2018 Subaru Outback

MSRP $25,895 - $38,690

Ranked #3 in Suv


Overall Rating

2018 Subaru Outback Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: August 30, 2021

Nathan Dyer's image
Nathan Dyer 

Senior Editor

The 2018 Subaru Outback gets 2 powertrains across six trims. The 3.6-liter 6-cylinder engine is offered only in that two high-end trims, 3.6R Limited and 3.6 R Touring. The basic two trims get a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine, the basic four trims are priced at $25,895-$36,490. The high-end trims are priced at $35,395-$38,690.

2018 Suabru Outback

With an average acceleration performance and brake performance to offer, the Subaru Outback does deliver in terms of fuel efficiency and towing capacity. Equipped with extremely comforting interiors and an attractive exterior it does give tough competition to its rivals the 2018 Honda CR-V and the 2018 Volkswagen Golf.

See detailed review »


Lots of cargo space

Standard All Wheel Drive

Spacious interior

Agile handling


Lacks luxurious features of the competitors

Optional 3.6 L engine is expensive and thirsty

Base 2.5 L engine lacks punch and has coarse idle

What's New?

Standard Apple Carplay and Android Auto

Cosmetic changes to exterior and interior

Sound-insulating glass and updated suspension for quieter ride


vehicle bio

base price



4dr SUV

passenger capacity


top speed

139 mph


all wheel drive

engine type


152 cu.in.


175 hp @ 5800 rpm


174 lb.-ft. @ 4000 rpm


continuously variable speed automatic


suspension front

Independent front strut suspension w/anti-roll bar

suspension rear

Independent rear double wishbone suspension w/anti-roll bar



108.1 in.


189.6 in.


72.4 in.


66.5 in.

curb weight

3622 lbs.

ground clearance

8.7 in.


passenger volume

108.1 cu ft.

cargo volume

73.3 cu ft.

towing capacity

2700 lbs.


zero to 60 mph

9.4 sec.

standing 1/4-mile

17.4 sec.

fuel economy


25/28/32 mpg


basic warranty

3 yr./ 36000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

5 yr./ 60000 mi.

powertrain warranty

5 yr./ 60,000 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr./ unlimited mi.

roadside assistance


Pictures & Videos


2.5i$25,895 onwards

2.5i Premium$27,995 onwards

2.5i Limited$32,695 onwards

3.6R Limited$35,395 onwards

2.5i Touring$36,490 onwards

3.6R Touring$38,690 onwards

Colors and Styles

2018 Subaru Outback in Crimson Red Pearl color
Crimson Red Pearl

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.




Engine and Performance


Fuel Economy










Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide


Overall Rating

The 2018 Subaru Outback gets a lineup of Six trims. Across this lineup there are two powertrains on offer, a 2.5L 4-cylinder engine, and a 3.6L 6-cylinder engine, generating as much as 175 HP and 256 HP. It offers only an average acceleration and brake performance. However, this "SUV" does have a fine towing capacity, an ability to tow 2700 lbs.

2018 Subaru Outback

With a good fuel efficiency on offer, the 2018 Subaru Outback has the best in class Passenger room, measuring 108.1 cubic feet. With a decent cargo room offering of 73 cubic feet, it also gets the largest exterior dimensions while also weighing the most, at 3622 lbs. With a perfect safety score as given by NHTSA and IIHS, the Subaru Outback makes a great buy.


Engine and Performance

Fuel Economy




2018 Subaru Outback Features


"The refreshed 2018 Subaru Outback gets a revised exterior design, a retuned suspension for a smoother ride, an updated multimedia system, and available adaptive full LED headlights." - Motor Trend

The 2018 Subaru Outback is offered in a total of six trims and the lineup starts for $25,895. Overall, there are 2 powertrains on offer, the four trims get a basic powertrain of a 2.5L 4-cylinder engine and the two high-end trims get a 3.6L 6-cylinder engine. The high-end trims are the 3.6R Limited and the 3.6R Touring, priced at $35,395 and $38,690 respectively. It goes without saying that apart from the change in powertrain there are several features on the inside that are added as you climb from the basic 2.5i trim to the 3.6R Touring trim.

