2020 Subaru Outback

#3
in Suvs
2020 MODEL
$26,645 - $39,695
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8.2

Overall Rating

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2020 Subaru Outback Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide

Updated on: March 30, 2020
Aaron Smith's image

Aaron Smith

Automotive Journalist

The station wagons are becoming rarer by each passing day. The 2020 Subaru Outback, however, is still marching strong on the path paved by the iconic Volvo wagons of the bygone days. Its strong points are the same - everything. Be it space, practicality, safety, comfort, value for money and good fuel economy.

The Subaru Outback has spacious first and second-row seats, composed ride quality and best in class cargo space (a trademark of the Outback). All these make it a great mile muncher. However, the engine choice is either a budget-friendly and efficient but pesky 4 cylinders or a powerful but considerably expensive 6 cylinder.

See detailed review »

Pros

Spacious Interior

Heart-warming Fuel Economy

Impressively Comfortable

Tech Loaded

Cons

Impractical Interior storage space

No major updates

Lethargic Base Engine

11.6-inch immersive multimedia display(higher trims)

What's New?

Longer and wider

New Subaru Global platform

Updated Suspension


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$26645

bodystyle

4dr SUV

passenger capacity

5

drivetrain

AWD

engine type

displacement

152 cu.in.

horsepower

182 hp @ 5800 rpm

torque

176 lbs.-ft. @ 4400 rpm

transmission

7 speed auto shift manual

chassis

frame type

Unibody

suspension front

Independent front strut suspension w/anti-roll bar

suspension rear

Independent rear double wishbone suspension w/anti-roll bar

dimensions

wheelbase

108.1 in.

length

191.3 in.

width

73 in.

height

66.4 in.

curb weight

3634 lbs.

ground clearance

8.7 in.

capacity

passenger volume

109 cu ft.

cargo volume

75.7 cu ft.

towing capacity

2700 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

8.3 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

26/29/33 mpg

ev range

481 mi.

highway range

610.5 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

3 yr./ 36000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

5 yr./ 60000 mi.

powertrain warranty

5 yr. / 60000 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr. / unlimited

roadside assistance

3 yr./ 36000 mi.


Pictures

Exterior
Interior

Styles

 2020 Subaru Outback in Abyss Blue Pearl color  2020 Subaru Outback in Crystal White Pearl color  2020 Subaru Outback in Ice Silver Metallic color  2020 Subaru Outback in Magnetic Gray Metallic color  2020 Subaru Outback in Crystal Black Silica color
Abyss Blue Pearl

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

8.0

Interior

8.5

Safety

9.0

8.2

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


 2020 Subaru Outback Base

Base

power
182 hp @ 5800 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
29 combined

$26,645


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) Starting at $26,645 MSRP (26/29/33) 182 hp @ 5800 rpm, 2.5 L, flat 4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic all wheel drive 5

 2020 Subaru Outback Premium

Premium

power
182 hp @ 5800 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
29 combined

$28,895


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) Starting at $28,895 MSRP (26/29/33) 182 hp @ 5800 rpm, 2.5 L, flat 4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic all wheel drive 5

 2020 Subaru Outback Limited

Limited

power
182 hp @ 5800 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
29 combined

$33,445


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) Starting at $33,445 MSRP (26/29/33) 182 hp @ 5800 rpm, 2.5 L, flat 4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic all wheel drive 5

 2020 Subaru Outback Onyx Edition XT

Onyx Edition XT

power
260 hp @ 5600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
26 combined

$34,895


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Onyx Edition XT 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl Turbo CVT) Starting at $34,895 MSRP (23/26/30) 260 hp @ 5600 rpm, 2.4 L, flat 4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic all wheel drive 5

 2020 Subaru Outback Touring

Touring

power
182 hp @ 5800 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
29 combined

$37,345


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Touring 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) Starting at $37,345 MSRP (26/29/33) 182 hp @ 5800 rpm, 2.5 L, flat 4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic all wheel drive 5

 2020 Subaru Outback Limited XT

Limited XT

power
260 hp @ 5600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
26 combined

