Subaru Ascent Forum banner
1 - 20 of 48 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 20,000 on my '21 Ascent. I'm going to lay out some points I have noticed. Some will agree, some will bash, but it's my focus group of one. Both good and bad.

I am in Metro Atlanta where the average road speed is 78-80. You will literally get run over at 70 on all sides. The car holds that speed well from a power standpoint, but out of the hole, it doesnt' have enough guts to merge in most cases when getting on the freeway and the fake shifts? Awful.

As I've said before, the mileage gets better the faster I drive. If I drive at 80, I'm consistently getting 24-25. If I drive at 70, I get 23.

I never use cruise because the algorithim keeps it out of overdrive and that raises RPM almost 500rpm which drops mileage by 2mpg--that just P*sses me off because as soon as I disengage and use my foot, it drops the gear down and holds speed just fine, so it's just not necessary.

The steering in this car is terrible. With the tires set at 33 and lane keeping off, I find the steering so sensitive at roadspeed that I am continually running over reflectors on the strips and have trouble staying in my lane. It's the worst car I've ever experienced at this in over 35 years of driving. My wife has the same issue so it's not me. Any little bump or pothole upsets the car on the highway.

The interior has held up well, but the seats are still rock hard and passengers have commented on it. I literally go numb after 60 miles in my left leg. \

The carpet is pretty thin----I am showing signs of the carpet wearing through in some spots on the drivers side, even with the rubber mat options.

I still fumble with the ergonomics after 18 months. The controls to me are just not intuitive (Cruise, environment, the switches for the info screen). I've never had a car that did not become intuitive. As a reference, I rented a Tahoe on business this week and have never driven one or really any Chevy products---I had the controls memoried by day 3.

It's pretty quiet at roadspeed and around town, it's well behaved except on steep hill starts, then the transmission hunts like crazy.

Interior space is good.

Entry and exit is easy, so that's something.

I wish I could give a better report out, but all of those things individually could be dealt with, collectively they add up. What else can I say.

It has multiple personality disorder...some days I really like it other days, it's just a different vehicle.
 

·
Registered
2021 Ascent Limited Black/Black
Joined
·
597 Posts
Obviously a lot of things are very subjective, and so much can depend on what other cars one is used to, etc. That said, though, I've been on this forum long enough to sometimes wonder whether or not Subaru has some serious quality control issues. So often it seems like people are talking about totally different cars on this forum, and I often wish there was a quick easy way where a lot of us could swap cars for a day or an hour or something to see if it's individual Ascents that are that different or if it really is just a matter of differing opinions.
Like the steering, as mentioned above, in my Ascent it is ridiculously easy to drive, no problem whatsoever staying in my lane at any speed, and I can't imagine anyone borrowing my Ascent to have troubles there either. Then there's the "guts" that for me are ridiculously more than enough in any situation I've encountered. When I need it to, my Ascent takes off like a friggin' rocket, and anyother family member who has driven it has said the same thing. Really wish we could trade for a day and then know if one Ascent to the next can actually be pretty darn different in a lot of respects, or if it is just a matter of really different opinions of the exact same vehicles.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
190 Posts
I am in Metro Atlanta where the average road speed is 78-80. You will literally get run over at 70 on all sides. The car holds that speed well from a power standpoint, but out of the hole, it doesnt' have enough guts to merge in most cases when getting on the freeway and the fake shifts? Awful.

As I've said before, the mileage gets better the faster I drive. If I drive at 80, I'm consistently getting 24-25. If I drive at 70, I get 23.
First person I've heard of who has successfully defied the laws of physics! Or, maybe you got worse MPG at 70 MPH because you were constantly getting run over. "On all sides." :rolleyes:
 

·
Registered
2022 Abyss Blue Pearl Onyx
Joined
·
243 Posts
I found the steering so tight compared to my leggy that it was noticeable until I adapted to it. I do notice it more if I'm tired, and that's when I turn on the lane centering assist. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
189 Posts
I have 20,000 on my '21 Ascent. I'm going to lay out some points I have noticed. Some will agree, some will bash, but it's my focus group of one. Both good and bad.

I am in Metro Atlanta where the average road speed is 78-80. You will literally get run over at 70 on all sides. The car holds that speed well from a power standpoint, but out of the hole, it doesnt' have enough guts to merge in most cases when getting on the freeway and the fake shifts? Awful.

As I've said before, the mileage gets better the faster I drive. If I drive at 80, I'm consistently getting 24-25. If I drive at 70, I get 23.

