Subaru Ascent Forum banner
1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Wife and I are lifelong Subaru fans. My first car was a Subaru GL-10 4WD Turbo Wagon that had originally been purchased brand new by my Grandfather, absolutely loved that car. I learned to drive manual in it, lots of fun high school/college adventures, was a beast of a little car. Thank god it had the turbo though, would have been pretty gutless without it. Unfortunately, in 2010 it sustained some damage that threw off the tow of the rear passenger tire and it would shake at high speeds/blow through tires and I had to say goodbye to it (couldn't find anyone to fix it). At the time I bought a 2011 Outback 2.5 Premium and it has served our family faithfully for the last 12 years and 170k miles. Sometimes I still have trouble believing it is not a new car and how fast the last 12 years have flown by, here is to another 170k miles out of it!

For a long time, my wife and I just had the outback as we had transit options that worked for work. A few years back though some family members were buying a new outback and gifted a 2006 Tribeca B9 Premium to my wife. It was pristine as they are very discerning owners, only 75k miles when we got it, and like new inside. It has been handy to have another car especially as we have welcomed two children into our life (one and three-year-old boys). That said, I have never been a huge fan of the Tribeca, style wise or how it drives. Has had odd repair stuff we have had to do, and I am just done putting money into it.

While the Outback isn't going anywhere, we decided it is time to say goodbye to the Tribeca and buy an Ascent as our main family car for raising the boys and to take some use out of the outback, it deserves a break from being our primary vehicle.

Already all lined up with a local dealer to be ready to place an order for a 2023 when ordering starts (sounds like sometime this month, August 5th is last day to place a 2022 Ascent order). Only change I am a bit leary of is the big iPad style infotainment and less physical buttons, but some other new features are must haves for me (360 camera, eyesight upgrades, cabin connect) so decided the wait for 2023 was worth it. I know the styling redesign is polarizing as well, but I dig the more angular design. I like the Java Brown and want all the bells and whistles after driving older cars for so long, so going to go for a Touring edition. We are still trying to decide on the color, probably either the new cosmic blue pearl or the autumn green metallic (if it comes back).

Excited to be joining your community!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
We just put our order in for a 2022 Ascent Onyx. Debated waiting on the 2023, but after reading issues with the wireless car play on the outback’s and actually wanting knobs for the climate controls, we went with the 2022.
I know what you mean, it is a tough call. I have been a bit hater of the tablet screen in cars trend, and here I go buying one anyway. For me one of the biggest things it came down to was styling, the original Ascent was not necessarily doing it for me and I had been considering things like the Kia Telluride, but something about the 2023 clicks for me.

I am test driving a 2022 tomorrow just to 100% make sure I like the feel of things, excited to check it out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
143 Posts
I hope you find you made the right choice!

We are also ready to order a 2023 the moment they become available. I've been in close contact with our local dealer/salesperson. He said if we are quick enough when orders go live we may actually have a good chance at customer ordering one (i.e. with the features we want) before Subaru builds the first bunch that are typically pre-configured. With the dealership's help we are trying to be one of the first, if not the actual first, orders of a 2023 Ascent in the US. :)

Our history with Subaru is a bit wild too. The Ascent is a 'third time's a charm' attempt at buying a Subaru for a family vehicle. Bought a 2004 Subaru WRX in 2007 (that I still drive today) before I was married. After getting married my Wife and I ordered a 2012 WRX that we walked away from (couldn't make ourselves get rid of the '04, we like it too much). Later around 2016 we ordered a Subaru Forester and walked away (again, couldn't bring ourselves to sell the '04 WRX) and instead went with a 2016 Nissan Rogue (with 3rd row, we had 2 kids with #3 on the way). 1 year later traded that in for a 2015 Nissan Pathfinder, which the transmission died right at end of warranty (like 34k miles). Traded that in for a 2018 Pacifica Hybrid minivan, traded that in for a 2020 Pacifica Hybrid minivan (transmission died at 6k miles), the 2020 is being replaced via lemon law and we will take our replacement Pacifica and are trading that in for a 2023 Subaru Ascent.

