The Ascent starts from $37,910 for the Convenience trim and moves up to $51,910 for the Premier package (Submitted).

The Ascent starts from $37,910 for the Convenience trim and moves up to $51,910 for the Premier package (Submitted).

2019 Subaru Ascent strikes the right cord

While the Subaru Ascent still bears resemblance to other vehicles in the Subaru fleet, it creates strides of its own with a powerful large stance and bold edges

The largest Subaru to debut is the all-new 2019 Subaru Ascent, designed to make a strong impression for those in the market for a mid-size SUVs with a three-row seating. Subaru first made the foray into a three-row SUV with the unpopular Tribeca in 2006, which did poorly in sales until 2014 when it was removed from the market. This time around, Subaru isn’t taking any chances and therefore the Ascent was developed to provide a comfortable, predictable road manners with tons of features that consumers want these days. Subaru as a whole is hitting records each month in sales, and so it is pretty safe to say that this decision was a well-thought out one. With a consistent and reliable product, the “ascent” of this vehicle in the marketplace filled with Toyota Highlanders and Honda Pilots is sure to be steady.

Design

While the Subaru Ascent still bears resemblance to other vehicles in the Subaru fleet, it creates strides of its own with a powerful large stance and bold edges, though generally speaking the Ascent is still somewhat generic looking. The ascent is the largest vehicle Subaru has ever created (although it is average for other vehicles in its class), and it boasts seven or eight passenger seating arrangements.

Despite looking somewhat bland in terms of the exterior, the interior is absolutely first class – thanks to combination of rich materials, trims and components. In the top trim level, the Ascent’s interior won’t look out of place in a $100K German luxury SUVs. The visibility is excellent with large windows and the vehicle feels “airy” and “open” with lots of space to stretch out. The only thing to keep in mind is that the third row seat – like in most other SUVs in the market – is tight for adults though fine for younger or smaller teens and tweens.

The interior boasts 498 litres of space behind the third row, and increases all the way to 2,435 litres with both seat rows folded down. Towing capacity is also good at nearly 5,000 pounds for the top model.

Every trim level offers power driver’s seat, heated front seats, automatic climate control for three zones, extended roof rails and Subaru EyeSight driving assistance. For those who wish for a more luxurious environment, moving up the trim levels will get you added features such as panoramic sunroof, heated second-row seats, heated steering wheel, power liftgate, auto-dimming mirrors, and a navigation system. On the top Premier package, even more options are available: Apply CarPlay, Android Auto and a mobile hotspot on a 6.5-inch touchscreen.

Performance

Built on the new Subaru Global Platform (SGP) which is also found on models such as the Impreza and the Crosstrek, the Ascent is a Subaru through-and-through. Under the hood is a 4-cylinder, 2.4L Direct Injection Turbocharged Subaru Boxer engine that provides 260 horsepower and 277 lb-ft of torque. Paired with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT), the Subaru Ascent consumes less fuel in comparison with a regular automatic transmission equipped cars. The caveat to this is that the engine noise can be noticeable during acceleration but other than that, the ride is extraordinarily smooth and enjoyable.

Subaru “built-in” a feeling of transmission shifting (CVT does not shift due to its design) so that the car will feels more normal, if such a statement makes any sense. In other words, CVT equipped cars normally feel od,d since there is no shifting per se and instead just the change in sound and feel as the car goes faster. Subaru is simply trying to make the Ascent feel more like normal transmission cars by making the car express shifting feel as it goes faster – which works well actually.

The Ascent is as refined as a Lexus costing much more, but the handling is light and somewhat numb. The Mazda CX-9 is a benchmark in this regard, as it boasts a Porsche-like handling and road feel that is absent in every other competitor. The Ascent feels smoother than the Honda Pilot and more upscale than the current Toyota Highlander (which by the way is changing completely for 2020). With so many new models arriving this year, however, the Ascent is going to face still competition indeed.

To handle more rugged terrain, the Ascent has decent ground clearance and offers an “X-MODE” driving mode.

Official posted numbers for fuel economy for city, highway and combined are 11.6 L/100 km, 9.0 L/100 km and 10.4 L/100km, respectively. Further, even with a turbo engine, premium gasoline is not required which is a great economical bonus for buyers.

