I own a 2015 Limited Outback and I'm extremely happy with it except that now that I have 2 grand daughters we are looking to get a 3rd row SUV. Plan on keeping the Outback as my wife will get the new SUV and I'll inherit the Outback, yeah me
So far from what I've looked at and I've looked at them all I have it narrowed down to the VW Atlas or the Ascent when it comes out. Here's my opinion for what it's worth on the other models out there.
Ford Explorer - Really Like it except for the drivers compartment. Being 6'4" it seems to confined for me especially around the left lower kick panel as for some reason it sits in more pushing my left foot closer to the brake pedal.
Toyota Highlander - Never really test drove it as one of the first things I check is 3rd row access and comfort. Let me say that the 3rd is horrible. Except for a small child there is no room back there and comfort is bad.
Honda Pilot - This was an extremely close 2nd to the Atlas. The only thing that brings it in second is that the front drivers compartment feels a little smaller then the Atlas and I'm not a big fan of the 9 speed transmission they have as that is the only trannie available on the Elite
VW Atlas - Overall I really like this SUV. Access and comfort of the 3rd row is the best for this size SUV. I could actually sit comfortably back there and take a road trip. Granted I wouldn't want to sit back there for 10 - 12 Hours. I have plenty of room up front in the drivers seat and everything seems to be placed in the right spot. Drives and handles nicely. Plus VW has a 6 year / 72,000 mile bumper to bumper warranty. I've never owned a VW before but I'm definitely interested.
I'll be waiting for the Ascent to hit the market so I can test drive it and see it in person. I would much rather buy a Subaru as I have become a big fan of theirs ever since I've owned my Outback. Anyway sorry so long winded just wanted to add my .02