"Took our Outback on an overnight camping trip this weekend and was pleased to find it fully acquits itself as our 2010 Sport/Utility of the Year," says Loh, who "drove it 396 miles and managed 24.1 mpg." Loh is also a fan of the Subaru’s powertrain and off-pavement capability. "I normally hate CVTs, but this one is pleasantly smooth and quiet. The car is by no means powerful, but passing wasn’t much of a problem; paddles make downshifting on demand easy and useful, especially if you’re trying to engine brake on the freeway. I also had a chance to do some light off-roading and found the high ground clearance to be a boon over dirt whoops. We had a couple Toyota Highlanders in our party, and they experienced some undercarriage scraping. The Outback’s never touched—not even the longish nose and tail."


Our vehicle
Months/miles in service 2/4727
Avg econ/CO2 24.1 mpg/0.80 lb/mi
Unresolved problems None
Maintenance cost $0
Normal-wear cost $0