Subaru Outback received a body overhaul in 2015, making it appear bigger and more rugged than its predecessor. In the past, you could confuse an Outback with the Legacy since they were built on the same platform but with the new styling, its easy to differentiate the two from a distance. The new model (BS9) hasn’t picked up really well in our market compared to its younger sibling the Forester. It all boils down to its high price tag. Perhaps its because the new Outback started in 2015; thus, we’ll wait till next year to pay the least taxes. That aside there are still a few BS9 Outbacks around. You must have seen new Outbacks with funny number plates. They are common with the state agencies, political entourages where they play a chase car’s role. How does it find its way into the Land Cruiser-dominated entourage? Is it equally as capable? A review of the Outback gives an insight about its capability and how it manages to sit at the high table with SUVs.
The Outback comes in three trim levels i.e. base, Premium and the Limited package. They differ slightly in the interior features but have the same mechanical setup.
The Outback carries on with the same engines in the model it replaces. The most common one is a 2.5l Flat-four naturally aspirated engine that spits out around 180hp. A rare six-pot 3600cc that churns out around 260hp is available in the top trim; Limited package implying it is the best for spirited driving. All the engines are mated with a CVT lineatronic gearbox that sends power to all wheels. Unlike other cars in the same family like the Legacy, Impreza and Forester, the Outback doesn’t offer the do-it-yourself gearbox. For those who like to take matters into their hands, the Outback comes with paddle shifters to get you close. All Outbacks, regardless of the trim, come with an All-Wheel-Drive system.
This is where the Outback will give many crossovers a run for their money. The AWD drivetrain comes in handy when the going gets rough. It looks like the Outback sits lower than many crossovers but surprisingly, the Outback has the same ground clearance as the Forester. When off the beaten path, the Outback impresses. The AWD system detects wheels with the most traction and sends them more power than the slipping wheels. Another crucial feature in the Outback that contributes to its offroading acumen is the X-mode. It works in conjunction with the AWD to lower the gear ratios and send more power to wheels with more grip. The offroading potential means you can trust the Outback to go where Landcruisers go and still make it back home without any issues. Arm yourself with the right set of tyres, a small lift (if necessary) and let the AWD + X-Mode do the rest in your offroad adventures.
The 2.5l accelerates from a standstill to 100km/h in 9 seconds while the 3.6 achieves the same fate in 7 seconds. There’s something unique about the CVT in the Outback. Push the accelerator hard and listen to the CVT mimic a conventional auto with an instant response. It is not as sluggish as it behaves in other models. Having checked a 3.6l but in the previous generation, we predict it is a better performer though it’s thirstier than a Roysambu slayqueen on a Friday evening. The Outback needed just one mod to make it a performer; a forced induction system like a supercharger or a turbocharger. Fast forward to 2021, we now have a 2.4l turbocharged Outback that Subaru claims to make over 260hp from the new powertrain while returning better gas mileage. The 2.5l returns about 9km/l average driving. Even with the flat-four, the Outback lags behind many crossovers in gas mileage figures.
The Outback rewards the driver with refined road manners. It is stable at high speeds thanks to its long wheelbase. The ride is quieter than the predecessor, which could allow noise into the cabin. There are small signs of body roll around corners due to its ground clearance. Comfort is now improved thanks to the better suspension and the car-like handling of the Outback. It has a raised driving position than its sibling Legacy but its lower than what many crossovers offer.
The new Outback gains a few inches in the headroom and legroom making it a comfortable car for long travels. It’s also worth noting that the Outback doesn’t mimic what many crossovers are trying to install; a third-row seat. It maintains the two rows of seat, making it’s boot space better than what crossovers will give you. Fold the rear seats and get van-like room to haul more luggage.
The Outback being a new car comes with a different interior design. There’s a 7.5 Inch infotainment touchscreen, a better sound system, leather-wrapped steering wheel and power-adjustable front seats. The car also benefits from dual-zone automatic climate control, Bluetooth connectivity, USB ports and a reversing camera.
The wagon rides on 18-inch alloy wheels, comes with a power tailgate, LED headlights, day time running lights, electric sunroof and roof rails to complete the new makeover.
The new Outback packs an arsenal of safety features. Driver assistance features include adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, automatic brake assist and pre-collision warning, all courtesy of the Eyesight system.
At the moment, the BS9 Outback costs over Ksh. 2.9M. This is higher than what many crossovers cost, even in their highest trims. With a controlled ride, accurate steering, a modern upscale interior, versatile off-road capability, van-like space and exterior makeover, the Outback checks many boxes crossover buyers consider. Before settling for that crossover, test-drive the Outback; it may change your priorities. Expect the wagon to rule the roads in a few years once the price stabilizes. Probably the best thing since sliced bread. What are your thoughts about the new Outback?
Generous cargo room
Offroading capability
Roomy interior + Plentiful cargo space
Poor fuel economy

Mbona hii gari inakaa Toyota Corolla L-touring?

Such an ugly vehicle

Mimi nimekeama kwa Forester Ile ya kwanza

A car should do at least one thing exceedingly well. Otherwise it’s trash.

Scotty Kilmer, a mechanic for 51 years, said Subarus are very hardy vehicles that can take a thrashing and still run well.
Lakini bado Toyota is King.

Pointless vehicle , Forester does a better job for less money.

Kwa bumps kubwa huwa na vibrations through the cabin hivi