Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Post Reply
Topic Author
radiowave
Posts: 2445
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 5:01 pm

Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by radiowave »

Well I got 173K miles out of my old 2004 CR-V and time to buy a new one. I was all set to purchase a new CR-V EX but found on both the 2017 and 2018 models the drivers seat was very uncomfortable and actually was painful after a short test drive. The leather seat in the EX-L model does much better but priced in the low to mid $30k. My wife and I drove the Outback and that was much more comfortable with the cloth seat, like the safety features and can get one the below $30k range.

Anyone have a new 2018 Subaru Outback and willing to provide some comments?

thanks
Bogleheads Wiki: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Main_Page
User avatar
Alexa9
Posts: 1872
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:41 am

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by Alexa9 »

Both are winter warriors. Interior and reliability slight edge to CR-V. AWD and ride slight edge to the Outback. Both are solid choices. Go with whatever is comfortable. Might compare a Toyota RAV-4 and Mazda CX-3 as well.
samsmith
Posts: 125
Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2015 9:33 am

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by samsmith »

Love the safety features on the Subie. Might also consider the Subaru Forrestor which I think is usually viewed as Subaru's CRV class competitor. Have had both the CRV and Forrestor. Don't think you can go wrong with either or the outback.
Jack FFR1846
Posts: 12799
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 am
Location: 26 miles, 385 yards west of Copley Square

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by Jack FFR1846 »

I'd agree that the Forester is a closer competitor. I'd view the Outback as a class up. If I'm next to either a Forester or CR-V now, I have to look at the wheel center caps to know what it is as it appears they copied each other.
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid
chw
Posts: 869
Joined: Thu May 24, 2012 4:22 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by chw »

Own a 2012 CRV and 2016 Outback. Both nice vehicles, but the Subie is a much nicer vehicle- better ride, options, and overall, a much more solid auto.
Topic Author
radiowave
Posts: 2445
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by radiowave »

Jack FFR1846 wrote: Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:51 pm I'd agree that the Forester is a closer competitor. I'd view the Outback as a class up. If I'm next to either a Forester or CR-V now, I have to look at the wheel center caps to know what it is as it appears they copied each other.
I drove the Forester, ride was much harsher than the Outback. With leather seats it was getting close to $30k. The Outback premium with Starlink but not the eyeball thing seems to be the best tradeoff between features and safety. Hueberger in CO Springs has them listed for $27k.

Thanks for other comments, my wife has a Legacy and it had the starting problem which was fixed with a firmware upgrade. It happened twice so I'm a bit hesitant on the reliability of the Subaru. Only thing I ever had go wrong on the CR-V was an AC compressor go bad.
Bogleheads Wiki: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Main_Page
KT785
Posts: 395
Joined: Fri Jul 11, 2014 2:21 pm
Location: Texas Hill Country

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by KT785 »

radiowave wrote: Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:13 pm
Jack FFR1846 wrote: Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:51 pm I'd agree that the Forester is a closer competitor. I'd view the Outback as a class up. If I'm next to either a Forester or CR-V now, I have to look at the wheel center caps to know what it is as it appears they copied each other.
I drove the Forester, ride was much harsher than the Outback. With leather seats it was getting close to $30k. The Outback premium with Starlink but not the eyeball thing seems to be the best tradeoff between features and safety. Hueberger in CO Springs has them listed for $27k.

Thanks for other comments, my wife has a Legacy and it had the starting problem which was fixed with a firmware upgrade. It happened twice so I'm a bit hesitant on the reliability of the Subaru. Only thing I ever had go wrong on the CR-V was an AC compressor go bad.
I have a 2017 Outback and would heartily recommend you get the Eyesight system if you go that route; Eyesight and the overall safety of Subarus were what caused me to buy the Outback and have proved worth it in the nearly year I've owned it. My wife and I are planning on starting a family in the next year so I wanted one of the safest cars I could get . . . the practicality, AWD, etc. were added pluses.

