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Subaru Legacy Towing Capacity: Can It Tow A Trailer, Boat, Or Jet Ski?

Subaru Legacy is one of the highly-rated cars from Subaru. Its features high-end materials, comfortable seats, and a straightforward infotainment system. However, Its towing capacity is still a mystery. In this article, we’ll take a deeper look at what exactly this car can tow and how well does it perform as compared to its competitors.

The latest Subaru Legacy Variants (2015-Present) have braked towing capacity of 2,700 pounds and an unbraked towing capacity of 1,000 pounds. Subaru does not recommend these models for towing purposes. However, the previous generations were officially manufactured for towing purposes, and the 3.0L and 3.6L models can provide a towing capacity of 3,000 pounds.

Below, we discuss, in detail, if this 2,700 pounds towing capacity is enough to tow heavy-duty trailers or do we have to look for other options. We’ll start off by looking at the evolution in the towing capacity of this car, followed by trailers weight comparison, and lastly the towing competition in luxury sedans of this category. Let’s get started.

Also read: How Many Miles Can A Subaru Legacy Last?

Maximum Towing Capacity By Year

The following table highlights the changes in towing capacities of various models of the Subaru Legacy over the years. We can note that previously, this car was equipped with some decent towing capacities and it provided a 2,000 pounds towing capacity at its inception. We then witnessed a rise in this capacity up to 2,700 pounds and 3,000 pounds in different variants. Although the towing capacity hasn’t dropped drastically, any damage caused by towing might not be covered by the warranty. Therefore, we suggest that you tow with this car only in the case of an emergency.

YearEngineTowing Capacity Unbraked (lbs)Towing Capacity Braked (lbs)Note
2021All1,0002,700This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
2020All1,0002,700This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
2019All1,0002,700This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
2018All1,0002,700This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
2017All1,0002,700This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
2016All1,0002,700This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
2015All1,0002,700This vehicle is not recommended for towing.
20143.6 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 2.5 Litre Models1,0002,700 
20133.6 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 2.5 Litre Models1,0002,700 
20123.6 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 All other models1,0002,700 
20113.6 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 All other models1,0002,700 
20103.6 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 All other models1,0002,700 
20093.0 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 All other models1,0002,700 
20083.0 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 All other models1,0002,700 
20073.0 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 All other models1,0002,700 
20063.0 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 All other models1,0002,700 
20053.0 Litre Models1,0003,000Always tow within the towing limits.
 All other models1,0002,700 
2004All1,0002,000Always tow within the towing limits.
2003All1,0002,000Always tow within the towing limits.
2002All1,0002,000Always tow within the towing limits.
2001All1,0002,000Always tow within the towing limits.
2000All1,0002,000Always tow within the towing limits.

Also read: Subaru Legacy Transmissions: Overview, Problems, Fluids

Can It Tow a Trailer, Boat, or Jet Ski?

Trailers come in all weights and sizes. We have done an extensive research to identify the weighing limits of different types of trailers. We have then matched these weight limits against the towing capacity of the Subaru Legacy.

All The latest models of the Subaru Legacy can tow a number of small and mid-sized trailers with a maximum weight limit of 2,700 pounds. In the case of small trailers, you can tow both empty and loaded trailers, and in the case of most medium and large-sized trailers, you can only tow an empty trailer as most of such trailers weigh more than 2,700 pounds.

Trailer TypeAverage Empty Weight (lbs.)Average Total Loaded Weight (lbs.)Can The Latest Subaru Legacy Tow It?
Canoe / Kayak Trailer200400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Jet Ski Trailer3001,800Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Motorcycle Trailer5002,400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Teardrop Trailer1,7002,400Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
Small Open Utility Trailer7002,500Yes, it can tow both empty and filled trailers.
A-Frame Camper1,7002,900It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Small Enclosed Utility Trailer1,0003,200It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Fishing Boat Trailer6003,300It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Pop Up Camper2,3003,400It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Small Travel Trailer2,8003,600No.
Tow Dolly6004,000It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Enclosed Utility Trailer2,7007,100It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Small Horse Trailer2,9007,200No.
Large Travel Trailer6,7008,300No.
Car Trailer1,9009,000It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Large Flatbed Trailer3,00010,400No.
Large Boat Trailer2,20013,600It can only tow an empty trailer of this category.
Dump Trailer4,50016,900No.
Toy Hauler7,60017,900No.
Large Livestock Trailer7,30018,700No.
5th Wheel Camper12,70018,700No.
Gooseneck Flatbed Trailer7,20023,200No.

