By on April 17, 2014

2015-Subaru-Outback-06

The 2015 Subaru Outback made a stop at the 2014 New York Auto Show as the fifth-generation wagon makes its way to the showroom floor this summer.

Under the bonnet, a choice of either a 2.5-liter flat-4 or 3.6-liter flat-6 will send 175 to 256 horsepower through a standard CVT to all four corners. The Legacy-esque Outback should average 28 mpg from the flat-4, 22 with the flat-6.

As for safety, rearview camera, pre-collision braking and adaptive cruise control make up part of the overall driver-protection package on-offer from Subaru.

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43 Comments on “New York 2014: 2015 Subaru Outback Revealed...”


  • avatar
    PenguinBoy

    At our local car show, a guy from Subaru told me that a 6MT will be available in the Legacy in Canada – unlike the US where the CVT is standard.

    If that is in fact true, I wonder if the Canadian Outback will be available with a 6MT as well?

    • 0 avatar
      djsyndrome

      Already confirmed 6 speed for Canada:

      http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1857905

      • 0 avatar
        PenguinBoy

        Thanks! I currently have a manual Forester Touring, this looks like it might be a good replacement in a couple of years. I prefer a manual, and would accept a good “conventional” automatic, but a CVT would be a deal breaker for me.

        The take rate for 3 pedal cars must be higher in Canada than the US. They also don’t seem that hard to sell in Canada – I don’t sell cars for a living, but the last two cars I sold privately each sold within a day, and both of those had manual transmissions. My old cars were well maintained with full service histories since new, so that may have helped, but nobody that called about them seemed to be put off by the presence of a clutch pedal…

        • 0 avatar
          djsyndrome

          I can answer the CVT question as we have a ’14 Forester with the 2.5+CVT combo. It’s light on the rubber-banding that other CVTs seem to exhibit, but it’s not perfect. And there’s no manual mode, only a ‘Low’ mode for hills or creeping (although the Outback corrects this by adding paddles). Fuel economy is great; we average 24+ around town and upwards of 30 on the freeway, and managed to squeeze 500 miles out of a tank taking us down I-5 from Seattle to the California/Oregon border.

          Coming from the 4EAT in our ’08 Impreza with the old 2.5 it’s a huge improvement.

        • 0 avatar
          PhilMills

          2012 Outback 2.5 with the CVT – I am a dedicated stick-shift guy and I have ZERO complaints about Subaru’s CVT if you get one with flappy paddles.

          The Outback’s a station wagon, not a sportscar. Get that set in your head and the CVT makes perfect sense – smooth around town, no herky-jerkies (unlike the Chevy Equinox LTand Ford Focus SE rentals I just had), no big hesitations – it just moves the engine speed around and the right thing happens.
          The flappy paddles make it usable in the mountains on long down-grades so you can lock it into “3rd” just like you would a stick-shift.

        • 0 avatar
          Luke42

          I find that.manual and CVT work better for me.

          The step-shift automatic is an uncomfortable middle ground which combines the worst drivability features of both.

          If you’re going to have car shift for you, why not do it right and use the CVT? I also like the primal experience of driving manual.

          The 3/4/5-speed automatic is an intermediate technology that’s waiting to be replaced by a proper CVT, a hybrid, or a fixed-gear EV. Or a proper manual transmission, if you enjoy the discipline of drivetrains management. That said, traditional automatics like the one in my Sienna have gotten good enough that they almost don’t intrude…. Almost! I’d rather have a CVT, but my wife vetoed the Quest.

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    The de-clutch-ification of America continues…

    • 0 avatar
      gtrslngr

      Thats a foregone conclusion as well as inevitable . Unfortunately .

      Best advice I can offer being … Deal with it . Unfortunately .

      Cause its either that or become angrier/frustrated with each and every new car announcement . And that .. simply is not worth the energy expended . FYI ….. they [ the manufactures ] sure as hell aint gonna listen to the likes of you and I So why bother ?

      So remember the good ole days . Crack an occasional smile for what todays car buyers are missing out on . And deal with it .

    • 0 avatar
      gottacook

      But aren’t Legacys and Outbacks for sale in Canada made at the Indiana factory? If so, Subaru of America could offer these as 6MT cars in the U.S. if it wanted to, which just adds to the frustration. (Not that I’d be in the market for an Outback; if they still made a Legacy wagon, however…)

  • avatar
    xtoyota

    This is a nice improvement …… How about pictures of the interior??
    I hope they upgraded the interior..that was their weakness

    • 0 avatar
      djsyndrome

      Plenty of pictures on Subaru’s own website : http://dbrochure.subaru.com/brochures/subaru.outback.prelaunch.2015/index.html

      Of interest to me is the rear seat vents and headed seats, two things which you can’t currently get on the Forester at any price.