Trims 2.5i 2.5i Premium 2.5i Limited 2.5i Touring 3.6R Limited 3.6R Touring
MSRP $ 25,895 $ 27,995 $ 32,695 $ 36,490 $ 35,395 $ 38,690
Key Features Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive with X-MODE. Includes 2.5i key features and adds: Includes 2.5i Premium key features and adds: Includes 2.5i Limited key features and adds: Includes 2.5i Limited key features and adds: Includes 3.6R Limited key features and adds:
  Vehicle Dynamics Control with Active Torque Vectoring. Available EyeSight Driver Assist Technology. Leather-trimmed upholstery. Exclusive Java Brown Leather-trimmed upholstery. 256-hp SUBARU BOXER engine. Exclusive Java Brown Leather-trimmed upholstery.
  8.7 inches of ground clearance. SUBARU STARLINK Safety and Security. 12-speaker 576-watt-equivalent Harman Kardon premium audio system. EyeSight Driver Assist Technology. LED Steering Responsive Headlights. EyeSight Driver Assist Technology.
  SUBARU STARLINK Multimedia with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Available Blind-Spot Detection/Rear Cross-Traffic Alert. 18-inch alloy wheels. Low-profile roof rails.   Low-profile roof rails.
  Raised roof rails with integrated cross bars. Fog Lights. All-Weather Package w/ heated front and rear seats. Heated steering wheel.   Heated steering wheel.
  17-inch alloy wheels. All-Weather Package w/ heated front seats. Keyless Access with Push-Button Start GPS navigation system.   GPS navigation system.
    Dual-zone automatic climate control. Power Rear Gate. LED Steering Responsive Headlights.    

We Recommend

Considering value for money as the purchase objective, we recommend you go in for the 2.5i Premium trim, priced at $27,995. It comes equipped with several features such as Vehicle dynamics control, Active Torque vectoring, Driver Assist Technology, Subaru Starlink safety and Dual-zone automatic climate controls, and more.

2018 Subaru Outback Engine and Performance


"The 4-cylinder engine used in the majority of Outback models is merely adequate for acceleration and passing, and its standard continuously variable transmission (CVT) is efficient but won’t snap off shifts like a traditional automatic. The 6-cylinder engine on upscale models packs good power but also commands a significantly higher price". – Kelley Blue Book

Engines and Transmission of the 2018 Subaru Outback

The 2018 Subaru Outback gets two powertrains, however, this is offered based on the trim you select and not as an option to choose from. The base four trims get the first powertrain, a 2.5L 4-cylinder engine that churns out 175 hp and 174 lb-ft of torque. It comes mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission system. It features 2.5i, 2.5i Premium, 2.5i Limited, and the 2.5i Touring trims, priced at an MSRP range of $25,895-$36,490.

2018 Subaru Outback

The Second powertrain on offer is a 3.6L 6-cylinder engine available only in the 3.6R Limited and 3.6R Touring. This engine is capable of generating 256 HP and 247 lb-ft of torque, sufficient power not only to compete but enough to outperform its rivals. The top 2 trims come priced at $35,395 and $38,690 respectively.

Models 2018 Subaru Outback 2018 Honda CR-V 2018 Volkswagen Golf
MSRP $ 25,895 $ 24,250 $ 25,995
Engine 2.5-liter 4-cylinder Gas engine 2.4-liter 4-cylinder Gas engine 1.8L turbocharged  inline4 Gas engine
Transmission 6-speed cvt automatic transmission CVT automatic transmission 6-speed shiftable automatic transmission
Power (hp@RPM) 175 hp @ 5800 RPM 184 hp @ 6400 RPM 170 hp @ 4500 RPM
Torque (lb-ft@RPM) 174 ft-lbs. @ 4000 RPM 180 ft-lbs. @ 3900 RPM 199 ft-lbs. @ 1600 RPM

(Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year)

6.3 6.3 6.1

In comparison with its competition, we have the 2018 Honda CR-V that comes equipped with a 2.4L 4-cylinder gas engine, churning out almost 10 HP more than the Subaru Outback while also generating 5 pound-feet of torque in excess. This is despite the fact that the Honda is priced at $24,250, significantly lower than the Outback. The other competitor is the 2018 Volkswagen Golf, which generates 170 HP and 199 lb-ft of torque, equipped with a 1.8L turbocharged inline 4-cylinder gas engine.

