Subaru vs Subaru vs Subaru [Ask Nathan]

2014 buick verano nathan adlen
Nathan and The Fast Lane Car team are here to answer your (reasonable) questions. Interesting and/or entertaining emails will be posted to this column. If it’s relevant in the automotive universe, there’s a chance we may know something about it. The author’s email address and name will be omitted – leaving your initials or nickname, your preference.

From day one, The Fast Lane Car has made it our policy to answer as many questions and comments as we can. We get thousands of emails and comments and feel that, as part of a tight-knit automotive community, having an open dialogue with you keeps things fresh and exciting.

2015 subaru legacy chicago video debut

In this special Subaru edition of Ask Nathan:

  • Subaru Forester or Mitsubishi Outlander Sport
  • Used Audi or new Subie?
  • Info on the 2015 Subaru Outback and 2015 Subaru Legacy
  • Where’s the Subaru WRX Hatchback!?
2014 Subaru Forester 2.5L AWD Touring 0-60 MPH Drive and Review
2014 Subaru Forester 2.5L AWD Touring 0-60 MPH Drive and Review

We drove this guy bonkers by not comparing two vehicles he wanted us to compare. It happens. We try our best to get cars that can be matched against each other. Often, we get completely different vehicles to “Mash-up.” Still, I think this email favors one vehicle over another right off the bat.

What say you?

Q: Ya all drive me nuts! Ya usually make me laugh and give me good info. But the one time you get a car I’ve been trying to compare to another, you DON’T! I am torn between the Subaru Forester base model and the midlevel Mitsubishi Outlander Sport SE AWD. Instead of comparing them, Roman bashes the Mitsy and hurls love on to the Subaru. But you seem to have a different point of view. Tell me! I have always had good fortune with Mitsubishis. Tell me which one is a better buy! I am nearly poor and live in Park City, Utah. Help, help, help!


A: Thanks for the email! Before I answer, you left a bit of a clue as to what you truly want. It sounds like you want the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport and want to see if I have a compelling argument for buying the Subaru Forester. I can say this: both vehicles are competent in bad weather, they are efficient and both are comfortable rides.

The Subaru Forster is the best small family vehicle Subaru makes. Not only that, but it’s one of the best cars in its class. I’ve owned one of the first generation Foresters and I’ve never regretted it. Good bones, good driveability and rock solid in just about any condition. The XT (turbo) is fairly quick and the off road ability of all Foresters is impressive.

The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport is one of the best vehicles Mitsubishi sells in North America. It’s packed full of goodies, especially considering the price, and it is a frugal companion. It worked great as a commuter for my small family in the wet, slush and Colorado powder. It’s a bit under-powered and, unlike the Subaru Forester, there are no options for more power. The features and superior stereo certainly help sweeten the deal.

Roman and I disagree about the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport. I think it’s pretty damn good in the snow, despite its cheap-o tires and Roman finds it an underwhelming package off the beaten path.

The point is: you want the Mitsubishi and that’s fine. It’s a good ride. Still, you would be cheating yourself if you didn’t test a Forester.

Best of luck!


2015 Subaru WRX Front

This next one is from a conflicted buyer. I think he takes lots of selfies.

Q: Simple question dudes. 2014 Subaru WRX or a used 2008 Audi S4? They are both under $30,000 and are fast. I know that many douches drive S4s, but I don’t care. It’s used and that’s a problem because some girls can tell if a car is used. The WRX looks good to me, but it’s always going to be just a Subaru. The Audi S4 is a @@@@@@g S4! The Subaru is more reliable i guess. It’s kind of a chick car too.


A: I think you want the 2008 Audi S4. I say that because the image of what you drive seems important to you. Nothing wrong with that and absolutely nothing wrong with a 340 horsepower V8 stuffed in a small Audi. It’s a killer car.

With that said, the Subaru WRX will be cheaper to maintain, it has a full warranty, gets better mileage and is a damn fast car. I think it’s greatly underrated and underestimated by performance freaks. At the very least, you owe it to yourself to test one.

As for the 2008 Audi S4? If you get one, join an Audi club. You can find good support for maintenance, parts and events via a good Audi club. Don’t forget to post lots of pictures!

Auf Wiedersehen!


We missed our chance to produce videos for the 2015 Subaru Legacy and 2015 Subaru Outback press events. Bummer. Still, we wanted to answer this nice fan’s request for information.

Q: Hello! I’m currently in the market for a new vehicle and I just wanted to say thank you for the stellar video reviews you guys provide on youtube. I’m not really a car type of guy, so hearing the feedback on some of the vehicles you test drive has helped me weed out a few vehicles I was thinking about.
A question though, any plans to review the 2015 Subaru Outback or Legacy? Would be much appreciated, thanks for your time, and the reviews and have a kick ass day!

J. G
Pittsburgh, Pa

A: Thanks J.G! Roman and I have yet to drive the 2015 Subaru Legacy and Outback, so we have no video reviews of either vehicle. I think it was some sort of oversight; fortunately, our man Arv Voss penned a review of the new 2015 Subaru Legacy. Frankly, I am a little concerned about the performance of both vehicles now that they are exclusively available with continuously variable transmissions (CVTs). They are said to be more efficient, but slower than some journalists expected.

We’ll post video reviews the moment we’re given one to test.

Best of luck!


This last one comes to us from a viewer who’s pretty upset at Subaru for not offering a WRX hatchback.

Q:What the hell is wrong with Subaru!? They neuter both big cars with no sticks and now they no longer offer a WRX with a hatchback! I ski and so do tons of Subaru buyers. Nathan! You TOTALLY KNOW that Subaru drivers ski. They need room and a rear wiper! I own a 2010 WRX and I love it but it’s getting up there with mileage. I can’t trade it in for a stupid sedan! What am I going to do!? Did Subaru mention ANYTHING about bringing back the hatchback WRX?? PLEASE tell ME!!!


A: You, my friend are not alone. We get that question often and there is no solid answer. Journalists were told that the sedan was a more logical choice at the WRX and WRX STI press events. I can tell you this: when asked, Subaru indicated that they would consider looking at adding a hatch if there was enough demand.

I think they should shove the 2.0-liter turbo from the new WRX into a XV Crosstrek and call it a Crosstrek GT!

Sadly, I have no other information on Subaru bringing back the hatch to WRX. If anyone has info or rumors, post it below!

Best of luck!


Nathan Adlen Bio Picture Easily amused by anything with four wheels, Nathan Adlen reviews vehicles from the cheapest to the most prestigious. Wrecking yards, dealer lots, garages, racetracks, professional automotive testing and automotive journalism – Nathan has experienced a wide range of the automotive spectrum. His words, good humor and videos are enjoyed worldwide.