We've shopped around for a ton of other vehicles, but always come back to Subaru being the most comfortable for us. It just 'feels right' when sitting in a Subaru. Nothing else we've driven comes anywhere close to inspiring as much confidence as Subaru has for us.

My Wife and commonly have the conversation about how we never should have walked away from the Forester. If we bought that at the time we'd be driving it today as our main vehicle and would be trading it in for a Subaru Ascent (we need 6 seats minimum starting next month with kid #4 on the way!).

So basically our family vehicles start with Subaru and will end with Subaru. Going forward I doubt we'll buy anything other than Subaru.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Just wrapped up a test drive of a 2021 Limited, and it was about what I expected. Felt and drove like a Subaru as I am used to, but sat up higher so felt a bit more nimble, and did feel like a pretty big rig, almost truck-like. Recently drove a friends Honda Pilot which I would say felt a bit more buttery smooth, but liked how responsive the Ascent was. Looks like it going to work out for us!

Was a bit bummed at the 3rd row, but knew that would be tough. For sure would not be something that works for me (6ft 230lbs), but would be manageable with seat leaned back so head does not hit the ceiling and room to stretch legs between 2nd-row captains chairs. Was pretty easy to climb back into at least. Felt a bit meh about the cargo area even with the 3rd row down, but it should work out.

Got to check out the Autumn Green I am considering, and it is looker in person. Obviously no way to checkout the Cosmic Blue Pearl yet, still a tough call. As an aside, saw a few fresh-off-the-truck Outback Wilderness editions in Geyser Blue. Gorgeous, I was worried it would be a bit much based on photos, but what a looker. Bummer there is not a Wilderness Ascent hitting in 2023.
 

·
Super Moderator
2019 Ascent Touring (CWP)
Joined
·
5,678 Posts
Was a bit bummed at the 3rd row, but knew that would be tough. For sure would not be something that works for me (6ft 230lbs), but would be manageable with seat leaned back so head does not hit the ceiling and room to stretch legs between 2nd-row captains chairs. Was pretty easy to climb back into at least. Felt a bit meh about the cargo area even with the 3rd row down, but it should work out.
Ascent's third row is better than most midsize three row SUVs, IMHO. And honestly, most folks don't stick big adults back there. At least they can. For some of the rides in this class it would be even more uncomfortable or even unworkable.
 

·
Premium Member
2021 Ascent Touring
Joined
·
438 Posts
Ascent's third row is better than most midsize three row SUVs, IMHO. And honestly, most folks don't stick big adults back there. At least they can. For some of the rides in this class it would be even more uncomfortable or even unworkable.
For all the mid-size 3-rows that were on the market when we bought in 2019, the Ascent was the most accessible and roomiest back there. Not that it's "roomy" but it could be a lot worse. I've ridden back there on 2+ hour trips and been plenty comfortable (as a 5'9" guy). I don't think I'd be super stoked about it if I was 6'2"...but I don't have that problem.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
For all the mid-size 3-rows that were on the market when we bought in 2019, the Ascent was the most accessible and roomiest back there. Not that it's "roomy" but it could be a lot worse. I've ridden back there on 2+ hour trips and been plenty comfortable (as a 5'9" guy). I don't think I'd be super stoked about it if I was 6'2"...but I don't have that problem.
Yeah for sure, it is miles better than the '06 Tribeca we have, which we basically just pretend does not have a 3rd row. How easy it was to get into was a huge bonus, either between the captains chairs or pulling the seats forward. Wasn't maybe as bad as I have seen comparisons videos to the Kia Telluride for example make it seem. Was a bit bummed when my head hit the ceiling. For us, it is mainly just about having a space for a person to squeeze into in a pinch around town with both the captains chairs occupied by car seats, and overall more room for cargo.
 

