How does it stack up against other three-row SUVs?
Subaru needed to create a new model that would be a hit in the US market. That is why the Japanese automaker has released its largest model ever, the Ascent. The Ascent is a three-row SUV that can be bought with seven or eight-passenger configurations. Power comes from an all-new 2.4-liter turbocharged boxer four-cylinder with 260 horsepower and 277 lb-ft of torque going out to Subaru's Symmetric All-Wheel Drive. This looks like the perfect Subaru for US consumers and pricing has finally been announced.
Pricing for the Ascent begins at $31,995. That is more expensive that competitors like the Chevy Traverse, Kia Sorento, Hyundai Sante Fe, Honda Pilot, Toyota Highlander and Volkswagen Atlas. However, it is less expensive than the Mazda CX-9 and just $500 more than the Ford Explorer. The Ascent isn't the cheapest three-row SUV on the market, but it does come with a lot of standard features. Many of the SUVs in this segment come with FWD as standard, but the Ascent is AWD only. The Ascent also comes standard with Subaru's EyeSight Driver Assist Technology, which rolls in automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, throttle management, and head-up display.
The 2019 Ascent will be available with four trim levels: Base, Premium, Limited and Touring. The Limited trim starts at $34,195 and comes with blind-spot detection, rear cross-traffic alert, towing capability up to 5,000 pounds, power driver seat, Starlink 8.0-inch infotainment with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay and Wi-Fi connectivity. The $38,995 Limited adds leather-trimmed upholstery, second-row captain chairs (or bench seating at no additional charge), power rear gate with height memory, and keyless access. The Limited also adds two USB ports, bringing the total number to six.
Finally, the top-of-the-line Touring trim starts at $44,695. It adds unique heated and ventilated leather seats and woodgrain trim. It also adds two more UBS ports for a total of eight. The Touring also gets an 8.0-inch navigation system, Harman Kardon Quantum Logic surround sound system with 14 speakers, panoramic power moonroof and rain-sensing wipers. The Ascent should be a big seller for Subaru and a solid competitor in the three-row SUV segment.