I never use cruise because the algorithim keeps it out of overdrive and that raises RPM almost 500rpm which drops mileage by 2mpg--that just P*sses me off because as soon as I disengage and use my foot, it drops the gear down and holds speed just fine, so it's just not necessary.

The steering in this car is terrible. With the tires set at 33 and lane keeping off, I find the steering so sensitive at roadspeed that I am continually running over reflectors on the strips and have trouble staying in my lane. It's the worst car I've ever experienced at this in over 35 years of driving. My wife has the same issue so it's not me. Any little bump or pothole upsets the car on the highway.

The interior has held up well, but the seats are still rock hard and passengers have commented on it. I literally go numb after 60 miles in my left leg. \

The carpet is pretty thin----I am showing signs of the carpet wearing through in some spots on the drivers side, even with the rubber mat options.

I still fumble with the ergonomics after 18 months. The controls to me are just not intuitive (Cruise, environment, the switches for the info screen). I've never had a car that did not become intuitive. As a reference, I rented a Tahoe on business this week and have never driven one or really any Chevy products---I had the controls memoried by day 3.

It's pretty quiet at roadspeed and around town, it's well behaved except on steep hill starts, then the transmission hunts like crazy.

Interior space is good.

Entry and exit is easy, so that's something.

I wish I could give a better report out, but all of those things individually could be dealt with, collectively they add up. What else can I say.

It has multiple personality disorder...some days I really like it other days, it's just a different vehicle.
I’m on my 30k miles on my 19 ascent and for sure I don’t like the steering feel! It is too light that I felt like the car is always swerving!
 

·
Registered
2021 Subaru Ascent, 2015 Kia K900
Joined
·
168 Posts
I wouldn't use the word "carpet". It's more like a heavy felt material. At the price point for a Touring model, I would expect carpeting rather than what Subaru uses. But it's no deal breaker for me. Besides, I have TuxMats in my new '22 so there is little context with the felt-like material.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
For the steering part, it is definitely more sensitive compare to other vehicles in this segment because of the low steering ratio. The Ascent has a steering ratio of 13.5:1 compare to 16.0:1 from the Honda Pilot and Nissan Pathfinder. If you compare it to the Toyota 4Runner, that has a 18.4:1 steering ratio which is very slow to react on steering input. On the other hand, I appreciate the Ascent's quick steering ratio because it takes less effort when you're doing a U-turn or a 3-point turn. Also, a quicker steering ratio will also help you dodge any unexpected event happen in front of you faster since you will need less steering input to get yourself away from it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
70 Posts
I concur with the steering comments of the OP.

It seems that if I breathe on my steering wheel the car moves.

The steering takes very little effort but I also think there is something else that makes it prone to un-commanded lane excursions.

Of the various wheel alignment specs, I wonder which one affects this most.

Is it possible that setting that spec to the far side of the range might help?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
101 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Interesting to see I'm not the only one with steering issues. I have driven other Ascents. I have a friend who has had a 19 and a 22. His 19 was a rock, his '22 is twitchy--he even asked me about it....stating it didn't feel like the same car--i drove them both and agree. Lane centering makes it worse. It's fine below 50 and it doesnt' pull so that makes me think it's the assist ratio. Maybe the tires from the factory don't play nice with the physics of the car---that's been known to happen. The turning radius also drives me nuts. My Sequoia will do a U-turn where the Ascent is a 3pt turn.
 

·
Registered
2020 Ascent Touring
Joined
·
1,472 Posts
I find the steering so sensitive at roadspeed that I am continually running over reflectors on the strips and have trouble staying in my lane. It's the worst car I've ever experienced at this in over 35 years of driving.
And passing semis, crosswinds and headwinds make it into a white knuckle experience. I always feel like people behind me just thin I'm drunk the way the car won't track a straight line.
Of the various wheel alignment specs, I wonder which one affects this most.
Caster is a big one. It's what provides the self-centering on-center. In my other car, if I take it into an empty lot and turn the wheel 90° then let go of the wheel the wheel re-centers and stays there (hands still off the wheel). In the Ascent, do the same thing and the wheel doesn't return stably to center, it wavers left and right (LKA is off).

I've told the dealer about this on 2 separate visits, the 2nd time they did a courtesy alignment. The caster left was 3.2° before and after; caster right was 3.5° before and after alignment. Either they don't include caster in their alignment or it isn't adjustable in the Ascent. I haven't checked.