As an additional data point, my Outback (2.5i Limited w/ Eyesight) is cheaper to insure than my wife's 2015 Nissan Rogue SV (mid-tier trim). I'd be curious if the Outback might be cheaper to insure than the CR-V too . . .
Last edited by KT785 on Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
yukonjack
Posts: 625
Joined: Wed Feb 21, 2007 10:36 pm
Location: Rocky Mountain West

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by yukonjack »

If you like the Subarus you might want to look at the Crosstrek. It appears to have received a recent makeover giving it a kind of mini Outback look.
Topic Author
radiowave
Posts: 2445
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by radiowave »

yukonjack wrote: Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:33 pm If you like the Subarus you might want to look at the Crosstrek. It appears to have received a recent makeover giving it a kind of mini Outback look.
The Crosstrek seems underpowered to me. Nice vehicle if you're in the flat lands, not all that good in mountain roads where we are out west.
Bogleheads Wiki: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Main_Page
goldensam
Posts: 39
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 8:45 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by goldensam »

I have had my 2018 Outback for almost two months and I absolutely love it. It took me three years to finally pull the trigger and I'm glad I did. I haven't taken it on any long trips yet, but I've done approximately 2 hour stretches with no issues (and I have back issues in general).
euroswiss
Posts: 246
Joined: Sun Oct 25, 2015 4:40 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by euroswiss »

goldensam wrote: Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:27 am I have had my 2018 Outback for almost two months and I absolutely love it. It took me three years to finally pull the trigger and I'm glad I did. I haven't taken it on any long trips yet, but I've done approximately 2 hour stretches with no issues (and I have back issues in general).
I have the 2017 outback (not sure how much changed with the 2018 so take it with a grain of salt). Recently returned from a 3 week / 6500 mile road trip and the car was extremely comfortable even during 12hour continuous driving sessions. I was very impressed. I previously owned 1999 outback and 2009 outback which I liked as well, but they were nowhere near as comfortable rides. The Outback has grown (in size) significantly over the years, so that may be one of the reasons for better comfort. Gas mileage has kept steady or decreased slightly over the years
Raladic
Posts: 196
Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2014 4:56 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by Raladic »

I was previously in a similar situation and was looking between CRV and Subaru, but eventually ended up with the Outback 2017 last year.

I have the 2017 Outback for a bit over a year now and it's great. I've taken it for a long skiing trip across states with 4 adults, luaggage and ski rack on the roof and it's been comfortable and reliable for everyone.

The safety features of Subaru are also unmatched and the adaptive cruise control and lane assist really help with stop-and-go traffic.
Topic Author
radiowave
Posts: 2445
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by radiowave »

So here is the latest for those interested . . .

Went back to the Subaru dealer yesterday, drove the Premium Outback with cloth seats and the 3.6 Limited with leather seats. Better than the CR-V but still having problems with mid back pain after a short drive (arrgh, I was definitely leaning towards the Outback). Went to the Jeep dealer and drove the Cherokee, underwhelmed although the seat was livable but not ideal. Went to the Toyota dealer and salesman showed me a RAV4 Adventure with leather seats, oh what a difference and I just melted into these seats, no pain. Drove it and felt a lot like the CR-V, has comparable safety features, good gas mileage, and overall liked the color selection and build quality. So any opinions on the RAV4 and should I suspend my Boglehead ways and buy a car in the low to mid 30's but probably have it 10 years? Toyota is known for its reliability and overall quality.
Bogleheads Wiki: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Main_Page
dbr
Posts: 33842
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 9:50 am

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by dbr »

radiowave wrote: Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:07 pm So here is the latest for those interested . . .

Went back to the Subaru dealer yesterday, drove the Premium Outback with cloth seats and the 3.6 Limited with leather seats. Better than the CR-V but still having problems with mid back pain after a short drive (arrgh, I was definitely leaning towards the Outback). Went to the Jeep dealer and drove the Cherokee, underwhelmed although the seat was livable but not ideal. Went to the Toyota dealer and salesman showed me a RAV4 Adventure with leather seats, oh what a difference and I just melted into these seats, no pain. Drove it and felt a lot like the CR-V, has comparable safety features, good gas mileage, and overall liked the color selection and build quality. So any opinions on the RAV4 and should I suspend my Boglehead ways and buy a car in the low to mid 30's but probably have it 10 years? Toyota is known for its reliability and overall quality.
In the end your personal experience with the car trumps everything else. If there were a clear reason that one particular make/model was the standout for everyone then the losers would quickly produce exact clones or go out of business. Just be sure with regard to seating that adjustments are everything.
User avatar
CULater
Posts: 2832
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 10:59 am
Location: Hic sunt dracones