Also read: The Types Of Gas A Subaru Legacy Takes (Explained)

  • Kayak: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow a kayak trailer. On average, an empty kayak trailer will weigh 200 pounds. A loaded kayak trailer will weigh an average of 400 pounds with a maximum of 800 pounds which is well within the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Jet Ski Trailer: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty jet ski trailer. On average, an empty jet ski trailer will weigh 300 pounds. A loaded jet ski trailer will weigh an average of 1,800 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Motorcycle Trailer: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty motorcycle trailer. On average, an empty motorcycle trailer will weigh 500 pounds. A loaded motorcycle trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds with a maximum of 3,500, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Teardrop Trailer: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow a teardrop trailer. On average, an empty teardrop trailer will weigh 1,700 pounds. A loaded teardrop trailer will weigh an average of 2,400 pounds which is within the range of the  Subaru Legacy. Some teardrop trailers will weigh a maximum of 6,000 pounds, outside of the limits of the  Subaru Legacy.
  • Small Open Utility Trailer: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty small open utility trailer. On average, an empty small open utility trailer will weigh 700 pounds. A loaded small open utility trailer will weigh an average of 2,500 pounds with a maximum of 3,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • A-Frame Camper: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty a-frame camper. On average, an empty a-frame camper weighs 1,700 pounds. A loaded a-frame camper will weigh an average of 2,900 pounds with a maximum of 3,600 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Small Enclosed Utility Trailer: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty small enclosed utility trailer. On average, an empty small enclosed utility trailer weighs 1,000 pounds. A loaded small enclosed utility trailer will weigh an average of 3,200 pounds with a maximum of 7,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Fishing Boat Trailer: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty fishing boat trailer. On average, an empty fishing boat trailer weighs 600 pounds. A loaded fishing boat trailer will weigh an average of 3,300 pounds with a maximum of 6,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Pop-Up Camper: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty pop-up camper. On average, an empty pop-up camper weighs 2,300 pounds. A loaded pop-up camper will weigh an average of 3,400 pounds with a maximum of 4,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Small Travel Trailer: No Subaru Legacy model will be able to tow a small travel trailer. On average, an empty small travel trailer weighs 2,800 pounds. A loaded small travel trailer will weigh an average of 3,600 pounds with a maximum of 4,500 pounds, outside of the range of the  Subaru Legacy.
  • Tow Dolly: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty tow dolly. On average, an empty tow dolly weighs 600 pounds. A loaded tow dolly will weigh an average of 4,000 pounds with a maximum of 5,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Large Enclosed Utility Trailer: All  Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty large enclosed utility trailer. On average, an empty large enclosed utility trailer weighs 2,700 pounds. A loaded large enclosed utility trailer weighs an average of 7,100 pounds with a maximum of 10,000 pounds, outside of the range of the  Subaru Legacy.
  • Small Horse Trailer: No Subaru Legacy model will be able to tow a small horse trailer. On average, an empty small horse trailer weighs 2,900 pounds. A loaded small horse trailer weighs an average of 7,200 pounds with a maximum of 8,000 pounds, outside of the range of the  Subaru Legacy.
  • Car Trailer: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow an empty car trailer. On average, an empty car trailer weighs 1,900 pounds. A loaded car trailer weighs an average of 9,000 pounds with a maximum of 15,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Large Flatbed Trailer: No Subaru Legacy model will be able to tow a large flatbed trailer. On average, an empty large flatbed trailer weighs 3,000 pounds. A loaded large flatbed trailer weighs an average of 10,400 pounds with a maximum of 26,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.
  • Large Boat Trailer: The latest Subaru Legacy models will be able to tow a large boat trailer. On average, an empty large boat trailer weighs 2,200 pounds. A loaded large boat trailer weighs an average of 13,600 pounds with a maximum of 34,000 pounds, outside of the range of the Subaru Legacy.

Also read: How Well Does A Subaru Legacy Drive In The Snow?

How Well Can It Tow Compared to its Competitors?

The following table mentions the towing capacities of several compact sedans that compete with the Subaru Legacy. We can note that towing is not a popular/primary feature in most of these cars as the average towing capacity of several cars in the market is 1,500-2,000 pounds. Also, most manufacturers don’t recommend their cars for towing purposes and do not provide official towing stats.

Looking at this competition and comparing it against the towing capacity of the Subaru Legacy, we can safely say that it provides the best towing performance. No car has a better tow rating than the Subaru Legacy.

Year / Make / ModelMin. Towing Capacity (lbs.)Max. Towing Capacity (lbs.)
2021 Chevrolet Malibu2,0002,000
2021 Hyundai Sonata2,0002,000
2021 Toyota Camry1,5002,000
2021 Honda Accord1,0001,000
2020 Nissan Altima1,0001,500

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