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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
New user, first post, hello!

Have heard great things about Subaru(s) and never owned one. I have decided to trade in my performance oriented sedan (5 series, 3L Turbo) for an SUV(ish) and Outback has floated to the top of my list. My intent is to travel more and potentially go SUV camping, tow my motorcycle if needed or a small popup perhaps if tenting doesn't work out. You can see why I am looking at an Outback.

2.5L is a non starter for me. I am willing to sacrifice some level of performance and 2.4L is sufficient for my needs and gives good enough mileage (vs 23mpg combined I am used to getting). I have thought of a Hybrid powertrain but that doesn't seem to be an option unless I go Kia Sportage (maybe Mazda CX-50). Subaru seems to do a good job here and a whole lot more but then again I have not test driven the other two contenders yet.

I need wireless carplay and I am told the infotainment system is improved in 2023 and I am willing to wait a few months (even up to spring 2023). Here's to hope that dealers begin to play ball by then. Kia wants $5K adjustment, Subaru is telling me MSRP and not sure about Mazda. Anyway, I have a few months or more to figure this out.

Can someone confirm or provide your comments on the following?
1. Is there a way to turn off beeps for lane control departure, keep your eyes on the road dummy stuff? This could get old!
2. Does auto lane feature work well at all speeds? Inclement weather?
3. The CVT seems to slam/thunk (not sure how to describe it) if I throttle hard and step off the accelerator pedal quickly. This seems to be a driver mistake as I feel I could learn to do it more elegantly or is this CVT clunky? I only drove for 15 minutes so look for some thoughts here
4. For every person that complains about this CVT, there are probably hundreds that either don't mind it or have mechanical issues for a long time. True?

Overall, I found this to be a very capable SUV/Wagon. The interior is very plush (at least in the Limited I drove), roomy, able to handle ramp speeds and more well and merge/pass extremely well. The infotainment system was not bad, didn't think it was too laggy as I have seen suggested sometimes; some menus do seem buried alright.

Cheers!
 
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2021 MGM Outback 2.5i Premium with Tungsten Grey seats
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2.5L is a non starter for me. I am willing to sacrifice some level of performance and 2.4L is sufficient for my needs and gives good enough mileage
To be clear - the 2.5 is the base engine, the 2.4 turbo is the performance engine and is the one you want for towing. For what it's worth, I find the 2.5 to be absolutely fine for my needs, and I'm on my second. I have no trouble merging on an uphill onramp, though I DO need to get my right foot into it to do so in really heavy traffic. But, for towing pretty much anything other than a lightly loaded utility trailer the Turbo is the way you want to go.

I need wireless carplay and I am told the infotainment system is improved in 2023 and I am willing to wait a few months (even up to spring 2023)
At the very least the interface will be updated (us 2020-2022 folks hope we get the new interface back-ported) and wireless CP and AA added (which can't be back-ported). You will want the 2023.

1. Is there a way to turn off beeps for lane control departure, keep your eyes on the road dummy stuff? This could get old!
This may be an unpopular opinion - pay attention while driving and don't drive like you're under the influence and the beeps don't get annoying. Yes, some road conditions cause a beep or two (I have a couple on my daily commute that I can predict/anticipate) but as long as I'm paying attention and keep to my lane I don't get beeps.

2. Does auto lane feature work well at all speeds? Inclement weather?
I have mine set to only use the lane keep assist when I'm cruising on the highway, it's off (with no annoying light) all other times, and that setting sticks. It works well enough, I've found it quite a pleasure to drive on the 2 road trips I've taken it on over the last year.

3. The CVT seems to slam/thunk (not sure how to describe it) if I throttle hard and step off the accelerator pedal quickly. This seems to be a driver mistake as I feel I could learn to do it more elegantly or is this CVT clunky? I only drove for 15 minutes so look for some thoughts here
There's a throttle learn procedure floating around the forums, some have had good luck taming the CVT after doing that process.
 

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2020 Onyx
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You can tame the CVT behavior with Throttle Calibration

The 2023 has an improved eyesight system on all trims, but only the Touring trim of the Outback has a new THIRD camera for what it's worth.