$37,745


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Limited XT 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl Turbo CVT) Starting at $37,745 MSRP (23/26/30) 260 hp @ 5600 rpm, 2.4 L, flat 4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic all wheel drive 5

 2020 Subaru Outback Touring XT

Touring XT

power
260 hp @ 5600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
26 combined

$39,695


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Touring XT 4dr SUV AWD (2.4L 4cyl Turbo CVT) Starting at $39,695 MSRP (23/26/30) 260 hp @ 5600 rpm, 2.4 L, flat 4, regular unleaded
continuously variable-speed automatic all wheel drive 5

Expert Review

8.2

Overall Rating


Subaru prefers to call the outback as a “Sports Utility Wagon” and for good reasons. Roof rails not only give it the rugged SUV looks, but they are also actually usable for those excursions. The standard AWD with 8.6-inch ground clearance makes it more capable off-road than many SUVs on the market.

All these warrants this station wagon remains to be the jack-of-all-trades. Don't let the looks fool you as it is a very skilled offroader as well. With a tempting price tag of $26645, it sure gives its opposition a serious run for its money.

2020 Subaru Outback front view
2020 Subaru Outback rear view

8.0/10
Features

 
 
 

8.5/10
Interior

 
 

9.0/10
Safety

 
 
 

2020 Subaru Outback Features

8.0/10

A total of 6 trims are offered by 2020 Subaru Outback. With a pair of engines and plenty of interiors and exterior highlights, they have made certain that the trims are all different and not selling tricks! The safety features are standard from the base up making even the base trim appealing. The pricing is also very competitive and not very wide-ranging from $ 26645 to $39695 with ample updates.

Trims

Base

Premium

Limited

Touring

Onyx Edition XT

Limited

XT

Touring XT

MSRP

$26645

$28895

$33445

$37345

$34895

$37745

$39695

Engine

2.5L BOXER 4

2.5L BOXER 4

2.5L BOXER 4

2.5L BOXER 4

2.4L Turbo BOXER 4

2.4L Turbo BOXER 4

2.4L Turbo BOXER 4

 Features    

Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive

All the features in Base and includes or is replaced by:

All the features in Premium and includes or is replaced by

All the features in Limited and includes or are replaced by

All the features in Touring and includes or is replaced by

All the features in Onyx Edition XT and includes or is replaced by

All the features in Limited XT and includes or is replaced by

 

SUBARU STARLINK Dual 7-inch Multimedia

Dual Zone Climate Control

Leather-Trimmed Upholstery

Power tilt moonroof

18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels

Leather-Trimmed Upholstery 

Nappa Leather-Trimmed Upholstery

 

EyeSight Driver Assist Technology

10-WAY power-adjustable driver's seat

18-inch alloy wheels

Satin Chrome finish ORVMs

Body-colored door handles

ORVMs with integrated turn signals

2-position Driver Seat Memory

 

Lineartronic CVT

Heated Front Seats

Power adjustable driver and front passenger seat

Ventilated Front Seats

StarTex water repellent upholstery

LED Steering Responsive Headlights

 
 

Hill Descent Control

(HDC)

Dual Rear seat USB charging ports

Auto-dimming rearview mirror with HomeLink

STARLINK 11.6-inch navigation

     
 

Reclining 60/40-split flat-folding rear seatbacks

Retractable Cargo area cover

Harman Kardon Audio System

       
 

Advanced Adaptive Cruise Control

 

Reverse Automatic Braking

       
 

Vehicle Dynamics Control

           
 

Brake Assist

           
               

We recommend

Many of us look at Subaru Outback as a do-it-all value for money station wagon. If you look at it this way, the Premium delivers tremendous bang for your buck. You can have it for $28,995 with a very efficient 2.5 L boxer 4 engine and features like heated front seats and dual-zone climate control. Also, a power tilt/sliding moon-roof is optional.

2020 Subaru Outback Engine and Performance

Subaru is one of the few prominent manufacturers (along with Porsche) that use the flat engine. The base outback has a 2.5 L flat 4 (or boxer 4) engine developing 182 hp and 176 pounds-feet of torque. It feels underpowered in the almost 3600 pounds Subaru station wagon. However, it’s nothing you can’t live with and it delivers excellent fuel economy too.

