Plenty of space and standard features.

Subaru Ascent Review | CarMax

Are you looking for a vehicle that can shuttle your family and friends around in all weather? If so, the 2021 Subaru Ascent is a good choice. This midsized SUV comes with seating for seven to eight people, as well as a host of standard features that will help you get where you're going. Those include standard all-wheel drive and driver-assist features, such as steering-responsive LED headlights that illuminate your path even as you're turning.

While we currently do not have many 2021 Subaru Ascents on our lots, we look forward to selling more in the future. If you love the 2021 model, you should also consider prior model years of the Subaru Ascent with similar features.

Below are average prices of prior model year Subaru Ascents1

  • 2019 — Average prices less than 35,5001

Here's what you'll learn in this 2021 Subaru Ascent review:

Key Specs and Features:


  • The base 2021 Subaru Ascent with the four-cylinder, 2.4 L engine, and automatic transmission gets an EPA-estimated 23 mpg combined fuel economy.2
  • The 2021 Subaru Ascent Limited and Touring trims with the four-cylinder, 2.4 L engine, and automatic transmission get an EPA-estimated 22 mpg combined fuel economy.2

Cargo Space:

The 2021 Subaru Ascent offers the following cargo space:

  • 17.8 cu-ft with all three rows of seats up
  • 47.5 cu-ft behind the second row of seats
  • 86.5 cu-ft when all back seats are folded flat

Towing Capacity:

  • The 2021 Subaru Ascent towing capacity is an estimated 2,000 lbs. on the base trim model with the 2.4L engine, when properly equipped.3
  • The 2021 Ascent's Premium, Limited, and Touring trims have a towing capacity of an estimated 5,000 pounds with the 2.4L engine, when properly equipped.3

Seating capacity:

  • The 2021 Subaru Ascent comes standard with seating for eight passengers.
  • Optional bucket seats in the second row allow for seating for seven passengers.

Engine Options:

Subaru Ascent Review: Engine | CarMax

All trims of the 2021 Subaru Ascent come with a 2.4-liter DOHC, direct-injection turbocharged (DIT), four-cylinder engine that has 260 horsepower. All-wheel drive is standard.

Tech Features:

  • Steering-responsive LED headlights
  • EyeSight® Driver Assist Technology
  • Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™
  • Keyless entry
  • High-resolution rear-vision camera

5 Reasons to Buy

1. Room for everyone

Subaru Ascent Review: Front Seats | CarMax

The Subaru Ascent comes with seating for eight people, so you can bring your whole crew. If you're traveling with older kids or teens you might appreciate the option for bucket seats in the second row, to give everyone a bit more space and easy access to the third row. But, if you need to prioritize the number of passengers, the standard bench seats in the second and third row will do just fine.

Subaru Ascent Review: Backseats | CarMax
Subaru Ascent Review: Third Row | CarMax

2. Features for large groups

Subaru Ascent Review: Trunk | CarMax

With the Subaru Ascent, travelling with your crew goes beyond just the number of seatbelts. The Ascent comes standard with 19 cup holders, so your passengers won't be searching for their drinks in the footwell. The back of the Ascent is big enough to fit a stroller or sports gear, even when the third row is in use, making it practical for both errands and leisure trips. If you find yourself in need of more space, standard under-floor storage in the cargo area can provide a bit of extra storage room.

3. Standard all-wheel-drive

If you live in a colder climate or regularly find yourself on dirt roads, having all-wheel drive is essential. A capable vehicle provides peace of mind but it also allows you to go off the beaten path, which is handy if you love the great outdoors. Standard all-wheel drive will ensure that you can get where you want to go, year-round.

4. Driver-assist features

Subaru Ascent Review: Dashboard | CarMax

The 2021 Subaru Ascent comes with lots of features to help you reach your destination. The car comes standard with Subaru's EyeSight® Driver Assist Technology. The suite of assistance features includes pre-collision braking, adaptive cruise control, and lane centering. Together, they go a long way toward helping you feel comfortable on the road.

5. Tech-ready

Subaru Ascent Review: Tech | CarMax

If you and your passengers like to stay connected, the Subaru Ascent can make that possible. All trim levels of the 2021 Ascent come standard with USB-ports in the first and second row, while the Touring and Limited trims also offer ports in the third row. Every trim except the base trim comes with 4G LTE Wi-Fi capability to keep you connected to the internet even while you're traveling.4


What You Need to Know

Available Trims

The 2021 Subaru Ascent comes in four available trims.

