2023 Subaru Legacy
MSRP: $24,395 (base) As Tested: $38,715 (Touring XT)
Sponsored By GT TOYZ
The Subaru brand has long been linked to SUV’s and Crossovers, and the 2023 lineup includes five: Crosstrek, Forester, Outback, Ascent, and Solterra. The company’s other four vehicles include a four door compact hatchback (Impreza), a four door midsize sedan (Legacy), and a pair of performance minded offerings (BRZ, a two door sport coupe, and WRX, a four door sport sedan). There are five trim levels (Base, Premium, Sport, Limited and Touring XT), with starting MSRP’s ranging from $24,395-$37,695. My Legacy Touring XT tester had an as-delivered price of $38,715.
Of all its siblings, Legacy has the most in common with Outback. The pair share the same platform. Visual changes for the 2023 Legacy are found up front (new grille, bumper and headlamps). Functionally, the top trim Touring models now have include a wide-angle camera that improves the field of view, for the EyeSight Driver Assist technology. And, Subaru has expanded the availability of their 2.4L turbo four engine.
More on motors. Subaru’s 2.5L four cylinder remains the sole power source for Base, Premium and Limited models. It’s rated at 182 horsepower and 176 lb.-ft. of torque, and is linked to a Continuously Variable Transmission. EPA fuel economy is estimated at 27/35/30. Sport now joins Touring as the Legacy models fitted with Subaru’s turbocharged, 2.4L engine as standard equipment. It makes 260 h.p. and 277 lb.-ft. of torque. The turbo’s power boost (+78 horsepower, 101 ft.-lb. of torque) yields quite a difference in performance. The base, 2.5L engine takes about eight seconds to get from 0-60, which is sufficient for all daily driving duties. The turbo motor shaves about two seconds off of that trip. It feels lively under foot, injecting a fun factor into the driving experience. EPA predicts your mpg’s at 23/31/26, so the added zip extracts a minor giveback at the pumps. Regardless of engine, Legacy has a trip-worthy ride quality and handles confidently. All Wheel Drive – standard on all Legacy’s – is a comfort when road conditions get wintry.
Driver visibility is good in all directions, owing to the number of large windows. The cabin has room for six footers in both rows, and a good sized (15 cu.-ft.) trunk. If you need to carry more cargo than that on a regular basis, you may want to consider a crossover like Outback, for example (32.6-75.6 cu.-ft.). Premium trim and above use Subaru’s 11.6″ multimedia touchscreen as the access point for most system controls. The layout of the vertically oriented screen is logical, but the reliance on strictly touch controls makes system adjustments slower than need be. That’s particularly true for controls drivers use most (like HVAC). Smartphone integration is wireless for Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. The Harmon-Kardon sound system (12 speakers, 576 watts) is standard on Limited and Touring, and easy on the ears. (Old heads take note – the system includes a CD player, on Touring).
Subaru’s suite of standard, driver assist technology includes advanced, adaptive cruise control with lane centering, pre-collision braking, lane departure and sway warning, lane keep assist and automatic emergency steering. Staying with safety, blind spot monitoring – always on my list of “must haves” – is standard (along with lane change assist and rear cross-traffic alert) on Touring, Limited and Sport, optional on Premium and not offered on the Base model. Subaru’s Distraction Mitigation System (DriverFocus) is unavailable on the bottom, two trim levels, standard on the top two, and optional on the middle trim model.
|A 40 year resident of the Capital District, Dan Lyons has been reviewing new cars for publications for nearly 30 years. He is the author of six automotive books, and photographer of more than 200 calendars.