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2010/2016 outback
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I think that is a very true statement. Yesterday Subaru announced the new 2022 BRZ. Nicely redone, upped the size of engine from 2.0 to a 2.4, HP up to 228, and torque up 15%. Body Structure stiffer by 50%. These are ALL things I would be looking for in a Sport Coupe like this. But some of the early feedback is this..."Why no TURBO?"

Man, I felt like replying and setting things straight but why bother? Most people can't drive any vehicle they own at 10 10ths of what the care is capable of, and for "ME" it's not about straight line performance.

Just my .02 cents
I have the 2.5 in my 20 Legacy and as much as I like most of it I would like to see that NA 2.4 as the standard engine in Outback/legacy
 

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2020 Outback Limited
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115 Posts
I have the 2.5 in my 20 Legacy and as much as I like most of it I would like to see that NA 2.4 as the standard engine in Outback/legacy
Knowing what I know of Subaru, they will probably do this on a refresh of the Gen6. I think it could be a very smart move for them.
I have the 2.5 in my 20 Legacy and as much as I like most of it I would like to see that NA 2.4 as the standard engine in Outback/legacy
 

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2015 Outback Limited, 2.5i, 2021 Touring XT in White, 2018 Crosstrek
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We owned a 2007 Volvo TC wagon for 7 years. It had a turbo 5 cylinder engine. It was a great road car. The Volvo AWD system is not that great. I tried to by a new Volvo in 2015. These cars loose a ton in value. After not making a Volvo deal, I bought a 2015 Outback Limited. This car was $8000 less than the Volvo I was trying to buy. The Outback was equally as good a road car. When you spend 8 hours behind the wheel you learn a lot about a car. The dealer gave me a great trade on our 2021 Touring XT. I love the performance of the Turbo, very much like the turbo Volvo.

As a side note I watched an extended review of an Audi EV. I have no idea what it cost. The range is 225 miles at best, 9 1/2 hours to recharge. All cars are high priced and I expect to get some utility for the money. EV’s have a long way to go to meet my needs for the money. We also owned a Prius, 50 MPG was great, but change to winter gas our buy new tires, you are below 45.
 

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'15.5 Volvo V60 CC; '15 MINI Roadster S; '19 BMW 230i xDrive
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Well, Kind of.....LOL! For the past few years I have been working with one of the most progressive Subaru Dealerships in Ny State., I have learned a lot, seen a LOT. I stayed out of sales because that is not my desire. It's about Customer Service and helping folks when they walk in that door. But....Due to Covid, my age, and health issues, I have been out of work since March. That's okay because I am retired and really didn't need to work....
I too have a similar history..and left my "retiree" position as a courtesy driver at a local 8 brand family dealership due to COVID exposure concerns. Have had ('80 245 DL and '05 V50 T5) and still have a Volvo ('15.5 V60 CC, last of the 5 cylinders). [Also had a '86 Subaru GL Wagon...with its very marginal, 85hp carbureted engine.] It was a close competition several years ago between a new '16 Outback and the dealer demo V60 CC..but my wife preferred the higher amenities in the Volvo and made the comment, " It handles so much better than the Volvo in the corners". THAT blew me away (!) as well as the fact we got the 6k mile Volvo with Cert Pre-Owned 7 year/ 100k warranty...for the same price as the new Subaru. A future Subaru is still a possibility when replacement time comes.
 

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2010/2016 outback
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Well, Kind of.....LOL! For the past few years I have been working with one of the most progressive Subaru Dealerships in Ny State., I have learned a lot, seen a LOT. I stayed out of sales because that is not my desire. It's about Customer Service and helping folks when they walk in that door. But....Due to Covid, my age, and health issues, I have been out of work since March. That's okay because I am retired and really didn't need to work.

