Subaru’s long-serving and standard Outback is now out there with a turbo kick. Listed below are 5 issues it’s best to know concerning the Sport XT.

This Outback Sport’s been to the health club

Underwhelming. That’s a form phrase for the Subaru Outback’s efficiency. However now, ultimately, right here’s one with a turbocharged 2.4-litre flat-four petrol engine to ship the efficiency many Aussies demand. These boosted Outback XTs ship 32 per cent extra energy and 42 per cent extra torque than common 2.5-litre non-turbo Outbacks. The tow ranking jumps from 2000kg to 2400kg.

Such numbers higher go well with the Outback Sport’s rugged beauty. Observe the adventure-ready roof rails, sporty color flashes, black alloys and good-looking wagon fashion, a welcome antidote to blobbier SUV rivals. The brand new engine provides chunk to the bark, but in addition $5000 to the asking value. This Sport XT is $52,190 plus on-roads, whereas a fancier, leatherier Touring XT is $55,990 plus expenses.

The drive expertise is brawnier, however dents the pockets

The engine’s a detuned model of Subaru’s WRX turbo motor – a pleasant brag when your mates giggle about your “sensible” household automobile. There’s 183kW of energy and a formidable 350Nm of torque, the latter all there by 2000rpm for pleasing low-down shove.

We’re informed the earlier era Outback 3.6R – a hero Subaru – impressed this new turbo engine’s character. There’s not fairly the buttery, straightforward energy of the three.6R’s much-missed flat six-cylinder, however the Outback XT’s not far off. There’s severe pull on faucet. Its CVT auto gearbox – as within the WRX – is an efficient one, however doesn’t assist driving pleasure. Paddle shifters with synthetic gear “steps” enhance issues and really feel sharp in Sport mode. However put together for a shock on the bowser. Turbo Outbacks want 95 gas and drink at a fee of 9.0L/100km total. On the town, that climbs to a guzzling 12.1L/100km. Throw in $2673 for five-years/62,500km servicing and it ain’t low cost to run.

It’s a five-seater extremely suited to Aussie household life

The Outback XT’s an automotive Swiss Military knife: an all-rounder to rival an in-form Pat Cummins. It has gutsy efficiency, with a roomy effectively laid out, effectively geared up cabin and it’s comfortable on- and off-road.

Highlights embody a 11.6-inch tablet-style infotainment display that runs wi-fi CarPlay and Android Auto, energy heated seats and water-repellent faux-leather trim. Helpful security gadgets embody radar cruise management, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert. Kudos to Subaru for calibrating its lane-keep system so I don’t instantly scramble to show it off.

As a substitute of compromising cabin house by becoming (not often used) third-row seating, Subaru’s prioritised a wagon-like prolonged boot, full-size spare and huge rear passenger house. Children out again get heated reclining seats, limitless leg and head room, USB ports, vents and elbow-cushioning arm rests.

Grumbles? The dashboard’s too plain, there no wi-fi cellphone charging and no sliding rear seats.

Regardless of missing low vary, it’ll take you deep into the scrub

Adventurous Aussies usually dismiss the Outback as a result of it isn’t a low vary 4WD. As a substitute, they unnecessarily purchase lumbering, uncomfortable dual-cab utes for biannual tenting journeys. However sandy highway surf spots, snowfields and wild tenting areas are comfortable Outback looking grounds.

There’s competence in spades with Subaru’s good X-Mode controlling traction management and torque, whereas 213mm floor clearance sees you sail over gravelly climbs and washouts. I pushed it by way of gentle sand, moist mud and a few mighty, undulating climbs and it by no means faltered. However such capability means its on-road dealing with’s wobblier than many rival five-seat SUVs. This being the “Sport” XT mannequin, it may do with barely stiffer suspension and a decrease journey top.

With wise hat on, simply purchase the non-turbo Outback as a substitute

This Outback XT has an issue, and it’s pleasant hearth. The non-turbo Outback Sport has in any other case equivalent spec (twin tailpipes apart) for $5000 much less and drinks cheaper common unleaded at 7.3L/100km. The turbo premium right here is excessive, particularly if most of your driving is city. And whereas the efficiency leap is marked, the turbo’s nonetheless no outright thrill-bringer with a soulful soundtrack. So, the Outback XT’s a snug commuter, secure household hauler and keen adventurer, however then so is the common and cheaper Outback. It simply does so at a extra leisurely tempo. And for a lot of patrons, that’ll be simply high-quality.