2019 Subaru Ascent
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How New Subaru Ascent 2.4L Engine Compares To Competition’s V6 Power

Subaru says the new 2019 Subaru Ascent 2.4L engine compares favorably to the competition’s larger V6 engines. Here’s the specs.

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The all-new 2019 Subaru Ascent 3-Row family hauler is powered by an all-new 2.4-liter 4-cylinder Boxer direct fuel injection turbocharged engine, and Subaru says it will offer drivability, power and fuel economy equal to or better than that of 6-cylinder engines. We don’t have the EPA/DOT estimated fuel economy numbers yet, but we can compare the Ascent’s engine horsepower and torque numbers with the competition.

Subaru’s new Ascent will compete with Japanese rivals like the Toyota Highlander, Nissan Pathfinder, Honda Pilot, Mazda CX-9, and American entries like the Ford Explorer, Chevy Traverse, Dodge Durango and Jeep Grand Cherokee. Most come standard with a V6 engine, but Ford and Mazda also have 4-cylinder turbo engines.

Subaru says, despite its smaller displacement, the newly developed 2.4-liter turbocharged direct-injection boxer engine will achieve smooth acceleration equal to or better than that of competing vehicles with 3.5-liter 6-cylinder engines. That is accomplished with torque more than horsepower, because torque is what gets a vehicle moving from a stop and helps in pulling the vehicle up a hill, or when towing.

Subaru will build the Ascent on its new Global Platform and the new 2.4-liter twin-scroll turbocharged four-cylinder boxer engine sits under the hood producing 260hp and 277 lb. ft of torque. The Ascent 2.4-liter twin turbo four cylinder is their new-generation boxer engine developed specifically for this vehicle that’s built at Subaru’s U.S. factory in Lafayette, Indiana.


How Ascent 2.4L compares with the competition

Compared to its Japanese rivals, Toyota Highlander is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 producing 295hp and 263 lb ft of torque. Nissan Pathfinder is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 Direct Injection Gasoline (DIG) engine producing 284hp and 259 lb-ft of torque. Honda Pilot also gets a 3.5-liter V6 engine producing 280hp and 262 lb ft of torque. The Mazda CX-9 is powered by a 2.5-liter turbo engine producing 250hp and 310 lb ft of torque.

Compared to its American competition, Ford Explorer is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 producing 290hp and 255 lb ft of torque. Explorer also gets a 2.3-liter turbo producing 280hp and 310 lb ft of torque. Chevy Traverse is powered by a 3.6-liter V6 producing 281hp and 266 lb ft of torque. Dodge Durango gets a 3.6-liter V6 producing 295hp and 260 lb ft of torque. Jeep Grand Cherokee also gets a 3.6-liter V6 with 295hp and 260 lb ft of torque.

The Mazda CX-9’s 2.5-liter turbo gets a massive 310 lb ft of torque, and Explorer’s 2.3-liter turbo also produces 310 lb ft of torque, outgunning the Ascent’s 277 lb ft, but both are turbocharged four-cylinder power plants. Subaru is correct when they say the all-new Ascent 3-Row will achieve smooth acceleration because of torque, equal to or better than that of competing vehicles with 3.5-liter V6 engines. The new 2.4-liter twin-scroll turbocharged four-cylinder boxer engine has more torque than any of the competition’s larger 3.5-liter or 3.6-liter V6 engines.

The all-new 2019 Subaru Ascent will start in the low $30,000 price range and will be on sale in early summer 2018.