If you want the latest and greatest from Subaru then spring for the Touring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Appreciate your response hallux. I am used to 4.5 seconds 0-60 and I'll accept 6 seconds on the 2.4T :). I got the sense that the suspension just about keeps up with the peppy engine and its performance is nothing to sneeze at. The ride is actually more plush which I know I'll appreciate on long trips. I was happy but I guess there's nothing wrong with testdriving the 2.5L as well. It's cheaper, less can go wrong, let's see.

I understand there can be a fine line between safety features, what they do for you and become overbearing. I saw that I could at least minimize the beeps. My 5 series vibrates the wheel which I got used to so don't view Subaru's implementation as a showstopper, perhaps they'll offer it in an update but I doubt it.

Is there a link to a manual, even a service manual? If not, I'll look something up on the Subaru website. There are some confusing settings which while scrolling didn't make sense to me. Example, Lane departure prevention function had four selectable options. What is all functions setting vs some of the others? And, can you make the adaptive cruise control more aggressive / less so? It seemed to always stay back the same distance no matter what setting I tried.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
You can tame the CVT behavior with Throttle Calibration

The 2023 has an improved eyesight system on all trims, but only the Touring trim of the Outback has a new THIRD camera for what it's worth.


If you want the latest and greatest from Subaru then spring for the Touring.
Thank you.
 

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  1. Yes, but it's not recommended. Like anything, you get used to it and tune it out until you actually want to concentrate on it. Instead, consider just turning down the beep volume in settings.

  2. Generally yes. It does rely on the front-facing EyeSight cameras, so if you are finding it difficult to see through heavy rain or fog, EyeSight will too and it will disable itself (and notify you to take over manually) if it cannot reliably see.

  3. The CVT works great, and the only clunk I get in mine is switching from reverse to drive. I don't get clunks in day to day driving. Unfortunately your market does not get SI-Drive for Outbacks. In my market, SI-Drive is a dream with the CVT when you want extra power at the push of a button.

  4. The Subaru CVT is generally considered to be the "best", and having driven others, I wholeheartedly agree. The general arguments against CVT definitely do not apply to Subaru. If it was really that bad, they wouldn't be making them because customers would be returning the cars in disgust hand over fist.
 

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Is there a link to a manual, even a service manual?
Go to subaru.com click on Owners, then vehicle resources. Fill in the year, make, model drop-down (you'll need to use 2022 as a placeholder) and you can find the literature. Of course, the 2023 is going to have some differences. Note that there are several books, one covers the Eyesight system in detail.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
...Unfortunately your market does not get SI-Drive for Outbacks. In my market, SI-Drive is a dream with the CVT when you want extra power at the push of a button.
hmm, that's a shame that it's not offered in the U.S., especially for the Turbo models.
 

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You can definitely turn off the Lane departure warning. It's the first thing I did. The lane keep assist is great when not in traffic, but I turn it off when other cars are around. Ultimately it won't override your steering input, but it is forceful at highway speeds. I don't mind the cvt. It's the best ive driven The infotainment is definitely laggy. Once I set up everything the way I wanted it, I haven't had to go digging for anything. If you cn wait for wireless carplay I would wait.
 

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One thing to consider is that a new generation of eyesight may have some early teething problems. Personally, I think the 2023 will be much uglier because it has even more black plastic than the 2022. I do find that the lane centering is very unhelpful in traffic because it fights you when you to bias yourself to one side of the lane or the other.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for your feedback.

I also heard a major refresh in 2024, more based on RAV4 prime hybrid power train and a DCT?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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I also heard a major refresh in 2024
Subaru, historically, is on a 5 year cycle for the Outback with a minor facelift mid-cycle. The current model started in 2020, is getting the facelift for the 2023 model year and would be due for a clean-sheet design for the 2025 model year (usually releasing sometime in the middle of the calendar year before).
 

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One thing to consider is that a new generation of eyesight may have some early teething problems. Personally, I think the 2023 will be much uglier because it has even more black plastic than the 2022. I do find that the lane centering is very unhelpful in traffic because it fights you when you to bias yourself to one side of the lane or the other.
I agree, The 23 Outback , WRX, Solstice have way to much plastic- I guess sales figures will determine if they still work for the public. I am kind of thinking an Ascent for my next car but not if that huge front fender flare goes on it.
 

