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Subaru makes several SUVs, including the Crosstrek, Forester, Outback, and Ascent. But only one earned a spot among Kelley Blue Book’s best family cars of 2023. Learn more about the 2023 Outback and why this Subaru SUV is great for families.

Kelley Blue Book changed the criteria for its ’12 Best Family Cars of 2023′

Subaru SUV: 2023 Subaru Outback family car
2023 Subaru Outback | Subaru of America, Inc.

It’s a new year, and Kelley Blue Book has changed its criteria for what makes a great family car. Some standards remain the same, such as ensuring the vehicle is roomy, functional, and has a wide range of safety features, but KBB went further for this year’s guide.

For starters, no sedans or luxury models appear on the list. That’s because families typically want larger vehicles with more space, and more people invest their money into mainstream models than luxury brands.

KBB also considered families’ transportation needs several years from now by choosing SUVs that hold their value well. Historical reliability also played a significant role. 

Finally, KBB wanted to provide a wide range of vehicles that cater to various consumer tastes and needs. Whether families have toddlers, teens, or adult kids, there’s an SUV for everyone. And most models on the list are affordable.

Subaru’s midsize SUV, the Outback, is perfect for growing families

Kelley Blue Book recommends the 2023 Subaru Outback for many reasons. They include excellent resale value, a spacious interior, and standard all-wheel drive.

In addition, the 2023 Outback has earned superb safety ratings. It also provides many advanced safety features, such as lane departure warning, lane-keep assist, EyeSight Driver Assist, and a pre-collision safety system.

This Subaru SUV also offers two engine options. The base is a 2.5-liter four-cylinder making 182 hp and 176 lb-ft of torque. The second is a 2.4-liter turbocharged engine harnessing 260 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque. With 26 mpg in the city and 32 on the highway, the Outback is a fuel-efficient pick.

It also offers customizability through nine trim levels. Starting prices range from $28,895 to $42,795, making the Outback an affordable choice for growing families.

With its AWD, the Outback can handle light off-roading, but it feels just as comfortable cruising through town. As for reliability, Subaru reports that 97% of the Outback models sold within the past 10 years are still on the road. 

KBB has only two complaints. The base 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine is merely adequate, and the infotainment system takes some time to learn. But for families focused on safety and reliability, neither of these complaints will be deal-breakers.

This isn’t the first time the Subaru Outback has earned a spot on a list of the best family vehicles. KBB recommends the 2018 Outback as a used family car for under $20,000.

The other models on KBB’s list are also excellent family cars

Subaru isn’t the only Asian automaker on KBB’s best family cars list. However, the other brands performed better. Honda, Hyundai, and Toyota have three vehicles each in the roundup. Kia has one, leaving the 2023 Ford Expedition the only American SUV KBB recommends for families.

Here is the complete list of 2023 models that Kelley Blue Book believes make ideal family SUVs (alphabetically by brand):

  • Ford Expedition
  • Honda CR-V
  • Honda Odyssey
  • Honda Pilot
  • Hyundai Ioniq 5
  • Hyundai Palisade
  • Hyundai Santa Fe
  • Kia Telluride
  • Subaru Outback
  • Toyota RAV4
  • Toyota Highlander
  • Toyota Sienna

Despite its siblings not making the cut, the Outback represents Subaru SUVs well as an affordable, reliable option for families.


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