Acceleration of the 2018 Subaru Outback

In terms of acceleration, the base engine of the 2018 Subaru Outback goes from 0-60 mph in 9.4 seconds and completes the same feat in 7.5 seconds when equipped with the second powertrain, the 3.6L 6-cylinder configuration. It further goes a quarter-mile in 17.2 seconds, while maintaining a speed of 82.6 mph.

Models 2018 Subaru Outback 2018 Honda CR-V 2018 Volkswagen Golf
0-60 MPH 9.4 sec 9.3 sec 7.5 sec
Quarter mile 17.2 sec @ 82.6 mph 16.0 sec @ 89 mph 15.9 sec @ 87 mph
Engine 2.5L 2.4L 1.8L

As seen above, we find the 2018 Honda CR-V to be the most power generating in competition, this fails to translate to the best acceleration time. It goes from a standstill to 60 mph in just 9.3 seconds, but we have a competitor faster. It records the quarter-mile in 16.0 seconds while maintaining a speed of 89 mph. The Volkswagen Golf, having the least power to its name, is the quickest amongst the cars in consideration. Measuring the 0-60 mph in 7.5 seconds and a quarter-mile dash and 15.9 seconds.

Ride and Handling of the 2018 Subaru Outback

The 2018 Subaru Outback offers a stable ride, one with composure. It gets a stiffened suspension setup along with 18-inch wheels, making the entire offering sturdy and up for some rough game. With a fabulous ability to turn into tight corners easily, the 2018 Outback seems to be more agile and aggressive than before. The entire drive experience gets enhanced when you go in for the two high-end trims, which feature a larger engine displacement, simply put with more power comes more fun.

Braking of the 2018 Subaru Outback

With a decent acceleration performance and a fine power generation, the 2018 Subaru Outback performs below average in terms of its brake performance. Weighing the most in class at 3622 pounds, the Subaru takes 126 feet to come to a standstill from a speed of 60 mph. Giving it this ability is a set of 12.4-inch rotors for the front wheels and a set of 11.8-inch rotors for the rear.

Models 2018 Subaru Outback 2018 Honda CR-V 2018 Volkswagen Golf
Brake pads-front(in) 12.4 11.1 11.3
Brake pads Rear(in) 11.8 10.2 10.7
Curb weight(lbs) 3622 3307 3351
60-0 MPH 126 ft. 116 ft. 122 ft.

Up against the competition, the Honda CR-V proves to be the best in terms of brake performance. Even though it was 3307 pounds, it somehow managed to come to a standstill in 116 feet. This is even though it gets the smallest rotors in class, they measure 11.1 inches for the front wheels and 10.2 inches for the rear. The 2018 Volkswagen Golf ranks in between, with a stopping distance of 120 feet, and rotors that are larger than the Honda's but smaller than the Subaru's.

Hauling and Towing Capacity of the 2018 Subaru Outback

The 175 HP and 174 lb-ft of torque generated by the base engine of the 2018 Subaru Outback give it the ability to tow 2700 pounds, the best in class towing capacity. One can only imagine what the high-end engine could do for you, with 256 HP and 247 lb-ft of torque to offer.

Models 2018 Subaru Outback 2018 Honda CR-V 2018 Volkswagen Golf
Towing Capacity(lbs.) 2700 1500 1500 (voids warranty)

The competition in consideration delivers a towing capacity of 1500 pounds each. The Volkswagen Golf offers the same even without a warranty. The 2018 Golf gets the ability to haul 981 lbs.

2018 Subaru Outback Fuel Economy


"With its four-cylinder engine, the Outback has an above-average fuel economy rating in our wagon rankings." - Cars.USNews

The 2018 Subaru Outback delivers a range of 462 miles for city drives and 592 miles for highway cruises. This is with a fuel tank capacity of 18.5 gallons. It records a decent fuel economy reading, EPA estimates at 25 miles to a gallon for city drives, 32 miles to a gallon for Highway drives, and a combined reading of 28 mpg.

