This purchase (2013 Limited with Special Appearance package) was the culmination of 2 years of research (I keep my cars 12-15 years, 200k+ miles).
A big change from my mid-size 4WD SUV; I'm loving the driveability and handling.
Just as roomy inside except not as tall as my old one. No road wandering I've noticed after 2500 miles including 2 road trips.
2.5 is more than enough for me, although others may want more. The other finalists were Volvo XC70 and Audi Q5, although they cost $$ more and were nicer trimmed of course.
The OB feels just as solid on the road.
Honda CRV AWD was the only close-price contestant and the OB felt much more solid. I liked the CRV's front storage though
Stereo, BT, and Nav are all awesome - no problems at all. Nav isn't cutting edge but more than sufficient. Spec App package is just plain sharp looking, especially the brown leather. Love the keyless start. Very comfortable for me (6'3", 200 lbs). Roof rack is brilliant - used with my bikes/kayak - no issues for me. Headlights are excellent; not HIDs but far better than the CRVs. MPG has been 23-26 overall; engine has yet to break in so I expect it to get better. Still a 7-10 mpg improvement over old car. CVT has been fine - for all the yelling I hear about them, I don't understand the fuss....it's been fine for me.
Paddle shifters were a one-time thrill...not necessary. Boxer = amazing.
As they work on the total redesign for '15, my suggestions include: additional 2-3" increase in height; increase the sunroof to Forrester size; cooled seats; make SAP available on all colors; ditch the silver trim on dash/console (see Acura for superior design/trim); additional console storage spaces (see CRV for tips); backlight Homelink buttons; power lightgate (I'm sure that's coming); additional tilt in seat bottom for us freak long-legs folks (I like sitting bus driver style); back seat AC plug (dealer option currently). Keep it a Subaru - this car overall is very impressive.
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