  • Ascent: Seating for eight; all-wheel-drive; EyeSight® Driver Assist Technology; raised roof rails; cloth seats; Apple CarPlay, Android Auto; 6.5-inch display, and more.
  • Premium:Spill-resistant cloth upholstery; eight-inch display screen; increased towing capacity (to an estimated 5,000 pounds with the 2.4L engine, when properly equipped); and more.3
  • Limited:Leather seats and accent trim; 10-way adjustable driver seat; third-row USB ports.
  • Touring:14-speaker Harman Kardon® surround sound system; wood grain accent trim; chrome door handles; power-folding exterior mirrors, and more

Available Colors

  • Abyss Blue Pearl
  • Brilliant Bronze Metallic
  • Cinnamon Brown Pearl
  • Crimson Red Pearl
  • Crystal Black Silica
  • Crystal White Pearl
  • Ice Silver Metallic
  • Magnetite Gray Metallic


  • 17.8 cu-ft of cargo space behind the third row; 47.5 cu-ft behind the second row; 86.5 cu-ft behind the first row; standard under-floor storage.
  • Standard seating for 8; seating for 7 with optional bucket seats in the second row.
  • Standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto; USB ports; 4G LTE Wi-Fi capability available on all except the base trim4
  • 19 cup holders standard; stain-resistant cloth upholstery on Premium trim; leather upholstery on Limited and Touring trims.

Average CarMax Prices1

The 2021 Subaru Ascent is a newer model year and we currently have a limited number in our inventory. See below for average CarMax prices for previous model years of the Subaru Ascent1

  • 2019 — Average prices less than 35,5001

Similar Model Years

If you like the 2021 Subaru Ascent, check out some previous model years of this vehicle with similar features.


The 2021 Subaru Ascent was rated overall 5/5 by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Certain vehicles may have unrepaired safety recalls. Click here to look up a specific vehicle.

Similar Vehicles

If you're interested in the 2021 Subaru Ascent, you should also check out these similar vehicles from previous model years.

Chevrolet Traverse

The Chevrolet Traverse is a midsize SUV with seating for seven to eight, depending on whether you choose bucket seats or a bench in the middle row. The 2019 Chevy Traverse comes standard with a 310-horsepower V6 engine in the L, LS, LT, Premier, and High Country trims; the RS trim offers a 257-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine in front-wheel drive. All-wheel-drive is an available option. The 2019 Traverse has 23 cu-ft of cargo space behind the third-row seats. Standard 2019 features include:

  • 310-horsepower V6 engine
  • Seven-inch display screen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
  • 23 cu-ft of storage space behind the third row

Honda Pilot

The 2017–2019 Honda Pilot comes standard with a 280-horsepower V6 engine in all trim levels. It comes standard with front-wheel-drive, although all-wheel-drive is an available option. It has seating for 7-8 passengers, depending on the configuration of the third row. It offers 16.5 cu-ft of storage space behind the third row. 2017–2019 models come standard with a five-inch display screen and all except the base trim have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. You'll also get these standard features from 2017:

  • 280-horsepower V6 engine
  • Lane-keep assist, adaptive cruise control, and emergency braking are standard on the 2019 model
  • Standard push-button start

Nissan Pathfinder

The 2017–2019 Nissan Pathfinder comes standard with a 284-horsepower V6 engine across all trim levels. It comes standard with front-wheel drive, but four-wheel drive is an available option, setting the Pathfinder apart from many midsize SUVs. The Pathfinder comes with seating for seven people and 16 cu-ft of cargo space behind the third row. You'll get these features from 2017 onward:

  • 284-horsepower V6 engine
  • Standard rear parking sensors and emergency braking on the 2019 model
  • Standard eight-inch touch screen

The Bottom Line

The 2021 Subaru Ascent is a great SUV if you need to carry a lot of passengers. Thoughtful touches like multiple cup holders and stain-resistant cloth add to its appeal. Standard features from lane-keep assist to all-wheel-drive will make you feel comfortable behind the wheel.

Need some more inspiration? Take a look at these related articles:

1Based on CarMax average prices between January 1, 2019 through May 31, 2020. Actual prices may vary based on your selected model year, features and trim packages. Prices do not include tax, title, tags, and any applicable fees.
2Fuel economy figures are based on EPA estimates when vehicles sold as new. Fuel economy may vary for reasons like driving conditions and vehicle history. Unless specified, figures are for vehicles equipped with an automatic transmission. See fueleconomy.gov for details.
3Various factors may impact towing capacity, including weight of passengers, cargo, and options/accessories.
4Wi-Fi hotspots require a data plan to activate and may also require a compatible device. See the owner's manual or manufacturer website for more information.
Unless otherwise noted, information related to these featured vehicles comes from third-party sources, including manufacturer information. Product and company names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of third-party entities. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by these entities.

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