Photo credit: Subaru USA

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Do you know what grade of gasoline (octane) is recommended to the new 2.4L Subaru Ascent engine? Regular gas?
As far as i know, on the spec sheet they say 87 octane..
Hmmm, turbos usually require high octane gas.
Not any more. With modern electronic controls, the need for high octane has been lessened. I believe Ford's eco-boosts can all run on low octane, albeit at reduced power levels.
True! Especially with direct injection gasoline turbo engine, electronics are so precise, it's not necessary to use high octane. High octanes are mostly for psychological assurance... feel good paying more...
Actually any modern car with a turbo is tuned for a specific octane rating or octane rating range. Usually the other turbo subaru models do require 91 octane as a recommended fuel. Not necessarily required. This is apparently a new engine although I would bet it's the exact same short block as the current wrx, sti or FXT. Usually subarus have a weak/mild tune to get the highest mpg rating. this would be amazing on a E85 tune.
Sorry, no. The higher the octane, the better. These newer engines have 11:1 or better compression ratios, and even higher on full boost with a turbo. The laws of physics haven't changed.
There is no magic here. It's accomplished by retarding the spark. This means if you run "cheap" gas, the ignition controls simply delay the firing, wasting fuel sending raw gas out the exhaust. Everything comes with a price, and for this choice the engine will run much dirtier, have less power, get lower mileage and have a shorter life. I guess it's easier to look at a number on a gas pump than calculate how much money is actually being wasted. And such a tiny motor, with a ridiculous compression ratio, will have a hard (and short) life.
You’ve got the general gist of how engines manage octane differences but are grossly exaggerating the effects. No new car today is ever “sending raw gas out the exhaust.” Ever. And while higher HP can be had with advanced timing and high octane, the cost of doing so is often unjustified, especially in typical SUV driving.
The only question that matters - will it fit in the BRZ??
Will the outback ever get a turbo engine version?
I'll give you two to one odds that when the Outback receives its next makeover, it will have the same engine as the Ascent in place of the 3.6R as an option. May be tweaked a little, but the six is going to the grave yard. (Outback/Legacy) The Ascent is a little late which will push the Outback's remake back to 2020 I'm betting.
I doubt it, looks like Subaru is getting rid of their performance oriented turbo. I hear the Forester XT will scrapped in 2018.
This looks like a good SUV but I will never buy one with a 4 cylinder, I don't care if it has turbo. So just the lack of a V6 would keep me from buying this. I'd look at the Highlander V6 or the Dodge Durango before this, I have had two suburus long ago that I really liked but for an SUV that hauls dogs, I need a V 6
Barbara, you won’t see a V6 in a Subaru, besides the Outback and Legacy 3.6R which will probably be discontinued.
sorry to hear that however do you know for sure,was thinking f getting one but if no more 6 cylinders then its a no as i hear many complaints of 4 cyl head gasket failures .
I totally agree, my friends think I’m stupid for not wanting a SUV/Car with a V6. There like V6 will be a thing of the past and I’m like I think there will always be a market for v6. But I love this vehicle, but paying 30,000+ for a base model and not even having a V6 engine, makes this a no go for me. I hope they continue with the v6 legacy has some have said they won’t. Don’t know why they just don’t go back to the days when majority of cars were V6’s
Subaru's never made a V6 they are all boxer engines. They do have a boxer 6 in the outback.
Drive it and decide. It'll cost you precisely nada. It's not like you have to count the cylinders before you pull on the highway.
"This looks like a good SUV but I will never buy one with a 4 cylinder, I don't care if it has turbo. So just the lack of a V6 would keep me from buying this. I'd look at the Highlander V6 or the Dodge Durango before this, I have had two suburus long ago that I really liked but for an SUV that hauls dogs, I need a V 6". This is exactly what people said about 6 Cylinders as compared to 8 Cylinders twenty or so years ago. Time and tech move on..... Get the 4 Cylinder!
lower octane fuel burns producing more carbon than higher octanes,not making this SUV with a six cylinder is less appealing to me also .
I have a 2004 Odyssey, and I just love this old beauty. Hence, so far, I have been considering the 2018 Odyssey, and I like it too. However, this Ascent seems very appealing as well. I understand that this is a brand new vehicle from Subaru. But, does anyone have any inkling on how reliable it will be? How will the long-term reliability of the Ascent compare to that of the Odyssey, Sienna, Highlander etc.?
CVT transmission? No sale.
Does anyone know if the rated HaP of 260 is with the turbo kicked in and if not, how much additional aHappy does this turbo produce?
One thing I have noticed is that the HP on the Ascent is less than the lb/ ft numerically. 260 to 277. Normally, the HP number is higher.
They’re touting the torque more than the HP since that’s what pulls the car from start of momentum. I’ve heard passing power is the issue and the engine may be somewhat underpowered for the SUV, especially when loaded. We shall see, I plan to test drive. I don’t know how folks preorder without test driving.
I test drive one and it goes like a bat out of hell, but I want to tow a 3200 pd travel trailer and I’m concerned about the 2.4 turbo in the Ascent’s towing compasity. I’ve never owned a new vehicle in my life and I’m retired, so this would be the rest of my life vehicle. I’m really apprehensive, but not sure if I’m over thinking this.
Bobbi, the higher trim models tow up to 5000 pounds so you should be just fine. Based on driving reviews I’ve read the power is sufficient. You sound like you are pleased with the vehicle overall. I say go for it and enjoy!
I have owned 3 Subaru vehicle and loved them. Last two turbo charged were a Forrester and STI. For the long haul I would go with the V6 Highlander (and just did). Turbo fours are pretty high strung and I would much rather own the larger displacement more relaxed engine after 150,000 miles than the little turbo engine. My 2010 Forrester was beginning to blow some smoke and moved it down the line before it got any worse. A turbo 4 cylinder Ascent would not be my choice for a long term ownership vehicle.