Because motherhood is an adventure, too.
Motherhood is quite an adventure in itself, isn’t it? Each day brings something new. Some days its baseball practice, others it’s dance, grocery shopping, or playdates with friends. As a mother of two school-aged kids, when I look for a new vehicle, I look for one that can handle all of this chaos. But it doesn’t end there, I want a vehicle that can help me feel calm and in control – because with all of this daily running around, I feel like that is rarely the case.
To be honest, the Subaru Outback was never on my list of vehicles that I thought would make a great family everyday driver. To me, this vehicle screamed outdoor adventure and road trip across the US. Known for all wheel drive and being a rugged car that can withstand all sorts of driving situations, I could definitely see this vehicle as being able to keep up with our busy lifestyle. But the question still remained in my head: would I enjoy driving it?
I was excited to hear that I was going to be able to spend an entire week in the 2017 Subaru Outback 3.6R Touring/HDL. As always, we had a schedule full of everyday adventures planned and I was ready to put it to the test.
As expected, the adventurous side of the Subaru Outback was perfect for my busy life because it made it easy to haul around both the kids and all of their sports gear. Although, to my surprise, the interior design and attention to details gave this vehicle a certain luxurious feel. Plus as an added bonus, the Subaru Outback had helpful technology that simply made life easier.
The Subaru Outback is also a great car when used; we’ve kept our original review intact but will be analyzing the reliability of the used vehicle at the bottom of this post.
Who This Car Is For:
- Singles, couples or small families
- Drivers who like adventure
- People who need space for sports/adventure gear
- Drivers looking for style and design
- Anyone looking for AWD and other vehicle safety mechanisms
What it Costs:
- 2017 Subaru Outback 3.6R Touring starts at $38,195
- The model we drove was this same price, all features included
“Touring” Means Top of the Line
The Subaru Outback comes in many different models. The cheapest of the bunch is the 2.5i, with a price point starting at $25,645. From that point on up, there are five more models in the Outback line. The touring model is at the top of that line with the most features and the highest price.
Fashion Driven Design
When I first opened up the door to the Subaru Outback 3.6R Touring, my jaw dropped. The interior design had style and class with beautifully coordinated Java leather-trimmed upholstery paired with an otherwise classic gray interior.
In the front, the layout around the captain’s seat made sense. Things such as the radio volume, seat adjustments, and media controls were all within easy reach.
The center console was large enough to actually have a purpose, yet somehow it didn’t seem to get in the way. There were also two cup holders in the center, a spot for change and a cubby to hold my phone. I basically had a hub to store everything I needed on a daily basis as I ran between practices and events.
Back Seats With Everything the Kids Need, Which Keeps Things Peaceful
From the rear seats, my kids boasted many of the same luxuries as I had up front, such as heated seats and access to two more USB ports. I will also add that I never once heard them argue that the other one was “too close” or heard them cry the other’s “touching me.” Although, the view out of the moonroof may have helped as a distraction. I wasn’t about to disrupt the beauty of silence to ask, so we may never know.
Kids and Gear: It All Fits in This Cargo Space
For our small family of four, this vehicle was the perfect size with even a little bit extra space for a friend to come along if needed. While there wasn’t wasted space, everything we needed to take along with us for our busy schedule could fit with ease. With the kids’ seats in place, the cargo space in the 2017 Subaru Outback 3.6R Touring measured at 35.5 cubic feet. Although, if I leave the kids at home and lower the seats, I can jump that space up to 73.3 cubic feet!
With the kids’ seats in place, the cargo space in the 2017 Subaru Outback 3.6R Touring measured at 35.5 cubic feet. Although, if I leave the kids at home and lower the seats, I can jump that space up to 73.3 cubic feet!
Aside from the numbers, what really made me happy was that I could fill the back with their sports equipment and still have space to grab groceries on the way home from practice! Talk about a real timesaver over needing to stop by home to unload and then head back out to shop.
Thoughtful Technology in the Subaru Outback Made Things Easy on Me
I loved that the Subaru Outback had style and I loved that it had functionality. However, what I loved most about the vehicle was that it made several of the things that I do on a daily basis a bit more simple.
- When using the heated seats, the car would remember my last setting and turn the seats back on for me when I re-entered the vehicle after turning it off.
- When sitting in traffic, the Subaru would alert me if the car ahead of me moved ahead and I didn’t respond. This is awesome for the school pick-up line!
- If I started to drift out of my lane, the Subaru Outback would alert me. The only problem with this feature is when you live in a highly concentrated pothole area. I was getting beeped at every time I would try to avoid them.
- The vehicle had all of the safety features I simply cannot live without such as the rear vision camera, blind spot detectors, lane change assist, and rear cross traffic alert. With young kids around, these features help put me at ease while backing out of driveways or parking lots.
- The Subaru Outback 3.6 R Touring came equipped with a 7.0-inch Infotainment System which made searching for radio channels or checking the weather a breeze. The screen used touchscreen technology so I could quickly see if it was going to rain at the baseball fields and then switch back to our jams on Radio Disney.
What We Loved
- Leather-trimmed seats and steering wheel
- Keyless access with push-button start
- Heated front and rear seats
- Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity
- 7.0-inch infotainment system which includes navigation and voice activated controls
- Power rear gate with height memory
- Safety features like rear vision camera, blind spot detection, lane assist, and rear cross traffic alert
- The rear seats can recline or fold 60/40
What You Need to Know
- 20 MPG City/ 27 HWY
- Gasoline vehicle – 87 octane is perfectly fine
- The vehicle comes with LATCH system for child safety seats
- 35.5 cubic feet of cargo space / 73.3 cubic feet when seats are folded down
- The Subaru has a 3.6L horizontally-opposed 6-cylinder engine. I thought the vehicle had great “get up and go” power
- Subaru’s X-mode with hill descent to helps you maintain control over steep inclines
How Does the 2017 Subaru Outback Fare As A Used Car?
The Subaru Outback is the favorite vehicle of automotive enthusiasts and moms alike; it has the versatility, reliability, liveability, and plain old fun that turns a good car into a great one — so if you’re in the market for a used car that’ll make you smile as you head to the school drop-off line, this is it.
The Subaru Outback usually costs around $19,000 and $28,000, depending on the trim, condition, and location of the vehicle
There are four recalls for the 2017 Subaru Outback: the air bags may not deploy properly and could cause injury, bolts can loosen on the brakes, and steering can fail. Once those issues are addressed in a recall, many buyers have been pleased with their purchase.
What Owners Are Saying
“Very quiet interior and rigid suspension without being too rough. A recent 700 mile trip with just one stop was not that tiring.” – J A., FL
“The excellent gas mileage much the same as our 2017 Forester. I love the “tap shift” feature when decending grades. The safety features are truly amazing. We have owned 13 Subarus in the past 20+ years and have seen constant improvement in each one through out that time.” – Donald T., OH
“Excellent SUV that handles Alaska winters like a champ!” – Anonymous, AK