2019 Subaru Ascent First Look | Edmunds

2019 Subaru Ascent First Look

Subaru Returns to the Three-Row Crossover Class


Remember the Subaru Tribeca? No? Well, you're not alone. It was Subaru's unremarkable and slow-selling three-row crossover SUV last sold in 2014. But now the company is back with the all-new 2019 Subaru Ascent. When it goes on sale in early summer 2018, it will be the largest Subaru ever and will compete with models such as the Chevrolet Traverse, Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander.

Under the hood of all Ascent models will be an all-new turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 260 horsepower and 277 pound-feet of torque. A continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) and all-wheel drive are standard. In terms of utility, the Ascent will have a maximum towing capacity of 5,000 pounds and provide seating for up to eight passengers. Subaru says there's 19.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third-row, 44.2 cubic feet behind the second row and a maximum cargo space of 72.6 cubic feet. These numbers are on the small size for a three-row crossover, but we won't know how well the Ascent's cargo-carrying abilities work in the real world until we get one to test.

The Ascent will be offered in four trim levels. Standard feature highlights for the eight-passenger base Ascent will include 18-inch wheels, roof rails, a head-up display, tri-zone automatic climate control, a second-row bench seat, a 6.5-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, four USB ports, and a conversation mirror to keep tabs on rear passengers. On the safety front, forward collision warning and mitigation, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and trailer sway warning are all included. The Premium trim will add heated mirrors, a power-adjustable driver seat, heated front seats, an 8-inch touchscreen, an onboard 4G data connection with a Wi-Fi hotspot, and a blind-spot monitor with lane-change assist and rear cross-traffic alert. The Premium trim and higher are also eligible for second-row captain's chairs (reducing seating capacity to seven) at no additional cost.

The Limited includes all of the above, along with 20-inch wheels, adaptive LED headlights, automatic high beams, a power liftgate with memory, keyless entry and ignition, leather upholstery, second-row sunshades, two more USB ports, and a reverse collision warning system with automatic braking. The range-topping Touring trim fills out the features list with a panoramic sunroof, automatic wipers, premium leather upholstery, ventilated front seats, a front-view camera system, a rearview camera projected into the rearview mirror, even more USB ports, a household power outlet, a navigation system and a premium Harman Kardon audio system. Many features will be offered on supporting trims as options.

Our initial impression is that the 2019 Subaru Ascent will be a competitive model in the three-row crossover SUV class. Check back with Edmunds for pricing information and driving impressions as we close in on the on-sale date.

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