When it was introduced in the mid-1990s, the Subaru Outback represented one of the first crossover vehicles. It was a hybrid between a wagon and sport utility vehicle before the genre even existed. Even today, with the 2013 Subaru Outback, the car still looks different from most cars, as it veers closer toward being a wagon than most crossovers. The 2013 Subaru Outback represents the fourth generation of the Outback name, as well as the third year of the current design. The car is available in two different engines and three separate trims, allowing buyers significant flexibility.
New For 2013
The Outback receives the same upgrades as the Legacy sedan does for 2013. The biggest changes are a slightly more powerful and efficient 2.5-liter flat-four engine and a revised CVT. Safety-conscious shoppers will want to add the EyeSight system that includes adaptive cruise control, pedestrian detection, lane-departure warning, and precollision braking.
The exterior of the 2013 Subaru Outback combines the length of a wagon with the ground clearance of a sport utility vehicle. Still, it should be noted that the ground clearance is not as substantial as other vehicles in the small sport utility vehicle category. The vehicle borrows from the basic frame of the Subaru Legacy, and so it would be virtually impossible to manufacture a more car-like sport utility vehicle. Those who find sport utility vehicles to be too boxy or large will enjoy the design of the 2013 Subaru Outback. Having been in existence for over 15 years, the Outback’s design has cultivated a loyal following.
The design of the 2013 Subaru Outback is not the most stylish on the market, as the wagon frame emphasizes utility over style. However, Subaru has incorporated some sportier touches that are likely to appeal to a youthful demographic. Choosing the Premium or Limited trims brings 17-inch wheels, an upgrade over the 16-inch ones that come standard with the base trim 2.5i. A lip spoiler and roof rack also come standard and add a sense of stylish utility.
Interior & Cargo
Interior and cargo are both areas in which the 2013 Subaru Outback excels. Legroom is ample, with 43.0 and 37.8 inches between the front and rear, respectively. The rear legroom is particularly impressive as there simply are not many vehicles that can boast such robust totals. The lack of a third row of seats is one disadvantage to the 2013 Subaru Outback, although this is only likely to deter larger families, as the vehicle can comfortably seat five people. The trunk is expansive and the car offers a full 34.3 cubic feet of luggage space, and 71.3 cubic feet of cargo space in total.
Subaru has also included a number of interior features on the 2013 Subaru Outback, including map lights and a cargo light. Those with pets will appreciate the optional pet guard cargo nest. The car should also appeal to those looking for entertainment features. All trims include MP3 capability, as well as Bluetooth adaptability. Those who spring for the Limited trim receive a navigation system, as well as an LCD screen. The base trim comes with four speakers, but one of the significant advantages to the Limited is that it comes with nine Harmon/Kardon speakers. However, because there is a significant difference in price between the base and Limited trims, drivers should take time to do some values clarification before deciding on which trim to purchase.
The 2013 Subaru Outback comes standard with stability and traction control, as well as anti-lock brakes and tire-pressure monitoring. One useful touch is that a backup camera is included with the power moonroof option and displays the image on a screen. All trims come standard with front, side, and side curtain airbags. Those who do vast amounts of city or highway driving should consider the EyeSight Package, which offers pedestrian protection, a lane-departure warning, and precollision braking.
The driving experience of the 2013 Subaru Outback is smoother than other sport utility vehicles, thanks largely to its car-based construction. The car-like design also makes for strong fuel economy, as drivers can expect to receive 18-24/25-30 mpg city/highway. However, the Outback is unlikely to receive significant enthusiasm based on its performance. Even in the absence of a truck-based design, the outback is fairly heavy, weighing in at 4585 pounds.
Subaru offers two different engines on the 2013 Subaru Outback, and each engine comes with all three trims available. The base engine is a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine, with 173 horsepower. The engine also has 174 lb-ft of torque. The higher-level engine is a 3.6-liter, V-6 engine. This engine also offers 256 horsepower, and 247 lb-ft of torque. The base trim includes a six-speed manual transmission. The Limited trim comes with a five-speed automatic transmission.
The performance of the 2013 Subaru Outback is somewhat underwhelming, as the car does not accelerate especially well. From a standing still, it is estimated that the car accelerates from zero to 60 in 8.8 seconds. Steering is smooth, however. Because all trims of the 2013 Subaru Outback come with all-wheel drive, the car is more likely to appeal to those who live in areas with harsh weather climates. It would be a rare sight to witness an Outback in the city, for example, and the all-weather capabilities of the 2013 Subaru Outback are likely to please those who drive through harsh weather.
Key Competitors For The 2013 Subaru Outback
- Ford Escape
- GMC Terrain
- Jeep Liberty
- Toyota Highlander