2023 Subaru Ascent Touring First Test: Maximum Subaru But Best 3-Row SUV? (2023)

Billy'ego RoebuckaWriterBrandon LimPhotographer

subaru uspon Full review


  • Smooth, relaxed drive
  • Pleasant interior materials
  • Competitive prices
(Video) 2023 Subaru Ascent Touring is a nicely refreshed and loaded 3 row family SUV. Review and drive.

As the largest and best-equipped vehicle Subaru has ever produced,Rise in 2023is the de facto flagship of the manufacturer.Updated for this model year, the styling of the three-row SUV is undeniably consistentthe rest of the Subaru line. It is also equipped with the brand's latest infotainment and safety technologies. We got behind the wheel of the top-of-the-line 2023 Subaru Ascent Touring to see if it will rise to the top of the three-row midsize SUV class.

How is the ride on the Ascent 2023?

Subaru equips every 2023 Ascent with a 2.4-liter turbocharged inline-four that sends 260 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque to a standard all-wheel drive system via a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). The drivetrain is relaxed and unencumbered, and the Ascent helps you pull away from the line without having to press hard on the gas pedal. This three-row Subaru accelerates as quickly as we'd expect in its class, hitting 60 mph in a respectable but not exciting 7.1 seconds. We achieved the best times using Subaru's steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters to control the eight simulated ratios programmed into the CVT. While the Ascent doesn't perform like a sports car, this feature should entice driving enthusiasts who ditch their WRX for something more practical.

(Video) 2023 Subaru Ascent Limited - REVIEW and POV DRIVE - Is This The Best 3 Row SUV Under $50,000?

Most people who drive this SUV on a daily basis will not use manual transmissions and will still find the Ascent to be a smooth, quiet and predictable ride. To these customers, EPA data is more important than our footprint data. The Ascent's 19 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway match other four-wheel-drive competitors, beating out the Kia Telluride, matching the Honda Pilot, but not the Toyota Highlander. The total range is 405 miles, which is enough for longer trips on cross-country trails.

The Ascent brake pedal works with some force, butour track testsshowed that the choice of Subaru tires is a disappointment. Braking distances were reasonable for the segment, but we didn't feel any tire bite under hard braking. The tires also lack the lateral grip of a sports car, but the Ascent can be a lot of fun to drive if kept within its modest handling limits. The steering wheel is light and precise, which enables easy maneuvering in parking lots or city streets. The suspension setup is pretty nifty, so there's some body roll when cornering, but the Ascent soaks up most road imperfections comfortably. Take it easy while driving the 2023 Subaru Ascent and enjoy a relaxing and relaxed ride.

Luxurious, but flawed interior

Other SUVs with three rowsit boasts more futuristic cabins, but the interior of the 2023 Subaru Ascent looks classy, ​​especially when equipped with Touring leather seats and Slate Nappa trim. Our test car was decked out in faux-wood trim, which, thanks to the open-pore finish, looks more convincing than expected. We also dig the floor mats, which have a cool colorful pattern that looks classy out of the box at the same time.

Thoughtful features such as shelves that run along the dashboard give passengers extra storage space. We especially like the small shelf on the left side of the steering wheel, which is large enough to hold a phone or garage door opener. The cup holders (and there are plenty of them) are well distributed throughout the cabin and are large enough to hold thermo-insulated water bottles.

Passengers in the second row enjoy captain's seats upholstered in the same rich leather as the front. The rear doors open wide, making it easy to get in and out of the SUV. Subaru equips the middle row with two USB ports, its own climate control and heated seats.

(Video) 2023 Subaru Ascent Review | Subaru's Largest SUV!

While we love the second row, getting into the third can be tricky. The lever for folding the captain's seat is only available on the outside of the second row of seats, which do not automatically slide forward like other models in the three-row SUV segment. After an hour of driving in a car full of adults, we finally decided to use the middle aisle to get to the back.

