good The new Outback is bigger and mechanically better than ever (we're a little undecided about the new looks). The big change in the exterior appearance is it now looks more like a SUV rather than a raised wagon; they've increased its off-road credentials with integrated wheel arch flares and a colour-coded lower front air dam to protect the bumper.
Not so good The new Subaru front fascia is very slick and modern but we're not confident it matches the styling of the rest of the exterior design. We know it's subjective, but we preferred the look of the superseded model - however people who have bought the new model say it grows on you!? Beauty is in the eye of the key-holder after all...
Interior and Styling

Interior and Styling

Good Subaru has really lifted its game with the Outback’s interior - previously it was an All-Bran-looking interior and it's now a modern & sophisticated design. Space has grown significantly (good for families with older kids); rear legroom has increased by 10cm and hip-room in the front & rear has grown (as well as shoulder-room). It boasts more storage compartments, additional seat moveability, and more front knee space enabling easier entry & exit of the vehicle. The cargo area extends from 490L to 1690L by folding the rear seats flat.
Not so good The soft-touch plastics used on the previous model's interior have been replaced with a hard-to-touch plastic material - we liked the old plastic better.
Performance

Performance

Good Three versatile engines to choose from: four-cylinder boxer, a V6 and a Turbo Diesel. The 3.0L V6 has been replaced by a new 3.6L 191kW engine; although the engine has increased in capacity, fuel economy has improved and its combined cycle has been reduced to 10.3 L/100km. Subaru’s Turbo Diesel engine is a 2.0L Turbocharged unit with 110kW & 350Nm of torque. The Diesel engine achieves 6.4 & 7.7 L/100km on the combined cycle for the manual and automatic respectively...
Not so good The naturally-aspirated 2.5L Petrol boxer engine can feel underpowered when accelerating or overtaking, this engine has slighlty less power than its successor.
Ride and Handling

Ride and Handling

Good The Australian-tuned suspension means the Outback can cope with many of the non-bitumen roads that Australia has to offer - so you can go travelling to a wider range of places. The ride is quite firm yet still remains comfortable.
Not so good The off-road able suspension means that when you're on the road there is sufficient body roll whilst cornering - however it's not that noticeable at reasonable urban driving speeds.
Buying and Owning

Buying and Owning

Good Subaru’s have always been a good reliable choice when it comes to picking a new car that requires All Wheel Drive and that bit of extra luggage space. Plenty of safety features as standard on all grades and it receives a 5 star ANCAP rating. The new Outback has increased the number of standard features making it more competitive than ever AND it comes with a competitive 3-year/unlimited kilometre warranty.
Not so good There’s not too much to knock about buying a Subaru, they offer value for money, quality products and are reliable.