Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A popular Subaru for sale near you, a red 2021 Subaru Forester is shown from the side.

More Than Just the Outback: Check Out These Three Fabulous Subarus

While the Subaru Outback is probably the most well-known Subaru in the world, the automotive brand isn’t just limited to its signature model. The manufacturer doesn’t just make vehicles for regular driving; Subaru has produced vehicles that have won rallies and has collaborated with Giorgetto Giugiaro, the creator of the DMC DeLorean. They even figured out a way to avoid high import taxes by welding the backseats of one of their models so that a truck could be marketed as a car. If you’re thinking, “Is there a Subaru for sale near me?” it might be a relief that your choices aren’t limited to the Outback. Subaru has long been known to take risks in design, producing not only popular and cult favorites but some truly unique vehicles. Let’s take a look at some of their more specialized designs and the features that make them stand out above the rest.

The Subaru BRZ tS

Though the BRZ had been around since 2013, it wasn’t until 2018 that it brought a more specialized look to the Subaru lots. The tS trim level pleased fans immensely; from its side skirts to more aerodynamic styling to the stiffer suspension, it’s an incredibly nimble vehicle capable of winning rallies or just getting to your appointments on time. The BRZ tS is a small sports car, but it manages to pack a lot of fun inside. There are many reasons people gravitate toward the BRZ tS if they’re looking for a sports car; it’s an enjoyable ride that’s affordable, coupled with Subaru’s impeccable reputation.

If you’re looking for a smaller vehicle that’s anything but boring, you may want to take the BRZ tS for a test drive. Toyota’s collaboration with Subaru has resulted in one of the fastest, most affordable, and fun vehicles we’ve seen for quite some time. For those interested in this exciting trim, be aware that the tS was available for the BRZ from 2018 to 2020, meaning you would more than likely be looking at a used model. This shouldn’t deter you from considering the tS, especially those looking for a responsive sport-focused sedan. Equipped with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder Boxer engine and a six-speed manual transmission, the tS offers unparalleled handling on the road.

Even if you decide to go a different direction, it’s easy to see why people keep coming back to Subaru: a quality vehicle that’s also affordable and fun to drive is quite a rare and exhilarating combo. Of course, if you’re looking for more of a family vehicle that still has some flash, you might be more interested in the next example.

The Subaru Forester

There are several types of Foresters, perhaps most notably the Forester 2.5XT, which was introduced into the market at a time when it could shine as one of the fastest SUVs around, with a record of 0-60mph in just 5.5 seconds. While you may not associate SUVs and speed regularly, it’s a good idea to take a second look at the Forester; something of this size that can muster such a speed will not only provide an exceptional driving experience, but it’ll be full of safety features, ensuring that no matter what inclement weather or traffic conditions you meet, you and your passengers will be safe and comfortable.

The 2022 Subaru Forester comes with plenty of standard driver-assist features regardless of which trim level you take home, thanks to its EyeSight driver assist technology package. Not only are there a set of cameras to help spot potential dangers, but there are also tools like adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, and a duo of pre-collision preventions that use the brakes and throttle to minimize damage.

While the newer Foresters are packed to the brim with safety and technology features, older models are also equipped with an array of desirable driver-friendly tools. They’re often very affordable and can still provide the same level of power, comfort, and safety as newer models. For example, the aforementioned EyeSight technology has been available on all Subaru models since 2012, demonstrating the company’s dedication to safety. If safety is just as important as power and performance, the Subaru Forester is a model worth considering.

The Subaru Outback 3.6R

Yes, an Outback needed to be included in this list, but not just any Outback. The Subaru Outback has remained consistently popular among a wide range of people, from those with families, explorers with a wild side, and those who need to haul around instruments, moving boxes, and the like. The 3.6R, however, is a special Outback, and in 2017, the model wowed drivers and dealerships alike with its lifted body and spacious, quiet interior. Do you want something a little sporty that can still handle your family’s needs for space and storage? Maybe a casual look at the 3.6R is in your future.

The 3.6R’s top trim level is the Touring package, which will heighten your experience from happy to ecstatic. The interior is trimmed with leather, upping the luxury factor, and the seats can be heated and cooled at the discretion of each individual; that’s right, it isn’t just the driver and front passenger who have the option to warm up or cool down their seat. There’s a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment center, a sunroof, and Subaru’s special Eyesight System, paired with a dual-camera setup that will help you avoid collisions, keep you in the correct lane, and a handy adaptive cruise control for covering long distances.

This is a newer “used” option, but if you can find a Touring edition, you’ll be very pleased that you did. You’ll have a less expensive, relatively new vehicle, complete with an array of safety features, comfort features, and a cabin so quiet you’ll be able to hear a pin drop. There’s also a 12-speaker stereo system from Harmon/Kardon, which means you can sing along to your heart’s content while the rest of the cabin stays quiet (unless you’ve got others singing along with you). You deserve to feel at ease in your vehicle, and the more luxury, the better.

Which Subaru Suits You?

As you have seen, Subaru has more to offer than the Outback, though it is, of course, popular for many reasons, particularly where I live in Colorado. Every day I see scores and scores of Subarus, mostly Outbacks, and wonder about the people driving them. Do they like their Outback? Do they wish they’d gotten a different Subaru model? Will they get another Subaru after the current one needs replacing? If you like the Subaru brand but want to look beyond the Outback, there are plenty of other options for sale, both new and used. As we saw above, the upside is that you don’t have to look far to find something that will fit your needs. Shopping in the used market may help you uncover discontinued hidden gems like the previously mentioned BRZ tS. Whether a new or used vehicle, you can find plenty of options available at your local Subaru dealership. After all, Subaru’s legacy extends far beyond the impact of the Outback, and these few examples demonstrate that.