What We Love & Hate About the 2021 Subaru Outback

April 24, 2023
5 min read

Subaru has made its mark among those who love to go on an adventure but who also have a practical side. The Outback is an iconic wagon that has a comfortable interior and plenty of space for the gear that you need to take along on your adventure. It is packed with modern conveniences, and it has a powertrain that gives it excellent off-road capability. Let's explore the reasons why the Outback might be one of the best crossovers of 2021.

What We Love & Hate About the 2021 Subaru Outback

What’s New?

This year Subaru only added a few extra features to last year’s crossover design. The Outback was completely redesigned in 2020, so this year, there were only a few upgrades and improvements. Last year's improvements included a more powerful engine that allows it to tow up to 3500 pounds, increased back seat space, and a bigger cargo area. (1)

They also added the latest technology to the 2020 model, and this model continues those changes. This year, It received adaptive headlights that will turn with the steering wheel to give you better visibility around curves. It also added a passenger seat belt warning light and chime. It now has a rear seat alert to remind you to check the back seat before you exit the vehicle. (2)


The Outback has an appeal for those who like a rugged appearance and a vehicle that is ready for adventure but also one that is refined and practical. It has distinctive exterior styling with elegant lines and an artistic appearance. Its reputation is built on comfortable interiors, advanced technology, and outstanding performance. Let's take a closer look at some of these features.


The heart of Subaru’s performance is its iconic Subaru BOXER engine. This balanced design has a low center of gravity and contributes to the excellent off-road performance of the Outback. It is an efficient engine design, and Subaru engines are known to last for many miles. You can expect to have your Subaru for many years to come. Subaru has built its reputation reliability and long service life. Its low cost of ownership makes it a good value.

One thing that you need to understand about a Subaru is that they do not emphasize performance features like rapid acceleration or sports handling. Many people consider the acceleration and performance of the Subaru to be rather lackluster in these areas. The Outback would be better suited for those who like to take it slow and steady.

Subaru’s symmetrical all-wheel drive gives the Outback excellent all-weather handling capability and a stable feel. (3) It has 8.7 inches of ground clearance, which allows you to clear small obstacles when going off-road. (3) Subaru also features its famous X-Mode that optimizes the symmetrical all-wheel-drive system and gives you more responsive handling when you need it. (3)

Interior and Cargo Space

The new Outback has the comfortable interior you expect from a Subaru, and it has up to 75 cu. ft. of cargo space. It is known as a durable station wagon that is made from high-quality materials. The interior is more than capable of withstanding the challenges of a family adventure. The ride is smooth and quiet, much like you would expect from a high-end sedan.

When it comes to style and design, the Subaru Outback emphasizes practicality, and some drivers consider its interior to be a little plain and unexciting. Others consider it to be elegant and sophisticated in its simplicity. It all depends on what you expect from interior design. The seats are positioned high, which gives you good visibility all around the vehicle. It also has a spacious back seat with plenty of room that will not cramp your passengers. (2)

Amenities and Technology

When it comes to technology and amenities, this is one area where Subaru stands out. Base models offer a 7-inch touchscreen, but you can upgrade to an 11.6-inch vertically-oriented touchscreen that is easy to see from the driver's perspective. It does offer rotary buttons for the climate control and infotainment system, which makes it a little more comfortable for those who are a little less technologically oriented.

When it comes to technology, the Outback offers everything you would expect, including a Wi-Fi hotspot, wireless device charging, smartphone integration, and premium audio systems. (4) The interior of the new Outback is well-designed, and everything is within easy reach. Subaru took a driver-centric approach to their design, and this is one of the reasons why it is so popular. You can enjoy amenities such as heated front and rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and dual-zone climate control. (4) Subaru thought about your comfort when it designed the interior of the Outback to make your trip more pleasurable.

Advanced Safety

Subaru built its reputation on reliability and safety. They continue this tradition with the new Outback. They consistently received top ratings from the National Highway Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Subaru includes a long list of passive and active systems to help keep you safe along the trip.

Some of the more advanced features include a standard forward-collision warning system with an automatic braking feature, adaptive cruise control with a lane-keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, and a rear cross-traffic alert. (4) Subaru's standard EyeSight Driver-Assist Technology Suite has been known to reduce rear-end crashes and injuries by as much as 85%, according to the auto manufacturer. (4)

Final Verdict

There is no denying that this crossover has plenty of loyal fans that choose it year after year. It may not be the most exciting when it comes to interior design, exterior design, or thrilling performance, but that is not what makes Subaru customers so loyal. For those who are looking for practical design, quality materials, and a comfortable vehicle with excellent off-road performance, the 2021 Outback is an excellent choice. Subaru drivers expect quality, and this year, Subaru delivered both inside and out. If you want a reliable vehicle that will last for many years to come, we highly recommend Outback as one of the best crossovers of 2021.


2020 Subaru Outback, Car and Driver, https://www.caranddriver.com/subaru/outback-2020
2021 Subaru Outback, Car and Driver, https://www.caranddriver.com/subaru/outback
2021 Outback, Subaru, https://www.subaru.com/vehicles/outback/index.html
2021 Outback, Subaru, https://www.subaru.com/vehicles/outback/features.html

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