2015 Subaru Outback Review
Pros & Cons
- Spacious and comfortable interior
- efficient engines
- excellent visibility
- above-average off-road ability
- top safety scores.
- Base engine's lackluster acceleration.
List Price Range
$13,202 - $24,998
Used Outback for SaleSee all for sale
Edmunds' Expert Review
Most helpful consumer reviews
2.5i Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)
We traded our 2014 Outback for a 2015 and it is a completely different car. This car is much closer to the Volvo we traded for the 2014 at a fraction of the cost. Things we like: - It handles and tracks great - No jackrabbit starts like the throttle on the 2014 - No harsh suspension feedback like on the Volvo - Quieter ride - Big improvement in the GPS/infotainment system. Improved ergonomics of controls. - Great fuel efficiency for this sized vehicle - Better than my 4WD truck in snow and slippery conditions. - We continue to find features we didn't realize it had.
2.5i Limited PZEV 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)
Note: I rarely give something 5 stars. For me, 4 is high praise and I quibble about the three choices of poor, OK and great. If I didn't rate something 'great', it's because it was less but certainly more than just OK. That said, I've owned this car for 7 months. I've had to adjust to it rather than the vehicle adjusting to me. But taking the Outback on its own terms, this is what I'd say to prospective buyers: It's been a very competent car. Road handling in all weather, except wind, has been excellent. Because of it's 8.5" ground clearance which is great for loading and unloading, entering and exiting, it can be a handful on windy highways. And while it's notable, it's minor. Electric steering is responsive, making navigating city streets and parking lots easy. Turning radius is excellent. Braking is good. Acceleration is modest in the 4 cyl. Beware. It's fine around town. On the highway, and with people and luggage, it's another story. But once you learn it and adapt, it is fine. Gas mileage started soft but has gotten better and averages around 26, city and town. Highway averages 31 which I think is outstanding for a 'station wagon-y' vehicle with roof rack and 4wd. It's a joy to buy regular gas. Cabin is comfortable, attractive and uncluttered. We like it. Leather seats are quite comfortable on short or long trips. Rear seats have plenty of room. The seat backs adjust, a big comfort plus. And folding the seats down, a 60/40 split, is a breeze - from inside the car or from the tailgate. The tailgate on our car can auto open. It is a bit fussy, a love/hate feature on the car. Visibility is very good. Backup camera is essential and works very well in handling tight spaces. I give it a solid A. Cross traffic warning is a good option. Blind spot detection is OK but the side mirror warning light, no sound signal, is weak, especially in daylight. That's a big negative. Gauges are OK. Lighting is bright and distinct. Time and temp are tiny. Bizarre. Lots of radio and music options. We have iPhones. They work beautifully and are very easy to connect. The technology is definitely better than ever. That said, not all tech is the same. While the interface works, the voice prompt is clumsy with rigid prompts and responses. I find that disappointing but I can easily get over it. The sound/phone system works seamlessly and the sound quality of phone calls to and from the car is quite good. That's basic to the tech and important that it works as well as it does. The touch screen is large, easy to navigate and easy to read, even in bright sunlight. Remote start is really handy in winter but it takes some practice making it work from the key fob. The suspension was VERY stiff when we first got it. It was on the verge of being a deal breaker. I've seen that comment from others, too. But it has softened. It is firm and comfortable and not at all rigid. Road noise is quite modest. Heating and cooling work well, front and rear. Front and back wipers are solid. Best option: dimming side mirrors. I did not get adaptive cruise control and emergency stop. I'm sorry I didn't. I rode in an Outback with that option and thought it was outstanding. Oddity: no heated steering wheel which I miss a lot! Another oddity and major mistake: doors do not self lock above a certain speed. If you don't remember to do it yourself, your doors remain unlocked while you drive. Even our 2003 Passat had self-locking doors. It never occurred to me that Suburu would sell a car without them. Lastly, the most important aspect of any car is its safety - all the things about a car you don't see or care about until you absolutely need them. We were recently rear-ended on a highway while going 50 MPH. The pickup was doing 65. My young son was in the back seat. That could have been a very bad accident. The car performed flawlessly, stayed on center and steered to a perfect stop. Another car could have lost control, hit other cars to the side and caused a deadly pile up. The back is badly bashed in, of course. But despite the damage, all rear lights on the car still worked. Even the back up camera still worked! My appreciation and trust of this car took a big leap. This is not an exciting vehicle to drive. It drives you. If you can adjust to that, this is, as my son says, a "beast" of a car, in the best sense of the word. I like "Ranger". UPDATE: the original tires, Bridgestone Duelers, were very poor. 29,000 and done. Shocking. Advice: on a new Outback, sell them immediately and buy real tires. Shame on Subaru for marring an otherwise solid desi UPDATE 12/18: My appreciation has grown. Added a value star. Reliable car - comfortable, safe, good in all conditions. We've since bought a Lexus, too. In terms of equipment and design, it stands up well, even surpasses the Lexus in some areas. No mechanical failures. UPDATE 6/20: same as 12/18. Love this car.
2.5i Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)
I have always been a GM person. A couple years back I went to work for a supplier to Subaru. It was time to buy a new car and after being involved as a supplier I found just how quality minded Subaru is. Its my job to over see the plastic molding for the doors and dashboards for the 2015 Outback and Legacy. We scrap any molding that has the smallest imprafection. We make 925 car units a day and after multi inspections they are ready to head for the assembly line at the Subaru plant in Lafayette, Indiana. In October I took delivery of a 2015 Outback and its just a very nice car to drive. I have a 16 ft travel trailer weighting 2400 lbs and this car pulls it very well.
Janice L Ricci,04/11/2015
3.6R Limited 4dr SUV AWD (3.6L 6cyl CVT)
This is our 1st Subaru. Purchased the 3.6, 6 cylinder Outback with Eyesight and Navigation in October 2015. Commute over 100 miles every day between NH and MA. This vehicle performs well in all driving conditions. We have never been stuck in the snow and we had a horrendous winter. It has plenty of power, seats are comfortable, heat and defrost work well. The navigation is very easy to use and the adaptive cruise control is amazing. We use the Mobil 1 synthetic oil and have not had any issues with mechanics or electronics. The computer voice even tells you that the vehicle ahead has moved- if you've stopped and not paying attention. The lane departure warning is a great feature.