• Steve Posted: 9/30/2009 5:12am PDT

    John, are you guys really doing your homework? I am!
    First, my 2008 LL Bean (which I traded yesterday for my new 2.5 Limited) had a navigation system, as Phil pointed out, above. Second, in an era where so many manufacturers are knocking themselves out building hybrids, Subaru has built a large model that vies for gas mileage with some of its competitors' cheapest, lowest-rated-for-safety autos. And with standard all-wheel drive. In my mind, those features alone blow everything else out of the water.
    Granted, the car isn't perfect (the directional side mirrors aren't offered this year at any price) but I think it should rank at the very top of its class because it stands out for comfort AND economy.

  • Bill Posted: 9/13/2009 8:28am PDT

    John, let me get this straight... Are you saying that if Subaru offered a $26,500 "base" model Outback with dual zone climate control it would be rated higher? I'm struggling to find the logic here. With both the Legacy and Outback lines Subaru offers far more value in its base trims than anything on the road. With AWD, unsurpassed safety and a good list of standard features AND now meeting or exceeding the FWD competition's fuel economy ratings how can you not recognize "the little guy"?
    As for "Our ratings are comparative, although Features isn't just matching one vehicle's list against another's. We look at anything functional that doesn't directly affect comfort: storage cubbies, how the seats fold, etc." then why are you not praising Subaru for offering their trick folding roof rack when virtually all of the CUV competition offers roof rails as an option/accessory? Same with the trunk mat on the Outback, surely an extra cost accessory on the "other guys". Having spent some time working for both Toyota and Subaru I think the reference to the Venza is ludacris. There is not a single Toyota model, save for maybe the Prius, that offers class-leading value - period.

  • Phil Posted: 9/12/2009 3:51pm PDT

    A navigation system has been available on the top end models of the Outback since MY 2006. It was available on the Outback XT and the LL Bean editions.