The only specs that changed after alignment were front and rear toe.
 

·
Registered
2021 Subaru Ascent Touring
Joined
·
85 Posts
Interesting to see I'm not the only one with steering issues. I have driven other Ascents. I have a friend who has had a 19 and a 22. His 19 was a rock, his '22 is twitchy--he even asked me about it....stating it didn't feel like the same car--i drove them both and agree. Lane centering makes it worse. It's fine below 50 and it doesnt' pull so that makes me think it's the assist ratio. Maybe the tires from the factory don't play nice with the physics of the car---that's been known to happen. The turning radius also drives me nuts. My Sequoia will do a U-turn where the Ascent is a 3pt turn.
I didn’t notice any difficulty keeping my 21 in a lane but I agree about the turning radius, the Ascent feels bigger than it is when doing a u turn. Also agree about lane centering, pretty much useless, I’ve been told I might be fighting it so I just tried to let it drive on it’s own until it complains and it drives like a drunk driver, tried giving it minimal input and still drives like a drunk, it also tries to stay way to close to the left lane which is not ideal in two way roads.
 
  • Like
Reactions: jcr

·
Registered
2021 ascent limited ice silver
Joined
·
117 Posts
I am in Metro Atlanta where the average road speed is 78-80. You will literally get run over at 70 on all sides. The car holds that speed well from a power standpoint, but out of the hole, it doesnt' have enough guts


You should try mine 06 B-9 Tribeca . That lady IS underpowered. But not mine Ascent.
 

·
Registered
2019 Subaru Ascent Touring (Canadian Edition) -- Ice Silver Metallic
Joined
·
188 Posts
I actually was driving a straight stretch of highway once. I held the wheel so still that the warning "to keep your hands on the steering wheel" popped up.

As for the sensitivity, it seems great when driving a winding highway along the coastline. Other SUVs that are normally on my tail disappear in the rearview mirror as I corner at within speed limits much like a video game. They only catch up to me on the straight stretches.

I guess you just get used to a certain style of driving either tighter or loser steering response. Some brands let you tune this with a dial for their electric power steering assist.

I am curious as to how the driving dynamics may differ with the newer models that have lane centering function.
 

·
Registered
2021 Subaru Ascent Touring CWP
Joined
·
50 Posts
I have 20,000 on my '21 Ascent. I'm going to lay out some points I have noticed. Some will agree, some will bash, but it's my focus group of one. Both good and bad.

I am in Metro Atlanta where the average road speed is 78-80. You will literally get run over at 70 on all sides. The car holds that speed well from a power standpoint, but out of the hole, it doesnt' have enough guts to merge in most cases when getting on the freeway and the fake shifts? Awful.

As I've said before, the mileage gets better the faster I drive. If I drive at 80, I'm consistently getting 24-25. If I drive at 70, I get 23.

I never use cruise because the algorithim keeps it out of overdrive and that raises RPM almost 500rpm which drops mileage by 2mpg--that just P*sses me off because as soon as I disengage and use my foot, it drops the gear down and holds speed just fine, so it's just not necessary.

The steering in this car is terrible. With the tires set at 33 and lane keeping off, I find the steering so sensitive at roadspeed that I am continually running over reflectors on the strips and have trouble staying in my lane. It's the worst car I've ever experienced at this in over 35 years of driving. My wife has the same issue so it's not me. Any little bump or pothole upsets the car on the highway.

The interior has held up well, but the seats are still rock hard and passengers have commented on it. I literally go numb after 60 miles in my left leg. \

The carpet is pretty thin----I am showing signs of the carpet wearing through in some spots on the drivers side, even with the rubber mat options.

I still fumble with the ergonomics after 18 months. The controls to me are just not intuitive (Cruise, environment, the switches for the info screen). I've never had a car that did not become intuitive. As a reference, I rented a Tahoe on business this week and have never driven one or really any Chevy products---I had the controls memoried by day 3.

It's pretty quiet at roadspeed and around town, it's well behaved except on steep hill starts, then the transmission hunts like crazy.

Interior space is good.

Entry and exit is easy, so that's something.

I wish I could give a better report out, but all of those things individually could be dealt with, collectively they add up. What else can I say.

