Subaru Outback Forums banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
We're looking to buy a certified or used Outback, most probably the smaller engine to use for travel when we retire.

Being a motorcycle enthusisast, I want to take my BMW R1200GS with on trips.
I have a Stinger trailer (about 250 lbs) that I pull behind my Prius for towing lighter dualsport bikes without a problem.
These bikes weigh mostly under 350 pounds.

However my GS weighs about 600 lbs.
I don't know alot about the pulling power of an Outback (2015-2019).
Hoping I can get some feedback on this.

Thanks All,
Rex
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
94 Posts
From what I remember, it's factory rated to tow 2700lbs (3000lbs for the 3.6, except for 2018, it was derated down to 2700lbs). Tongue capacity is 200lbs.

Sent from my Pixel using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
'17 Outback 3.6R Limited, '05 Forester
Joined
·
121 Posts
I've towed a boat and trailer with a combined weight of around 1,800lbs (~820kg) without any problems.
One warning, as soon as you start towing, your gas mileage will drop significantly.
 

·
Registered
2016 Outback Premium 2.5 CVT w/EyeSight+SRVD
Joined
·
7,114 Posts
Hoping I can get some feedback on this.
Towing limits per the 2018 Legacy/Outback Owners Manual:


  • 1,000 pounds without trailer brakes
  • 2,700 pounds with trailer brakes
  • 1,500 pounds (3.6 engine) or 1,350 pounds (2.5 engine) when towing on long uphill grades at ambient temperatures above 104 F (40 C). These are cooling system limits, not structural limits.
  • 200 pounds max tongue weight (all configurations)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,907 Posts
If you are going to tow on any sort of regular basis you should go with the 3.6 instead of the 2.5.
 

·
On the Super Mod Squad
02 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
Joined
·
26,222 Posts
just motorcycles on a light trailer, should be fine with either the 2.5 or 3.6.

______

keep the tongue weight down below 200#, = all outbacks have that max weight on tongue,

foresters maybe even less, as that is actually a old impreza platform.
 

·
Registered
2016 Outback 2.5i Limited
Joined
·
104 Posts
I personally do not tow with mine, but I know someone with a 2.5 2016 who tows a 3500 pound r-pod travel trailer! She says it does it no problem. I still think she's absolutely crazy.
 

·
Registered
'13 2.5 Premium
Joined
·
2,399 Posts
We're looking to buy a certified or used Outback, most probably the smaller engine to use for travel when we retire.

Being a motorcycle enthusisast, I want to take my BMW R1200GS with on trips.
I have a Stinger trailer (about 250 lbs) that I pull behind my Prius for towing lighter dualsport bikes without a problem.
These bikes weigh mostly under 350 pounds.

However my GS weighs about 600 lbs.
I don't know alot about the pulling power of an Outback (2015-2019).
Hoping I can get some feedback on this.

Thanks All,
Rex

850 lb total? Make sure the tongue weight is <200 lb and you'll be just fine.


For comparison: The empty wt of the smallest UHaul box trailer (4x8) is 850 lb.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
The tongue weight is minimal. Like I mentioned, I use the Stinger trailer on my Prius.
Someone just mentioned to me that the Outback is available with a tow package.
Is that pretty common or rare to find one?
We'll be looking for used or certified as I said.

Thanks for the insights...
 

·
Registered
'13 2.5 Premium
Joined
·
2,399 Posts
The tongue weight is minimal. Like I mentioned, I use the Stinger trailer on my Prius.
Someone just mentioned to me that the Outback is available with a tow package.
Is that pretty common or rare to find one?
We'll be looking for used or certified as I said.

Thanks for the insights...
The "tow package" is a hitch and 4-flat light connector.


The OEM hitch is pretty expensive (x2 or x3) compared to an aftermarket so you'll probably find fewer OEM hitches installed.


There are plenty of trailer hitch installation stories on this board, the search function will find most of them for you. The trailer light connector is a very simple DIY. If you aren't scared of using a wrench, the hitch installation isn't too hard.


I went the DIY route on my '13 2.5.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
I have the same hitch on the Prius.
By '"Tow Package" I meant besides the hitch, it has a transmission cooler.
This may not be the case, but I may be wrong
"The tow package adds cooling lines, which helps maintain your tranny."
 

