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The Top Gear car review:Subaru Outback
What is it like on the road?
With 200mm of ground clearance and a torque-sapping CVT mated to the petrol whether you like it or not, the Outback’s no driver’s car. For this reason, we’d strongly advise you stick to the diesel instead – a unique flat-four boxer turbo design at that. And although it sounds like a WRX-lite, the flat-four petrol 2.5-litre is nothing of the sort, disappointment further compounded by its standard CVT gearbox.
What it does do is conquer all surfaces with consummate ease. Ignore the marketing spiel about mountaineering with surfboards in the boot – the fact is that on gnarled UK roads, often covered with mud, grit, leaves, or just indeterminate drizzle, the Outback just gets on with it. Full-time all-wheel drive eliminates wheelspin, and that long-travel suspension, together with squidgy tyres, means the ride’s properly soothing too. An Audi A6 Allroad is more ‘sporty’, but it lacks the Outback’s bulletproof toughness.