Subaru Outback Forums banner
  • Hey everyone! Enter your ride HERE to be a part of October's Outback of the Month Challenge!
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
90 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

Well, took a test drive on a 2013 Outback.
Really like it a lot.
But -

With the base engine, the car didn't seem to have "enough" oomph to merge onto highway traffic all that well.

Anyone else notice this ?

Are there some techniques to use to get the initial merging speed up ?
Different gear setting, or...?

I remember years ago, don't know if they still have this, many cars would
drop down a gear or so if you held you foot all the way down on the gas when merging or passing.

Outback have anything like this ?
(if so, probably should have tried it, but didn't)

Thoughts would be most appreciated.

Thanks,
Bob
 

·
Registered
2013 Subaru Outback Premium 2.5i All-Weather+Moonroof Venetian Red Pearl W/ Ivory Coth
Joined
·
571 Posts
I had a CRV before so I really cannot tell much difference. Outbacks are sluggish off the line but tolerable once you get used to it. Some get the 6 speed manual just so they lave longer time to get oomph off the line in low gear. The CVT maximizes the fuel economy even off the line, so no speedster there. If you are used to a V6 car especially US made ones they are all geared low end so they jump off the line, but the Outback is different and will talk some getting used to. I think of it as a cool appliance rather than an ethusiast car
 

·
Registered
2012 Outback Premium Ruby Red Pearl 2.5 CVT AWP
Joined
·
401 Posts
Hi Bob
I have a '12 OB with the 2.5 CVT. Have had it for 7 or 8 months now and I have to say that it seems to have enough power for me and I can't really remember a time that it did not seem to have enough merging power. As for the pasing gear, if the '13 that you drove was the 2.5 with an auto transmission, then it was equipped with the CVT, which does not have traditional gears. It does drive a bit differently but I have found the package on the whole to be more than adequate (and I tow with mine). Good luck!
 

·
Registered
'14 3.6R Outback
Joined
·
2,348 Posts
We could all better relate and advise if you told us what your car history is.

The 2.5 with 175hp is average for hwy acceleration and at the upper end for it's weight and class. It weighs over 3k pounds empty after all.

The CVT is a smoother and more refined experience so it doesn't clunk like normal automatic transmissions do.
 

·
Registered
'15 STi and '13 GTI
Joined
·
1,009 Posts
Hello,

Well, took a test drive on a 2013 Outback.
Really like it a lot.
But -

With the base engine, the car didn't seem to have "enough" oomph to merge onto highway traffic all that well.
I merge onto the highway twice a day during my commute and I haven't died yet... Typically other cars are keeping me from merging at highway speeds (but that's another rant).

I remember years ago, don't know if they still have this, many cars would
drop down a gear or so if you held you foot all the way down on the gas when merging or passing.

Outback have anything like this ?
(if so, probably should have tried it, but didn't)
Most traditional automatics have a kickdown switch. Since the 2.5i Outback has a CVT this button isn't there.

You have the shift paddles of reason, use them.

I haven't driven a 3.6R but I'd imagine it has a kickdown switch. I have yet to drive an automatic car that doesn't have one.
 

·
Registered
2013 OB 3.6R Limited, Black Silica
Joined
·
383 Posts
I merge onto the highway twice a day during my commute and I haven't died yet... Typically other cars are keeping me from merging at highway speeds (but that's another rant).



Most traditional automatics have a kickdown switch. Since the 2.5i Outback has a CVT this button isn't there.

You have the shift paddles of reason, use them.

I haven't driven a 3.6R but I'd imagine it has a kickdown switch. I have yet to drive an automatic car that doesn't have one.
Yup the 3.6r has a kickdown switch and it also hauls $ss for what it is. I did test drive the 2.5 first and my right foot just wasn't happy with it. But I am coming down from a truck and wanted a little pep and have fun driving again.
 

·
Registered
2013 Outback Limited 2.5i/CVT/Graphite Gray
Joined
·
52 Posts
I only have about 500 miles on my 2013 with the 4-cylinder + CVT but this really hasn't been a problem for me.

