Now With A Sharper Design. Subaru has updated the Outback’s exterior design for the 2023 model year. Instead of last year’s humdrum design, the wagon has a much sharper look that matches the Forester.

At the front, the headlights have a more angular design thanks to a triangular piece that sits at the lower portion of the lights. The grille has grown in size, as has the front bumper, gaining a more angular section that connects to the headlights. Beyond a slightly larger rear bumper, things remain the same at the back.

We think the updated exterior design helps the Outback’s appeal, though Subaru hasn’t touched the interior, which is an odd decision. The interior design of the Outback is boring, especially on lower trims that aren’t equipped with the massive vertical display. Simple lines, black trim, and durable plastics create a dull cabin.

Something For Everyone. The Outback is offered in a total of eight different trims, resulting in an available trim for a wide range of consumers. From the simple Base trim to the luxurious Touring and the rugged Wilderness trim somewhere in the middle, most consumers will be able to find an Outback that fits their needs.

The Premium trim might be toward the lower end of the lineup, but it stands out as the most value-packed option. For $31,920 (with destination), the Premium trim brings LED fog lights, wireless smartphone compatibility, heated front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, a power-adjustable driver’s seat, and an 11.6-inch touchscreen.

For consumers looking to go off-roading, the Wilderness trim that was introduced last year returns and stands out as the clear choice for adventure seekers. With all-terrain tires, 17-inch wheels, an upgraded all-wheel-drive system, a heavy-duty skid plate, increased ground clearance, a rugged body kit, and an upgraded roof rack with a 700-pound limit.

2023 Subaru Outback Interior

Roomy, Versatile Interior. The Outback is roughly a foot longer than the compact Forester, which results in a roomier cabin. There’s plenty of room for five people and the wagon has a large cargo area. Not to mention the Outback’s low load floor makes it far easier to load cargo into the wagon than in an SUV.

The Outback offers passengers in the back 39.5 inches of legroom and the rear seats recline for added comfort. When it comes to cargo capacity, the Outback has 32.5 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats. With the rear seats folded, the wagon has 75.7 cubic feet of total cargo space.

Subaru knows its consumers and offers the Outback with water-repellant synthetic leather upholstery that’s easy to clean. Of course, Nappa leather upholstery is available, though it doesn’t match the Outback’s rugged character.

Pristine Safety Score. Subaru is one of the leaders when it comes to automotive safety, packing every one of its cars with an extensive list of advanced safety features and ensuring its vehicles earn excellent crash-test scores.

In IIHS testing the 2022 Outback earned a Top Safety Pick+ award. Without any major changes to the Outback or the way IIHS tests vehicles, we expect the score to remain the same for the 2023 model year. The NHTSA gave the 2022 Outback a five-star overall safety rating.

The 2023 Outback comes with a long list of safety features which includes forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keeping assist, automatic high-beam assist, pedestrian detection, and adaptive cruise control. Upgrades include blind spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and reverse automatic emergency braking.

For the new model year, Subaru has fitted the Touring, which is the range-topping model in the lineup, with a new wide-angle camera that helps the EyeSight system’s dual cameras. Subaru claims the new camera helps expand the system’s field of view and helps the vehicle better recognize bicycles and pedestrians. We’re not quite sure why Subaru limited the new camera to the Touring trim, but we could see lower trims benefit from the system in the future.

Final Thoughts. There aren’t too many wagons to choose from, which is a shame, because the 2023 Subaru Outback highlights just how good wagons can be. With a roomy cargo area, great safety scores, impressive safety equipment, and high-tech features, the Outback blends the lines of being a family-friendly utility vehicle.

For comparison, the Volvo V60 Cross Country is an upscale wagon with a rugged touch. It has comfortable seats, a high-end interior, and a smooth ride. The Audi A4 Allroad is a lifted, rugged version of the A4 sedan in wagon form. It has high-tech features, roomy seats, and a 261-horsepower engine.

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