Yesterday I did my running around on the expressways and being I am over 2000 miles let her LOOSE a few times. Now I know this is not a Mustang GT, or even a VW GTI, but for the most part this 2.5 got up to speed quick enough and much better than my wife's Journey with a V6 under the hood. Shoot, most CUV's and SUV's that you see now a days are NOT the most well thought out vehicles. Few have a truly independent suspensions and the handling quality has been traded of for ride comfort quality. This is one place that I think the GEN 6 Outback excels in.
A little late in responding, but I also think the 2.5 is a adequate power plant in current form. Any criticism would be in its lack of NVH. Subaru really needs to quiet these engines down a little and while they have gotten better it takes away from the total refinement of Gen 6. A quiet engine along with a non-CVT transmission would be a great start IMO
 

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Was looking forward to the Onyx XT test drive as we need a car very soon and I like what it has to offer for the pricepoint … was lucky to find a local dealer that had quite a few trims in stock …

We have a 2017 Forester XT in the family which I am currently “borrowing” and I love it mostly because of its instant pickup, great agility and composed steering feel. Even though it has a CVT as well, it is well matched and turbo lag is minimal if any. I never feel it is searching for the right gear and it feels super predictable.

I was expecting the same, if not much better from the new Outback XT, given the engine is 3 years newer than the Forester and also reworked.

Came away with mixed feelings …

First thing I noticed is the steering is super loose, for the lack of a better term … it’s very responsive but much more disconnected from the road especially at low speed. It does tighten up somewhat at higher speed and feels more confident but still a bit numb.
The engine is quiet and while plenty powerful it’s nowhere near as smooth as on the Forester. There is noticeable lag off the line. The paddles help in the fun factor but there is something not quite matched right I feel with this XT Turbo engine and the CVT. The 2019 3.6 I drove a few weeks ago felt like a beast when off the line with smooth linear power compared to the new turbo. The XT is much more tossable however and does feel feel more nimble and lighter than the front heavy 3.6 … I would say less refined and more sporty if that makes any sense.

I know this sounds negative, but I still think it’s a good engine. It probably needs some break-in, but it does feel “confused” … I really was expecting to be blown away and maybe my expectations were too high coming from an older XT.

Before leaving I asked the salesman to let me try the NA 2.5 and while that engine off the line is loud and begging for all you have, its linear power is much better matched to the CVT and when using paddles it’s actually a lot more fun than the turbo to bring it up to speed. Things happen much more predictably. I have to say this surprised me … I used to have a 120hp Mini Cooper with paddles and used to love to get the most out of that engine, granted the car was much lighter as well.

Still leaning towards the Onyx XT, but 2019 3.6 is not off the table just yet ... it all comes down to the interior creature comforts. More on the later ...

Here are some photos I took by the way of a bunch of colors they had available and a side by side of the Gen 5 and 6 from the front …
 

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I too found the steering/suspension too loose in the 2020 and there are simple mods that are inexpensive that will fix that if you do get the 2020. Much more precise now.
 

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2020 Outback Limited Abyss Blue Pearl 2.5
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A little late in responding, but I also think the 2.5 is a adequate power plant in current form. Any criticism would be in its lack of NVH. Subaru really needs to quiet these engines down a little and while they have gotten better it takes away from the total refinement of Gen 6. A quiet engine along with a non-CVT transmission would be a great start IMO
I like the Growl of my 2.5. Don't bother me
 

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2020 Outback Limited
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Just yesterday I was running around town with my grandson to pick up tires for his 4WD Pickup. I came down this one hill and were waiting at the light and I said to myself, "I do really like how quiet this car is. I guess it is all in the way people drive the 2.5 with the CVT. If driven very hard, yes some of the harshness comes through. I drive mine for longevity and fuel economy and that is hard to do in the North East with Winter Blend Fuels.
 

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2020 Outback Premium
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I guess it is all in the way people drive the 2.5 with the CVT. If driven very hard, yes some of the harshness comes through. I drive mine for longevity and fuel economy and that is hard to do in the North East with Winter Blend Fuels.
Exactly! The vast majority of people that buy this car with the 2.5 will rarely need to push the engine hard enough for the noise to become objectionable. My driving style is the same as yours and I'm very happy with the car`s power and comfort.
 

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2020 Limted XT Black/Ivory
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Just yesterday I was running around town with my grandson to pick up tires for his 4WD Pickup. I came down this one hill and were waiting at the light and I said to myself, "I do really like how quiet this car is. I guess it is all in the way people drive the 2.5 with the CVT. If driven very hard, yes some of the harshness comes through. I drive mine for longevity and fuel economy and that is hard to do in the North East with Winter Blend Fuels.
You aren't kidding. Last few fillups since the switchover to winter blend and the snow tires, I've been in the high teens with mileage on the XT.
 

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Only drove a little bit yesterday, but my impression in mixed driving is that it’s so **** quiet and it moves when you get on it.