      • 0 avatar
        Carfan94

        One thing that’s interesting is that the $40,000 Acura RDX is not available with rear seat air vents (or heated seats). I think that’s unacceptable.

    • 0 avatar
      Carfan94

      The interior looks much better.

      http://www.netcarshow.com/subaru/2015-outback/800×600/wallpaper_2a.htm

    • 0 avatar
      Brawndo

      Agreed. This new design is much more coherent. I always think “ungainly pork-thing” whenever I see the previous incarnation. They’ve managed to work their way up to not too shabby, but functional with their interiors lately, so I too will be interested to see what they do here. They still have a long way to go when it comes to infotainment.

  • avatar
    carguy

    That was predictable.

  • avatar
    gtrslngr

    And thar she blows mateys ! Avast ye varlets . Man the main sails . Batten down the hatches . Strap yer worthless selves to the mast . Why ?

    Because all bets are with this ” new ” Outback and after the Winter most of the US has just been thru [ especially in the South which was not previously a Subaru market }

    Subaru’s sales success : as well as having the most enviable problem an auto manufacture can hope for [ sales exceeding production capacity ] will only jump forward in leaps and bounds . Extending the Subaru Sales Storm success even further while making even more marketing inroads into regions not previously disposed to buying Subarus .

    Arrrrrr …..

    [ full discloser – i and my household neither own/lease nor are planning to buy/lease a Subaru . I’m just enjoying watching the little guy make a major league comeback and sticking it left and right to the big guys is all ]

  • avatar
    gtemnykh

    I really hope Subaru improves the comfort of their seats, their small seat cushion length and resulting lack of thigh support makes them a total non-starter for me currently.

    That is a damn shame, because a Subaru would fit my needs absolutely perfectly: camping/dog hauling/ occasional light trailer towing (single motorcycle) on the weekends. Efficient commuting during the week, and excellent AWD system for foul weather. I currently split the weekend/weekday roles between two specialized vehicles: 2012 Civic, 1996 4Runner.

    I think this updated model looks great. More mature and polished, even more expensive looking in a way.

    • 0 avatar
      gtrslngr

      Funny … at 6’5″ I’ve got the very same problem across the entire [ excepting the old SVX ] model range no matter how much I try adjusting the seats [ we’ve rented a few Subies for extended vacations ]

      Funny also that if I didn’t have the same problem as you most likely a Subaru would be in my garage as well

      Hmmmn . At first I thought this was a problem specific to me . But now I’m thinking this may be a problem worth addressing for Subaru

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        Its been a problem for me too. Most weekends in the summer, I take a 7 hour round trip to Northern Michigan. There is no way I could do that in an Outback. I am uncomfortable during a test drive.

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        I’m only 5’11” but the undersized seats seem to be a Subaru-wide problem. First noticed it on a 6 hour drive to Boston in a rental 2011 Outback. Encountered the same thing when test driving a 2012 Impreza. What’s baffling is that my ‘econo-box’ 2012 Civic has absolutely fantastic seats, I can sit in them for 10 hours and not feel fatigued. The seat cushion is both long and wide and canted back, leg bolsters aren’t in too close. The pronounced lumbar support is perfect for my back and wide seatback supports my shoulders well. The second most comfortable seats I have sat in were in my gf’s old Volvo S60. My 4runner’s seats leave something to be desired, physically smaller than the ones in the Civic, but it’s more of a rough and tumble truck so I’m okay with that.

      • 0 avatar
        Jeff Waingrow

        gtrslngr, you’re the first pirate I’ve encountered who has a garage.

      • 0 avatar
        Power6

        The Subaru seats seem to have gotten worse over the years. Our Outback XT however has the same sport seats as the Legacy GT, in addition to a little more bolstering they have a longer bottom cushion, which makes them pretty comfortable for me (36″ inseam)

        • 0 avatar
          Speedygreg7

          I sold my 07 2.5i Outback in part because I could not take the seats anymore. I have a 31″ inseam and the bottom cushion was too short. I knew the seat back was different on the turbo car, but not the bottom. Are you sure? The newer cars have been far worse. I had an 01 2.5RS and its seat was fine in length if too wide.