For some adrenaline junkies, you have is a 2.4 L  turbocharged flat-four which dishes out 260 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque. However, the base powertrain has sufficient power and it perfectly complements the agile handling of the Outback.

The Base trim of 2020 Subaru Outback powered by a 2.5L flat-four pumping out 182 horsepower

Both engines come mated to a CVT transmission which is smooth in delivering power. The Outback is offered with a standard All-Wheel Drive system which offers all-terrain drivability, even from the bare-bones base trim.

Models

Subaru Outback  

(Base)(AWD)

Hyundai Santa Fe  

(Base)(FWD)

Nissan Rogue

(Base)(FWD)

Kia Sportage 

(Base)(FWD)

MSRP

$26645

$25900

$25200

$23990

Engine

2.5L Flat4

2.4L I4

2.5L I4

2.4L I4

Transmission

CVT with 

manual shift

8-speed Automatic 

CVT with automatic shift

6-Speed Automatic

Horsepower

182hp

@5800rpm

185hp

@6000rpm

170hp

@6000rpm

181hp

@6000rpm

Torque

176lb-ft

@4400

178lb-ft

@4000

175lb-ft

@4400

175lb-ft

@4000

The name “outback” has a message – the off-road capability of this car. With 8.7 inches of ground clearance and a standard and capable all-wheel-drive system, this station wagon can put many SUV to shame when going gets tough. The roof rack adds a good dose of toughness. 

Acceleration

The base engine is slow – very slow. It’s slowest in segment taking 8.7 seconds for reaching 60 mph from standing start. If you opt for the turbocharged powertrain, the outback is able to shave off a second when compared to the base powertrain.

2020 Subaru Outback sprints from a standstill to 60 in a decent 8.7 seconds

The All-wheel drive system is a boon as it helps propel the car without any latency which helps it achieve such numbers. The engine produces a continuing and anticipated surge of acceleration across the engine’s power band.

Models

Subaru Outback 

(Base)(AWD)

Hyundai Santa Fe 

(Base)(FWD)

Nissan Rogue 

(Base)(FWD)

Kia Sportage 

(Base)(FWD)

0-60 MPH

8.7

8.6

8.7

7.2(est.)

Quarter mile

16.8

16.5

16.9

16.5

Emission (Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15k mi/yr)

6.8

7.1

6.1(est.)

7.0

The Kia Sportage is a second quicker in attaining the 60 mph mark when compared to all the rivals. All of the other three are similar in terms of acceleration.

Ride and Handling

The Outback rides with composure at slow or high-speed thanks to the stiffened suspension setup. However, it’s still capable of gobbling up those rough spots to keep your family comfortable. Even off-road driving is smooth thanks to the high sidewall tires on 18-inch wheels. The outback possesses surprising agility within tight spaces making city driving effortless.

It has the very good body control and handles precisely. The car feels very nimble because of the short steering ratio which requires less movement for manoeuvring the vehicle. This makes it a breeze to drive even in cities in spite of its dimensions. The 2020 incarnation of Outback flaunts a responsive CVT mode and an effectual all-wheel-drive system.

Braking 

The Subaru Outback braking performance is average in the class. The outback has 12.4-inch brake rotors up front and 11.8 rotors at the back. The Outback takes 130 feet to stop from 70 mph. The standard AWD system guarantees more solid traction at any driving situation.

Models

Subaru Outback

(Base)(AWD)

Hyundai Santa Fe

(Base)(FWD)

Nissan Rogue

(Base)(FWD)

Kia Sportage 

(Base)(FWD)

Brake Front (in.)

12.4

12.6

11.7

12

Brake Rear (in.)

11.8

12

11.5

11.9

60-0 MPH (ft)

130

114

113

115

Contrasted to the opposition, the Subaru stays head to head in terms of dimensions but misses on braking performance due to sheer size and mass. 

2020 Subaru Outback Fuel Economy

The Subaru Outback gas mileage depends on the engine you choose (obvious). The small 2.5 L boxer 4 delivers stellar fuel economy – 26 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway. The most exciting part is that in spite of boasting an all-wheel-drive setup, it still succeeds to give a very healthy range.