·
Registered
'13 2.5 Premium
Joined
·
2,399 Posts
I have the same hitch on the Prius.
By '"Tow Package" I meant besides the hitch, it has a transmission cooler.
This may not be the case, but I may be wrong
"The tow package adds cooling lines, which helps maintain your tranny."
I don't know all OB models, but I'm not familiar with a factory transmission cooler as part of a tow package.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,836 Posts
The OB and the Legacy are identical regarding engine, brakes and transmission.
The ONLY car built by Subaru with a “Towing Package” where additional cooling capability is part of a Towing Package is the Ascent.
 

·
On the Super Mod Squad
02 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
Joined
·
26,222 Posts
Is the Legacy approved for towing at all?
when you compare and contrast outback vs. legacy tow specs on cars101 by the year the legacy comes up short.

but still does tow.

even a impreza has tow specs.

edit: I think the only recent subaru with no factory tow rating was the old crosstrek hybrid, as they did not want the tow hitch or anything back there crushing the battery pack.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,836 Posts
Is the Legacy approved for towing at all?
Subaru put tow ratings on all cars up through 2008. I actually received a research questionair asking how important the tow rating was to my Legacy purchase. After that questionair subaru only listed tow ratings for their more expensive trims. This was also done by several other makers. Its a marketing sales tactic.

“Approved” is the wrong word choice. All vehicles have the ability to tow. The Legacy mechanically is identical to the ob i have both. The Legacy actually is better towing than the OB from several aspects sedan bodys are much stiffer than wagons, the Legacy sway bars are bigger another bonus and the legacy corners better than the OB all translates to better towing behavior. Cooling, cvt ratios etc are identical between the Legacy and the OB. Other than taller ride height and body stiffness differences they are mechanical twins.

The XV and the Impreza are the same car from a towing stand point. Only the more costly XV gets stamped with a tow rating.

The Ford Taraus and the Ford Explorer are near identical mechanical twins only the Explorer gets the tow rating.

Welcome to the world of SUV perception when really all your driving is a tall wagon car?
 

·
Registered
'13 2.5 Premium
Joined
·
2,399 Posts
I found the '18 Legacy/OB manual online.

The section on towing says this about the Legacy:

>>>
Your vehicle is neither designed nor
intended to be used for trailer towing.
Therefore, never tow a trailer with your
vehicle.
<<<

I didn't look at other model years to see when this was added.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,836 Posts
I found the '18 Legacy/OB manual online.

The section on towing says this about the Legacy:

>>>
Your vehicle is neither designed nor
intended to be used for trailer towing.
Therefore, never tow a trailer with your
vehicle.
<<<

I didn't look at other model years to see when this was added.
That verbiage was added in 2010. I have both Legacy and OB. I installed a hitch in fact the very same hitch on both same factory mounting even. Both run identical brakes, both run identical cvt fluid specs both run identical coolant specs. My OB replaced a 2001 Legacy GT Limited 5spd which in 2001 came with better brakes, and better gearing than the OB for towing and because its the ssme platform had the same 2000lb tow rating. That car towed yr around thousands of miles I sold it at 180,000 miles 100% original oem and 100% working. The clutch was done at 140,000 due to a failing snout bearing.

The kid that bought it replaced it recently with a new Subaru after graduating college he had over 300,000 on it!

I wouldn’t hesitate to tow with my Legacy if I needed to. If all I wanted was a 4dr sedan Id have a 3.6 R Legacy set up to tow and wouldn’t worry a bit about it. Auto makers today play the SUV game because consumers pay more for the SUV. When really its the same **** machine with minor differences to a car being sold at a lower price point. LOL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Towing limits per the 2018 Legacy/Outback Owners Manual:


  • 1,000 pounds without trailer brakes
  • 2,700 pounds with trailer brakes
  • 1,500 pounds (3.6 engine) or 1,350 pounds (2.5 engine) when towing on long uphill grades at ambient temperatures above 104 F (40 C). These are cooling system limits, not structural limits.
  • 200 pounds max tongue weight (all configurations)
This one's really helpful. I was having the same problem and glad I read this comment. Thanks
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top