·
Super Moderator
2019 Ascent Touring (CWP)
Joined
·
5,678 Posts
The pits for me was the third row in the MY06 Highlander Hybrid Limited I owned for 7 years...the third row was about large enough for two build-a-bears, but not humans older than about 8 years old. Adults? Fugetaboutit...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
143 Posts
My Wife and I have done so much research I feel like I should make a bunch of videos on the topic of 3rd row and car seats in various SUV's/minivans.

IMHO, it doesn't matter whether it's an SUV or minivan, if the vehicle has a 2nd row bench then it's always going to be more challenging accessing the 3rd row. But with 2nd row captain's chairs, it's equal on 'ease of access' to the 3rd row whether it's an SUV or minivan at that point (with exception of the Honda Odyssey which allows the captains chairs to slide sideways, very easy access to 3rd row). One thing I do wish the Ascent had was the 2nd row seats that folded forward as a single unit (to allow forward facing child seats to remain in place while moving the seat forward), rather than having the backs fold first and then the bottom sliding forward as it is now.

@Inoculator It sounds like you do have child seats to consider and additional passengers at times, but if that were not the case I would highly suggest the Outback. It has a very wide 2nd row and tons of cargo space in the back (I believe the most out of any Subaru).

One of my pet peeves is youtubers reviewing 3rd row seating space, they are almost always over 6' tall (well above average) and always complain about 3rd row leg room. It's a legit concern for those taller folks, but for the average person like myself (5'8"), the 3rd row of the Ascent is more than enough. I've sat with the 1st and 2nd row set to my height (with generous 2nd row leg space) and still end up with about 5 inches of room beyond my knee when in the 3rd row. Not cramped at all, very comfortable! However, friend of ours who is just over 6' sat in the 3rd row during a test drive and his head was just brushing the ceiling with basically almost no knee/leg room.

That said, the space for your feet in the 3rd row is quite generous (something rarely touched on in any review), especially compared to other SUV's that compete with the Ascent. My least favorite so far has been the Toyota Highlander with much less 3rd row space overall. I also tested a Volvo XC90 (not a direct competitor, due to pricing), still had decent knee room (less than the Ascent), but very little space for the feet to go. There's at least one direct competitor to the Ascent (names escaped me at the moment) that had basically zero space for your feet due to the under seat design of the 2nd row, so the 3rd row was really useless for adults no matter how much knee room it had (which was still less than the Ascent).

It seems often on paper the Ascent sits in the middle for 3rd row room, but in reality it's near the top because of the overall design (i.e. if you actually test and compare yourself and don't just rely on numbers on paper).

As for storage space behind the 3rd row, IMHO all SUV's are terrible in this regard. :) BUT! With part of the 3rd row down (or even all of it down) there's is a generous amount of space. There's about 25% more cargo room with the 60% side of the Ascent 3rd row down compared to our Chrysler Pacifica Minivan with the 3rd row up. And in our case the bonus is that the overall cargo space is flat in the Ascent vs the vertical cargo area of the Pacifica. I did a bunch of measurements to compare and was really surprised how wide and usable the Ascent cargo space is.

I realize the picture below is kind of backwards with the Ascent 3rd row up and then half the Pacifica 3rd row down, but doing the measurements and comparing in person confirmed the 25% cargo gain in the Ascent with half 3rd row down vs Pacifica with all 3rd row up.

The reason I call this out is that when we become a family of 6 next month, we'll have 1x forward facing child seat, 1x rear facing child seat, and 2x booster seats, and 2 adults. In our Pacifica (with 2nd row captain's chairs), we'll need the whole 3rd row up at all times, which limits the cargo room to only behind the 3rd row. However, with the Ascent 2nd row bench seating we'll get 3 kids in the 2nd row with only 1 in the 3rd row, allowing us to put half the 3rd row down, hence more usable cargo space in the SUV vs the minivan. :)

Perhaps not relevant to this conversation unless you are really comparing to minivans (or perhaps SUV's with 2nd row bench vs captain seats), but thought I'd share anyway. :)


Vehicle Hood Automotive tire Motor vehicle Car


Vehicle Hood Automotive tire Motor vehicle Car
 

·
Registered
2020 Ascent Touring / 2020 Forester Touring
Joined
·
837 Posts
We just put our order in for a 2022 Ascent Onyx. Debated waiting on the 2023, but after reading issues with the wireless car play on the outback’s and actually wanting knobs for the climate controls, we went with the 2022.
can you explainn ? 2022 outback’s dont have wireless car play
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
My Wife and I have done so much research I feel like I should make a bunch of videos on the topic of 3rd row and car seats in various SUV's/minivans.

