Compact crossovers are the hottest segment of the auto market. These models are loved for blending spaciousness, fuel efficiency, and affordable prices. But while they’ve gotten increasingly fancy in recent years, even some of the best compact crossovers still show their budget-car roots — they’re typically less cushy, quiet, powerful, and polished than larger mid-size models.
If you’re looking for all the value and efficiency of a compact crossover but you want a more substantial, more expensive-feeling vehicle, one crossover stands above all the rest: the 2021 Subaru Outback. Generously equipped even at its base price of $26,795, the mid-size Outback costs less than some compact models and still gets up to 29 mpg in mixed driving. You also get a richer interior, more comfortable seats, a smoother ride, superior towing capability, and an optional 260-horsepower engine. If this sounds like the perfect crossover for you, keep reading to learn more about the Outback’s pros and cons.