These two best-selling crossovers were both introduced 25 years ago, and while they are both capable of off-road driving, they are also popular with commuters.  The Subaru Outback and the Toyota RAV4 target similar audiences but are definitely not the same vehicles. Read below to find out how the Outback stacks against the RAV4 and if the 2020 Subaru Outback is a good fit for you. 

Features of 2020 Outback vs Features of Toyota RAV4

The standard engines in the Subaru Outback and the Toyota RAV4 are both 2.5 L, 4-cylinder engines.  The Outback has 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft torque while the RAV 4 has 203 horsepower and 184 lb-ft torque.  However, the optional engines is where you see the difference in the Subaru Outback vs the Toyota RAV4. The Outback also comes with a turbocharged 2.4 L engine with 260 horsepower and 277 lb-ft torque while the RAV4 comes in a more commuter friendly hybrid engine with 203 horsepower and 184 lb-ft torque.  
The RAV4 has 35 cubic feet of cargo space and the Outback has 30 ft of cargo space.  Although the RAV4 has more on paper, the space that is usable is less because of the crossover's design whereas the Outback's cargo space is more accessible, and the design allows for the comfortable seating of 5 tall passengers.  
The Outback and the RAV4 have comparable fuel efficiency with 26 and 28 mpg city and 33 and 35 mpg highway for the Outback and RAV4 respectively.  
Both vehicles have LED headlights, LED DRL, and 17 inch wheels.  The outback gets more ground clearance and has some impressive upgrades.  Although both vehicles can come with heated/cooled seating, the Outback can come with natural leather, and an impressive 11.6 inch touchscreen display while the RAV 4 can only come with up to an 8 inch display. 
Many desirable features come as upgrades in the RAV4 while they are standard on the 2020 Subaru Outback.  The biggest example of this is all wheel drive but also goes for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.  


The choice is obvious when comparing the price of the Subaru Outback vs Toyota RAV4.  The Outback starts at $26,645 and the RAV4 starts at $25,850.  Consider that the starting RAV4 does not come standard with AWD.   

Reviews of The 2020 Subaru Outback

Reviews of the 2020 Subaru Outback are in consensus: the Outback does not look much different, but it's ride is smoother than ever before.  Critics claim that the Outback's updated chassis and suspension make it so you glide over bumps and ditches. claims that the Outback drives like a "premium luxury vehicle" which is incredible because it does not come at a premium luxury vehicle price.  Overall, reviews praise the Subaru's new frame, suspension, 8 speed CVT, spacious interior, and added safety features that make it a fun, comfortable, and practical ride.  On the contrary, the RAV4 reviews say that the base model is sparse.  Indeed, the base model, although slightly less expensive than the Outback base model, do not have all-wheel drive, and lacks many of the features that come standard on Subarus.  Reviews also critique the RAV4s engine noise and driving dynamics, two features that reviewers complimented in the Outback.  Although the RAV4 is praised for offering something for everyone, there is a reason why the Subaru Outback has had the highest model loyalty in its class for 3 years and is the best selling all-wheel drive vehicle in its class for 10 years.   

Which is Better Toyota RAV4 or Subaru Outback?

The Subaru Outback vs the Toyota RAV4 comparison reveals that both vehicles are popular for a reason.  They have many of the features that people want and are looking for.  However, the Subaru Outback is unmatched in its style, off-road ability, and quality of the ride.  The RAV4 may be a smarter choice for the commuter with the hybrid option and the option of having only FWD.  However, if you're looking to get into the outdoors, need to feel safe driving in snow, or want to pack quite a bit in the back while still keeping your passengers comfortable, the Subaru Outback is the one for you.  

What is comparable to the Subaru Outback?

There are many other vehicles that are in the same class as the Subaru Outback such as the Honda CRV, the Ford Escape, and the Kia Sorento.  However, none of these models can match the Subaru's combination of off-road ability, price, fuel economy, and style.  The models that are most comparable to the Subaru Outback are other Subaru models.  The Subaru Forester in particular is a very similar vehicle with similar cargo space, ground clearance, and engine.  The Forester is a little bit taller, looking more like a compact SUV while the Outback is longer, and looks more like a wagon.

Make an Inquiry

Rafferty Subaru

4700 West Chester Pike
Directions Newtown Square, PA 19073

  • Sales: 484-588-6229
  • Service: 855-588-0452
  • Parts: (610)353-6900


  • Monday 9am - 9pm
  • Tuesday 9am - 9pm
  • Wednesday 9am - 9pm
  • Thursday 9am - 9pm
  • Friday 9am - 9pm
  • Saturday 9am - 5pm
  • Sunday Closed