Video: 2023 Subaru Outback: Up Close
By Cars.com EditorsApril 14, 2022
About the video
From the 2022 New York International Auto Show, we get up close with the redesigned 2023 Subaru Outback. Watch our video to find out more.
(wind blowing) I'm standing in the not really wilderness at the New York International Auto Show, at the Subaru display, where there's lots of ambient wildlife type noises and fake snow, with an Outback.
Now, the Outback is an extremely popular vehicle. It's won some awards from cars.com in the past for its family friendliness, things like that. It's one of the few SUV or crossover vehicles that has resisted becoming too much of an SUV. It's really more wagon-like. All I can tell you is it has extreme brand loyalty. Try and get between one of these and its owners and they will beat you with a sandal, or an oar from the canoe that's invariably gonna be on top, or a kayak. But that's not an oar. I think that's a paddle. I clearly don't know. But I do know that for 2023, Subaru has updated all versions of the Outback, except the Wilderness. Once again, Wilderness, which already got its own treatment, and it has a new front end. It has a look that's more like the Impreza and WRX already have. Smaller headlights, more vertical front end. And also the wheel arches have been redone. They're more of a swept back design. And this kind of peak here is really to address splatter and rock chips and stuff like that, which tend to come up when you're going off-road, which you do in an Outback, or at least you should. Now, one of the other big changes is the Onyx, which is one of the specialty trim levels, is now available with the less powerful engine. The 2.5 liter normally aspirated engine instead of the 2.4 liter turbocharged engine. Beyond that, some changes to EyeSight, which is their forward collision warning and prevention system that uses the two cameras here up high on the windshield. Now, if this were a Touring trim level, that is the highest, it would have a new center mono camera that they say is wide angle, which allows it to see pedestrians and such when entering an intersection. Now, this one is not the Touring, but they say the whole system sees better at wide angles, has some programming updates, stuff like that to make it work better. The rest of the news is inside. So the big change is an upgrade to the Starlink touchscreen system multimedia system here, which is now a vertically oriented 11.6 inch touchscreen, which does one important thing at least, which is to surface some of the more important features like heated seats. So they're always there. You can just reach out, hit it. It's not in a sub menu, so you're tapping several times just to get to something you wanna do. Same thing with turning off the automatic engine stop/start, which some people don't like. You can turn it off easily. Similarly, what they've done is they've made it so both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto take up a good deal of the screen. I'd say about 60%, and a real vertical kind of arrangement. More of a portrait than a landscape, which is great, because oftentimes when you have these vertical screens, the Android Auto or Apple CarPlay will just be a little horizontal part of it, and ends up being smaller than you would find in a vehicle with a normal wide screen touch screen. So what that gives you is more to see, a bigger image, which is good. And also, if you're using it for mapping, which is kind of the point much of the time, you've got a vertical image. And if you're going in direction of travel, you wanna have your map vertical anyway, as opposed to wide screen. So that's a big advantage. The Outback also has added a USBC jack next to the USBA underneath the screen. And what the system does is it's the first navigation system to integrate what3words. What3words is a separate company that has mapped the entire world into three meter by three meter squares, each of which has three random words associated with it. And the whole point behind this, they say, is because sometimes an address doesn't match where the front door is for a location. Or maybe you wanna find a gate to something or a driveway and it doesn't match. This way, you use those three random words and it can get you there. I don't know how effective this thing is, but I did bother to look up cars.com's home office and find out that the street on which the office resides has such intriguing locations as gravy onion angle, clear apples dangerously, and locate spicy method. So if you're bored, you can go to what3words, three numeral three, .com and find out where you live. Or maybe a better idea, go to cars.com and find out more about what's happening at the New York International Auto Show.