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by CULater »

Only thing is the current RAV4 was introduced in 2013, so it's a little long-toothed. Me, I'd either wait in the next one or get the newly re-designed CRV.
On the internet, nobody knows you're a dog.
KT785
Posts: 395
Joined: Fri Jul 11, 2014 2:21 pm
Location: Texas Hill Country

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by KT785 »

CULater wrote: Wed Nov 22, 2017 2:39 pm Only thing is the current RAV4 was introduced in 2013, so it's a little long-toothed. Me, I'd either wait in the next one or get the newly re-designed CRV.
I always recommend that people avoid the first year or two after a re-design; the last year(s) of a design generation are usually the most reliable since the issues have been continually worked out. You're also more likely to get a better deal on the price as you approach a major re-design.

As a Subaru owner, I'm sorry the seats didn't quite work out for the OP, but Toyota would have been my other choice personally if I hadn't bought the Outback (though I was looking at the Highlander instead). I owned a Honda a few years ago and was very displeased with the poorer than expected build quality and hassle with factory warranty claims--the new CR-V looks nice but I feel burned by the brand.
nura
Posts: 157
Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2016 11:24 am

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by nura »

Outback/Forester has 2 extra inches of ground clearence over CR-V/RAV-4 which makes real difference if you plan to drive on unploughed streets or offroad.
dbr
Posts: 33842
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 9:50 am

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by dbr »

nura wrote: Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:47 pm Outback/Forester has 2 extra inches of ground clearence over CR-V/RAV-4 which makes real difference if you plan to drive on unploughed streets or offroad.
That is a good point and was one incentive when I went with the Outback.
User avatar
htdrag11
Posts: 1245
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:22 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by htdrag11 »

Before deciding on the '18 Outback Limited 2.5i fully loaded (LED swivel when turning corners), I had test drove the 2017 CR-V as well as Forester, CX-5 and Tuscon, coming from a 12 RX350.

The deciding factor for me is price, the 18 Outback Limited is less than the 17 CR-V EX-L, $365 for 36-month vs. $399 for 39-month. For purchase, the CR-V EX-L is less. If you do not need leather, all the better.

I also prefer the infotainment on the Outback (knobs), as well as the Harman Kardon speaker package. Not sure what Honda used, but they are inferior IMO.

Honda has a better interior packaging, in terms of rooms and cargo, but felt noisier. It's lighter than the Outback by couple hundred pounds, so the ride is not as nice; ditto for the lighter Forester.

Honda has more power and better mpg.

The 3 Outback gripes I've - need to put a iPad Mini screen protector (cut out to fit) over the 8" infotainment screen to minimize the glare. The other is the power tailgate. It is power only, not manual (tried it at your own risk). On long trip, my RX350 seat is more comfortable. However, Lexus is pretty soul-less in terms of driving, so I did not bother to test drive the RAV4.

Subjectively, I did not care for the look of either Honda or Toyota. It's my first Subaru.

GL.
User avatar
CULater
Posts: 2832
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 10:59 am
Location: Hic sunt dracones

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by CULater »

KT785 wrote: Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:44 pm
CULater wrote: Wed Nov 22, 2017 2:39 pm Only thing is the current RAV4 was introduced in 2013, so it's a little long-toothed. Me, I'd either wait in the next one or get the newly re-designed CRV.
I always recommend that people avoid the first year or two after a re-design; the last year(s) of a design generation are usually the most reliable since the issues have been continually worked out. You're also more likely to get a better deal on the price as you approach a major re-design.

