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2024 Honda Passport vs. 2024 Subaru Outback Comparison


One is a more adventurous offshoot of a family-friendly 3-row SUV. The other has wagon-like proportions and an exterior design inspired by a hiking boot. That’s right, we’re talking about the 2024 Honda Passport and 2024 Subaru Outback.

The Passport shares a platform with the 3-row Honda Pilot. Yet it’s about 7 inches shorter and jettisons the Pilot’s rearmost seating for greater cargo capacity behind its split-folding second row. All-wheel drive is standard. The Passport boasts one of the roomiest cabins in its class.   

It’s true, the Outback takes styling cues from a hiking boot. To our eyes, it looks like a blend of a station wagon and a high-riding SUV. That’s fine by us. Like the 2024 Honda Passport, the 2024 Subaru Outback has standard all-wheel drive and adult levels of space in both rows of seating.

Let’s take a closer look at the Passport and Outback.

2024 Honda Passport

2024 Honda Passport TrailSport in grey near a barn.

This generation of Passport dates back to the 2019 model year. Changes to the 2024 variant are fairly small. Honda equips the off-road-themed TrailSport trim with more aggressive all-terrain tires and a tougher suspension. Replacing the Elite at the top of the lineup is the new Black Edition. 

The Passport is offered in three trims: EX-L, TrailSport, and the Black Edition. Pricing starts at $41,900, excluding destination charges. While it has a higher entry fee than a number of direct competitors, the Passport comes with an impressive range of standard features and active driver aids.   

Honda Passport Highlights

Powerful V6: The Passport comes with one choice of engine, and it’s a good one. The 280-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 and 9-speed automatic transmission provide plenty of grunt. Acceleration is strong and highway passing power is never an issue. 

Towing capacity: While the Passport’s maximum towing capacity of 5,000 pounds is average among midsize SUVs, it’s significantly better than the 3,500-pound max offered by the Outback.

Bring lots of luggage: The Passport has two rows of seating and more than 41 cubic feet of cargo space behind its split-folding second row. This is a huge amount of space and nearly 10 cubic feet more than the Outback.

TrailSport trim: To give the Passport some added machismo, Honda added the TrailSport variant to the lineup for the 2022 model year. It consists of trim-specific 18-inch alloy wheels, chunkier tires for off-road adventures, steel skidplates, roof rails, and orange accent stitching in the cabin.  

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Pilot models for sale near you. 

2024 Subaru Outback

2024 Subaru Outback driving on a dirt road.

The 2024 Subaru Outback can be had in one of nine trims: Base, Premium, Limited, Onyx Edition, Onyx Edition XT, Wilderness, Touring, Limited XT, and Touring XT. Pricing starts at $28,895 for the base Outback, not including factory-to-dealer delivery fees. This is notably less expensive than the starting price of the Passport.

Serving as the standard powertrain is a 182-hp 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine paired with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). A 260-hp turbocharged 2.4-liter 4-cylinder is used in XT-badged trims of the Onyx Edition, Touring, and Limited. It also sees duty in the go-anywhere Wilderness trim.

Subaru Outback Highlights 

Turbocharged engine: If you want to keep the price low and don’t mind subdued acceleration, the base 4-cylinder will suffice. Yet we appreciate the added punch delivered by the available 260-hp turbo 4-cylinder. Acceleration is much better, and passing on the highway is a breeze.

Sasquatch-hunting Wilderness trim: With its chunky exterior cladding, added ground clearance, and off-road tires, the Outback Wilderness (photo above) is for folks whose everyday wardrobe is from L.L. Bean. This isn’t some mere cosmetic rehash of the Outback, however. The Wilderness has a more advanced X-mode all-wheel-drive system with selectable drive settings tailored to snow, dirt, and mud.

Safety scores: The Outback scores a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). This is the highest possible ranking. It’s based not only on a vehicle’s performance during crash tests, but also on the effectiveness of active driver aids and other features like the headlights and child-seat compatibility.

Check this week’s Fair Purchase Price or see the Outback models for sale near you. 

Similarities

The Passport and Outback are both 5-seat midsize SUVs with standard all-wheel drive, identical warranties, and enviable reputations for value. Each has a user-friendly cabin with intuitive tech touches and robust trim materials.  

Conclusion

The Honda Passport is a solid choice if you want loads of cargo room, a strong V6 engine, and a generous lineup of standard features. But it is now six model years into its lifecycle, and the Passport is starting to feel a bit behind the times compared to newer rivals.

One of these is the Subaru Outback, surprise surprise. While we’d never accuse this wagon-like SUV of being avant-garde in its approach, the Outback simply feels a bit fresher than the Pilot, even if its base engine is a tad underwhelming. 

Last, let’s not forget which of these two outstanding SUVs is the reigning Kelley Blue Book Best Resale Value Award winner for its class. Yes, it’s the Subaru Outback, which also happens to get significantly better fuel economy than the Passport.

  2024 Honda Passport  2024 Subaru Outback
Starting Price  $41,900 $28,895
Popular Powertrains      
Engine  3.5-liter V6 2.5-liter 4-cylinder
Horsepower  280 hp @ 6,000 rpm 182 hp @ 5,800 rpm
Torque  262 lb-ft @ 4,700 rpm 176 lb-ft @ 4,400 rpm
Transmission  9-speed automatic  CVT 
Fuel economy  19 mpg city/24 mpg highway/21 mpg combined 26 mpg city/32 mpg highway/28 mpg combined 
Also Available  Turbo 2.4-liter 4-cyl.
Specs       
Basic Warranty  3 years/36,000 miles  3 years/36,000 miles 
Powertrain Warranty  5 years/60,000 miles  5 years/60,000 miles 
NHTSA Overall Safety  5 star  5 star
Max Seating Capacity 
Wheelbase  110.9 inches  108.1 inches 
Overall Length  189.1 inches  191.1 inches 
Width  78.6 inches  74.2 inches 
Height  72.2 inches  66.4 inches 
Turning Diameter  36.1 feet  36.1 feet 
Headroom, Front  39.5 inches 40.1 inches 
Headroom, 2nd Row  40.0 inches  39.1 inches 
Legroom, Front  40.6 inches  42.8 inches 
Legroom, 2nd Row  39.6 inches  39.5 inches
Shoulder Room, Front  62.0 inches  58.1 inches 
Shoulder Room, 2nd Row  61.9 inches 57.4 inches
Cargo Volume Rear Seats Up/Down 41.2/77.7 cubic feet   32.6/75.6 cubic feet 



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