Electric or Hydraulic Power Steering


Asked by Nov 03, 2015 at 12:19 AM about the 2016 Subaru Outback

Question type: General

What do you think about these two systems and which one do you prefer?

12 Answers


Hydraulic, why mess with something that works. Electrics still have this, "not of it will fail but when" stigma around them yet. In fact this whole "drive by wire" thing is just plain scary.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

More reliable power steering with hydraulic.


Sure, but pumps and belts and fluid. I'm sick of it after 30+ years. I hear some of the newest electro systems have nearly identical feel to a good hydraulic rack, but in general excellent steering is more easily attainable with parasitic hydrraulics.


If the poster's question is specific to Subarus, it should be noted that outstandling handling inherent in Subies' excellent rack is dramatically compromised by poor body control and suspension compromises inherent in the taller iterations (Forester, latest OBs). With a lower CoG an Imp or Leg Sedans' steering rivals the best from BMW, Audi and Mazda...and far better than Honda, Toyota, Nissan, for example.


Trying to stop new technology is difficult, see this link http://www.autotrainingcentre.com/blog/comparing-hydraulic- electric-steering/


Both have a single point of failure, more actually with hydraulic since it can start leaking or snap a belt, but, the greatest disadvantage to hydraulic is the fuel-efficiency penalty. As this technology improves, I imagine so will the road feel.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

If you want to stop new technology just stop buying it.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

OK, that's an interesting perspective, but, you don't really mean that. After all, if you follow that logic, we would never have gone through the industrial and computer revolution and all the applications that have developed since. And, while you may not agree, all of this modern technology since the beginning of the automobile, cars have just gotten progressively safer and better with each passing year. I'm afraid that it is better than what some people might call the good old days... I think those days were not as good as you might remember it. Sorry.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I'll agree with the safer part but better isn't the word I would have used. All this technology just makes it harder and more expensive to fix. It's no longer a fun job being a mechanic, just look at the money you have to pay for test equipment now days not mention the special tools you need above your normal hand tools, and it keeps changing with every year make and model. Then there is the knowledge base, when I first started out all I needed were a few books, now you need to subscribe to a database just have access to the information you need and you need tech to even do that. I could go on for hours about this. So better? NO

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Better is a qualitative adjective and it means different things to people, but, I think SAFER is definitely better in this case. And, yes, cars today are rolling computers. The world has changed and it will change again with self driving cars. It's coming and it will be phase 2 of the automobile. A lot of people won't like it, but when you add up all the fatalities on the road, the numbers are staggering. And, traffic congestion in major metropolitan areas are turning into a parking lot. I'm sorry, the backyard mechanic you're referring to has been virtually dead for years and if you don't have or invest in the right tools and equipment, you're lost, I get that. The good news is that cars today are generally speaking better and have less problems in between service intervals. And, since cars are now made by robots, they're more exacting to precise specs. Finally, the advances in fuel-efficiency on non- hybrid cars has really come a long way. No matter what you spend on an old 60s muscle car, you're going to get 30-40 or better miles per gallon.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Correction, "you're NOT going to get 30-40 miles per gallon on that 60s muscle car.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

If your phase 2 does happen I will not buy one, I buy a car to drive not for it too tell me how or where to drive, that tech is one that should die, it is too vulnerable too outside interference, maybe in 50 years it will be viable in the slow speed city's but not yet. As far as getting better mileage for muscle cars of the 60's and early 70's that will be fixed with the coming of hydrogen cell tech getting retroed into older cars, and that I am looking forward too.

Your Answer


Looking for a Used Outback in your area?

CarGurus has 783 nationwide Outback listings starting at $2,400.

Postal Code:

Subaru Outback Experts

  • #1
  • #2
  • #3
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Subaru Forester
49 Great Deals out of 961 listings starting at $1,900
Used Honda CR-V
40 Great Deals out of 2,873 listings starting at $2,500
Used Subaru Legacy
15 Great Deals out of 313 listings starting at $1,995
Used Subaru Impreza
38 Great Deals out of 722 listings starting at $2,994
Used Subaru Crosstrek
4 Great Deals out of 191 listings starting at $21,695
Used Toyota RAV4
41 Great Deals out of 3,109 listings starting at $4,799
Used Toyota 4Runner
5 Great Deals out of 530 listings starting at $4,995
Used Toyota Highlander
13 Great Deals out of 1,023 listings starting at $4,950
Used Subaru XV Crosstrek
7 Great Deals out of 153 listings starting at $8,945
Used Toyota Tacoma
33 Great Deals out of 1,357 listings starting at $6,900
Used Honda Accord
59 Great Deals out of 1,262 listings starting at $1,215
Used Toyota Camry
35 Great Deals out of 1,951 listings starting at $1,995
Used Jeep Grand Cherokee
146 Great Deals out of 3,993 listings starting at $2,400
Used Ford Escape
162 Great Deals out of 4,996 listings starting at $1,777
Used Honda Pilot
4 Great Deals out of 610 listings starting at $3,490

Used Cars For Sale

2018 Subaru Outback For Sale
310 listings starting at $30,700
2017 Subaru Outback For Sale
21 Great Deals out of 79 listings starting at $25,990
2016 Subaru Outback For Sale
7 Great Deals out of 56 listings starting at $17,995
2015 Subaru Outback For Sale
5 Great Deals out of 117 listings starting at $16,995
2014 Subaru Outback For Sale
8 Great Deals out of 60 listings starting at $11,450

Content submitted by Users is not endorsed by CarGurus, does not express the opinions of CarGurus, and should not be considered reviewed, screened, or approved by CarGurus. Please refer to CarGurus Terms of Use.