Once passengers squeeze into the third row, most people above average height will find it cramped. Taller passengers can hit their heads on the ceiling, and the D-pillar makes the rear greenhouse even cramped. With every seat in the car adjusted to my 5-foot-9 frame, I can sit with legroom in every row, but three taller people sitting next to each other in the back seat won't be comfortable. The Subaru has two USB ports in the back, but only on the right side of the row, so passengers will have to carry a very long cable with them if they sit on the left side of the Ascent. There are only three shopping bags behind the third row. The Ascent is extremely roomy when used as a mid-size SUV with the rear seats down, but other models on the market have more when all three rows of seats are in use.

Technology and security

Our 2023 Subaru Ascent Touring test car was loaded with the best equipment the automaker has to offer. At first glance, the 11.6-inch infotainment screen located in the center of the dashboard appears massive and imposing. However, once you start fiddling with the large touchscreen, it quickly becomes clear that the graphics are sluggish and look dated. The buttons and controls around the screen are round, massive and made of glossy black plastic. Along with the cheap touch screen, the center console undermines the rest of the luxurious feel of the cabin. Fortunately, once Apple CarPlay or Android Auto are up and running, the system becomes a little easier on the eyes.

The standard Harman Kardon audio system at least sounds clear and full, distributing music evenly throughout the cabin through a total of 14 speakers. At the front, heated and ventilated seats and a heated steering wheel will take care of the driver in all weather conditions.

Subaru equips the Ascent with the EyeSight active driver assistance package, which includes automatic emergency braking, lane centering, adaptive cruise control, cornering headlights and automatic high beams. Blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and a surround-view camera system are also available on the Touring model. The camera system doesn't have the highest resolution we've seen in the segment, and the rear camera is particularly blurry.

We believe Subaru fine-tunes its adaptive cruise control to accelerate and brake naturally, and Lane Centering Mode keeps the Ascent comfortably centered by following the vehicle ahead rather than lane lines. This can create problems if, for example, the vehicle in front takes a wrong turn or veers from the traffic lane; at one point the Ascent with EyeSight tried to leave the lane behind the vehicle in front. Passive lane control is often aggressive, so if you plan to steer manually, we recommend disabling this feature.

Crash safety is one of the Ascent's best attributes. It earns a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the IIHS, which just renewed its testing standards to be tougher for 2023. The Ascent scores top marks in every category for crashworthiness and active safety technology. The front cornering lights also get the highest rating on offer.

(Video) 2023 Ascent Touring 0-60, Walk Around, and Review! Is this the Best Subaru Ascent?!

Is the 2023 Subaru Ascent a good value?

Subaru undercuts many of its competitorseven in Touring guise. Without extra options, our test car stickers for $49,420. These include beautiful Autumn Green metallic paint, luxurious leather seats, all-wheel drive and a host of comfort and convenience features. Some three-row SUVs go a little further to better equip the second and third rows, while others offer better driving dynamics but are also more expensive. The 2023 Kia Telluride SX Prestige starts at $51,955, the 2023 Honda Pilot AWD Touring starts at $50,245, and the all-wheel drive 2023 Toyota Highlander Limited starts at $49,560. If the Ascent's smooth drivetrain, comfortable first and second rows and safety package appeal, it represents solid value. The Ascent is fun to drive, comfortable and just as safe as a three-row SUV, even if its cabin tech and third-row sweat room hold it back from the top of the class.

Looks good! More details?
2023 Subaru Ascent Touring Specifications
BASIC PRICE49,420 dollars
SCHEDULE OF VEHICLESFront engine, AWD, 7-speed 4-door SUV
MOTOR2.4 liter direct injection DOHC 4 cylinder 16 valve turbo engine
SNAGA (SAE NET)260 KS at 5,600 rpm
CLOSING MOMENT (SAE NET)277 lb ft @ 2000 o/min
TRANSFERContinent variable car
Length x width x height196,8 x 76,0 x 71,6 kal
0-60 mph7,1 sek
QUARTER MILE15.6 seconds at 90.0 mph
BRAKING, 60-0 MPH121 feet
MT FIGURE EIGHT27.3s @ 0.63g (average)
(Video) New 2023 Subaru Ascent - Mid Size 3-row Family SUV Facelift


Why is the Subaru Ascent rated so low? ›

According to reports from CR, the 2020 Ascent had several issues, including body/integrity, climate system, transmission system, brakes, and in-car electronics. According to CarComplaints.com, the 2020 Ascent is the worst model for the three-row SUV, with 305 NHTSA complaints and 3 recalls.

