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Is Subaru Outback in Snow & Winter A Good Choice

Many areas in America have already started seeing snow, and the roads can descend into chaos pretty fast because of being covered by a lot of snow and ice. Therefore, the need for a suitable vehicle to go on snow is exceptionally high. The America Subaru reported that the Subaru Outback remained the second-best-selling model in its lineup because its customers want the best vehicle for navigating winter weather.

Subaru Outback in snow is efficient, equipped with many high-tech features and able to get off the beaten path, and more affordable than its closest competitors like the Volvo V60 Cross Country and the Audi A4 Allroad. 

However, you probably wonder if Subaru Outback is a good choice in snow and winter. And the below article will be the detailed answer for you to refer to.

What Features Will Improve Winter Driving?

X-Mode traction control system

The Subaru’s X-Mode system has the function of preventing tires from losing their grasp and twisting perpetually in piled-up snow and icy streets. This X-Mode is installed on all Outbacks with five different control forms:

  • Transmission – To guarantee improved motor power by keeping the communication in lower cogwheels.
  • Throttle – To turn down the accelerator or tweak the throttle. It is served for the same reason as conventional Snow Modes.
  • Hill Descent Control – To assist you in gaining control and balance when approaching sloping trails.
  • Vehicle Dynamics Control System (VDC) – To prevent tire sliding.
  • AWD – To transfer capacity consecutively and consistently to both the back and front wheels.

Related post: How To Compare Tires (Ultimate Guide For Tire Buyers)

Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive

The Subaru Outback is equipped with an incredible AWD system called Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive (AWD). The feature making this Symmetrical AWD better than the normal one is that it can lift the power of front/back coupling and upgrade the general control of the drainage train. This ability is thanks to the support of the motor, transmission, and differentials placed along the car’s centerline. Moreover, this incredible system also maintains more consolidation on snow and ice by conveying equal power to four wheels and stopping fishtailing when speeding up.

Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS)

ABS is known as a standard feature on all Subaru Outbacks. On smooth surfaces covered with a lot of snow, a driver might use a braking force that is bigger than the tire’s traction; this leads the wheels to freeze and crazily slip. This system will help to keep the vehicle from falling while slowing down in this case.

Traction Control

The Outback’s Traction Control system helps the vehicle to keep stable by tightly restraining the wheelspin. It will automatically apply the brakes and cutoff motor power when it distinguishes that the wheels are slipping. If you are trapped in snow or ice, you can completely lock up this system with only one button; this makes the vehicle stop sooner and stays under the driver’s handle. Furthermore, the Outback’s stopping mechanism accompanies Electronic Brake Power Conveyance (EBD) to control the slowing down power conveyed to the front/back wheels.

Heated Mirrors, Windshield and Rear Glass, Seat, and Steering Wheel

One of the critical things of winter driving is keeping the driver warm, safe, and mindful of their current circumstance so that it is something beyond cruising through roads with lots of snow. And the Subaru Outback can deal with all these requirements by heating side mirrors and removing water on the windshield. Therefore, the driver can see every corner of the car and get safer.

Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC)

VDC, used when the streets are sleek and out of control in winter, is a type of electronic steadiness control. It is constituted of the decisively positioned sensors to rate and control the wheel speed, steering wheel location, and lateral speed-up. The sensor will transmit information to the system to find out the cause, propose a solution and handle if they sense that the car is not going correctly.

In addition, the Outback is accompanied by Active Torque Vectoring, which will help to apply a weak braking force into the inner front wheel when the car enters the cornering condition to enhance traction and handling ability further.

Remote Start

Even though the Remote Start is widespread, your Subaru Outback can be known as a better and free amendment by vendors. This feature permits you to start and turn on the radiators to heat up the inside car before getting in.

How Do You Drive AWD In The Snow?

If you have a Subaru Outback for work, winter driving could be more convenient regardless of the snow on the road. Following is some advice for you to drive more smoothly Subaru Outback in the snow:

  • Have your Subaru Outback be regularly maintained at a nearby shop to check the washing liquid of the windshield, motor oil, and coolant level.
  • Always keep a set of tools, additional coats, gloves, water, or even blankets for yourself and your four-wheeled companion.
  • Checking tires: tension, chains, and tire condition.
  • Pre-look at the weather condition in the area you pass through.

How Much Snow Can An Outback Handle?

The Subaru Outback is considered an ideal vehicle for snowfall in the winter because it has an undercarriage 8.7 inches high from the ground. It can also be compared to more giant pickup trucks and SUVs of the moving length, and you do not need to worry about driving it through deep snow and unplowed streets. However, it is noticed that you should not keep passing through if snow height gets up to 7-8 inches.

Do Subaru Outbacks Need Snow Tires?

Yes, it is enthusiastically suggested that you should equip your Outback with good snow tires because they are proven to improve handling and stopping distances in winter driving conditions significantly. This is due to the specially designed tread pattern for pushing out the snow from tires and a compound that is still soft and supple during lower temperatures. 

See more at: Best Tires For The Subaru Outback – Top 10 Subaru Outback Tires You Need To Know

How Does Subaru Outback in Snow Handle Low Winter Temperatures?

Most Subaru Outbacks are used in northern regions with a lot of snow and under-zero temperatures. The Outback has a high-tech Boxer motor supporting automatic fuel injection, which adjusts various parameters like air/fuel level when the outside environment changes to keep the engine performing consistently. And even many proprietors have driven their cars through the most hardship circumstances without complaints.

You can follow the recommendations below to maintain your Subaru Outback engine in good condition if you stay in the low-temperature area for a long time.

  • Changing to using motor oil which is suitable for cold weather
  • Installing the block radiator
  • Changing to remote start control
  • Using a battery heater and connecting it with a battery tender in the evening. 
  • Replacing the new battery frequently and not leaving your car unused for a long time because the batteries can drain quickly in the cold weather, especially since the old battery can run out of charge only after a night. 
  • Keeping the tender connected to the battery so it’s always packed. 


All in all, Subaru Outback is considered an excellent choice for you when you want a partner to experience snowy roads during the winter days. Thanks to being equipped with high-tech intelligent systems and outstanding features, which help to adapt to the snow and ice environment, the Subaru Outback will not disappoint you. These features include X-Mode, Symmetrical AWD, ABS, VDC, Traction Control, Heated Mirrors, Windshield and Rear Glass, Seat, Steering Wheel, Remote Start, etc.

However, to be safer on snowy roads, it is highly recommended that you use snow tires specially designed for low-temperature weather. It is said that Subaru Outback is a good choice in snow and winter; however, you had better take a test drive on both city and parkway streets before deciding to purchase. This is to ensure the car usually operates as well as avoid the worst cases that may happen on your long journey.