We test drove an Outback 3.6R and a Cherokee V6 in exchange for gift cards

The missus was interested in checking them out as well this time hence the “SUVs”. $65 from Subaru and $50 from FCA. The promotion might be over now but still maybe worth trying. We went some time back but never got around to making a post about it.

The Cherokee was one of those middle trims Latitude/Altitude. It was meh- interior quality, the way it drove, general quietness and refinement. V6 had some pull but you really had to get into it. Best part was the uConnect system- so simple and easy to use. Maybe a 2.0T Trailhawk is a better version of this, dunno.

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Impressed by the Outback though. Spacious, comfortable, easy to use infotainment and controls that are well laid out, Great visibility and practicality. Subaru interiors have come a long way.

I’d rather go all black but to each his own

The engine pulls strong, has more torque than I expected. They do fool you a little bit with a very aggressive throttle tip in initially that makes it looks like it’s got gobs of torque down low. And then the damn CVT comes into the picture and spoils the fun. It’s the biggest negative for me with this vehicle which would otherwise be the perfect family car. Sorry to say it’s not even as good as the Nissan CVT from the Maxima and Honda CVTs. It drags, drones and moans.

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Handling was very good for what it is. I was on the power on some off-ramps and the AWD system makes it very neutral. Quiet and smooth on the highway as well. It’s a very easy car to drive.

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My wife really, really likes the Outback. Curious to see if the new 2.4 turbo makes the effect of the CVT less dreary. But it’s fine I have to understand this is a family car and temper my expectations accordingly. Definitely going back to test drive the new Legacy and Outback XTs.

P.S. I received the Subaru Gift card in my email even as I was driving back from the dealership (the salesguy was super friendly and helpful), still waiting over a week for my Jeep dealership to send the card and I had to call them twice now. Maybe that tells something about the dealerships.

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