Final SUV chronicles: We tried the Palisade, the Telluride, the CX-9, and the Ascent.

My wife didn’t want anything GM, nor did she want the Ford Explorer. She wasn’t enthused about the Pilot or the Highlander, either. Let’s clear that up to start with. And yes, we researched the shit out of all of them.

We drove the Palisade. Sat in a Telluride. Both felt...cheap. The door handles on the Palisade were wobbly enough that even my wife noticed when she went to open the door. The touch screen moved when we touched it - not purposely. XM radio wasn’t even offered on the model we drove. And, the upholstery on the door panel was torn. This on a 2020 with 15 miles. And at a higher price point than the Subaru.

The Palisade and the Telluride both had the wide center console that intruded on seat room, which my wife hates. The CX-9 did, too.

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The Ascent felt the most solid. And smooth. It was beyond comfortable and easy to drive. It drives like a big car - which I like. I’m quickly becoming a Subaru fan.

All the safety gizmos are nice. Subaru “EyeSight” is crazy cool. And the lane keep assist works well without being intrusive. We tried it and it politely steered us back into our lane on a side road close to the dealer.

Apple CarPlay is sweet and so is Subaru StarLink (remote unlocking/locking and remote start with your phone). Overall, I’m pretty satisfied with the level of tech it offers. The only things this one is missing, being a Limited instead of a (top-of-the-line) Touring are a sunroof and cooled/ventilated seats.

The CVT isn’t as bothersome as some Nissan units I’ve tried. It simulates an 8-speed automatic and has a “manual” mode. Plenty of power from the little Boxer four-cylinder. The engine itself is interesting to me, especially with its top-mounted oil filter.

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It does 0-60 in less than 7 seconds...which means it’s faster than my 6.

If you don’t like it, well, that’s fine. No need to chastise me over buying a crossover for my wife instead of a manual WRX.

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I’m cautiously excited to enter the word of Subaru ownership.

The dealer offers a lifetime powertrain warranty as long as I have my service done there. They surprisingly have good customer service ratings, too. The downside is that they’re about 35 - 40 minutes from my house. Hopefully, we won’t have to be there often.

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We are calling around to some banks on a Monday to get the best loan rate. They’re holding it for us until then.

Have some photos:

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