How many miles can a Subaru Ascent last? ›

How Many Miles can a Subaru Ascent Last? The 2021 Subaru Ascent is a durable vehicle that is predicted to last between 200,000 to 250,000 miles. With a yearly average of 15,000 miles, that adds up to around a 13-17 year lifespan.

What is the 0 60 time for the 2023 Subaru Ascent? ›

Its 260-horsepower turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder powertrain delivers middling acceleration—a 6.7-second 60-mph time—and can be noisy under duress, but it'll pull a camper trailer or speedboat.

Do people like the Subaru Ascent? ›

"While its wonderful ride and standard safety tech make the Ascent a great family choice, other three-row crossovers offer more room and a better driving experience." "Even with noteworthy updates this year, the 2023 Subaru Ascent doesn't really stand above and beyond the crowded field of three-row family crossovers."

What are the downsides of a Subaru Ascent? ›

2022 Subaru Ascent Problems, Complaints and Common Issues
  • Power Equipment Issues. 2022 Subaru Ascent issues include power equipment issues. ...
  • Fuel System Issues. Subaru Ascent complaints also include fuel system issues. ...
  • Engine Issues. ...
  • Brake Issues. ...
  • Transmission Issues. ...
  • Suspension Issues. ...
  • Body Issues. ...
  • Drive System Issues.
Nov 30, 2022

What problems does the ascent have? ›

They include transmission issues, problems with windshields randomly cracking without any impact, and electrical problems that result in dead batteries have been common since day one. Problems with the 2022 Subaru Ascent are no different.

Do Subarus last as long as Toyotas? ›

And, Toyota was awarded the most reliable brand at the 2021 Auto Trader New Car Awards. Also, Toyota's can last well past 300,000 miles (think of the million-mile Tundra), while Subaru typically lasts around 200,000 miles.

Which Subaru is the most reliable? ›

The Subaru model that is the most reliable and ranks the highest in its vehicle category is the Subaru Impreza, which ranks 1 out of 5 Most Reliable Wagons. Following the Impreza is the Subaru Crosstrek (Plug-in Hybrid) and the Subaru Outback. You can see the rest of the Subaru vehicles and their rankings below.

How many miles will a Subaru engine last? ›

For the matter of “how long do Subarus last,” you can expect to reach around 200,000 to 250,000 miles on your trusty Subaru. Furthermore, Subarus can last up to 10-13 years before requiring a significant amount of work to keep them on the road.

What is the gas mileage for a 2023 Subaru Ascent? ›

The 2023 Subaru Ascent can get up to 20 mpg city and 26 mpg highway. Every Subaru Ascent includes a 2.4-liter turbocharged SUBARU BOXER® 4-cylinder.

Does Subaru Ascent need premium gas? ›

Premium gasoline has a higher octane rating compared to regular gas. The octane rating of a particular gas tells you how much it resists early detonation, a.k.a. engine knock. On ordinary Subaru family vehicles like the Ascent and Forester, regular gas is all you'll need.

How long does it take to order a 2023 Subaru? ›

Subaru model wait times 2023
BRZNot available
Impreza72 days
Outback115 days
WRX102 days
XV53 days
1 more row
Feb 25, 2023

Is the Subaru Ascent noisy? ›

Consumer Reports eight quietest 2023 model year 3-Row SUVs are ranked in order of the results of their interior noise tests. The Kia Telluride ranks number one, followed by the Hyundai Palisade, Chevrolet Traverse, Mazda CX-9, Subaru Ascent, GMC Arcadia, Volkswagen Atlas, and Toyota Highlander.

