2016 Subaru Outback


#2 out of 9 in 2016 Wagons

$19,587 - $26,817

2016 Subaru Outback Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2016 Subaru Outback was new.


Interior: 8.4

The 2016 Subaru Outback's interior has excellent build quality, critics say, and it features first-rate materials. The Outback also earns praise for its spacious rear seat, large cargo capacity and easy-to-use infotainment system.

  • "High-quality materials adorn the Outback's cabin, while passengers both front and rear enjoy stretch-out space." -- Left Lane News
  • "The seams are perfect and the finish is richer than ever, with comfortably plush fabric even on the cheap seats." -- AutoWeek (2015)
  • "Subaru upped the interior refinement ante with more soft-touch materials, most noticeably the entire dash and the window sills. Trim pieces have been improved, too, with a textured fake aluminum on lower models and surprisingly convincing fake wood on higher versions." -- Edmunds (2015)
  • "Where the 2015 Subaru Outback makes some of its biggest strides forward is inside. The available faux wood trim looks great, as does the dark, textured trim on the center console." -- Motor Trend (2015)


The 2016 Outback seats five and comes standard with cloth upholstery and reclining rear seats. Higher trims have features like heated front seats, a 10-way power-adjustable driver seat, leather upholstery, driver seat position memory, a power-adjustable passenger seat and heated rear seats.

Auto writers report that the Subaru Outback's cabin feels as roomy as the cabins in midsize SUVs like the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Toyota Highlander. The front seats are comfortable on long-distance trips, according to critics, and the rear seats are very spacious, offering plenty of headroom, even for passengers taller than 6 feet. The Outback's thin roof pillars provide excellent visibility, test drivers say.

  • "The seats are comfortable in all positions, especially the roomy, reclining rear seat (thanks to the Outback's tall roof)." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The Outback's cabin feels as spacious as something ostensibly larger, like a Highlander or Grand Cherokee." -- AutoWeek (2015)
  • "Interior comfort is an Outback strong suit, with well contoured front seats providing all-day driving comfort. The rear bench of the Outback is especially spacious, offering 2.7-inches more legroom than the outgoing model and enough head room for those well over six-feet tall." -- Left Lane News (2015)
  • "Although the Outback is more of a station wagon than it is a tall and airy SUV, slim pillars give it superb outward visibility." -- Edmunds (2015)

Interior Features

Standard features in the 2016 Subaru Outback 2.5i include a rearview camera, a USB port, Bluetooth, smartphone app integration, HD Radio and a 6.2-inch touch-screen infotainment system. The 2.5i Premium model adds dual-zone automatic climate control, satellite radio and an upgraded 7-inch touch-screen infotainment system that responds to multi-touch gestures like scrolling and swiping. The 2.5i Limited and 3.6R Limited models have blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert and a 12-speaker Harman Kardon audio system. Options include a moonroof, navigation, proximity key, push-button start and Subaru’s camera-based EyeSight system, which offers automatic pre-collision braking, adaptive cruise control and lane keep assist, which is new for 2016. The optional STARLINK Safety and Security system is also new for 2016, and can notify emergency responders if you have an accident, provide you with maintenance reminders and allow you to lock and unlock your Outback from your smartphone.

The Subaru Outback's 6.2- and 7-inch touch-screen infotainment systems are straightforward, according to critics, though some note that the screens are too shiny, making them tough to read in some kinds of lighting, and are positioned too low on the dashboard. Reviewers write that the available Harman Kardon audio system has excellent sound quality.

See 2016 Subaru Outback specs »

  • As noted in our Legacy review, Subaru's new infotainment system scores high marks for ease-of-use and functionality, but it's shiny screen can make it difficult to read in certain lighting situations." -- Left Lane News (2015)
  • Infotainment options include 6.2-inch and 7.0-inch touchscreen systems that work well, but could be mounted a bit higher in the center stack." -- Motor Trend (2015)
  • "Finally, Subaru has designed a system that works well, is very intuitive, and looks fresh and modern. This was always a sour point with the outgoing car, but it's not a problem, here." -- Autoblog (2015)
  • "Audiophiles will want to check out the new Harman Kardon 12-speaker system. It uses GreenEdge speakers and an amplifier that delivers the equivalent of 576 watts. It sounds great with deep, defined bass and clearly separated highs and mids." -- AutoTrader (2015)


The 2016 Subaru Outback is one of the most spacious wagons in its class in terms of cargo space. It also has more overall cargo space than some affordable midsize SUVs, like the Nissan Murano. The 2016 Outback has 35.5 cubic feet of cargo space behind its rear seat and 73.3 cubic feet with the rear seat folded. A split-folding (60/40) rear seat is standard and a power liftgate is available.

  • "Cargo capacity is also a major Outback strong suite - 35.3 cubic feet of stowage space are available behind the rear seats, expanding to a capacious 73.3 cubes with the rear seats folded flat." -- Left Lane News
  • "Rear-seat space is excellent, and there are 73.3 cubic feet of cargo area (with the seats folded), so don't bother deflating your river raft." -- Car and Driver (2015)
  • "Where the Outback offers added functionality is, of course, at the rear, where the wagon configuration is good for a whopping 73.3 cubic feet of storage space with the rear seats folded flat - two more cubes than its predecessor." -- Autoblog (2015)

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