The Subaru Ascent has earned a Top Safety Pick + from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

Summary

The Ascent starts from $37,910 for the Convenience trim and moves up to $51,910 for the Premier package. The competitors for the Subaru Ascent include the Mazda CX-9, Volkswagen Atlas, Chevrolet Traverse, Toyota Highlander, Ford Explorer, Honda Pilot and a few others. In this saturated market, the Subaru Ascent has taken the conservative approach and focused on being competitive in important areas like ride and smoothness – but because of this, the Ascent does not stand-out in any one particular measure. Subaru’s approach to emphasize elegant design, good road dynamics, good fuel economy, ample space and a comfortable interior is obviously working as it can’t keep up with the demand for the Ascent. It looks like the consumers – who already have lots of choices to choose from – have spoken and picked the Ascent as one of their all-time favourites.

If you’re interested in new or used vehicles, be sure to visit TodaysDrive.com to find your dream car today!

– written by David Chao

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

2019 Subaru Ascent strikes the right cord

2019 Subaru Ascent strikes the right cord

2019 Subaru Ascent strikes the right cord

Just Posted

Pioneer Arena is closing for the season. Photo: John Boivin
Castlegar’s Pioneer Arena and Nelson Civic Centre closing for season

RDCK is closing the ice at two of its arenas due to financial concerns related to COVID-19

A juvenile sturgeon in a B.C. rearing facility. The wild population in the Upper Columbia is estimated at 1,100 individuals, enhanced with roughly 5,500 hatchery fish. (file photo)
B.C.’s Upper Columbia sturgeon endure long battle with local extinction

Decades of monitoring and intervention is ongoing to save the prehistoric fish

Interior Health update. File photo.
86 new COVID-19 cases, two more deaths in Interior Health

The new deaths are from Heritage Square, a long-term care facility in Vernon

RCMP responded to a report early Friday morning of a suspect firing a gun at a Salmo home. Photo: Black Press
RCMP arrest woman who fired shots at Salmo home

The woman allegedly discharged a firearm early Friday morning

Summit Ski Hill had a delayed start to the season because of warm temperatures. Photo: Summit Ski Hill
Late season start frustrating for Nakusp ski hill

Summit Ski Hill only just opened Jan. 14

A scene from “Canada and the Gulf War: In their own words,” a video by The Memory Project, a program of Historica Canada, is shown in this undated illustration. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - Historica Canada
New video marks Canada’s contributions to first Gulf War on 30th anniversary

Veterans Affairs Canada says around 4,500 Canadian military personnel served during the war

A 17-year-old snowmobiler used his backcountry survival sense in preparation to spend the night on the mountain near 100 Mile House Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021 after getting lost. (South Cariboo Search and Rescue Facebook photo)
Teen praised for backcountry survival skills after getting lost in B.C.’s Cariboo mountains

“This young man did everything right after things went wrong.”

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa on December 10, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
No place for ‘far right’ in Conservative Party, Erin O’Toole says

O’Toole condemned the Capitol attack as ‘horrifying’ and sought to distance himself and the Tories from Trumpism

A passer by walks in High Park, in Toronto, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. This workweek will kick off with what’s fabled to be the most depressing day of the year, during one of the darkest eras in recent history. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
‘Blue Monday’ getting you down? Exercise may be the cure, say experts

Many jurisdictions are tightening restrictions to curb soaring COVID-19 case counts

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
COVID-19: Provinces work on revised plans as Pfizer-BioNTech shipments to slow down

Anita Anand said she understands and shares Canadians’ concerns about the drug company’s decision

Tourists take photographs outside the British Columbia Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday August 26, 2011. A coalition of British Columbia tourism industry groups is urging the provincial government to not pursue plans to ban domestic travel to fight the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. travel ban will harm struggling tourism sector, says industry coalition

B.C. government would have to show evidence a travel ban is necessary

(Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
‘Targeted’ shooting in Coquitlam leaves woman in hospital

The woman suffered non-life threatening injuries in what police believe to be a targeted shooting Saturday morning

JaHyung Lee, “Canada’s oldest senior” at 110 years old, received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. He lives at Amenida Seniors Community in Newton. (Submitted photo: Amenida Seniors Community)

Most Read