2021 Subaru Outback Review
Review of the 2021 Subaru Outback in Australia, including price, specs, interior, ride and handling, safety and score.
What is the 2021 Subaru Outback?
The Subaru Outback is a five-seat wagon that manages to stand out by virtue of its longevity, some decent offroad capability, full-time all-wheel-drive powertrain, and fantastic safety credentials. A nameplate that is iconic in Subaru’s stable of AWD wagons – not least because it’s synonymous with Australia’s landscape – it has a loyal following of owners, even if it’s not a ‘regular’ type of SUV. It’s an all-roader to many, blending off-road ability with urban wagon panache, in a way not even the likes of VW Golf Alltrack approach thanks to a more rugged utilitarian feel.
What does the Subaru Outback cost and what do you get?
The new Outback is built on the latest Subaru Global Platform (SGP) that is safer than before, with a number of unique improvements. Unlike the previous generation Outback, no diesel drivetrain will be available, with only a 2.5-litre petrol four-cylinder boxer engine fitted to every model. The new motor is improved, producing 138kW and 245Nm, mated exclusively to a CVT auto transmission. Unlike before, the transmission has a higher 8.1 ratio for improved acceleration and eight stepped gears, accessed via paddle shifters on the steering wheel.
As always, every model has all-wheel drive and is also equipped with dual-function X-Mode for off-road duties. Braked towing capacity is also the highest it has ever been for an Outback at 2000kg.
Inside is a revised cabin with more sophisticated materials and trims, including a large 11.6-inch digital display screen mounted vertically between the front two seats, with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and other applications. New for this generation, the Outback also incorporates an airbag underneath the front passenger’s seat which moves the occupant upwards in the event of a collision, helping to prevent the torso from slipping under the seat belt.
On the safety front, this new Outback is also the first Subaru to be designed to withstand collision impacts under new Mobile Progressive Deformable Barrier (MPDB) testing. It is fitted with active safety via Subaru’s Eyesight and has a list of comprehensive aids, such as Lane Centring Function, Autonomous Emergency Steering, Emergency Lane Keep Assist, Speed Sign Recognition with Intelligent Speed Limiter, Lane Departure Warning with steering wheel vibration, Lane Departure Prevention, Pre-Collision Braking System with expanded support for collision avoidance at intersections, Blind Spot Monitor (BSM), Lane Change Assist (LCA), and Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Reverse Automatic Braking (RAB).
The base model Outback is priced at $39,990 plus on-roads.
Outback AWD Sport
The mid-spec Sport is priced at $44,490 plus on-roads. In addition to the base model is receives:
- Water repellent sports seat trim
- Heated front seats
- Heated rear outboard seats
- Front View Monitor (FVM)
- Side View Monitor (SVM)
- Black exterior highlights (exclusive to the Sport AWD variant)
- Handsfree powered tailgate with memory height function
- Roof rails with green highlights
- Satellite navigation
- Dark metallic finish for alloy wheels
Outback AWD Touring
The flagship Touring is priced at $47,790 plus on-roads. In addition to the Sport model is receives:
- 9-speaker Harman Kardon sound system with subwoofer and amplifier; CD player located in centre console box
- Nappa leather-accented seat trim
- Electric sunroof
- Heated steering wheel
- Silver roof rails, with integrated stowable cross bars
- Gloss finish for alloy wheels