It has multiple personality disorder...some days I really like it other days, it's just a different vehicle.
I’ll agree with the transmission sucking. I’ve driven heavier, larger and more powerful vehicles that average better fuel returns than this. It’s moderately disappointing considering it only grosses 260hp. I recently drove the I29 corridor in South Dakota and the speed limit is 80mph. Had a 30mph head wind and my Thule Motion XL roof topper on. While driving sustained at 85-87mph I noticed that the transmission started to slip after about 30 minutes of driving. The engine would start revving higher but my speed and load wasn’t changing. I could watch the instant mpg readout stay the same. Ever since then my vehicle hasn’t felt the same. I have a 21 Touring and I bought the extended warranty. I’ll drive the wheels off of this thing then sell it to get my moneys worth.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
73 Posts
This is the most relatable post as I also feel the same exact way about EVERYTHING the OP posted. Its a great car, but I can't say that I love my 2019 Touring.

Cons:
The fake shifting from the CVT drives me nuts!
The felt/carpet is wearing in and around all entry/exit points
Carplay has never worked correctly, even when I'm plugged in directly, Pandora always tries to override all my other apps (waze, spotify, etc)
Steering feels really loose and I don't feel fully connected to the road
Constantly worried that if I leave the trunk open too long, I'll have a dead battery
I've been having a shudder in my brake pedal when i'm going 80 mph and I need to brake hard or when the car is fully loaded going down hill and I have to brake. Dealer cant replicate this issue :/

Pros:
Peppy enough to haul the family around town and take small trips, but not confident enough to overtake someone
Great space, even for the third row for a mid size SUV
Appreciate the hidden compartment space to put away/hide the trunk cover and other essentials
Why are there so many cup holders? lol
AWD
Mileage doesn't suffer with our cargo box ontop of the car
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
I’m not a Suba-phile. I drive a Honda Ridgeline and it’s a pretty good truck. My wife drives a 2019 Ascent Limited with 40,000+ miles. Every time she lets me drive it I love the experience. It handles well, excellent acceleration, comfortable drive, and decent fuel consumption for an AWD vehicle. Over 3 years of driving and no repairs. I’m sorry for those having problems with their Ascents but if she decides to buy a new one down the road she won’t get an argument from me.

I have 20,000 on my '21 Ascent. I'm going to lay out some points I have noticed. Some will agree, some will bash, but it's my focus group of one. Both good and bad.

I am in Metro Atlanta where the average road speed is 78-80. You will literally get run over at 70 on all sides. The car holds that speed well from a power standpoint, but out of the hole, it doesnt' have enough guts to merge in most cases when getting on the freeway and the fake shifts? Awful.

As I've said before, the mileage gets better the faster I drive. If I drive at 80, I'm consistently getting 24-25. If I drive at 70, I get 23.

I never use cruise because the algorithim keeps it out of overdrive and that raises RPM almost 500rpm which drops mileage by 2mpg--that just P*sses me off because as soon as I disengage and use my foot, it drops the gear down and holds speed just fine, so it's just not necessary.

The steering in this car is terrible. With the tires set at 33 and lane keeping off, I find the steering so sensitive at roadspeed that I am continually running over reflectors on the strips and have trouble staying in my lane. It's the worst car I've ever experienced at this in over 35 years of driving. My wife has the same issue so it's not me. Any little bump or pothole upsets the car on the highway.

The interior has held up well, but the seats are still rock hard and passengers have commented on it. I literally go numb after 60 miles in my left leg. \

The carpet is pretty thin----I am showing signs of the carpet wearing through in some spots on the drivers side, even with the rubber mat options.

I still fumble with the ergonomics after 18 months. The controls to me are just not intuitive (Cruise, environment, the switches for the info screen). I've never had a car that did not become intuitive. As a reference, I rented a Tahoe on business this week and have never driven one or really any Chevy products---I had the controls memoried by day 3.

It's pretty quiet at roadspeed and around town, it's well behaved except on steep hill starts, then the transmission hunts like crazy.

Interior space is good.

Entry and exit is easy, so that's something.

I wish I could give a better report out, but all of those things individually could be dealt with, collectively they add up. What else can I say.

It has multiple personality disorder...some days I really like it other days, it's just a different vehicle.
 

·
Super Moderator
2019 Ascent Touring (CWP)
Joined
·
5,384 Posts
While driving sustained at 85-87mph I noticed that the transmission started to slip after about 30 minutes of driving. The engine would start revving higher but my speed and load wasn’t changing. I could watch the instant mpg readout stay the same. Ever since then my vehicle hasn’t felt the same.
You need to take it to your dealer service department and have them both pull the codes and test it. If your transmission is actually slipping, they will replace it.
 
1 - 20 of 48 Posts
Top