          The current Forester has stools rather than seats……..just awful.

          I like this new Outback and the only thing that would keep me from buying it is the length of the seat cushion.

    • 0 avatar
      PenguinBoy

      The seats in my old Legacy wagon were really uncomfortable after an hour or so. The seats in our current Forester are a significant improvement and are reasonably comfortable on long trips, but still fall short of the best car seats I’ve owned.

      That said, I think seat comfort varies by individual – so it’s best to try before you buy.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      Can confirm. 5’10” with fairly short legs and the cushions in my 2013 Forester are a little short even for me. The seats are tolerable, and I can take long trips without serious discomfort, but they can’t hold a candle to those in my G8 or my former Acura TSX.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        I love the idea of having an Outback. It has been a very good car for a long time. I just don’t think I could trade the comfort that our MKT has on long trips.

        • 0 avatar
          dal20402

          Definitely different beasts. The MKT is much better suited for cruising, but the Outback would be a lot more wieldy in the city and also happier on two-track.

      • 0 avatar
        jschinito

        agreed. i really loved my 2005 legacy wagon, but now that i’m in a 2008 volvo c70, it’d be difficult to go back to subaru just because of the seats alone

        • 0 avatar
          Mandalorian

          I disagree on the seats. I am 5’11 with long legs and I love the seats in my 2011 Outback. They are superbly bolstered and are very comfortable.

          Now my friend’s 1998 Forester on the other hand has the most UNCOMFORTABLE seats I have ever sat in. Killed my lower back in a 3 hour ride.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    This is really a step up from the previous interior. Kind of tempted to trade in the Forester for one once the launch hype dies down and the discounts start showing up, especially because the fuel economy numbers for the 3.6/CVT combo are far better than the guzzly economy (15/21) we’ve been getting out of the EJ255/4-speed in real-world use. In a car like this a CVT doesn’t bother me in the least.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    I like it. I am not a fan of the current Outback wagon, the rear window is too tiny for the expanse of metal that surrounds it.

    The character line on the body of the new car defines it well and the rear window seems well proportioned.

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      Don’t judge a back window by the size of the glass. There’s usually a couple inches of black stipple around the edges that makes the usable window even smaller. It doesn’t matter, though: the window is so high, you don’t even need a rear view mirror, you can only see the roof line of the tallest vehicles behind you.

  • avatar
    ajla

    That Subaru EZ flat-6 has been around like 16 years now hasn’t it?

    That is the kind of sticking around that starts to make me interested in ownership.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      And it’s got a great reputation for durability — I’d say better for now than any other Subaru engine, although the new FB four is looking pretty good in its first couple of years.

  • avatar
    300zx_guy

    as a 2004 Outback owner, who really dislikes the looks (inside and out) of the current car, this is a big improvement. Overall, I like it quite a bit, but I still don’t like how they do the lower body cladding, and the roof rails may be functional, but are still an eyesore, especially for something most owners will never use (I’ve never in 8 years). I miss having the option of the Legacy wagon in the US, for those of us who don’t need or want the extra ground clearance or pseudo-SUV appearance.

    • 0 avatar
      Power6

      I feel similar, but figure with America’s crumbling infrastructure due to our unwillingness to pay for the upkeep…the jacked up wagon style vehicle becomes more ideal every day…Our Outback easily takes on Boston roads that swallow normal height cars and spit out bent rims.

      • 0 avatar
        Speedygreg7

        Agreed. Would prefer a Legacy, but with terrible roads the Outback just might be objectively better

        • 0 avatar
          zamoti

          Where do you guys live where you have body-sized potholes? I’ve lived in a number of rust belt cities and have not experienced potholes that would influence my choice of car. Unless I were driving a lowered roadster, I just typically drive around the big potholes or slow down a little. I’d rather have the Legacy wagon (turbo) if they could ever make one that doesn’t eat it’s pilot bearing or head gasket. Maybe that’s why they don’t bring them back to the US market. H6 with MT might be purty sweet though…

  • avatar
    Ubermensch

    This looks much more attractive than the current model. I just hope they fix the numb, darty steering and the horrible infotainment system (if you can even call what Subaru currently offers ‘infotainment’).

  • avatar
    FJ60LandCruiser

    -Less ugly than the previous model
    -Subaru still hasn’t dropped the 3.6
    -CVT sucks in the extreme cold–where most Subarus are run

    I kind of like it. What people don’t appreciate about these things is how big they are on the inside when compared to other cars in their price range.


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