Models 2018 Subaru Outback 2018 Honda CR-V 2018 Volkswagen Golf
Mpg city 25 26 21
Mpg highway 32 32 30
Mpg combine 28 28 24

The competition in consideration includes the 2018 Volkswagen Golf. It comes equipped only with a 1.8L engine and yet this powertrain seems to be the least fuel-efficient, recording 21/30/24 for city/highway/combined, respectively. The Honda CR-V and the Subaru Outback have similar fuel economy readings to offer.

2018 Subaru Outback Interior


“There’s nothing fancy here, just plenty of passenger and cargo room, terrific outward visibility, solid build quality and easy-to-operate controls.” – Edmunds

Seating and Comfort of the 2018 Subaru Outback

Designed like a wagon, the 2018 Subaru Outback does provide massive room even in the rear. Accommodating five individuals, it boasts of a passenger volume that measures 108.1 cubic feet. Space is its biggest luxury and is complemented by several technological features as well. It gets telescopic and tilting steering, a heated steering wheel as an option, and a power-adjustable driver seat as an option. The seats are comfortable, though a bit too firm.

Models 2018 Subaru Outback 2018 Honda CR-V 2018 Volkswagen Golf
Passenger capacity 5 5 5
Passenger volume (cubic ft.) 108.1 105.9 94.3
Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.) 40.8/58.1/42.9 40.1/57.9/41.3 38.6/55.9/41.2
Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg)(In.) 38.9/57.3/38.1 39.2/55.6/40.4 38.6/53.9/35.6

In comparison with the competition, we have the Honda CR-V that offers the next best passenger room measuring 105.9 cubic feet. It ranks 2nd for the same. The 2018 Volkswagen Golf accommodates 5 individuals just the same but offers a passenger room that measures only 94.3 cubic feet. It is obvious that the dimensions will follow the passenger room available.

Infotainment System of the 2018 Subaru Outback

The biggest change for the 2018 Subaru Outback is the availability of Android Auto and Apple Carplay. The base Outback 2.5i gets a 6.5-inch touchscreen and 4 speaker audio system. All other trims get an 8-inch touchscreen and 6 speaker audio system. The Harman Kardon premium audio system is standard in 2.5i limited and higher trims.

Trunk Volume of the 2018 Subaru Outback

The Subaru Outback has 35.5 cubic feet of cargo space to offer as standard. This is the offering while it accommodates five occupants, by folding the second row of seeds we can access a total of 73 cubic feet of cargo space. Quite large for a hatchback!

Models 2018 Subaru Outback 2018 Honda CR-V 2018 Volkswagen Golf
All Seats Up 35.5 39.2 30.4
The second Row Folded 73 75.8 66.5

Compared to its competition it is the 2018 Honda CRV that offers a larger cargo offering, both the standard and maximum cargo space is better, measuring 39.2 cubic feet and 75.8 cubic feet. On the other hand, the Volkswagen Golf offers a very minimal cargo area that measures 30.4 cubic feet as the standard offering and a maximum of 66.5 cubic feet.

2018 Subaru Outback Exterior


“The latest-gen Outback continues to cross over from a lifted wagon to a crossover SUV. Updates for 2018 embolden the Outback’s attitude.” – Kelley Blue Book

Dimension and Weight of the 2018 Subaru Outback

Weighing 3622 lbs, the 2018 Subaru Outback is the heaviest in its category. It is also the longest at 189.6 inches, the tallest at 66.1 inches, featuring the best ground clearance at 8.7 inches along with a fine wheelbase of 108.1 inches. Compared to its competition, it is slightly larger with regard to its exterior dimensions.

Models 2018 Subaru Outback 2018 Honda CR-V 2018 Volkswagen Golf
curb weight(lbs) 3622 3307 3351
Length(in) 189.6 180.6 179.6
Width(in) (w/o mirror) 72.4 73 70.8
Height(in) 66.1 66.1 59.7
Ground clearance(in) 8.7 7.8 6.7
Wheelbase(in) 108.1 104.7 103.5
Track width(in) F/R 61.8/62.2 63/63.7 61/59.9

The 2018 Honda CRV is the next heaviest weighing 3307 pounds and has the second-largest dimensions. It is smaller than the Subaru Outback but larger than the Volkswagen Golf equaling the height and width of the Subaru, it measures a slightly smaller length, ground clearance, and wheelbase. On the other hand, the Volkswagen Golf gets the smallest dimensions, a length of 179.6 inches and a height of 59.7 inches along with a wheelbase of 103.5 inches.

