2020 Subaru Outback, new Subaru Outback, specs, features, fuel mileage
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Say Goodbye To The Subaru Outback 3.6R; Why Customers Won’t Miss It

The Subaru Outback is about to get a complete remodel and one trim is going away forever. If you want a 3.6R 6-cylinder, you better act quickly, but you might want to wait for the all-new 2020 model.

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Customers who want an Outback 3.6R six-cylinder model need to move quickly to get one. The 2020 Outback is coming later this year and Subaru Corporation will completely redesign the popular SUV/Crossover and will likely drop the 3.6R trim forever. The 2019 Subaru Outback comes in 3.6 Limited and 3.6R Touring trims that offer the 3.6-liter Boxer engine with 256-hp and 247 lb-ft of torque.

Right now, Subaru is offering special deals on all 2019 Outback trims. Customers can get 0% APR Financing on all 2019 Outback models now through April 1, 2019. Subaru wants to move all remaining Outback SUVs off their dealer lots before the all-new 2020 models arrive later this year.

Why you might want to wait

Here’s why customers wanting an Outback might want to wait for the 2020 model year. When the new-generation Outback arrives this year, it will likely feature a new turbocharged 2.4-liter direct injection four-cylinder engine replacing the old six-cylinder Outback 3.6R. Like the Legacy, it will likely be called the Outback XT and use the same Ascent-sourced turbocharged 2.4-liter 260-hp 277 lb-ft of torque Boxer engine. This will outperform the outgoing the 3.6-liter Boxer engine in power and fuel mileage.

The Outback 3.6R gets an EPA estimated 20/27 city/highway mpg and 22 combined mpg. The Ascent 2.4-liter turbo has more horsepower and torque and achieves 21/27 city/highway and 23 combined mpg and it’s a bigger vehicle than the Outback. Look for a new 2020 Outback 2.4L to have better fuel mileage numbers.

New 2.4-liter turbo will outperform competition with a V6

The new 2020 Outback FA24 2.4-liter boxer turbocharged direct-injection boxer engine will achieve acceleration and power equal to or better than that of competing vehicles with 3.5-liter 6-cylinder engines. That is accomplished by adding torque over horsepower because torque is what gets a vehicle moving from a stop and helps in pulling the vehicle up a hill, or when towing.

The next-generation Subaru Outback will lose the 3.6R trim but gain a new XT 2.4-liter turbo model. Outback will keep its core values with safety being a strong point with EyeSight driver assist standard equipment, and the SUV will keep its “go-anywhere” attitude with 8.7-inches of ground clearance, all-wheel drive will remain standard on the Outback, and it will retain X-Mode for off-road adventures.

When the all-new 2020 Subaru Outback with the new Global Platform arrives late this summer, look for the new SUV to be even more popular with active consumers looking for an all-weather all-wheel-drive vehicle. If you want the 3.6R trim you need to act quickly, but if you can wait, the new turbocharged XT trim will be worth it.

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Photo credit: Subaru USA

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I can hear the whiners complaining now. They believe that only the 3.6 is the way to go. Nothing will convince them otherwise. I'm happy with my 2.5 and the CVT. 100K since new in '11 and zero problems. Loving every minute of it with no plans on replacing it ever!
I own a 3.6R, and this engine is a marvel of smoothness and quiet, capable performance. Having driven the 2.4T in the Ascent, I can say that this engine still has the harsh, signature boxer engine sound. Secondarily, when you summon up the power of the turbo 4, your gas mileage will not be good. Thirdly, the turbo 4 gets no better than the mpg of the 3.6R because the turbo 4 has to work harder than a 6 at all times Lastly, the turbo 4 is considerably cheaper to manufacture than the flat six.
I have only owned 6 cylinder Outback’s since 2001, 2007 and now my 2012. They are quite, reliable have the extra power on tap when needed. I would guess that the new turbo 4 pot will not match the quietness or smoothness of the 6 cylinder.
My 2018 Outback is the first car I have owned that the frame is not pre punched for a trailer hitch. The Subaru line markets to the outdoor enthusiast yet the trailering set up is weak. I tow a 750 lb kayak trailer with an 800 lb. load. I had to drill the frame and practically disassemble the rear of the car to install a wiring harness.
Simply incorrect David. Yes you need to take the rear facia off, but that's easy and no you don't need to drill a single hole! The wiring harness is a plug in and easy to access as well. I think you purchased the wrong hitch and wiring harness, there are a few available in the aftermarket and mine is almost completely hidden, strong, and easily bolted in. I regularly tow a small trailer to pick up building supplies, make trips to the dump, and for camping trips.
Not from Missouri, but you'll have to show me. For 13 years I drove a '05 Honda Pilot which was a great car but the best mileage I could get on the Interstates out of the 245 HP V-6 was 22 MPG. Bought a '18 3.6, 256 HP Outback, drove it from the W. Coast to Houston and back, 80 MPH on the TX, NM, AZ, CA Interstates and got 26, one tank 25 MPG, 20 around town. Smooth as silk, What's not to like?
I have owned two 3.6's and an XT the six is much smoother, but the turbos of course are faster. Both have their places it is sad that Subaru has terminated the XT line of Forester. The 3.6 is a wonderful engine and arguing that you get better fuel economy with the turbo is flawed logic.
they have bigger design issues. Like having to change a head light through the wheel well. Also the plastic bumper should not reach half way up the head lights. On a vehicle you market as a SUV. I hit a Raccoon and it is $1500 to fix. because half the bumper needs paint matched.
The 3.6R is a beautiful engine in every respect, which is why it has been around for so long. I love the subdued, low rumble as I drive through the neighborhood in the morning at an idle. I love being able to merge onto the highway going uphill at 70 MPH and not needing to break 2,000 RPM. My wife's Forester XT (which I drive frequently) makes a heck of a racket and provides a strange, sporadic acceleration profile doing the same highway merge -- whether trying to be gentle or aggressive. I think that's why the XT going away isn't that big a deal. I'll gladly purchase the electrified performance version, which hopefully will make it's way to the US shores before the lease is up. I'm tired of cleaning the constant coating of black soot from all over the back of her XT and who knows what the intake valves look like or what damage is being done by low-speed pre-ignition (LSPI). I also won't miss choking on the exhaust gasses in the morning from the overly rich, unburnt fuel as the car warms up and I'm cleaning off the windows. Conversely, my Outback with the 3.6R has the exhaust smell of a beautifully tuned muscle car (if you remember what those were and got to build and play with them as I did), and with the changes made to the 2018 Outback, the low speed drivability (over my 2016 that went like a bat out of hell no matter how you drove it) is much, much better (though they really screwed up the suspension, but adding a 19mm rear swaybar and $1,000 worth of decent tires helps a whole lot). Having had a few high performance cars that would generally get around 10-15 MPG, I am still amazed that I can drive in a fairly aggressive manner at 70-80 MPH and still get over 20 MPG. So to say customers won't miss the 3.6R is a misnomer. The performance option is there with the 2.4, and from the few times I've driven an Ascent the acceleration profile and drivability will be much better than that provided by the Forester XT (if you want to make that comparison). New buyers won't know the difference, but those that WILL miss the 3.6R will be the previous owners that won't have a similar option in a new Outback, years from now -- but by that time an electrified version that outperforms the 2.4 will probably be the performance option and we'll be having a whole new ICE versus PHEV versus BEV versus FCEV versus [maybe something new] argument.