The Subaru Legacy may look like just another handsome family sedan, albeit one a little more compact on the outside and smaller on the inside than segment leaders like the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry.
But as in most of its models, Subaru has something here that no one can match at the Legacy's mid-range price point: standard all-wheel drive. It's what makes this car stand out, not only against its competition but in a class of car whose popularity is being challenged by compact crossovers that often boast better interior space and visibility at a similar price tag.
A year after a mid-cycle refresh that brought subtle styling changes and eliminated this car's manual transmission option, Subaru has carried the Legacy over largely unchanged, save for the addition of a CD player for the sound system. That's an interesting feature to bring back in an era of MP3s, wireless Bluetooth streaming audio and in-car smartphone integration.
The Legacy line once again comes standard with a 2.5L four-cylinder engine that makes 175 hp and 174 lb-ft of torque. Optional is a 3.6L six-cylinder generating 256 hp and 247 lb-ft. Both engines are matched with a continuously variable automatic transmission and the aforementioned AWD system.
Trim levels are denoted started with their engine displacement, so the range begins with the 2.5i trim, followed by Touring, Sport, Limited and 3.6R Limited.
Sport and Limited come standard with Subaru's Eyesight active safety suite, which comprises radar cruise control, automatic emergency braking, reverse automatic braking, automatic high beam headlights, lane departure warning and lane keeping assist.
This is a pleasant car to use, but we're starting to feel like Subaru is leaning on AWD thing a bit heavily now: the Legacy feels dated next to the newer Accord and Camry, both of which were redesigned for 2018 with spacious interiors and are more interesting to drive.
And while that's maybe not a big deal here -- we can see this being the last generation of Legacy -- it matters more for the Outback mid-size crossover that rides on the same platform (and is covered in its own buyer's guide entry). The only model that's at all engaging to drive is the six-cylinder 3.6R; the four-cylinder is underpowered for the class.
The Legacy's fuel consumption lags behind those class leaders too, with estimates of 9.3/7.0 L/100 km (city/highway) with the four-cylinder and 11.9/8.3 with the six-cylinder. The Camry's four- and six-cylinder engines are both more powerful and notably more efficient, and the Accord's all-turbocharged engine lineup boasts a similar advantage.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed