Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A blue 2024 Subaru Ascent for sale is shown driving on a highway.

The 2024 Subaru Ascent: An Exceptional Family SUV

When you are in the market for a family vehicle, there are some things that you are going to be looking for regardless of your budget. You will probably want a vehicle that is convenient, comfortable, safe, and roomy. The Ascent is one of Subaru’s newest models, introduced in time for the 2019 model year to replace the Subaru Tribeca with three rows of seating standard. Drivers are able to choose between seven- and eight-passenger models.

Traveling with kids takes up a great deal of space. If they are younger, you probably need to install car seats in the back and have room in the trunk for things like food, clothing, and cleanup items for your children. If they are a little older, they will need more space for their school bags, art supplies, and sporting gear. On top of all of this, you want to make sure that your vehicle is affordable, both in purchase price and fuel economy. As a result, you will probably find that looking for a Subaru Ascent for sale makes the most sense, as this is one of the few three-row SUVs that can check all of these boxes.

Trim-Wide Performance

No matter which trim level you choose, your 2024 Subaru Ascent will be powered by a turbocharged 2.4-liter Boxer I-4 engine with a Lineartronic CVT (continuously variable transmission). This engine delivers up to 260 hp at 5600 RPM and 277 lb-ft of torque at 2000-4800 RPM.

The Ascent also features Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive; this is a full-time all-wheel drive system, with the Ascent designed from the ground up as an all-wheel drive vehicle. This is in contrast to most other SUVs, which have front-wheel drive as the standard configuration and offer all-wheel drive as an available alternative. As a result, you will get exceptional traction and stability, especially in inclement weather.

The Ascent also gets solid AWD fuel efficiency—a major selling point if you are looking to keep your family’s vehicular operating budget in check. The 2024 Ascent will give you 20 MPG in the city and up to 26 MPG on the highway, which are great figures for a vehicle of this size and drivetrain.

A red 2024 Subaru Ascent is shown parked on a driveway near a family.

Abundant Space

Having enough space for your family and their belongings is always vital to picking the right vehicle. The designers at Subaru have done an exceptional job maximizing the space inside the 2024 Ascent. If you choose a model with a moonroof, you will get 150.2 cu.ft. of passenger space, while those without a moonroof provide up to 153.2 cu.ft. inside of the passenger compartment, primarily in added headroom.

Three trims of the 2024 Ascent—the Base, Premium, and Limited—have space for up to eight passengers, as they are available with a second-row bench seat. Meanwhile, the Touring, Onyx Edition, and Onyx Edition Limited trims have room for seven passengers thanks to second-row captain’s chairs. These are also available on the Premium and Limited trims as well.

One thing that sets the Ascent apart from many other three-row SUVs is that its third row is useable by someone other than a small child. While the first row of seats has 42.2 inches of legroom and the second row has 38.6 inches, the third row provides 31.7 inches of legroom, which should be sufficient for most passengers. Similarly, there are 57.0 inches of shoulder room in the third row of seats, which is fairly comparable to the 61.1 inches in the first row and 60.3 inches in the second.

The seats themselves are quite comfortable. The entry-level Base trim has cloth upholstery, while the Premium adds a stain-resistant compound that will come in handy if you have younger children. The Onyx and Onyx Edition Limited trims feature a StarTex fabric that is water-repellent; this would work great if you have older children who play athletics or enjoy the outdoors because the last thing you want is for them to damage your SUV’s upholstery. Finally, the Limited and Touring have leather upholstery that is truly luxurious.

The front seats on every 2024 Ascent trim are heated except for the Base trim. The ones on the Touring trim are ventilated as well—a nice feature to have in warmer weather. The Limited, Onyx Edition Limited, and Touring trims also feature heated second-row outboard seats; these will make your kids happy when driving them to school on cold mornings.

The Ascent also has plenty of cargo space. The rear liftgate opens to 17.6 cu.ft. for your belongings. If you need more space, the third row can be folded down to free up 43.5 cu.ft. of space. When you need even more space, you can easily fold down the second-row seats to give you a voluminous 75.6 cu.ft. for cargo.

That’s Infotainment!

Last year, Subaru upgraded the touchscreen on the Ascent’s Subaru Starlink Multimedia system to a huge 11.6-inch vertical orientation. As a result, you won’t have to pay a premium to get a large touchscreen for your vehicle; this will make accessing the system’s applications easier than ever, and it will improve your visibility with the rearview camera.

The Starlink system makes it easy to hook up your devices using wireless Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Bluetooth; these come in handy if you forget to bring your phone’s charging cables. This system will allow you to make hands-free calls and texts and stream your favorite music; it also has a trial subscription to Sirius XM, allowing you to listen to music, sports, talk, news, and comedy commercial-free, no matter where you drive in North America.

The Onyx Edition Limited and Touring trims add a built-in navigation system. These two also upgrade the audio system from the standard six speakers to a Harman Kardon premium sound system; this distributes fourteen speakers throughout the Ascent’s cabin and has a 792-watt equivalent GreenEdge amplifier. If you and your family love music, this may be the one for you.

Subaru has distributed 19 cup holders throughout the interior of the Ascent. There are also illuminated USB charging ports in the first and second row of the Ascent, with the Limited, Onyx Edition Limited, and Touring trims providing ones in the third row as well.

The black dash and infotainment screen in 2024 Subaru Ascent is shown.

Safety Comes Standard

No matter which trim of the 2024 Ascent you choose, it will come with Subaru’s EyeSight driver assistance technology. This suite helps to make the Ascent one of the safest models in its class.

If you become distracted and start to drift out of your lane, the Lane Departure and Sway Warning will sound, alerting you to the problem. Lane Keep Assist will then use slight steering adjustments to get you back in lane and avoid a collision with a vehicle in an adjacent lane.

The EyeSight system will also help you avoid front-end collisions. If the system detects an imminent front-end impact, it will engage the Pre-Collision Braking to bring your Ascent to a safe stop or reduce the damage caused by a collision. It will also activate the Automatic Emergency Steering so you can take evasive action to avoid a crash.

The Advanced Adaptive Cruise Control with Lane Centering is a great feature if you plan to use your Ascent for family road trips. Once you set your favored cruising speed, the system will adjust this downward if slower-moving traffic develops in front of you. Once that traffic has cleared, the system will return you to your desired speed. In addition, the Lane Centering feature will keep you safely in the lane in which you are driving.

Rise to a New Level of Driving in the 2024 Subaru Ascent

Family driving should be enjoyable. Subaru takes that approach by including many performance, comfort, convenience, and safety features standard on every trim of the 2024 Ascent. You can also opt for more advanced features like navigation, a premium audio system, and fancier seat fabrics on the Ascent. Best of all, with a base MSRP of $34,195, the 2024 Ascent should be easily affordable for most families.