Subaru’s roomy and competent all-wheel-drive midsize sedan is available with two powertrains. The most popular is the 2.5i with a 175 hp, 174 lb-ft 2.5L flat-four. A small percentage of buyers opt for the more refined and luxuriously appointed Legacy 3.6R that sports a smooth 3.6L flat-six generating 256 hp and 247 lb-ft. Pricing for the six-speed manual 2.5i starts at $23,495 (add $1300 for CVT) while the 3.6R with CVT bows at $30,795.
As the only vehicle in the midsize sedan segment with standard all-wheel-drive, the Legacy is a value proposition for those who require four driven wheels. It shows a fine ride/handling balance and fuel economy is comparable to other four-cylinder cars in this class at 9.7 L/100 city and 6.5 hwy. The Legacy displays outstanding tractability in snow.
Downsides include somewhat tepid performance from the 2.5 and some CVT-induced engine droning when accelerating. Styling could be considered staid both inside and out, but trunk is a generous 425 L.
For 2016 the Legacy 2.5i (standard heated front seats, Bluetooth, 6.2-inch touchscreen, rearview camera) gets revised electric steering, rearview camera parking guide customization and wiper-linked automatic on/off headlights with welcome lighting. The Touring Package ($26,495) adds 17-inch alloys, blind spot detection, fog lights, dual zone climate control, sunroof. New for 2016 is auto-dimming rearview mirror with Homelink, and larger clock and temp display. The Limited Package at $32,495 adds 18-inch alloys, leather, 7-inch display with nav and Siri compatibility, HID headlights and 12-speaker Harman Kardon audio.
Available on Sport and Limited trim is the Technology Package that includes EyeSight safety bundle, steering responsive fog lights and proximity key with push button start.
The max-dollar $35,495 Legacy 3.6R Limited with Technology Package is a rare bird, but for those who dive in, it’s a smooth, powerful and luxurious sedan with exceptional foul weather capability.