As a Subaru owner, I'm sorry the seats didn't quite work out for the OP, but Toyota would have been my other choice personally if I hadn't bought the Outback (though I was looking at the Highlander instead). I owned a Honda a few years ago and was very displeased with the poorer than expected build quality and hassle with factory warranty claims--the new CR-V looks nice but I feel burned by the brand.
I normally agree about avoiding the first year or two. But I went with a 2002 CRV right after it was released and got 200K miles and 15 years out of it. Recently went with the 17 CRV and hoping my luck will be as good. However, at my stage of the game I might decide I have the money to go for something new again when the warranty is running out and we'll see what things look like then. I saw one blog recently in which the writer was a drive it til it dies person like I am, and he said he decided to lease this time around rather than buy new; mainly because the safety technology is evolving rapidly and might want to upgrade in 3 years because of that. I tend to agree. The life cycle on vehicles is changing.
On the internet, nobody knows you're a dog.
ragabnh
Posts: 148
Joined: Mon May 19, 2008 3:48 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by ragabnh »

Brother in Law has a 05 Rav 4 with 220k and he swears by it, but he maintains the car by the book. Toyota in general are quieter and more comfortable cars, but it is not fun to drive, CX-5 is a driver car and the most aesthetically pleasing choice.
tomd37
Posts: 3413
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 10:39 pm
Location: Middle Tennessee

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by tomd37 »

Is anybody reading the recent posts about the Subaru windshield issues (breaking easily when Eye-Sight option installed). Something with that windshield is making them much more vulnerable to rock damage (breaking them). :thumbsdown
Tom D.
User avatar
htdrag11
Posts: 1245
Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:22 pm

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by htdrag11 »

tomd37 wrote: Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:42 pm Is anybody reading the recent posts about the Subaru windshield issues (breaking easily when Eye-Sight option installed). Something with that windshield is making them much more vulnerable to rock damage (breaking them). :thumbsdown
Based on this thread, guess not.

viewtopic.php?t=221138

Looks like safety systems and windshields from other car manufacturers had problems with realignment as well.

BTW, all car manufacturers have problems, depending whether you can live with them or not. :annoyed
CurlyDave
Posts: 2049
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 11:37 am

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by CurlyDave »

KT785 wrote: Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:29 pm
...I have a 2017 Outback and would heartily recommend you get the Eyesight system if you go that route; Eyesight and the overall safety of Subarus were what caused me to buy the Outback and have proved worth it in the nearly year I've owned it. My wife and I are planning on starting a family in the next year so I wanted one of the safest cars I could get . . . the practicality, AWD, etc. were added pluses.

As an additional data point, my Outback (2.5i Limited w/ Eyesight) is cheaper to insure than my wife's 2015 Nissan Rogue SV (mid-tier trim). I'd be curious if the Outback might be cheaper to insure than the CR-V too . . .
I also have a 2017 Outback and strongly recommend the Eyesight system.

In just the first 5k miles it has saved my bacon. Not only does it look forward, but there is a rear collision avoidance system that prevents hitting things while in reverse, and the outside mirrors light up when a car is in your blind spot.

I got the larger engine, which has a bit of zip to it, but even the 4 banger is good.

I researched this a lot before buying and in the federal collision avoidance tests the Suby was the only car to not hit a barrier @ 25 mph. I have seen u-tube videos that showed one stopping in time when driven at a cardboard box at 45+ mph, and read claims of 55 mph avoidance.

The Outback and Forrester have almost exactly the same cubic feet of interior space, but the Outback has a better ride.

Best car I have ever owned, and I have had quite a few over the years. DW likes her Toyota, but my Suby has a lot more driver assist features.
CurlyDave
Posts: 2049
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2016 11:37 am

Re: Honda CR-V vs Subaru Outback

Post by CurlyDave »

tomd37 wrote: Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:42 pm Is anybody reading the recent posts about the Subaru windshield issues (breaking easily when Eye-Sight option installed). Something with that windshield is making them much more vulnerable to rock damage (breaking them). :thumbsdown
I am going to call BS on this one. In my Subaru, the Eyesight is installed an inch or so behind the windshield and there is no physical contact, so I don't see why there would be any interaction.

DW's Toyota Highlander has had two new windshields in 2 years from rocks, I have not had any. In fairness, she has a lot more miles on hers. Rock damage is more the luck of the draw. If a big enough pebble hits your windshield it is going to chip or break -- that is the nature of glass.
Post Reply