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The Newly-Upgraded Subaru Ascent Gets Left Out In The Cold Again

Is the 2023 Subaru Ascent a 3-Row SUV that families should look at this year? It gets new upgrades, and it's worth a look. But, unfortunately, even with the improvements, sales are down. Check out the Ascent report here.


With the 2023 Ascent model change and new improvements, the Ascent family hauler should perform better in the new year. Subaru of America reports the refreshed 2023 Subaru Ascent is the fourth best-selling SUV in the lineup, with 4,406 3-Row SUVs delivered to customers in February. However, the Ascent was down 15.0 percent compared with the 5,181 models sold in February 2022.

Because of its strong sales finish last year, The Ascent was on an upward trend, which ended in January, and the sales slide continued in February. The newly-upgraded 2023 Ascent midsize SUV is down 15.6 percent through the first two months of 2023. Subaru of America delivered 8,988 Ascent SUVs in 2023 compared with 10,651 in the same time frame in 2022.

2023 Subaru Ascent
photo credit: Schumacher Subaru

How does the Ascent compare in sales volume with the other Subaru SUVs? The 2023 Forester compact SUV is down 18.7 percent, the Outback midsize SUV is up 1.9 percent, and the hot Crosstrek is up 14.7 percent this year.

Check out the 2023 Subaru Ascent upgrades and model changes here.

Why should customers look at the Subaru Ascent?

What sets the Ascent family hauler apart from other midsize 3-Row SUVs is its standard all-wheel-drive system that provides all-weather capability, X-Mode for severe weather, and dual-function X-Mode on some trim levels for all-terrain ability. In addition, as with all Subaru SUVs, they are designed for active families needing extra off-pavement capability.

2023 Subaru Ascent
photo credit: Schumacher Subaru

Should customers wait to buy the 2024 Ascent?

The Subaru Ascent 3-Row family hauler should have received a redesign in 2024 models. But due to supply chain issues and parts shortages, Subaru refreshed the Ascent this year, and it will get a few changes in 2024. Subaru will likely delay the redesign of the Ascent until 2025 models. There is no benefit to waiting for the 2024 model as it will receive minimal changes and a price increase.

What is the 2023 Ascent pricing?

The 2023 Subaru Ascent base starts at $35,120, and Premium trims begin at $39,180. The Ascent Onyx Edition starts at $42,520, the upper Limited starts at $42,820, the new Ascent Onyx Edition Limited is priced at $47,520, and the top-trim Touring has a starting MSRP of $49,420. Pricing includes destination and delivery fees ($1,225).

The availability of the 2023 Ascent 3-Row SUV will remain tight for U.S. customers in the new year but should be improving later this year. Tom Doll, CEO of Subaru of America, told Automotive News after the brand's dealer meeting that Subaru forecasts a roughly 8 percent gain to 600,000 sales in 2023 as production constraints ease.

Sales are down in the first two months of 2023; look for sales of the newly-upgraded 2023 Ascent to rebound as inventory levels rise this year. Ascent is a 3-Row SUV that active families should put on their shopping list this year. In addition, reliability has improved significantly on the new models.

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2023 Subaru AscentDenis 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: main image Schumacher Subaru