Subaru has just launched the all-new Outback at the 2019 New York Auto Show. The rugged wagon version of the Subaru Legacy midsize sedan also receives a host of upgrades, including the migration to the Subaru Global Platform, the brand’s scalable architecture that now underpins almost all of its models.
From the outside, the all-new Outback follows an evolutionary approach. While the design looks familiar, it is nevertheless a good looking one. The rugged nature is emphasized by a host of black plastic cladding to protect it from mud and rocks, as well as a jacked-up ride height, giving it a ground clearance of 220 mm, comparable to most PPVs. Just like the Legacy, it has a hexagonal grille that’s flanked by LED headlights with C-shaped LED daytime running lights, as well as C-shaped LED taillights that mimic the lighting design up front. A new Onyx Edition XT features blacked-out exterior trimmings, as well as black 18-inch alloy wheels. One look at the all-new Outback, and it’s extremely clear why the Outback has one of the most loyal following in the North American market. Its rugged and functional looks backed by actual off-roading capability whilst delivering the same ride and handling qualities of a typical sedan has proven to be an extremely popular combination for North American consumers.
The interior more or less looks the same as in the all-new Legacy, which means it now has the same Subaru Starlink infotainment system with a massive 11.6-inch portrait touch screen display. Touring and Touring XT models have Nappa Leather upholstery as standard, whilst the first-ever Onyx Edition XT features a new grey StarTex interior upholstery that’s water resistant and hard wearing, perfect for the outdoor expeditions that Subaru Outback owners take the vehicle to. The new Outback also features Subaru’s new DriverFocus facial recognition system, which not only saves vehicle presets based on a driver’s face, but also alerts drivers if they are texting or looking away from the road while they are driving.
Under the hood of the Outback are two engine choices, both of which are also found in the Legacy. The 2.5-liter H4 boxer engine produces 182 hp and 238 Nm of torque, while the XT variant uses a 2.4-liter turbocharged H4 boxer engine produces 260 hp and 375 Nm of torque. The turbocharged engine effectively replaces the naturally-aspired 3.6-liter H6 boxer engine, marking the return of the turbocharged XT nomenclature since the third generation Outback was discontinued in 2009. This is, of course, mated to a Lineartronic CVT powering all four wheels via Subaru’s Symmetrical AWD system.
As expected, the all-new Outback features Subaru’s EyeSight driver assist system, which consists of Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Departure Warning, among other things. EyeSight is fitted as standard on all models for the North American market.
The Subaru Outback will go on sale in late 2019, while for the ASEAN market, Glenn Tan, Deputy Chairman and Managing Director of Motor Image, has said that the Legacy will not be arriving in the region, while the all-new Outback will be sold soon. We’re anticipating a local launch at next year’s Manila International Auto Show.