The Other Touches
The 2013 Legacy 2.5i Limited's gauge cluster employs analog electroluminescent gauges and a small color LCD display in the center. White lighting behind red needles creates a sporty aesthetic that's easy to read at night. Subaru fancies an LCD vehicle information center that relays the odometer reading, a trip measurement, the gear mode, gas mileage, and other basic data. It also pops up with notifications and alerts corresponding to the driver assistance features. Unfortunately, there is no tie-in with the navigation system, so you cannot get directions posted to the smaller screen.
Electronic Parking Brake And Hill Holder
When Subaru debuted its current-generation Legacy, it abandoned the traditional emergency brake handles and pedals. Instead, you get a simple switch that engages an electronic parking brake. Gone are the days of e-brake drifting. However, the electronic parking brake allows Subaru to offer a hill holder that keeps the new Legacy from rolling back. The feature has to be enabled manually every time you start the vehicle, unfortunately.
When the hill holder is enabled, the parking brake is engaged every time you come to a complete stop on a hill. This keeps you from rolling backwards when you take your foot off the brake pedal, and it automatically disengages when you start feeding the engine gas. Particularly in cities full of cabs (which tend to have a hard time respecting even a small buffer behind you), it's nice to not have to worry about rolling back into someone else's bumper.
We applaud Subaru for not jumping on the capacitive touch button bandwagon, and instead integrating physical HVAC controls. The 2013 Legacy 2.5i Limited employs standard buttons and an independent display for the environmental readings. As many other manufacturers try to get fancy with smooth surfaces, we're happy that Subaru didn't go that route. Call us old-school, but we like the feedback a mechanical switch affords. Here's looking at you, Ford and GM.
Folding Rear Seats
Mid-size sedans typically include folding rear seats that let you cram in larger items at the expense of backseat accommodations. Subaru simplifies this process with a release lever that's accessible from the trunk. This is a nice little touch compared to the vehicles that only have seat releases accessible from inside the cabin.