Models

Subaru Outback

(Base)(AWD)

Hyundai Santa Fe

(Base)(FWD)

Nissan Rogue

(Base)(FWD)

Kia Sportage 

(Base)(FWD)

MPG (city)

26

22

26

23

MPG (highway)

33

29

33

30

MPG (combined)

29

25

29

26

And when we compare it to the other wagons, it easy to find that turbocharged engines are more frugal. Hyundai Santa Fe is the least with 25 MPG(Combined), followed by Kia Sportage with 26 MPG.

2020 Subaru Outback Interior

8.5/10

The name “Outback” has another hidden meaning – the space out at the back. It was best in class and continues to be best in class. The front and rear seats are spacious too and the seats are supportive. The driving position is good and Subaru has worked on sound deadening for 2018 Outback resulting in a pleasantly quiet ride.

  • Tilting and telescopic steering column
  • Heated steering wheel (Optional)
  • Power driver’s seat (Optional)
2020 Subaru Outback have improved seating comfort

The Subaru Outback can seat five people and it accommodates them spaciously. The outback has best front legroom, shoulder room and legroom among the competitors. The seats are generally comfortable but feel a bit firm. The armrest is well cushioned and the door panel has soft-touch materials. All combine to make the long-distance commute a breeze.

Models

Subaru Outback

(Base)(AWD)

Hyundai Santa Fe

(Base)(FWD)

Nissan Rogue

(Base)(FWD)

Kia Sportage 

(Base)(FWD)

Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

40.1/58.1/42.8

41.2/59.1/44.1

41.6/56.6/43.0

39.3/57.1/41.5

Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)

39.1/57.4/39.5

39.2/58.3/40.9

38.5/55.9/37.9

39.1/55.1/38.2

In the back, Subaru Outback offers a headroom and legroom of 39.1 and 39.5 inches, respectively. Considering that 39.2 inches are the maximum rear headroom in the class, 38.9 inches is impressive. Hyundai offers the best legroom of 40.4 inches among the class rivals.

Interior Features

  • Dual 7 inch/ unified 11.6-inch Multimedia
  • Dual Zone Climate Control
  • Nappa Leather-Trimmed Upholstery
  • Ventilated Front Seats
  • Heated Rear Outboard Seats
  • Eight Cup and Bottle Holders
  • Sun Visors with Illuminated Vanity mirrors
  • Water Repellent StarTex Upholstery(only on Onyx Edition Trim)

Infotainment System

The latest avatar of the Subaru Outback flaunts a user-friendly infotainment system. It comes with a standard 11.6-inch touch display, which is responsive. The screen offers crisp graphics and fast response. For connecting devices, the system offers a USB port and support for Bluetooth.

2020 Subaru Outback offers a massive 11.6-inch tablet-style infotainment display

In addition to navigation and satellite radio, Siri Eye Free connectivity is available, allowing you to integrate some iPhone functions with the ride and voice recognition system. On the side and beneath the screen, are buttons and knobs that allow you to control audio and climate.

Infotainment Features

  • Android Auto and Apple Car play
  • AUX Input 
  • 12-speaker, 576-watt Harman Kardon system
  • Siri Eye Free connectivity
  • Bluetooth

Cargo Capacity

Subaru did a nice job updating the Outback's interior controls from the last generation. Beyond that, all the previous Outback goodness remains plenty of passenger and cargo room and terrific outward visibility .

2020 Subaru Outback cargo space

The Subaru Outback offers an impressive cargo capacity. The ride can hold 73.3 cubic feet of cargo at the expense of rear seating or carry on 32.5 cubic feet of cargo still having passengers on the rear. 

Models

Subaru Outback

(Base)(AWD)

Hyundai Santa Fe

(Base)(FWD)

Nissan Rogue

(Base)(FWD)

Kia Sportage 

(Base)(FWD)

Cargo Volume (cu.-ft)

32.5

35.9

39.3

30.7

With 39.3 cu-ft, Nissan Rogue has the most cargo space followed by the Hyundai Santa Fe at 35.9 cu-ft. Kia Sportage comes in last after the Subaru with 30.7 cu-ft. 