IMHO, it doesn't matter whether it's an SUV or minivan, if the vehicle has a 2nd row bench then it's always going to be more challenging accessing the 3rd row. But with 2nd row captain's chairs, it's equal on 'ease of access' to the 3rd row whether it's an SUV or minivan at that point (with exception of the Honda Odyssey which allows the captains chairs to slide sideways, very easy access to 3rd row). One thing I do wish the Ascent had was the 2nd row seats that folded forward as a single unit (to allow forward facing child seats to remain in place while moving the seat forward), rather than having the backs fold first and then the bottom sliding forward as it is now.

@Inoculator It sounds like you do have child seats to consider and additional passengers at times, but if that were not the case I would highly suggest the Outback. It has a very wide 2nd row and tons of cargo space in the back (I believe the most out of any Subaru).

One of my pet peeves is youtubers reviewing 3rd row seating space, they are almost always over 6' tall (well above average) and always complain about 3rd row leg room. It's a legit concern for those taller folks, but for the average person like myself (5'8"), the 3rd row of the Ascent is more than enough. I've sat with the 1st and 2nd row set to my height (with generous 2nd row leg space) and still end up with about 5 inches of room beyond my knee when in the 3rd row. Not cramped at all, very comfortable! However, friend of ours who is just over 6' sat in the 3rd row during a test drive and his head was just brushing the ceiling with basically almost no knee/leg room.

That said, the space for your feet in the 3rd row is quite generous (something rarely touched on in any review), especially compared to other SUV's that compete with the Ascent. My least favorite so far has been the Toyota Highlander with much less 3rd row space overall. I also tested a Volvo XC90 (not a direct competitor, due to pricing), still had decent knee room (less than the Ascent), but very little space for the feet to go. There's at least one direct competitor to the Ascent (names escaped me at the moment) that had basically zero space for your feet due to the under seat design of the 2nd row, so the 3rd row was really useless for adults no matter how much knee room it had (which was still less than the Ascent).

It seems often on paper the Ascent sits in the middle for 3rd row room, but in reality it's near the top because of the overall design (i.e. if you actually test and compare yourself and don't just rely on numbers on paper).

As for storage space behind the 3rd row, IMHO all SUV's are terrible in this regard. :) BUT! With part of the 3rd row down (or even all of it down) there's is a generous amount of space. There's about 25% more cargo room with the 60% side of the Ascent 3rd row down compared to our Chrysler Pacifica Minivan with the 3rd row up. And in our case the bonus is that the overall cargo space is flat in the Ascent vs the vertical cargo area of the Pacifica. I did a bunch of measurements to compare and was really surprised how wide and usable the Ascent cargo space is.

I realize the picture below is kind of backwards with the Ascent 3rd row up and then half the Pacifica 3rd row down, but doing the measurements and comparing in person confirmed the 25% cargo gain in the Ascent with half 3rd row down vs Pacifica with all 3rd row up.

The reason I call this out is that when we become a family of 6 next month, we'll have 1x forward facing child seat, 1x rear facing child seat, and 2x booster seats, and 2 adults. In our Pacifica (with 2nd row captain's chairs), we'll need the whole 3rd row up at all times, which limits the cargo room to only behind the 3rd row. However, with the Ascent 2nd row bench seating we'll get 3 kids in the 2nd row with only 1 in the 3rd row, allowing us to put half the 3rd row down, hence more usable cargo space in the SUV vs the minivan. :)

Perhaps not relevant to this conversation unless you are really comparing to minivans (or perhaps SUV's with 2nd row bench vs captain seats), but thought I'd share anyway. :)


