2013 Subaru Legacy 2.5i Limited
With a flurry of redesigned midsize sedans new to market, a small time player like the 2013 Subaru Legacy can easily get lost in the hoopla. For example, Honda sells about 9 times as many Accords every month as Subaru sells Legacys. But if you’re like me and prefer to not follow the herd with your purchasing decisions, then the updated Legacy provides a very viable alternative. Extremely spacious with the choice of 4 or 6-cylinder power, the Legacy sticks to the old –school segment standards – but its most distinguishing trait is that all-wheel drive comes standard. That can be a positive marketing advantage or a negative fuel economy killer depending on how you view it. But this 2013 Legacy now includes Subaru’s updated Boxer engine, a second gen CVT, revised suspension tuning, and some new tech that could save your life: (Stand-up) For a company that typically seems a step behind such things, EyeSight is a comprehensive safety system that can mitigate or even avoid a collision, capable of even bringing the car to a complete stop. A new feature I’ve never seen before is that EyeSight will alert you to when the vehicle in front of you has moved, keeping the guy behind you from honking his horn as you check a text at a red light. The whole package is bundled with the navi system with backup cam and upgraded audio for a relatively inexpensive $3,940. I like it a lot and if certain aspects are not needed they can be individually disabled.
Having recently spent time in the similar 2013 Outback wagon, the drivetrain and chassis revisions are more palpable in this sedan, which has a longer wheelbase, lower center of gravity and carries less weight. The new 2.5-liter Boxer engine makes 173 horsepower and near equal torque and mates to a CVT that produces a very favorable driving experience with a strong off-the-line feel. The Legacy has been known as a driver’s car and despite the death of the 2.5 GT model still plays the part. The double wishbone rear suspension has been fortified while spring and damper rates have been increased to produce a Legacy with more adept handling maneuvers while preserving a smooth, compliant ride quality. The steering has a heavy feel that is appropriately quick and tactile for a family car balancing its shaper driving dynamics. I was a bit surprised by the Legacy’s ability to satisfy with ample power and refinement. The cabin is quiet, keeping CVT moan and road noise to a minimum and spaciousness exceeds mid-size expectations, though softer plastics would elevate the look and feel.
This top of the line 2.5i Limited model optioned with the moonroof, excellent navi and innovative EyeSight system stickers for $31,014. Gas mileage improves by 1mpg over last year’s model, at 24mpg city/32mpg highway. If all-wheel drive is calling you, the updated Subaru Legacy is an intriguing entry in a crowded front-drive segment full of excellent choices.