2020 Subaru Outback interior
2020 Subaru Outback interior
2020 Subaru Outback rear seat
2020 Subaru Outback rear seat

2020 Subaru Outback Exterior

The Subaru Outback has a typical station wagon long glasshouse. However, it rides far above other station wagons and even some SUVs. All these lend it a unique sleek but raised stance on the road. The functional roof racks and liberal body cladding lend it a rugged look. The 18-inch wheels complement the look well filling the wheel arches fully. 

2020 Subaru Outback Exterior Design

The application of high strength steel helps keep the A and B pillars lean for greater outward visibility. The low beltline also gives a greater sense of the road up front and the sides. The use of plastic cladding on the lower half of the car makes it useful on numerous offroad trails. The combination of the coloured top and the black cladding gives the outback a distinctive look.  

Models

Subaru Outback

(Base)(AWD)

Hyundai Santa Fe

(Base)(FWD)

Nissan Rogue

(Base)(FWD)

Kia Sportage 

(Base)(FWD)

Length (in)

191.3

187.8

184.5

176.4

Width (in)

73.0

74.4

72.4

73.0

Height (in)

66.4

66.1

66.3

64.4

Ground clearance (in)

8.7

7.3

7.8

6.4

Wheelbase (in)

108.1

108.9

106.5

105.1

Track width (in) F/R

61.8/62.8

64.1/64.5

62.8/62.8

63.3/63.8

Curb weight (lbs)

3634

3591

3464

3305

Exterior Features

  • LED Steering Responsive Headlights
  • Roof Rails
  • 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Endurance Plastic Body cladding
  • ORVMs with integrated turn signals
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback
2020 Subaru Outback

2020 Subaru Outback Safety

9.0/10

Subaru has kept the Outback safe by providing all the important safety features from the base up. Adaptive Cruise control and side curtain airbags for the rear passengers are features that come in as standard. The body has also been souped up with high strength steel and reinforcements to the chassis for better crash protection. This also makes the ride much more rigid which improves handling as well.

Safety Features

  • EyeSight Driver Assist Technology
  • High Beam Assist(HBA)
  • DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System
  • Blind Spot Detection 
  • Lane Change Assist and Rear Cross-Traffic Alert
  • Brake Override System
  • High-Resolution Rear Vision Camera

2020 Subaru Outback Competition

Hyundai Santa Fe

The Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is a 5 seat version of the 7 seat Santa Fe. It’s spacious and comfortable but lacks the practicality and off-road capability of the outback. However, if you fall for the look of the vehicle more than anything else, the Santa Fe Sport looks decidedly more chick. 

2020 Hyundai Santa Fe

The Subaru is superior in all of these aspects and is a very competent offroader. The Outback is the better choice of the two as it provides better power, efficiency and comfort features.

Nissan Rogue

The Rogue is the least powerful of the lot and this also explains to lazy acceleration. This makes it a very pitiable offroader. It also fails in the interior which is dated and houses an outclassed infotainment system. Outdoor visibility is a bummer that cuts it below the Outback in almost all aspects. With all these, the Rogue doesn’t stand a chance against the All rounded Subaru

2020 Nissan Rogue

Kia Sportage

The Kia Sportage makes a good cause with its excellent ride and handling, comfortable and spacious interiors and a very immersive dashboard layout. The sound insulation brings it at par with the Subaru Outback. But the Outback outshines it in cargo space and better power transmission and makes it a better offroader with a dedicated all-wheel-drive setup.

2020 Kia Sportage

2020 Subaru Outback Final Verdict

The new Subaru Outback continues to strengthen its position as a value for  money station wagon that can take you places you never imagined. While other cars have strength in a specific area, the outback is a do-it-all vehicle. It’s comfortable, spacious, fuel-efficient and comes with Subaru Eyesight suite of driver assistance systems.

For daily drivers, Subaru Outback SUV is pleasing, allowing to enjoy short rides as well as relish long cruises. The 2.5i trims offer an impressive combined fuel economy of 28 mpg, which gains attention from almost anyone aiming for a smooth SUV riding experience with great mileage.