Back when it was launched, most of a decade ago, the Tribeca was given flamboyant design that looked almost alien--and that was part of its charm. Somehow that didn't agree with those in high places, and an exterior refresh came in 2008 that nipped and tucked the Tribeca to a far more conservative look, making it more anonymous on the outside--all as it maintained its curvy, once-futuristic cockpit.
That duality remains today--and a reminder that a complete interior redesign is far more complicated and costly than exterior cosmetics. Today the Tribeca remains smooth and decent-looking, even handsome. For better or worse, the interior looks a little space-age, a little dated.
The 2014 Tribeca remains about the same size as the Subaru Outback, but with a design that's calculated so as not to offend anyone. Especially from the front, its styling is generic to the point of invisibility. It might not even register as a Subaru to some.
The interior makes more of a impression, for better or for worse. There's a little too much matte-metallic plastic; and it's a little dated, with its space-robbing contours and overuse of matte-metallic surfaces. But the details of the design are handsome, with extensive ambient lighting adding a touch of sophistication.