View attachment 17709

View attachment 17709
That is super helpful, thank you so much for sharing! Some folks have been trying to steer us toward the minivan route, so very helpful to see this comparison.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
143 Posts
That is super helpful, thank you so much for sharing! Some folks have been trying to steer us toward the minivan route, so very helpful to see this comparison.
I actually enjoy having a minivan overall. The only AWD 8 seater minivan that I'm aware of is the Toyota Sienna. But the only way to get both AWD and 8 seats is the lowest trim, which loses out on a lot of great features. They do have a Woodland Edition in 7 seats only that raises the ground clearance to 6.9 inches (pretty decent for a minivan!).

We made the decision that if we are getting 8 seats and have to give up PHEV, then we might as well gain (really good!) AWD and ground clearance. We've taken our Pacifica on some forest service roads (would NOT recommend) and well, haven't broken anything yet just out of pure luck. :) When it snows we permanently park our Pacifica, it can't always make it up our driveway, we switch to our older subaru for that (which won't fit us all very soon).
 

·
Super Moderator
2019 Ascent Touring (CWP)
Joined
·
5,678 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
i did not think 2023 delivered yet
2023 Outback’s and yes they have I sat in one with the larger display and wireless Apple play that the Ascents are getting. I made my decision on a 2022 Ascent by checking out the Outback, since that will be the screen upgrade in the Ascent. I prefer the knobs for climate controls.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
3,499 Posts
One thing I do wish the Ascent had was the 2nd row seats that folded forward as a single unit (to allow forward facing child seats to remain in place while moving the seat forward), rather than having the backs fold first and then the bottom sliding forward as it is now.
Maybe captains chairs work different than the bench? My 2019 has a 2nd row bench with a fwd facing seat on the right side and rear facing seat on the left. Of course the fwd facing seat allows more forward movement so that's the preferred side to ingress/egress the 3rd row.
By using the lever under the front of the seat it does slide forward without tilting the back. Kids did it so much they got used to getting in/out that way. Now that we just switched to a booster there they can start tilting and sliding it which gives them even more room....but they always forget to put it back upright and it ends up sliding around the next time I drive without them.

As for storage space behind the 3rd row, IMHO all SUV's are terrible in this regard. :) BUT! With part of the 3rd row down (or even all of it down) there's is a generous amount of space.
Did you happen to research SUV's in the early 2010's? Storage behind the 3rd row was non-existent across the board unless it was a full size Suburban, Yukon XL, or Expedition EL. That's how I ended up with a Honda Odyssey back then. SUV's have improved the storage a lot since then; I can fit a double stroller or jogging stroller in the trunk of the Ascent. The Odyssey had a couple features I wish the Ascent carried over but I can still live without: removable middle of 2nd row bench to make either captains chairs or bench available, and the ability to fold down the back of just the center seat in the 2nd row. That was literally all, everything else about minivans is boring.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Landshark

·
Registered
2020 Ascent Touring / 2020 Forester Touring
Joined
·
837 Posts
2023 Outback’s and yes they have I sat in one with the larger display and wireless Apple play that the Ascents are getting. I made my decision on a 2022 Ascent by checking out the Outback, since that will be the screen upgrade in the Ascent. I prefer the knobs for climate controls.
All i see is 1st delivery is in end of september for 2023 and most been pushed back to October
larger display on out Outback’s is started 2020 but did not have wireless Car Apple and will not have one til 2023
as of right now 2022 Subaru Outback’s still in active transit to dealers
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
All i see is 1st delivery is in end of september for 2023 and most been pushed back to October
larger display on out Outback’s is started 2020 but did not have wireless Car Apple and will not have one til 2023
as of right now 2022 Subaru Outback’s still in active transit to dealers
Well then it was a 2022. All I know is I sat in an Outback with the larger screen that the Ascent will be getting. Not sure what year it was. Either way, we preferred the knobs and that is why we ordered a 2022 Ascent vs a 2023.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top