The Subaru Outback is currently due for its next full redesign sometime in 2018 or 2019.
With its last major update back in 2014 for the 2015 model year, the Outback received a small bump in power, a fresh new look eschewing some of the curvaceous silhouette of the previous generation, as well as the latest driver assistance technology.
Powertrain details have not yet been disclosed. For reference, the current Outback offers a choice between a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder making 175 hp with 174 lb-ft of torque, or a more powerful 3.6-liter 6-cylinder making 256 hp with 247 lb-ft.
While this arrangement has worked well for the model, it wouldn't be surprising to see an updated range of powertrains. One thing that will likely remain unchanged is the vehicle's CVT transmission, which helps the 2017 Outback earn up to 32 mpg highway with the 4-cylinder and 27 mpg with the 6-cylinder.
Subaru hopes for direct injection to enable the the redesigned 2017 Impreza achieve impressive levels of efficiency when it is unveiled in late 2016. According to industry publication Automotive News, Subaru is reportedly exploring a new generation of engines that involve cylinder deactivation and so-called lean-burn technology. At this time, we do not yet know if the Outback will benefit from these technologies.
In terms of safety, Subaru's EyeSight Driver Assistance Technology continues to be a popular selling point with shoppers. On the current Outback, the option adds adaptive cruise control, pre-collision braking and lane departure warning with lane-keeping assist. Blind spot detection and rear cross-traffic alert are available as add-ons as well. It's a good bet that safety will continue to be an area in which Subaru strives to make the Outback an impressive competitor in its segment.
Pictured: 2017 Outback