Exterior Features of the 2018 Subaru Outback

  • Roof Rails
  • Body-Color Door Handles
  • Fog Lamp
  • Projector-Beam Halogen Headlights
  • Body-Color Folding Side Mirrors (Optional)
  • Power Tilt/Sliding Glass Moonroof (Optional)

2018 Subaru Outback Safety


"The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the Outback a 2018 Top Safety Pick+, the organization's highest designation." - Cars.USNews

Safety rating of the 2018 Subaru Outback

The 2018 Subaru Outback gets a perfect safety score of five out of five stars in its overall rating. It scores the same even in its frontal crash tests and side crash tests. However, it gets only a four-star rating in the Rollover Safety tests and has room for improvement there. Moreover, it bags the "Top Safety Pick" as awarded by the IIHS. It further goes ahead to score a perfect "Good" grade in all the aspects of safety. It is indeed awe-striking to see a car score such grades at the IIHS safety tests.

Safety Features of the 2018 Subaru Outback

  • Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)
  • LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
  • Seat-mounted front side-impact (SRS)
  • Driver and front passenger seat-cushion airbags (SRS)
  • Whiplash-protection front seats with height and tilt-adjustable head restraints
  • Rear height adjustable head restraints
  • Height adjustable three-point front seatbelts
  • LATCH System

2018 Subaru Outback Competition

2018 Subaru Outback vs 2018 Volkswagen Golf

Priced similarly to the Subaru Outback, it produces lesser ponies but more torque. The torque translates to a good acceleration performance, but the brake performance is poor. Somehow, its higher torque generation figures fail in making it tow well. With a poor reading in terms of fuel efficiency, it fails to perform even in the aspect of the interior room offered. It also has a compact body and its dimensions do not impress. Overall, the Outback makes a better option any day.

2018 Volkswagen Golf

2018 Subaru Outback vs 2018 Honda CR-V

The Honda CR-V is a complete stunner from end to end. It has a phenomenal power generation and it yet magically delivers in terms of fuel efficiency. With the best in class brake performance it also delivers in terms of towing capacity, measuring 1500 lbs. With a spacious passenger room, it also offers the best cargo room in class. Overall, the Honda CR-V makes a fine offering and is totally worth its price, at $24,250. 

2018 Honda CR-V

2018 Subaru Outback Final Verdict

The 2018 Subaru Outback is a fine hatch that offers a total of six trims in its lineup and comes priced at $25,895-$38,690. It gets two powertrains a 2.5L 4-cylinder engine and a 3.6L 6-cylinder engine. The two high-end trims are the ones that get the 3.6L engine, generating 256 HP and 247 lb-ft of torque. The basic engine offers a poor acceleration and brake performance but it does deliver in terms of towing capacity, with an ability to tow 2700 lbs. With an average fuel economy reading, on one hand, it offers the best in class passenger room on the other hand. However, in terms of cargo room, it is the Honda CR-V that offers a better room. It further bags the best safety tags and awards and offers a very good list of safety features. It isn't the best offering in its class but it can certainly be considered.

2018 Subaru Outback


2018 Subaru Outback FAQs

What are the passenger room dimensions/Volume of the 2018 Subaru Outback?

The 2018 Subaru Outback measures a passenger room of 108.1 cubic feet.

What is the price of the 2018 Subaru Outback?

The 2018 Subaru Outback is priced at an MSRP range of $25,895-$38,690.

What powers the 3.6R trim of the 2018 Subaru Outback?

The 3.6R trims are equipped with a 3.6L 6-cylinder engine that generates 256 hp and 247 lb-ft of torque.

What is the towing capacity of the 2018 Subaru Outback?

The 2018 Subaru Outback measures a towing capacity of 2700 lbs.

What is the warranty offering of the 2018 Subaru Outback? 

The warranty offering of the 2018 Subaru Outback includes:

  • Basic Warranty: 3 yr./ 36000 mi.
  • Drivetrain Warranty: 5 yr./ 60000 mi.
  • Roadside Warranty: 3 yr./ 36000 mi.
  • Rust Warranty: 5 yr./ unlimited

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