Does 2023 Subaru Ascent have transmission problems? ›

They're often easy to notice. 2023 Subaru Ascent transmission problems could include shifting delays, jumping or grinding during acceleration, the car shaking at any speed, or whistling noises and a burning smell coming from under the hood.

What are people paying for Subaru Ascent? ›

Based on Edmunds analysis of recent prices paid in your area, the Edmunds Suggested Price for the 2023 Subaru Ascent Base base trim is $33,804. The Edmunds Suggested Price for a 2023 Subaru Ascent is based on recent transactions in your area.

Are Subaru ascents selling well? ›

Ascent finished in fourth place in the lineup with 63,704 sales for the year. Consumer Reports had the 2019-2021 Ascent 3-Row family hauler on its ten least reliable models list recently.
New Subaru Ascent Sales Drop To Start The Year - This Time It's Not Poor Reliability.
Ascent frontAscent rear
Ascent cabinAscent SUV
Feb 5, 2023

Are Subaru Ascent seats comfortable? ›

Interior Comfort

The interior of the Subaru Ascent has three rows of seats with room for up to eight people. The first two rows are spacious and comfortable, but the third row is only suitable for children.

Is the Subaru Ascent a top safety pick? ›

The Ascent has been an IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK for six years running (2018-2023) including the highest honor of TOP SAFETY PICK+ (2021-2023).

Does Subaru Ascent have enough power? ›

The Ascent's sole engine is adequate. It provides prompt acceleration and continues to deliver sufficient power as you gain speed, but it can feel weak on the highway when toting a full load of passengers and cargo. The CVT is designed to mimic traditional shifting and works well.

What is the death rate of a Subaru Ascent? ›

We estimate that the 2019 Subaru Ascent has a vehicle lifetime fatality chance of 0.0307% and a vehicle lifetime injury chance of 3.5095%, meaning the average driver has a 0.0307% chance of dying in an accident if they drive the car under regular conditions for fifteen years, and a 3.5095% chance of being injured.

Is the Ascent recall fire risk? ›

Subaru of America has issued a recall on select Model Year 2019-2022 Subaru Ascent vehicles due to increased fire risk. Owners are urged to park their vehicles outside away from structures and avoid leaving the vehicle unattended while the engine is running. The recall affects 271,694 vehicles.

Why do people love Subaru so much? ›

Safety, Safety, Safety

Many Subaru owners chose their cars for their safety features. All Subaru models consistently get high ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Many owners share first-hand experiences of how their Subarus exceeded their expectations when experiencing an accident.

Which is better between Subaru and Toyota? ›

Both Subaru and Toyota have a reputation for durability and practicality that make them a great choice for families and commuters. However, for the most part, Toyotas tend to have slightly higher reliability ratings than Subaru cars.

What country buys the most Subarus? ›

In the fiscal year ended March 31, 2022, Subaru Corporation sold approximately 506.3 thousand passenger cars in the United States. Therefore, the U.S. represented not only the leading market for the company overseas but globally. Japan is Subaru's second-biggest market.

What is the most popular type of Subaru? ›

Subaru Car Sales in the USA by Model in 2022
NameplateSales 2022% Change
6 more rows
Jan 5, 2023

Which is better Lexus or Subaru? ›

Subaru. When comparing the Lexus brand to the Subaru brand, Lexus has the advantage in the areas of used car pricing, depreciation, horsepower, fuel efficiency, retained value and variety of models offered. Subaru has the advantage in the areas of new car pricing, towing capacity and safety.

What is the best long lasting Subaru? ›

In this place for lasting the longest are the Subaru Impreza and Legacy. These models consist of the sedan and hatchback models. Furthermore, the report says 95 percent of these vehicles remain on the road today.