Break in period be damned. Must stay below 4000. Must stay below 4000. Must stay below 4000.
 

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2020 Onyx XT
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Break in period be damned. Must stay below 4000. Must stay below 4000. Must stay below 4000.
I have found, 4-plus months later, that rarely does the XT need to be pushed past 4K. It gets up to speed, makes passes on two-lane roads, etc. with little effort.
 

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2020 Legacy Limited XT
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Because of some ”miscommunication” at the service department of my dealer - had gone in for my Legacy’s first (6 month) service as well as the 380 software update - the update hadn’t been performed when I went to pick the car up. I was given a loaner 2021 Outback which I thought was very considerate. So I was able to compare my XT Legacy as well as my wife’s Onyx XT Outback to the loaner non-XT. I don’t know what version of Outback it was but it did have the 11.6 infotainment screen.

Two things that were immediately noticeable to me, the vehicle didn't track or steer as precisely as what we’re used to with our vehicles, I don’t know what tire and wheel combination it had so that could have been the difference. The other thing was engine noise. Some of that could be due to greater sound deadening in XT models but most was due to the engine itself. Just normal driving on roads around my community the loaner was constantly revving at 3000 rpm or more. Our XTs almost never rev that high, most of the time I’m at 1500 or below unless I floor it to kick the turbo in for some needed rapid acceleration.

The actual acceleration of the loaner was acceptable. I never felt like I was driving a slug and the overall feel of the vehicle is better than any SUV I’ve ever driven. But in terms of the engine, the big thing it lacks is that punch you really need in two specific instances. Coming from an on-ramp and attempting to merge with high speed traffic or when stuck behind slower cars and attempting to pass by moving into the parallel lane before approaching traffic blocks you in. That punch just isn't there. That’s what I experienced with my first 2002 Legacy which was a wonderful car but led me to my ‘06 GT turbo which had all kinds of punch.

I know that one’s finances will dictate what we drive, I started out with a used ‘57 Plymouth and drove a succession of used cars. I’m fortunate enough now to be able to afford a new car and a more expensive version of that car. So my comments are mostly aimed at those who are fortunate enough to be able to afford either an XT or non XT and are trying to decide between them. The loaner was very comfortable, the seats were wonderful. Not leather but I’ve never been a big proponent of leather seats, they’ve just come on the versions I’ve selected. But I fully believe the XTs are totally worth the extra money and are overall much more pleasant to drive with engines that feel like they’re just loping along instead of straining as the loaner vehicle felt to me.
 

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For me, having a powerful engine is another form of luxury. It pampers you by having a car that just glides up mountains as if they were flat land, or merging with traffic with little sense that it's having to strain to do it. In that sense, it's a layer of reduced noise vibration and harshness and greater serenity. I appreciate that kind of luxury over having napa leather so I just have the Onyx. Would have bought a Base Outback if I could have the turbo with it. Cloth seats are under-rated.

I remember buying my first Turbo car and being astonished at how effortless it could accelerate, and the non-linear nature of it literally felt like another car was pushing me from behind - a different sensation than a big V8 and I like it.
 

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2020 Legacy Premier GT & 2007 3.0R Outback LLBean
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I find that the turbo really eases easily to highway speeds so much so that you can easily surpass the posted speed limits in seconds - and she still wants to go... I went to pass a truck the other day and realized I was soon going 160kph (100 miles an hour). Up here, at that speed, you lose your license for 30 days, get charged with stunt driving, lose points and fined up to $10,000 fine on the first offense. They also impound your car simply for going 50kph (that's 30mph) over the limit. Careful....:sneaky:
 

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SubaruOutback.org Founder
2021 Outback Limited 2.5L - 🍦The Ice Cream Man🍦
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I played around with the cruise control levels 1 through 4 today on a 150+ mile trip I did this morning and I have to say that the #4 Dynamic setting makes a huge difference in how the non-turbo 2.5L responds. It seemed to be just fine (more than adequate) in merging and passing on a freeway. I am sure that it would not set any turbo driver's world on fire but as the 2.5L is all I needed and cared to pay for and since I drive this car in cruise control 99% of the time it is a major net positive for me.

FWIW levels 1, 2, and 3 are just a progressive version of bland. I would just as soon choose #1 or #4 and roll.
 
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