IIHS gives top scores to braking systems of Subaru Legacy, Outback

Article by Anita Panait, on September 28, 2013

Subaru Legacy and Outback both received “superior” ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety in its first ratings of automatic braking systems. During the tests, both Legacy and Outback detected a dummy car on the road and managed to decelerate from 25 mph to a stop in time to avoid slamming into it.

This was all thanks to Subaru’s EyeSight system, a package of cameras and software that scans the road ahead for possible obstruction. The Legacy and Outback were among the vehicles tested that managed a full stop.

Five other models -- the Cadillac ATS and SRX, Volvo S60 and XC60, and Mercedes-Benz C class – also received "superior" rating from the IIHS as they managed to slow down sufficiently after sensing the dummy car.

The new ratings focused on automatic braking systems, underlining the growing trend that road safety is not just about airbags and body materials, but also about software and sensors, into which carmakers are investing heavily.

New ratings will also be factored into the institute’s Top Safety Pick+ rankings for 2014, the first time for the IIHS to use any test besides crashes to pick what will get into the index. Definitely, the seven vehicles that got “superior” ratings in the new tests will have the upper hand to be included in the rankings.

“You're going to see more of this from us," remarked David Zuby, chief research officer at the IIHS, adding that crash prevention technology is already existing and is both promising and confusing. He said that the IIHS will try to “untangle the confusion” and encourage carmakers to adopt what is working.

The all-new Subaru Outback is smart-sized unlike the other 2-row crossover cars, highlighting a mid-size interior in an easy-to-move and off-road-proficient wagon. The Subaru Outback gives the fresh car-like handling with the flexibility of an SUV. The 8.7 inches of ground clearance is higher than that of many huge SUVs and crossovers while keeping a low step-in height.

The total passenger volume of 105.4 cu. ft. and peak cargo limit of 71.3 cu. ft. (with the standard 60/40 split rear seatbacks collapsed) rivals that of bigger, weightier vehicles. The Outback likewise includes a rear cargo area that is lower and broader than in numerous SUVs.

Overhauled Suspension for Enhanced Agility, Smoother Ride

Various upgrades to the body structure, suspension and steering made the Outback have a considerably sleeker and calmer ride for 2013, while likewise helping add handling deftness. The changes have led to significantly greater firmness at key purposes of the structure, including the front strut mounts and rear frame rails, decreasing transmission of vibration while likewise adding to more responsive handling.

Coupled with the structural improvements, Subaru grew the diameter of the double-wishbone rear suspension's sway bar and furthermore increased the spring and damper rates and bushing firmness. Therefore, body roll has been decreased by up to 40 percent. The Subaru Outback driver will feel a more responsive, yet calmer vehicle in general.

Improved Interior Comfort and Convenience

New, more comfortable seat texture and another light matte wood grain trim give a stylish look. The Outback Limited models for 2013 offer a new Special Appearance Package option that gives a new Keyless Access and Start system alongside a two-position memory system for the already-standard 10-way control driver's seat.

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