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Subaru Outback

The Subaru Outback is a mid-to-large sized family focused vehicle that straddles the line between wagon and SUV, and is essentially the wagon version of the now discontinued Subaru Liberty.

Introduced in 1994, the Subaru Outback is now in its fifth generation and should not be confused with the Subaru Outback Sport which was the name given to the smaller Impreza wagon in some other global markets.

Pricing kicks off from less than $40,000 and climbs to about the $50,000 mark for the range-topping Outback, with three engine options on offer. There's a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol, a turbo diesel 2.0-litre and a 3.6-litre six-cylinder at the top of the pack.

All are offered with a CVT-type automatic transmission connected to Subaru's proprietary permanent all-wheel drive. This, says the Japanese maker, imparts the Outback with a degree more all-terrain ability than your average wagon.

The Subaru Outback is a spacious high-riding wagon that offers plenty of practical features and targets the more adventurous owner with the potential to go further and explore where others might not be so capable.

Two levels of specification are offered with the entry level version and a Premium option but a decent level of equipment is standard for all variants including Subaru's EyeSight suite of safety features that brings forward collision avoidance. There's also Android Auto and Apple Carplay smartphone mirroring thrown in too.

Step up to an Outback Premium and the Subaru Outback get front and side view cameras added to the kit list, along with Harman Kardon sound system and seat heaters in the front row.

Despite its SUV-like qualities, generous cabin and boot space, the Subaru Outback is not available as a seven-seater.

If you're in the market for a Subaru Outback, the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace, Skoda Kodiaq and Toyota RAV4 should also be on your test drive list.

Is the Subaru Outback suited to off-road driving?

While the Subaru Outback might not offer the go-anywhere ability of a full-fat 4x4, many owners are surprised at the off-road ability of the model. In addition to its permanent all-wheel drive system, the Outback has 213mm of ground clearance which is above average, while the sophisticated X-Mode traction control system enables the Outback to go further than other less well equipped SUVs and all-wheel drive wagons.

How much does a Subaru Outback cost?

The Subaru Outback range starts at less than $40,000 for the 2.5-litre petrol while the 2.0-litre diesel adds a premium of $2500, while Premium variants add about $6000 to the bill. At the top of the range the Outback 3.6R is the most expensive at about $50,000.

Does the Subaru Outback come with roof racks?

The Subaru Outback has an ingenious roof rack as standard, which allows the mounting bars to be hidden away when not in use and without removing them. Stowed away in the permanently fitted roof rails, the horizontal bars lift and pivot out across the roof and plug securely into the opposite rail. A wide variety of accessories can then be fitted to the bars including a luggage cage or bike rack.

What are the costs of each Outback variant?

The Subaru Outback range starts at less than $40,000 for the 2.5-litre petrol while the 2.0-litre diesel adds a premium of $2500, while Premium variants add about $6000 to the bill. At the top of the range the Outback 3.6R is the most expensive at about $50,000.

Subaru Outback (8)
  • (base)
    Wagon
    Price:$37,440
    Body:Wagon
    Fuel:Petrol
    Transmission:Variable SP Automatic
    Engine:2.5L, 4cyl Petrol
    Seats:5
    Safety Rating:
    StarStarStarStarStarStar
    Fuel Economy:7.3 L / 100 km
  • Vision Plus Special Edition
    Wagon
    Price:$39,240
    Body:Wagon
    Fuel:Petrol
    Transmission:Variable SP Automatic
    Engine:2.5L, 4cyl Petrol
    Seats:5
    Safety Rating:
    StarStarStarStarStarStar
    Fuel Economy:7.3 L / 100 km
  • (base)
    Wagon
    Price:$40,040
    Body:Wagon
    Fuel:Diesel
    Transmission:Variable SP Automatic
    Engine:2.0L, 4cyl Diesel Turbocharged
    Seats:5
    Safety Rating:
    StarStarStarStarStarStar
    Fuel Economy:6.3 L / 100 km
  • X
    Wagon
    Price:$43,440
    Body:Wagon
    Fuel:Petrol
    Transmission:Variable SP Automatic
    Engine:2.5L, 4cyl Petrol
    Seats:5
    Safety Rating:
    StarStarStarStarStarStar
    Fuel Economy:7.3 L / 100 km
  • Premium
    Wagon
    Price:$43,940
    Body:Wagon
    Fuel:Petrol
    Transmission:Variable SP Automatic
    Engine:2.5L, 4cyl Petrol
    Seats:5
    Safety Rating:
    StarStarStarStarStarStar
    Fuel Economy:7.3 L / 100 km
  • Sports Premium
    Wagon
    Price:$43,940
    Body:Wagon
    Fuel:Petrol
    Transmission:Variable SP Automatic
    Engine:2.5L, 4cyl Petrol
    Seats:5
    Safety Rating:
    StarStarStarStarStarStar
    Fuel Economy:7.3 L / 100 km
  • Premium
    Wagon
    Price:$46,940
    Body:Wagon
    Fuel:Diesel
    Transmission:Variable SP Automatic
    Engine:2.0L, 4cyl Diesel Turbocharged
    Seats:5
    Safety Rating:
    StarStarStarStarStarStar
    Fuel Economy:6.3 L / 100 km
  • R
    Wagon
    Price:$50,440
    Body:Wagon
    Fuel:Petrol
    Transmission:Variable SP Automatic
    Engine:3.6L, 6cyl Petrol
    Seats:5
    Safety Rating:
    StarStarStarStarStarStar
    Fuel Economy:9.9 L / 100 km