Subaru of America is known for its rugged, safe and practical vehicles, and the all-new 2020 Outback did nothing but burnish that reputation during its introduction at the New York International Auto Show today.
The 2020 Outback sits on the Subaru Global Platform (SGP). The new-for-2020 Onyx Edition injects familiarerior with black trim and dark 18-inch wheels for a presence that's borderline imposing.
The Outback is Subaru's best-selling vehicle, and for good reason.
Either way, you get a Lineartronic CVT which can simulate an 8-speed manual transmission. The station wagon blurs the lines between crossover and auto like never before, offering impressive ground clearance and a huge increase in torsional rigidity from the previous model for a sure-footed driving experience. With a stiffer frame and other improvements to the structure and additional airbags, Subaru expects the Outback to achieve top safety scores when it is tested later this year, including a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
The Outback uses MacPherson struts with new internal rebound springs, aluminum lower L-arms and new 23-mm hollow stabilizer bar for its front suspension. It includes automatic emergency braking, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, and lane centering.
That means it will come with the latest crash avoidance and driver distraction technology, as well as being equipped with a large vertical tablet-style touchscreen in the centre of the dash, and available with a 360-degree "around view" camera. Convenience items added to the new vehicle include a hands-free powered tailgate - at least in higher spec models. Further, the seats are wrapped in a new water-repellant durable StarTex™ material. The driver and front passenger, meanwhile, enjoy 10-way adjustable, heated seats with lumbar support, standard on Limited and Touring models.
The rear seat is now more spacious, with rear head, shoulder and leg room enlarged, while USB ports have been increased to four.
The body itself is styled following Subaru's "Dynamic x Solid" philosophy, which is tied in with the "Active x Tough" concept. Wider fenders, large hexagonal grille, front cladding and LED fog lights on the corners (standard on all trims except Base) emphasize the SUV's capability.
Bringing out some facts and figures, the Outback offers up to 2,143 litres (75.7 cubic feet) of cargo space with the rear seatbacks folded down. Base models will come standard with a 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system, with an 8.0-inch screen taking its place on higher models.
While it's aimed at exhausted and texting drivers, a new 11.6-inch touchscreen display that's standard with all but the entry-level trim may prove to be something of a distraction, too, and is the high-tech showpiece of an interior that's quieter than the one in the outgoing best-seller for the brand.