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Discussion Starter #1

They talk about the abnormally light effort and imprecise electric steering, underdamped suspension, excessive body roll in turns at speed, and that it feels like a 5 yr old design.
 

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Pretty much exactly how I felt the first 1k miles but didn't really know how to describe it other than ''jerky''

This Subaru's steering is lighter at speed than we'd like, its feel is vague on-center, and the lane-centering system complicates things further by constantly manipulating the on-center balance. Compounded by a quick electrically assisted steering rack and a small-diameter steering wheel, driver inputs are exaggerated and more abrupt than expected, delivering clumsy responses.
 

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Pretty much exactly how I felt the first 1k miles but didn't really know how to describe it other than ''jerky''

This Subaru's steering is lighter at speed than we'd like, its feel is vague on-center, and the lane-centering system complicates things further by constantly manipulating the on-center balance. Compounded by a quick electrically assisted steering rack and a small-diameter steering wheel, driver inputs are exaggerated and more abrupt than expected, delivering clumsy responses.
I thoroughly disagree with their assessment, while fully understanding why they feel that way.

I haven't had such precise steering in ages. Some people think it makes it clumsy, because they constantly over correct, being used to more slop in the steering.

As a matter of fact, I can precisely track in a lane, even while towing the 4,395 pound beast behind me, in a tiny lane, up a hill, around a curve, with the edge of my wrist.

BUT, people who are not used to a non assist steering or tight sports car steering tend to over correct back and forth.
1708
 

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I think when you have 7 plus SUVs that your evaluating on a consistent basis you will start to pick up on nuances with all the them and you tend to focus in on them more. There is a difference between hyrdro (Crosstrek) to electric power steering and I tend to create a lot of noise when I drive the Ascent compared to my wife. She barely gets a beep unless the line on the side of there road goes away. The Ascent is her daily driver, the Crosstrek is mine. I've gotten better at driving Ascent over the 12000 miles we've had it and have gotten use to it's quirks.
 

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I thoroughly disagree with their assessment, while fully understanding why they feel that way.

I haven't had such precise steering in ages. Some people think it makes it clumsy, because they constantly over correct, being used to more slop in the steering.

As a matter of fact, I can precisely track in a lane, even while towing the 4,395 pound beast behind me, in a tiny lane, up a hill, around a curve, with the edge of my wrist.

BUT, people who are not used to a non assist steering or tight sports car steering tend to over correct back and forth.
View attachment 1708
It took me a few days of ownership to get used to the steering and road sensing. I have had no problems maintaining a straight path in the road and feel very comfortable steering. Those first couple of days I had many alerts but since I have had virtually none.
 

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I do enjoy the easy very light slow speed electric steering in parking lots, u turns, etc
Wish it was tuned or adjusted so as speed goes up you stay centered in the lane without micro 1/4” movements on a perfectly straight freeway.
 

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I think when you have 7 plus SUVs that your evaluating on a consistent basis you will start to pick up on nuances with all the them and you tend to focus in on them more. There is a difference between hyrdro (Crosstrek) to electric power steering and I tend to create a lot of noise when I drive the Ascent compared to my wife. She barely gets a beep unless the line on the side of there road goes away. The Ascent is her daily driver, the Crosstrek is mine. I've gotten better at driving Ascent over the 12000 miles we've had it and have gotten use to it's quirks.
^ I really think that this is key.

As human beings, we adapt shockingly fast to things like this: so if the vehicle isn't our daily driver and/or if we're constantly doing back-to-back evaluations, it's very, very possible for someone to pick up on the nuances and quirks.

I occasionally drive my wife's WRX (she's had two WRX's back-to-back, a '16 and now a '19), and I'm really only conscious of the differences in the first few minutes/miles.

I'm teaching my daughter how to turn my wife's car around in our small driveway. It's only been a week, so that's as many tries as she's had. I put her in the Ascent yesterday, and she immediately said how different the input (and output) felt.

I do enjoy the easy very light slow speed electric steering in parking lots, u turns, etc
Wish it was tuned or adjusted so as speed goes up you stay centered in the lane without micro 1/4” movements on a perfectly straight freeway.
I really enjoy the boosted low-speed stuff, too. My car really is a daily driver, and for parking lots/spots, easy one-handed spinning of the wheel really makes for a low-effort, relaxing kind of day. :)

That said, I'm honestly not seeing the persistent/constant corrections at-speed. I really couldn't comment much on this the first few months I had the vehicle since the winter are my lower-mileage months (during which time my "longer trips" are only 40 to 1 hour or so on the highway), but this spring/summer saw several weekend's worth of 1,200+ mile jaunts via Interstates, and I started off specifically looking for this ill behavior. To-date, the only time I've experienced it (and can reproduce at-will) is in crosswinds, with the LKA engaged.

99% of the time, I drive w/o LKA.
 