What mileage do Subarus start having problems? ›

A car with many miles on it is more likely to break down badly, costing a lot of money and sometimes making it worthless. In short, between 150 and 200 thousand miles is when most Subarus reach its first mileage limit. After that, the limit can be raised to 300,000 miles with major maintenance.

Can a Subaru last 500000 miles? ›

The average car can last anywhere from 150,000 to 250,000 miles in its lifetime. However, there are reports of Subaru Foresters lasting up to 500,000 miles if they are specially taken care of. This is somewhat of a norm when it comes to Subaru, as 96% of the cars they sold in the last decade are all still on the road.

What car will last the longest? ›

Here is the list of the top 20 longest-lasting vehicles on the road.
  • Honda Element. Honda. ...
  • Honda CR-V. Honda. ...
  • Honda Accord. Honda. ...
  • Chevrolet Avalanche. Chevrolet. ...
  • Ram 2500. FCA US LLC. ...
  • Ram 3500. Stellantis. ...
  • Toyota Sienna. toyota. ...
  • The 2024 Toyota 4Runner: Everything You Need to Know. Toyota. The 4Runner is due for a redesign.
May 3, 2023

What is the best gas mileage for a Subaru? ›

The Subaru vehicle with the highest mpg ratings is the 2022 Subaru Impreza, which offers up to 36 highway mpg and 28 city mpg. Wondering which new Subaru SUV has the best gas mileage? The 2021 Subaru Crosstrek returns up to 34 highway mpg to help you conquer all of your adventures.

What is the gas mileage on a Subaru Ascent Touring? ›

The 2023 Ascent Limited, Touring, Onyx Edition, and new Onyx Edition Limited trim levels get an EPA-estimated 19/25 city/highway mpg and 21 combined mpg.

How far can a Subaru Ascent go on a full tank of gas? ›

The 2022 Subaru Ascent has a driving range of up to 520 miles on a single full tank. That's a range you have to love anytime you have a car full of travelers and a great destination awaiting your arrival. The EPA expects the base and Premium trim levels will return up to 27MPG highway and 21 miles per gallon city.

Do Subarus run better on premium gas? ›

Higher octane doesn't make your Subaru perform better unless it's required. If you drive a Crosstrek, Forester, Outback, Legacy or Ascent, your vehicle is designed to run on 87 octane, or regular fuel.

Should you always use premium gas? ›

If the car is designed for regular — or doesn't specifically say that the car requires premium gas — go with regular. There are no benefits to putting premium gas in a car that doesn't need it. Cars that require premium gas will typically specify the minimum octane rating necessary.

Can I put premium gas in my Subaru? ›

If your Subaru has standard specifications and does not carry a warning to use only premium gas, regular gasoline should not affect performance. However, if your Subaru engine is turbocharged, follow manufacturer recommendations and use only premium gasoline.

Is it better to wait to buy a car by 2023? ›

Americans planning to shop for a new car in 2023 might find slightly better prices than during the past two years, though auto industry analysts say it is likely better to wait until the fall. Since mid-2021, car buyers have been frustrated by rising prices, skimpy selection and long waits for deliveries.

What is the best time of year to buy a Subaru? ›

In terms of the best time of the year, October, November and December are safe bets. Car dealerships have sales quotas, which typically break down into yearly, quarterly and monthly sales goals. All three goals begin to come together late in the year.

How long to wait for ordered Subaru? ›

Below is what to expect from a factory order, but please feel free to contact us with any questions. Time Frame: 4-12 weeks. This is the typical time frame, but sometimes if there is a vehicle that is already being built that matches, Subaru will preference that vehicle for you and it arrives sooner.

Why is my Subaru so loud? ›

A failing or dirty sensor can send incorrect data, resulting in too much or too little fuel going to the engine. This can result in a rough running engine that is louder than normal. Bad or Dirty Spark Plugs: Bad spark plugs can cause the vehicle to misfire which will make it run louder.