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2. The Subaru CVT is generally considered to be the "best", and having driven others, I wholeheartedly agree. The general arguments against CVT definitely do not apply to Subaru. If it was really that bad, they wouldn't be making them because customers would be returning the cars in disgust hand over fist.
While I agree with your statement about the CVT on Subaru's, there is a reason Subaru extended the warranty on many of their CVT's to 100K miles. It was not because they were flawless.
 

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I understand there can be a fine line between safety features, what they do for you and become overbearing. I saw that I could at least minimize the beeps. My 5 series vibrates the wheel which I got used to so don't view Subaru's implementation as a showstopper, perhaps they'll offer it in an update but I doubt it.
You can change the setting so that it moves the wheel, beeps, both, or neither, IIRC.
 

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  1. Yes, but it's not recommended. Like anything, you get used to it and tune it out until you actually want to concentrate on it. Instead, consider just turning down the beep volume in settings.

  2. Generally yes. It does rely on the front-facing EyeSight cameras, so if you are finding it difficult to see through heavy rain or fog, EyeSight will too and it will disable itself (and notify you to take over manually) if it cannot reliably see.

  3. The CVT works great, and the only clunk I get in mine is switching from reverse to drive. I don't get clunks in day to day driving. Unfortunately your market does not get SI-Drive for Outbacks. In my market, SI-Drive is a dream with the CVT when you want extra power at the push of a button.

  4. The Subaru CVT is generally considered to be the "best", and having driven others, I wholeheartedly agree. The general arguments against CVT definitely do not apply to Subaru. If it was really that bad, they wouldn't be making them because customers would be returning the cars in disgust hand over fist.
I really wish I knew why Subaru defaults to such a loud volume to all of the alerts. I left them on but had to turn all of them way down.

The turbo CVT works well and I haven't noticed any clunking. For some reason, we don't get SI-Drive, though. No idea why. The only other CVT I've driven was in my CRV and I found it to be about the same as the Subaru.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
While I agree with your statement about the CVT on Subaru's, there is a reason Subaru extended the warranty on many of their CVT's to 100K miles. It was not because they were flawless.
Could it also imply their confidence (hey, we have figured this out)?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I really wish I knew why Subaru defaults to such a loud volume to all of the alerts. I left them on but had to turn all of them way down.

The turbo CVT works well and I haven't noticed any clunking. For some reason, we don't get SI-Drive, though. No idea why. The only other CVT I've driven was in my CRV and I found it to be about the same as the Subaru.
I owned an Audi 1.8T with a CVT. The high Revs contributed to an instantaneous response from an otherwise anemic engine and then the turbo spooled up. It never felt like a V6 but it was “fun enough”. It had other electrical gremlins but CVT was flawless for 5 years that I owned it.

The SI-drive omission must be due to fuel emission standards in the US. Oh well.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Jo hi
 

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I owned an Audi 1.8T with a CVT. The high Revs contributed to an instantaneous response from an otherwise anemic engine and then the turbo spooled up. It never felt like a V6 but it was “fun enough”. It had other electrical gremlins but CVT was flawless for 5 years that I owned it.

The SI-drive omission must be due to fuel emission standards in the US. Oh well.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Jo hi
I liked the 1.5T in the CRV. Sadly, it didn't have a high torque CVT like the XT, so while the engine could be tuned to make 2.4T power, the CVT wouldn't handle over 200. I usually ran mine in Eco mode which endeavored to keep the engine to 2k or below which meant no to little boost. It also had a Sport mode which would keep the revs higher to stay in boost and I used mainly for mountain driving.

I don't think emissions is why the XT doesn't get SI-Drive as it defaults to I whenever you start the car, which I would assume would improve economy, etc. Could even help with those CAFE numbers.
 

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Main thing I’ll add is that you won’t get much more than 23 MPG with the 2.4L Turbo. I have the Touring XT (and really like it) and average about 25, much less when towing. That said, it is better mileage than most v6 SUVs, which is one reason I bought it (and it’s faster).
 
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