Traffic moves 75-80mph where I live on the highway.. no problems at all merging for me. Generally there are slow folks in the right hand lane and I can easily get to the end of the ramp at a high enough speed to have to slow down to avoid someone moving slow.

My old car was 210hp/2600lb with a 6-speed manual.. equal or better than the 3.6R Outback when it came to acceleration. So it's not like I'm coming from something very slow.

The Outback goes around corners just fine for how big it is, it's lighter then a lot of so called "sport sedans" and it has AWD, put some power down while you are on the ramp rather than waiting for the merge point and you should be fine.

I find the CVT to be extremely responsive when you want to accelerate.. it responds more quickly than an awful lot of automatics... it might seem less so though since it doesn't do a horribly sloppy downshift with a bang. The smooth way it ramps up power also should help you get comfortable getting into the gas a little earlier when you're exiting a ramp.
 

·
Registered
13 Outback 2.5 Premium CVT
Joined
·
340 Posts
Hello,

Well, took a test drive on a 2013 Outback.
Really like it a lot.
But -

With the base engine, the car didn't seem to have "enough" oomph to merge onto highway traffic all that well.

Anyone else notice this ?

Are there some techniques to use to get the initial merging speed up ?
Different gear setting, or...?

I remember years ago, don't know if they still have this, many cars would
drop down a gear or so if you held you foot all the way down on the gas when merging or passing.

Outback have anything like this ?
(if so, probably should have tried it, but didn't)

Thoughts would be most appreciated.

Thanks,
Bob
Look at other cars, if you are coming here and went through the registration just to see if some magical fix is available because you were disappointed after a test drive no matter what anyone tells you, you will still be disappointed after you buy.
 

·
Registered
2013 OB 2.5 CVT
Joined
·
128 Posts
Enough oomph is a very subjective measure so I agree with Cobalt, you may have to look elsewhere. I've had slower cars and faster, I sort of adjust to whatever I'm driving without really thinking about it. Everything is a trade off so you just have to list what is important to you and then decide what attributes are high on the list. I have about 7500 miles on my car with a lot of that being highway. I sort of get a kick out of rolling along at 75mph with the RPMs floating near 2k. But, that is just me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,806 Posts
First off brand new car with nearly zero miles on it they don't like running hard and sound terrible. Same car with 40K on it likes to run hard and doesn't sound so terrible when your using all the power.

Cars with smaller engines its not a crime to use use all the available power when you need it. Our 2.5 with CVT is not stop light drag racer but it still can merge onto our high speed highway on the uphill on ramp with the 70mph speeders just fine. However it does not have the same authority as my 4.7L V8 powered Sequoia.

Over 220,000 miles and what 14yrs living with the subaru 2.5 between our old subaru and our new Gen4 OB - never had an issue with not having enough speed capability merging onto California highways even pulling our boat. However if your the non forward thinking type use to driving an over powered vehicle which case smashing down the accelerator results in correcting none forward thinking mistakes then yes any small engine vehicle might make you feel as you did.

Your choice pay for a larger engine and the cost of fuel that comes with more power- or start thinking farther ahead LOL. By the way I generally end up towing our trailer with the subaru over the Sequoia for one simple reason - the subaru is a smaller package and much easier to maneuver around than the truck is - and the Subaru still posts better mileage with trailer in tow than the truck gets. Power hasn't been an issue
 

·
Registered
2013 Outback Limited, 2009 Forester
Joined
·
7 Posts
I have the 2013 2.5i. I have no problems with oomph. I am usually leaving others in the dust!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,818 Posts
Hello,

Well, took a test drive on a 2013 Outback.

