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CR’s 8 Best Sedans Under $20K - Subaru Legacy Included But They Miss A Key Feature

With new models challenging to find, what are the most reliable and fuel-efficient used midsize sedans? A new report says the Subaru Legacy is one of the top models to put on your shopping list.


With the new model shortages, what are the best used midsize sedans? According to Consumer Reports (by subscription), with the new 2022 Subaru Legacy sedan virtually nonexistent at retailers this year, CR says the 2017 Subaru Legacy ranks among the best for shoppers this spring.

The 2017 Subaru Legacy is one of the eight top models that are five years old. Consumer Reports says it's reliable and fuel-efficient, but they missed an important feature.

2022 Subaru Legacy pricing, features, specs

CR's top eight-best 5-year-old models

In addition to the 2017 Subaru Legacy, CR includes the Mazda 6, Hyundai Sonata, Kia Optima, Volkswagen Passat, Toyota Camry, and Ford Fusion as the top eight midsize sedans.

What is the Legacy fuel mileage?

CR says the Legacy gets an owner reported 27 mpg. The EPA fuel mileage estimates for the 2017 Legacy are 25/34 city/highway and 29 combined mpg.

2022 Subaru Legacy pricing, features, specs
New Legacy 2.5i Sport

What is the price of the 2017 Subaru Legacy?

The 2017 Subaru Legacy price range is from $18,850 to $23,700, depending on the model, miles, and condition.

Consumer Reports says, "The Legacy is unique on this list because of its standard all-wheel drive. Despite the added weight of the drivetrain components, the sedan performed well in our fuel-economy tests, returning 26 mpg overall and 39 mpg on the highway. Overall, it's a car with very few compromises, effectively blending an excellent ride, responsive handling, a roomy and quiet interior, great visibility, simple controls, and easy cabin access front and rear. This all adds up to a package that put it among the top performers in our ratings of midsized family sedans at the time."

Consumer Reports says it's reliable and fuel-efficient, but they miss one of the midsize sedan's most essential features; its safety rating.

What are Legacy's safety scores?

The 2017 Legacy earned the highest Top Safety Pick+ safety score from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and received a five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

New safety technology

New for the 2017 model year, Limited and Touring trim models get safer. The Legacy comes with reverse automatic braking, which detects objects when reversing and automatically triggers an alert and brakes the vehicle to avoid a collision. The headlights are improved, come with high beam assist, and are standard for 2017 Legacy models.

Legacy comes with Subaru's EyeSight driver-assist safety technology. EyeSight features six technologies to maximize passenger safety: Pre-Collision Braking, Pre-Collision Throttle Management, Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Departure, and Sway Warning, Pre-Collision Steering Assist, and Lead Vehicle Start Alert.

For 2017 there's a new Legacy 2.5i Sport

The new 2017 Subaru Legacy Sport 2.5i was a new model with a few exterior and interior styling upgrades. The Legacy 2.5i Sport trim will cost consumers $26,815. Outside, it features a dark gray grille, fog lights with gloss black housings, and newly designed 18-in. sport-styled wheels. Other Legacy Sport exterior styling upgrades include chrome-accented rocker trim and high luster silver-finished turn-signal mirrors.

Inside, the Sport trim has a two-tone pairing of gray and black cloth upholstery with blue stitching on the seats, door panels, and steering wheel. It also comes with a carbon fiber pattern dash and door panel trim and piano-black door switch panels and steering wheel switches.

You likely won't find a 2022 Subaru Legacy sedan, so check out the 2017 model year. Consumer Reports says it's one of the eight-best fuel-efficient and reliable midsize sedans under $20,000. We would add it's also of the safest models you can buy.

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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press. Check out Subaru Report where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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Photo credit: Subaru USA