If you are looking at used Subarus for sale but don’t know where to start, learning about some of the best models is a great jumping-off point. Subaru has been manufacturing cars for more than 60 years, which means more than 60 years’ worth of vehicles to consider when deciding which vehicle is right for you. To help you sort through all your options, we have put together a list of some top contenders in categories everyone will appreciate. There are many great used Subarus worth considering, so deciding what features matter the most to you is the best way to start narrowing down your options. Plus, checking out your local used Subaru dealerships will show you what’s available. Whether you are into an affordable older model or want something almost new, there is surely a used Subaru out there that is just right for you.
#1 – Subaru Outback: The Most Comfortable Subaru
When it comes to a car that you are most likely going to be using every single day, comfort is extremely important. You want a vehicle with features that improve your driving experience, like the Subaru Outback. This midsize SUV isn’t the flashiest option out there, nor the fastest, but it is extremely comfortable. Every trim comes standard with all-wheel drive and a lifted suspension, making driving smooth and airy. The option of a turbocharged Boxer engine provides enough horsepower and torque to provide a fun ride without taking away from the car’s other features.
Voted Best 2-Row Midsize SUV Resale Value by Kelly Blue Book, the 2021 Outback is spacious, with over 75 cu.ft. of cargo space when the rear seats are folded down. The interior is made of high-quality materials and has options like leather-appointed seats and a leather-wrapped steering wheel for those who want an elegant touch. The seats are roomy and comfortable for long drives. With added features like heated seats, dual-zone climate control, and power-adjustable front seats, it’s easy to customize your driving experience. Each trim level offers something extra, depending on what features make you most comfortable. A heated steering wheel, power-folding side mirrors, and even a hands-free power liftgate are all available as you climb trim levels.
#2 – Subaru WRX STI: Rally Car Performance
The Subaru WRX STI is the car to beat if you want a zippy vehicle that can outperform the best. Modified by Subaru’s in-house racing division, Subaru Tecnica International, this version of the rally-inspired WRX has been given all the bells and whistles to make it a truly spectacular car to drive. The final generation ran from 2015 to 2021 and is powered by a turbocharged 2.5L Boxer engine that pumps out 305 hp and 290 lb-ft of torque. Add in a six-speed manual transmission, and a stiff chassis meant to take on tight curves with speed, and you have a powerhouse that wants to play.
Body modifications were made to reduce aerodynamic lift and produce downforce, including the addition of a large wing in the back. However, the real secret of the WRX STI is its unique rally-ready all-wheel drive system. Unlike the base WRX, the STI version of this performance car comes with a Driver Controlled Center Differential that allows you to manually dial in the torque balance between the front and rear wheels. All the added features make the STI a spirited car to drive for any car enthusiast.
#3 – Subaru Impreza: More Bang for Your Buck
A well-designed vehicle at an affordable price is, well, priceless. Not everybody needs or wants a vehicle that tears up the pavement, which is exactly why there is the Subaru Impreza. Roomy, comfortable, and safe, this compact car is everything you could want in a Subaru for a fantastic price. It even comes in sedan and hatchback versions to suit your individual taste.
Safety is a particularly strong selling point for this Subaru model. The 2020 Impreza, for instance, was given a 5-star overall safety rating by the NHTSA and named a Top Safety Pick by the IIHS. Though not a particularly punchy drive, the handling and stability are impressive and provide a smooth and comfortable ride. Standard Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive seals the deal. A 60/40 split seat provides additional cargo space, and upper tiers offer convenient features like heated side mirrors and seats. Typical safety and driver-assistance features are also available, meaning you don’t lose out on peace of mind in the name of savings.
The 2020 model was given a facelift, featuring a sleek black grille, narrow headlights, some soft sculpted sides, and a fresh new interior to match. Decent fuel economy, common connectivity apps, and a clear and easy-to-use touchscreen make this a fantastic daily driver. Used, these relatively recent models can be found for around $20,000, making them affordable without sacrificing anything in the way of features or comfort.
#4 – Subaru Ascent: The Ultimate Hauling Machine
Three-row SUVs are fantastic all-around vehicles, especially for growing families. Typically spacious, loaded with features, and excellent at towing and hauling, there isn’t much you can’t do in a midsize SUV. Introduced for the 2019 model year, the Subaru Ascent is all of that and more. A 5-star overall safety rating from the NHTSA and a Top Safety Pick+ designation from the IIHS are two more reasons to choose a used Ascent to transport your family on all of their adventures.
With standard all-wheel drive and the ability to tow up to 5,000 lbs, this Subaru stands out from many competing three-row models. The turbocharged Boxer engine produces 260 hp and 277 lb-ft of torque, giving the Ascent the power it needs to tow what you need. Finally, with seating for up to eight passengers and over 86 cu.ft. of cargo space, hauling your family and all their stuff is a breeze. The Ascent is the largest vehicle Subaru makes and lives up to all expectations.
#5 – Subaru Crosstrek: An All-Around Great Pick
To finish our list, we considered what makes a vehicle a great all-around choice. To be a well-rounded vehicle, it needs to have a little bit of everything, including performance, looks, comfort, convenience, efficiency, safety, and more. While there are quite a few Subarus that could fit this description, the winner here is the Subaru Crosstrek, a subcompact SUV based on the Impreza.
A plug-in hybrid option is available for the Crosstrek, which is another reason to appreciate this specific model. If you aren’t looking for a hybrid, you can choose between a 2.0L engine or an available 2.5L engine. The base engine is more than enough to get the job done and provide an extremely comfortable and smooth drive, but upgrading to the 2.5L option will deliver 182 hp of performance. The suspension is soft enough to absorb impacts, so you won’t be feeling every bump and bounce, even if you head off-road.
This Subaru model has spectacular fuel economy for an all-wheel drive SUV. A 2021 Crosstrek with the base engine and an automatic transmission gets 30 MPG combined, and upgrading to the 2.5L engine barely reduces fuel economy, with a 29 MPG combined rating. Of course, the hybrid takes things to another level, with a 35 MPG combined rating and 17 miles of all-electric range.
A 5-star overall safety rating from the NHTSA and a full suite of available driver-assist features keep the 2021 Crosstrek right in line with many new vehicles. An infotainment touchscreen and added comforts like heated bucket seats, keyless entry, and voice-activated climate control add all the conveniences you could hope for. Plus, it’s an affordable used vehicle with a price tag typically around the mid $20,000 range.