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My first vehicle was an '88 F-150. When I turned the steering wheel a few degress literally nothing would happen. To get it to go straight required that constant back and forth motion that you'd see someone on a sitcom doing when pretending to drive. THAT is imprecise steering.
My current other car is a '98 528i with crappy old hydraulic steering and worn out everything in the steering/suspension department. It has a great feel for the road and is very fun to drive with a pretty tight and rather large steering wheel. I would never call it imprecise but its outdated for sure.
Then I enter my Ascent, pull out of my driveway where theres an immediate 90 degree turn. I'm ALWAYS surprised at first how easy it is to steer the Ascent. I'm NEVER concerned the steering isnt precise. Its new. If we'd just stop complaining its different and accept change there would be zero problem.
Want to go straight in the Ascent? stop playing with the steering wheel
Want to turn? Dont expect to move a small steering wheel as far as a large one would. Physics

The suspension point is more annoying that an article with a title meant to grab your attention. Its a 4500lb SUV not a Porsche. I'm constantly having to slow down behind highlanders, sorentos, CRV's and every other SUV (because thats what everyone is driving now) around exit ramps because they apparently feel like their SUV cant handle a curve. Making up problems just gets attention and clicks...
 

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The suspension point is more annoying that an article with a title meant to grab your attention. Its a 4500lb SUV not a Porsche. I'm constantly having to slow down behind highlanders, sorentos, CRV's and every other SUV (because thats what everyone is driving now) around exit ramps because they apparently feel like their SUV cant handle a curve. Making up problems just gets attention and clicks...
I think a lot of this is also driver-dependent: this isn't the track or in testing, where folks are deliberately creeping in on the 10/10ths or even over in order to either place/better or to elicit certain traits to come to the foreground.

On the road, while some folks are comfortable pushing to 8/10ths or even 9/10ths in a safe manner, most barely drive at 3/10ths of what the vehicle is capable of. :)
 

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When I took delivery of my Ascent, it was clear that the steering feel was different from both my previous vehicle (Grand Cherokee) and our two Outbacks. I expected that to be the case since it's always like that with a new ride. Within a week, I no longer felt the differences as differences. I'm not disappointed at all, honestly.
 

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"Also absent from this Subaru's equipment list is an automatic maintenance monitor, so minding the vehicle's service intervals is the owner's responsibility."

What is this referring to? Is it a system that (say) monitors oil quality and informs you when it thinks you really need a change? Or is this referring to some onboard system that nags you every 6000 miles?

I don't know why anyone would want the latter.
 

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"Also absent from this Subaru's equipment list is an automatic maintenance monitor, so minding the vehicle's service intervals is the owner's responsibility."

What is this referring to? Is it a system that (say) monitors oil quality and informs you when it thinks you really need a change? Or is this referring to some onboard system that nags you every 6000 miles?

I don't know why anyone would want the latter.
Alas, we have the latter, but it can be enabled or disabled or set by the user by using the top LCD pod's controls. And then we have the same via MySubaru. And via the head unit via MySubaru. And via Push Notifications if we turned that on.

I think C&D dropped the ball this time.
 

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Alas, we have the latter, but it can be enabled or disabled or set by the user by using the top LCD pod's controls. And then we have the same via MySubaru. And via the head unit via MySubaru. And via Push Notifications if we turned that on.
Thanks. Now that you mention it, I do recall getting a message on the head unit with a "make reservation now" type of option. (Time-based in my case.) Even if they were right about the absence of such a thing, it seems an odd thing to bother critiquing in an article. So I wondered if perhaps they meant something more impressive.
 

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"Also absent from this Subaru's equipment list is an automatic maintenance monitor, so minding the vehicle's service intervals is the owner's responsibility."

What is this referring to? Is it a system that (say) monitors oil quality and informs you when it thinks you really need a change? Or is this referring to some onboard system that nags you every 6000 miles?

I don't know why anyone would want the latter.
The 2011 Odyssey that I just came from had a maintenance minder system. It would display oil life as a percentage of useful life remaining. It was apparently based on how the car was driven and not just counting down mileage. It doesn't actually do oil analysis. It's just an equation. When it would start telling you that it was time for an oil change, it would also indicate other required services based on mileage.
 

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Another point:
From the title of the post, I expected to read about transmission problems. Not this:

"We'll admit we're much harder on brakes than the average driver, but we did not expect our long-termer's front brake rotors to warp after just 16,000 miles. The dealer resurfaced the rotors free of charge, and the pulsing brake pedal has yet to return. Otherwise, the Subie has become a poster child for reliability, with routine oil changes, inspections, and tire rotations every 6000 miles and cabin air filter replacements every 12,000. The Ascent has removed $382 from our pockets thus far."

Has there been much forum churn about brake rotors? Otherwise, "poster child for reliability" hardly jibes with "confirms forum complaints."
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Well as someone who has a diverse number of vehicles, including a 2017 Ford F450 dually and a Porsche Carrera GTS among other vehicles, I do find the steering to be wonky. It has literally no feel at all. And it's a steep learning curve to prevent the steering from overcorrecting. I am able to keep a 9500 lb truck with dual rear wheels on each side, literally two inches from the line, but it is much more difficult to do so in the Ascent. C&D makes a good point about the small steering wheel exacerbating the fast steering ratio.

No I don't expect the Ascent to be a Cayenne or Macan, but it should not have been difficult for Subaru to engineer far less body roll into this thing. My kids think they're on a roller coaster whenever I hit any turns at speed. At least offer some aftermarket sway bars!
 
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