Hot on the heels of the reveal of the updated Legacy at February’s 2017 Chicago auto show comes the reveal of the sedan’s tougher, more capable cousin, the Outback. It’s Subaru’s most popular model and the latest version was formally presented on Wednesday at the 2017 New York auto show.
It’s hard to spot the updated Outback over the current model which has been on sale since 2015. It benefits from a revised grille and headlights plus some refinements to the cabin and new safety and infotainment features.
For 2018, a rear-view camera has been made standard across the range and is joined by available adaptive headlights that help steer lights around corners. The tire pressure monitoring system has also been upgraded to detects pressure changes at individual tires.
In the cabin, an updated center console is highlighted by Subaru's latest and greatest Starlink infotainment system, which is upgraded to a bigger 8.0-inch touchscreen on higher trim models. The standard 6.5-inch touchscreen is also bigger than before. Adjustments to the engine timing, revised side mirror caps and better sound insulating glass have also been added to reduce noise.
2018 Subaru Outback
Otherwise, there’s not much newness to report on. Powertrains still consist of 2.5- and 3.6-liter horizontally-opposed gasoline engines. The smaller engine, a flat-4, is good for 175 horsepower and 174 pound-feet of torque, while the larger engine, a flat-6, delivers 256 hp and 247 lb-ft of torque. Both are paired to a CVT and all-wheel-drive system. Subaru says it updated the CVT to offer smoother performance by retuning its electronic control unit. The automaker also tuned the electronic power steering for improved accuracy.
The vehicle’s ground clearance remains at 8.7 inches and inside there’s up to 73.3 cubic feet of storage when the rear seats are folded. The load floor is nearly flat, and the cargo area features convenient rear seatback release levers.
The updated Outback and its Legacy cousin and are due in showrooms this summer, as 2018 models.
For more coverage on the N.Y. auto show, head to our dedicated hub.