Simon Lai road tests and reviews the 2015 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium.
Following on from our test drives of the Subaru Liberty line up, I hopped into the Outback equivalents starting with the 2015 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium.
As the logical name suggests, it has the same 2.5 litre petrol engine found under bonnet of the Liberty dealing out 129kW and 235Nm.
It’s also controlled by a six-speed CVT gearbox giving a similar drive experience taking into account the difference in size and weight distribution.
Height-wise the Outback roofline is lower than most SUVs in its class but it is reasonably long giving it it’s recognisable flattened, elongated look.
The internal styling of the Outback is pretty much identical to the Liberty range, just that it sits inside a different body.
From the steering wheel, to the instrument panel, the switchgear to the centre display, the whole dash looks like a cut ‘n’ paste job.
The centre dash houses the sleek looking Subaru 7” touchscreen and the equally functional sat nav system.
Dual zone climate control, auto lights, fog lights and adaptive cruise control are all present in this model and unlike the upper spec 3.6R has an auto start/stop function.
The medium size glove box has a soft release door while the rest of the cabin storage is on par.
Capacity is made all the more versatile by the fold down back row of seats. The rear seats can be let down from the back with release latches in the boot and the backrest angle can be adjusted for rear passengers’ comfort with levers cleverly located behind your elbow.
Being an SUV the features which set it aside from the Liberty sedan are its roof rails with cross bar, front mud guards, an extra row of fold down seats and a powered tailgate that has a height memory function for lower clearance areas.
And of course the Outback is AWD with an X-Mode button on the centre console to assist in various terrain controlling the engine and transmission plus braking for hill descent control.
The power distribution to all four wheels in either mode is also displayed on the centre touchscreen.
Also present in the Outback are two driving modes – Intelligent and Sport. Sport mode gives a steeper acceleration curve which can be seen graphically on the colour driver info screen.
Unexpectedly the fuel economy came out about the same as the Liberty sedan, just under 10 litres per 100km.
On top of all this the 2.5i Premium is kitted out with a reversing camera, leather interior, powered and heated front seats, heated electric mirrors, auto wipers with de-icer and a sunroof.
Like the Liberty, the 2015 Outback 2.5i Premium is an impressive package equipped with a raft of safety and comfort features and the added bonus of increased storage capacity and mild off-roadability.
In our next review we’ll talk about the more powerful and better equipped Outback 3.6R.
NUTS and BOLTS – 2015 Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium
Engine: 2.5 litre petrol producing 129kW and 235Nm
Warranty: 3 years Unlimited km
Safety: Five Stars
Price: From $41,490