Bob
What kind of vehicle did you drive to the dealer?
Perception of power could be distorted if you drove a Hemi Durango to the dealer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,806 Posts
What kind of vehicle did you drive to the dealer?
Perception of power could be distorted if you drove a Hemi Durango to the dealer.
Durango is a pile of junk LOL. 4.7L toyota V8 or GM v8 powered vehicle yes I can see lots of people wondering where you feed the OB hamster treats to make it run faster. HA HA

All seriousness the only car I've ever driven that was a serious safety issue getting onto the highway was a 83 3L Buick that had some sort of fuel issue. I swear the harder you pressed on the go pedal the slower it moved! Even the 60hp nonturbo diesel VW we had in the family did OK getting on the highway. Though packed with 4 people and 4 backpacks for two weeks in the woods you never wanted to exit the freeway where the on ramp involved a long hill LOL. 60hp only does so much even with a diesel 5spd MT.
 

·
Registered
2013 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited, PZEV, Satin White Pearl, SAP, OEM Hitch, Body Side Moldings, Door Edge Guards, Wheel Arch Moldings, Splash Guards, Rear Seat Back Protectors, Rear Bumper Cover, Pin
Joined
·
88 Posts
With my previous 2011 2.5 Outback, I was surprised that when I would press on the gas it did not feel like I was getting the power I was asking for, but when I looked at the speedometer I was up there above the speed limit. I usually had to push on the break to get back down to the speed limit.

I'm not saying it was the fastest response on demand, just that it took some getting use to the CVT.

It was definitely different from anything that I had ever driven before and by the way, I never felt like I didn't have enough to merge onto the highway.
 

·
Registered
2011 Outback 2.5i Premium, CVT, Steel Silver, all-weather package. Upgrades: Tweeter kit, BlueConnect, media hub, remote start, Curt 2" receiver hitch.
Joined
·
1,127 Posts
Push the gas pedal down closer to the floor.

I have always driven low horsepower vehicles... Including 68 to 125 horsepower Mercedes, 90-100 horsepower VWs, 128 horsepower Toyota, 156 horsepower Sprinter van, and a 180 horsepower class A motorhome. The 2.5i Outback feels somewhat peppy to me. It doesn't have the download grunt of my diesel VW, which was slightly modified and put down nearly 200 pounds of torque a 1,800 RPM, but it does just fine. If you are used to low-revving bigger engines, you just need to get used to a high-revving 4 cylinder. Putting the power down done not cause undue wear. I have laboratory oil analysis results that prove it.
 

·
Registered
2002 Outback Wagon 2.5L Auto Weather Package
Joined
·
1,969 Posts
I like to say 4 cylinders are like cheap watches - the tighter you wind them, the faster they go.

If you are afraid to push the gas pedal past halfway because you are 'hurting the car', why would the car be designed with a pedal that has 50% more travel than you are supposed to use? Engineers using a 'safety factor' work the OTHER way - they'd give you 50% power @ 100% pedal travel if it was meant to protect the car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,818 Posts
I once owned a '55 VW Bug with 36 hp. Now that car lacked omph.
Incidentally my 5.0 liter V8 Monte Carlo has the same horsepower as my 4 cyl Outback.
Technology does wonders to what was once considered low power, economy, 4 cyl engines.
 

·
Registered
'11 Outback 2.5i CVT - '06 Forester X 5MT
Joined
·
1,765 Posts
I think the big thing here is perception. The CVT shifts alot smoother and more linear than an old EAT. So when you floor it, it doesn't jump to 5k rpm, but rather gradually adjusts the gears as it accelerates to get you up to speed. Whereas a regular EAT will slam it down a gear and give you a jerk back, making it feel like you have better acceleration. And if you feel the need for a quick jerk or a lower gear, you have paddles handy to take advantage of it. However after a year and half, I generally only use the paddles to hold a gear down a hill.

I have had my OB next to a few cars when merging or pulling from a stop light, while I'm not trying to drag race them, I have yet to have any other comparable 4cyl car pull away from me, the CVT just holds steady rpms and accelerates. It takes some getting used to, but IMO the CVT is far superior to any EAT because it offers a smooth delivery of power.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top