Subaru unveiled the new Outback during the 2022 New York International Auto Show, and we couldn’t be more surprised. We’re used to the car-like aesthetics of the Outback, but the new variant begs to differ. It now has a more rugged, SUV-like countenance resembling the Subaru Solterra and Toyota bZ4X, with an aggressive front bumper cover that stretches under the revised headlight clusters.
We’re still not sold on the looks, but the 2023 Subaru Outback is the most outdoorsy version of the globally-adored station wagon.
2023 Subaru Outback: What’s New?
Apart from its truck-like mug, the 2023 Subaru Outback gets a bolder front grille, new fog lights, and beefy wheel arch claddings to complete the trail-ready vibe. New for 2023 is the availability of Subaru’s naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter Boxer four in the Outback Onyx Edition, previously offered with the turbocharged 2.4-liter Boxer in the outgoing Outback Onyx Edition XT.
Other goodies for the new Onyx Edition include 18-inch alloy wheels, a gray two-tone exterior, a front view monitor, water-repellent StarTex seats, dual X-Mode off-road driving modes, and a full-size spare tire.
Subaru has yet to unveil the official spec sheet, but all models have power door locks, welcome lighting, a sound-insulated windshield, front and rear USB A ports, two 12-volt DC power sockets, and one-touch folding rear seats. Updated convenience features include wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Engine & Transmission Choices
The 2023 Outback has a standard 2.5-liter naturally aspirated Boxer four-cylinder generating 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft. of torque. Meanwhile, higher trim variants receive a turbocharged 2.4-liter Boxer engine with 260 horsepower and 277 lb-ft. of torque. The Outback 2.4 turbo can tow up to 3,500 lbs., the most in the Outback’s lineup.
Power goes to all four wheels via symmetrical all-wheel drive with active torque vectoring, vehicle dynamics control, and X-Mode with hill descent control – quite a mouthful, yes, but it simply means the 2023 Outback can take on more demanding terrain than mere grassy trails. Standard across the board is a Lineartronic CVT gearbox with an eight-speed manual mode and steering-mounted paddle shifters.
2023 Subaru Outback Fuel Economy
Thanks to the Outback’s aero-friendly station wagon styling and CVT transmission, it’s quite a fuel miser considering it’s standard with all-wheel drive. The 2023 Outback 2.4 turbo achieves an EPA-estimated 22 in the city and 29 on the highway, while the base 2.5-liter engine returns a 26/32 city/highway rating.
Advanced Safety Architecture
Underpinning the 2023 Subaru Outback is the same seventh-gen Legacy platform the automaker calls the SGP or Subaru Global Platform. For the 2023 Outback, Subaru optimized the chassis, which is now 70 percent stiffer in torsional and front-suspension rigidity and 100 percent more rigid in the front and rear subframe. Subaru claims the new Outback’s chassis absorbs 40 percent more energy in a crash.
Of course, the 2023 Outback comes standard with Subaru’s EyeSight driver-assist technology, an assortment of high-tech safety aids like adaptive cruise control, lane centering, a driver focus mitigation system, high-beam assist, and a rear-view camera. Added safety features like a front-view monitor, reverse automatic braking, and a heads-up display are available.
2023 Subaru Outback Pricing & Trim Levels
The new Subaru Outback has nine trim variants: Base, Premium, Onyx Edition, Wilderness, Limited, Touring, and three XT models. Below is a breakdown of each trim and the accompanying MSRPs. Note that the price figures include the $1,225 destination charge. Our free and easy search tools* will narrow down which dealers in your area offer the best pricing on a 2023 Subaru Outback.
The Outback Base starts at $29,620 and includes the naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter Boxer engine and CVT gearbox. The standard equipment list includes steering-responsive LED headlights, LED fog lights, remote keyless entry, a USB-A charging port, dual seven-inch infotainment touchscreens, Bluetooth connectivity, and more.
The Outback Premium starts at $31,920. It includes all the goodies from the base trim, including the 2.5-liter Boxer-four and CVT automatic. However, it has more standard features like a leather-wrapped tiller, dual-zone automatic climate control, a 10-way power driver’s seat, front and second-row USB charging ports, an 11-inch infotainment screen, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, and more.
Outback Onyx Edition
The Onyx Edition starts at $34,720. It includes the naturally-aspirated Boxer engine, 18-inch black alloy wheels, black-finish exterior trim and badging, Star-Tex upholstery, dual-function X-Mode, and a hands-free power liftgate.
Meanwhile, the Onyx Edition XT starts at $39,820. For the price, it gets the more powerful 2.4-liter turbocharged Boxer engine, a power moonroof, an 11.6-inch touchscreen with navigation, a 180-degree front view monitor, an eight-way power driver’s seat, and more.
The Wilderness has a $39,670 starting MSRP. It builds upon the Onyx Edition XT trim and includes the potent 2.4-liter turbo Boxer engine. Standard features include a hands-free power liftgate, Yokohama Geolandar A/T tires, a full-size spare tire, performance suspension (offering up to 9.5 inches of ground clearance), and rugged exterior accents.
With the additional ground clearance and off-road treatments, fuel economy takes a hit for the Wilderness versus other trim levels. EPA ratings are 21 in the city and 26 on the highway.
The Limited trim is all-new for 2023. It starts at $36,520 and has the naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter Boxer engine. It builds upon the Outback Premium but adds perforated leather-lined upholstery, heated rear seats, keyless entry with push-button start, and a hands-free power liftgate.
On the other hand, the Outback Limited XT has a 2.5-liter turbocharged engine, a power moonroof, an 11.6-inch touchscreen, a Harman Kardon audio system, and standard navigation starting at $40,920.
The range-topping Touring starts at $41,070. It adds automatic power-folding door mirrors, a heated tiller, ventilated front seats, genuine Black or Java Brown cowhide upholstery, and an LCD rearview mirror on top of all the features from the Limited trim. Moreover, the Outback Touring XT starts at $43,520 and includes the 2.5-liter turbocharged Boxer engine.
2023 Subaru Outback Warranty
The 2023 Subaru Outback has a three-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty. There are options available to extend the factory warranty. Before you decide, see this helpful guide first.
Alvin Reyes is an Automoblog feature columnist and an expert in sports and performance cars. He studied civil aviation, aeronautics, and accountancy in his younger years and is still very much smitten to his former Lancer GSR and Galant SS. He also likes fried chicken, music, and herbal medicine.
Photos & Source: Subaru of America, Inc.
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