2011 Subaru Tribeca


2011 Subaru Tribeca Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2011 Subaru Tribeca was new.


Interior: 6.7

Most reviewers say that the 2011 Subaru Tribeca’s cabin is well-equipped and stylish, although a few comment on some low-quality materials. Plus, adding features significantly inflates the Tribeca’s price. The Tribeca has three rows of seats standard and seats seven.

  • “The expressive dashboard is formed from materials that look nice enough, but too many are hard plastic and lack the richness of those found in top competitors." -- Consumer Guide
  • "With its leather interior, stylish accents and a more-than-$37,000 price tag, I expected to find automatic headlights, rain-sensing windshield wipers and a more adjustable driver's seat. Am I being too harsh?" -- Mother Proof


The Tribeca has a standard third-row seat, but like most midsize SUVs with third rows, reviewers say it’s a tight fit. The front two rows of seats, reviewers say, are adequate.

  • "Adding the third row significantly cuts down on rear leg and cargo room, and only kids will feel somewhat comfortable here." -- Car Gurus
  • "You can access the third-row seat from both sides of the vehicle. Previously, you could only fold down the right-side second-row seat to access the way-back. It's still really tight in the back, but at least now you can get out of it a bit more quickly after your cramped ride back there." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "Comfortable, supportive [front]  seats provide adult-size room, but long-legged drivers may want more rearward seat travel."--Consumer Guide

Interior Features

The 2011 Tribeca is well-equipped and comes with easy-to-use controls. Standard features for the base model include heated side mirrors, power driver’s and front passenger’s seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls and an auxiliary audio input jack.  

The base model isn’t available with any high-tech options. Upgrading to the Limited allows for several packages, but they’ll inflate the Tribeca’s price substantially. Packages include a power moonroof and navigation system ($3,700) or a power moonroof, navigation and rear DVD entertainment system ($5,500). Though these options may seem expensive, some of them aren’t even offered on other affordable SUVs.

  • "Main gauges are large and legible, but flanking fuel and temp dials are harder to see. Audio and climate controls are mostly easy to use and none are absorbed by the optional navigation system -- a plus. The buttons can be confusing, and the display screen can wash out in some lighting conditions. Navigation controls are intuitive but may be a long reach for some." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The control buttons have been simplified to the point of near non-existence. But once you identify the function of each button, the system becomes fairly intuitive." -- Detroit News
  • “Fit and finish inside the test Tribeca was excellent.” -- MSN


With all three rows of seats in use, the Tribeca provides just 8.3 cubic feet of storage space -- which isn’t going to fit much luggage or even a lot of grocery bags. With the third row folded down, space expands to 37.6 cubic feet, which is more respectable. With both the second and third rows folded down, maximum cargo space is 74.4 cubic feet. This is more than many of the other vehicles in the the affordable midsize SUV class. However, the Chevy Traverse trounces the Subaru with a maximum of 116.4 cubic feet.

The Tribeca has an abundance of interior storage space. Highlights are cup holders in the door storage pockets, cargo-area underfloor storage, a storage compartment with net in the cargo-area side panel, and dual cargo-area grocery hooks.

  • "Space behind the 2nd row is ample, but only a few grocery bags fit behind raised 3rd-row seats, which fold flush into the floor. Cabin storage is OK, but less generous than it appears. Note that in one test Tribeca, the floor storage lids fit poorly and were prone to rattling once underway."--Consumer Guide
  • "With both second- and third-row seats up, cargo capacity is a mere 8.3 cubic feet, enough for a few grocery bags and not much else." -- Car Gurus
  • "There are handy cupholders sculpted into the vehicle's sides for occupants of the third-row seats." -- BusinessWeek
  • "Folding all the rear seats results in 74 cubic feet of cargo space, which is below average for the midsize crossover segment." -- Edmunds

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