Does the Subaru Ascent have a quiet cabin? ›

Subaru Ascent 2023

We like the SUV's steady and controlled ride, and found that the suspension does an excellent job of mopping up bumps. The cabin is quiet, and the second-row captain's seats are roomy and comfortable. Even the third row is usable for shorter trips. Controls are very straightforward.

Does Subaru Ascent come with remote start? ›

The 2022 Ascent features Remote Engine Start with Climate Control so every trip can be comfortable and convenient, no matter the season, with just a few taps on your smartphone.

Is the 2023 Ascent reliable? ›

We expect the 2023 Ascent will have about average reliability when compared to the average new car. This prediction is based on data from 2020, 2021 and 2022 models.

Does Subaru Ascent have CVT problems? ›

However, it is very common for Subaru Ascent vehicles to suffer from CVT transmission problems. Subaru Ascent Owners have reported the following CVT transmission problems: Hesitation. Loud Noises when shifting.

How reliable are Subaru ascents? ›

The latest and greatest Subaru Ascent is your safest bet if you want a reliable three-row SUV from this brand. According to J.D. Power, the 2021 Ascent has a Quality & Reliability rating of 80100 and a total Consumer Rating of 82100. As of this writing, this Ascent has 34 complaints and zero recalls so far.

Are Subarus low quality? ›

According to RepairPal, the Subaru brand has an overall reliability rating of 3. 5 and ranks 14th out of 32 car brands. The average annual repair cost is $617, which is slightly better than $652 across all models.

What is the Subaru Ascent class action lawsuit? ›

The first lawsuit from 2020 and a second class action in 2021 against SOA alleged the Subaru vehicles had defective electrical systems causing premature battery failure. Now owners will be compensated.

Is Toyota better than Subaru? ›

Both Subaru and Toyota have a reputation for durability and practicality that make them a great choice for families and commuters. However, for the most part, Toyotas tend to have slightly higher reliability ratings than Subaru cars.

Do Subarus hold their value? ›

The Subaru brand ranks first in retained value after three, five, and seven years of ownership. Subaru earns this high ranking with great performances from two of its models; the 2022 Subaru Crosstrek and 2022 Subaru Impreza car lines that depreciate less than 20 percent after five years.

What should I pay for Subaru Ascent? ›

Based on Edmunds analysis of recent prices paid in your area, the Edmunds Suggested Price for the 2023 Subaru Ascent Base base trim is $34,366. The Edmunds Suggested Price for a 2023 Subaru Ascent is based on recent transactions in your area.

Does the Subaru Ascent need premium gas? ›

Premium gasoline has a higher octane rating compared to regular gas. The octane rating of a particular gas tells you how much it resists early detonation, a.k.a. engine knock. On ordinary Subaru family vehicles like the Ascent and Forester, regular gas is all you'll need.

What is the fair market value of a Subaru Ascent? ›

2022 Subaru Ascent Value - $25,804-$43,891 | Edmunds.

How serious is the Subaru Ascent recall? ›

Subaru of America has issued a recall on select Model Year 2019-2022 Subaru Ascent vehicles due to increased fire risk. Owners are urged to park their vehicles outside away from structures and avoid leaving the vehicle unattended while the engine is running. The recall affects 271,694 vehicles.

Why is Subaru shutting down production? ›

The shutdown is because of interruptions in the supply of certain parts. The Subaru plant closure directly affects the refreshed 2022 Subaru Forester and the hot 2022 Crosstrek models for U.S. customers. The new plant shutdown will be for two days, April 28 and April 29, 2022.


1. 2023 Subaru Ascent Touring
(Chabby's Rides)
2. Is the NEW 2023 Subaru Ascent a better SUV than a Kia Telluride?
(Raiti's Rides)
3. The AMAZING 2023 Subaru Ascent - Midsize Family SUV
(Tech Time)
4. 2023 Subaru Ascent Touring
(Reliable Subaru)
5. 2023 Subaru Ascent Onyx Limited Review and 0-60!
(Automotive Anonymous )
6. A review of the 2023 Subaru Ascent - Climbing the 3-row ladder
(Modern Motoring)


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