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2018 Subaru Outback Pros vs Cons. Should You Buy?

Why Buy a 2018 Subaru Outback?

Should You Buy a 2018 Subaru Outback? Here Are Some Reasons For and Against

The Subaru Outback started life as one of the last station wagons. It has now morphed into something closer to an SUV. In many ways, it was ahead of its time. Smaller SUVs, now often called crossover vehicles, are gaining in popularity. If you want something sporty that can go on off-road adventures, family trips and grocery-store runs, the 2018 Subaru Outback is a great choice.

What's New For 2018

This year's Outback model gets an overhaul to the front and rear bumpers. The steering has been tuned for even better handling. The suspension system has even been upgraded for greater off-road performance. The overall ride quality and quietness inside the vehicle has been improved over last year's model.

Price Tip
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Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2018 Subaru Outback – The Pros

1. Excellent in all Weather and Terrain Conditions

The 2018 Subaru Outback is a great choice for anyone living in an area with extreme climates. The all-wheel drive Outbacks can cut through the snow and ice with ease. Rainy, slick roads are no match for the AWD and traction control of the Outback. The vehicle can even venture off-road for wherever life takes you. Bumpy back roads or snowy trails are always accessible.

2. Good Handling and Performance

The 2018 Subaru Outback has precise, responsive steering. The soft suspension system makes for a comfortable ride, even when driving over rough terrain. Good ground clearance and a rugged build make the Outback better than most competitors when it comes to off-road driving.

The engine choices are a 2.5-liter four-cylinder or a 3.6-liter six-cylinder. The beefier engine puts out 256 hp. The vehicle provides enough power for decent acceleration, towing and transporting a lot of cargo.

3. Lots of Cargo Space

The interior space is room inside of the 2018 Subaru Outback. There is plenty of room for five adult passengers, with plenty more to spare for cargo. Standard seat configurations give you 35.5 cu. ft. of storage, while putting the seats down provides for 73.3 cu. ft.

Optional roof and rear racks can provide for even more space for your long trips or off-road adventures. The Outback also has a lot of small-item storage areas for the family to make use of.

4. A Comfortable and Quiet Ride

The 2018 Subaru Outback really shines when it comes to a quiet and smooth ride. The experience is possible thanks to Subaru's unique engine design and great suspension system. The engine produces less vibration and the suspension soaks up every bump in the road. Subaru does a good job of preventing the outside noises from entering the interior.

5. Paddle Shifters For the CVT

Subaru's continually variable transmission system handles shifts accurately and smoothly. For drivers who appreciate a more hands-on approach, you can also manually shift through the gears. Subaru offers the option for paddle shifters to make your shifts right from the steering wheel.

6. Good Fuel Economy

Good gas mileage in an SUV or Crossover isn't something consumers expect to receive. The 2018 Subaru Outback does a pretty good job in this area. Even with the most power engine, you should get up to 25 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway.

7. Smaller Vehicle That Can Still Tow

When you need to tow a boat or trailer, you generally think of using a full-sized truck or SUV. The Outback is an easy-to-drive size, but still has the power to tow. The Outback has a towing capacity of up to 3000 pounds.

8. Sleek, Rugged Exterior

Never has something looked like a station wagon, but also looked so cool. The exterior of the 2018 Subaru Outback has a rugged, sporty design. Subaru offers over 14 different colors for the exterior.

9. Luxurious Interior

In contrast with the rugged exterior, the 2018 Subaru Outback has the interior of a luxury vehicle. You can ride in style, even if you are riding off-road or through a snowy trail.

10. Unique Flat Engine Design for Reliability

The unique, flat engines in Outbacks provide for less vibrations. This leads to a smoother ride. It also leads to less damage and more longevity for the engine. This has been a trademark of the Subaru Outback for years and the 2018 model continues this tradition.

Buying Tip: To avoid overpaying on a new car, shop prices online first. Get up front pricing before you walk into a dealership. We recommend the following free services; Car Clearance Deals, NADAguides, CarsDirect & Motortrend.
These free services will offer you the lowest prices and supply you with multiple competing price quotes. You will know the best price before you visit the dealer.

Reasons Not to Buy a 2018 Subaru Outback – The Cons

1. Engine Choices Haven't Changed In Awhile

The flat engines are innovative, but Subaru hasn't offered anything new for the Outback since its inception. Some different engine configurations and power levels might be nice.

2. Not Enough Changes or Innovations

There is a lot to love about a Subaru Outback. Perhaps Subaru keeps this in mind when they roll out new models each year. It might be nice to see some more innovations or creative upgrades in a newer model of Outback.

3. CVT Can Make a Whining Noise

The CVT does its job well, but can make an annoying whining noise from time to time. This is somewhat negated by the 2018 Subaru Outbacks sound insulation, but it's still unfortunately there.

4. Base Flat-4 Engine is Sluggish

If performance is your main priority, stay away from the base engine or choose a different vehicle. Acceleration for the base engine is downright sluggish. It will take you over 9 seconds to reach 60 mph even with a light load on a straight road. Choose the upgraded engine model and you'll be a lot happier with the performance.

How it Stacks up to the Competition

Competition for the 2018 Subaru Outback comes from other Crossover vehicles. Three of the top competitors are the Nissan Murano, Ford Edge and the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport. All of the vehicles fall within a similar price range. The Outback usually comes out the cheapest or at least second cheapest depending on your area and the trim and options you select.

The Outback has more seating and a more comfortable ride than the Edge. It beats out the Santa Fe in terms of cargo space and safety features. It is much cheaper than a Nissan Murano. The handling and AWD in rough terrain makes the Outback the best of the bunch.


The 2018 Subaru Outback offers something really unique among vehicle choices today. It has a sportier look than most crossover vehicles, while also outperforming most of them. If you are in the market for a crossover vehicle that can do it all, then the latest Outback might be the right choice for you.

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Previous Subaru Outback Buying Guides:

Why buy a 2017 Subaru Outback? w/ pros vs cons
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