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$5,542 - $7,978
$22,295 - $34,795

Pros & Cons

  • Composed handling
  • Standard all-wheel drive
  • Large cargo space
  • Tight back seat

New for 2009

  • Harman Kardon nine-speaker audio system became available
  • Stability control added to base model

Rankings & Research

The 2009 Subaru Outback's #2 ranking is based on its score within the 2009 Wagons category. Currently the Subaru Outback has a score of 8.4 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 58 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.




Critics' Rating: 8.7
Performance: 8.0
Interior: 7.8
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.2
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 9.8 for safety is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2009 Subaru Outback Overview

The 2009 Subaru Outback has three available engines: a base four-cylinder, a turbocharged four-cylinder and a six-cylinder. Both the turbocharged four-cylinder engine and six-cylinder engine require premium fuel. Of the three, reviewers liked the turbocharged engine most because of its strong passing power and quick off-the-line acceleration. Reviewers were less impressed with the base engine, saying that it runs out of steam quickly. Manual and automatic transmissions are available, but critics said that the automatic was slow to downshift when more power is needed. The Outback gets 20/27 mpg city/highway with the base engine and manual transmission. If you drive in inclement weather or head off the beaten path, reviewers said the Outback’s standard all-wheel drive and high ground clearance are two of this vehicle’s top strengths.

The upscale materials in the interior were liked by reviewers, though some said the Outback's back seat can be cramped. The Outback has 33.5 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats, which is pretty high for the class. The base Outback comes standard with a six-speaker stereo system with a CD player, an auxiliary jack, roof rails and a height-adjustable driver’s seat. Available features when it was new include a dual-panel power moonroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather-trimmed upholstery, heated front seats and a navigation system.  

See the full 2009 Subaru Outback specs »

Other Cars to Consider

While it doesn’t come with standard all-wheel drive, the 2009 Toyota Venza trumps the Outback with a longer list of standard features and better fuel economy. Car-like performance also made the Venza a favorite among reviewers when it was new.

For more passenger and cargo space, look to the 2009 Ford Taurus X, which has a standard third row and seating for up to seven. The Taurus X comes standard with a powerful V6 engine, and matches the Outback’s high safety scores.

Compare the Outback to the Venza and Taurus X »


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