Overview & Reviews
The Subaru B9 Tribeca was the first midsize SUV from a company that traditionally just made smaller station wagons with elevated ground clearance. Bigger and taller than other Subarus, the B9 was meant to be a viable alternative to established Japanese crossover competitors as well as other more upscale sport-utilities.
Named for New York City's fashionable and affluent TriBeCa neighborhood (the B9 was tacked on seemingly just for fun), it also became Subaru's first U.S. vehicle to feature a new design expression consisting of a stylized triangular grille and rounded bodywork apparently inspired by aircraft. It wasn't well-received, however, which was made all the worse because it was underpowered and not as spacious inside as other three-row SUVs.
In an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to turn the ship around, Subaru adopted more conservative styling for 2008 and ditched "B9" in the process. The rechristened Subaru Tribeca is covered in a separate review.
Most Recent Subaru B9 Tribeca
The Subaru B9 Tribeca was sold for 2006 and 2007, before it dropped the B9 from its name. Attached to its standard all-wheel-drive system and five-speed automatic was a 3.0-liter horizontally opposed (boxer) six-cylinder engine that produced 245 horsepower and 215 pound-feet. This modest output didn't do the relatively heavy B9 any favors, bringing it from zero to 60 mph in a pokey 9.6 seconds.
The B9 came in five- or seven-passenger configurations with either base or Limited trims. The base car included 18-inch alloy wheels, a sunroof, power front seats (eight-way driver, four-way passenger), a tilt-only steering wheel, dual-zone automatic climate control, and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player. An auxiliary audio jack was added for 2007. With its seven-passenger configuration, the base B9 Tribeca gained heated front seats and rear climate controls. The Limited got you leather upholstery and an upgraded sound system with a six-CD changer. Options on the Limited included a navigation system, a rearview camera and a rear seat entertainment system.
The Subaru B9 Tribeca's cabin had a distinct look with a waterfall center stack painted silver. It looked cool, but with its awkwardly arranged buttons, it was definitely a case of form over function. The cabin's abundance of hard plastic was also a turn-off, although we liked the central screen that displayed the climate control and audio information.
Many have found the B9 Tribeca's driving position awkward, which was largely a result of the non-telescoping steering wheel. Legroom was sparse for third-row passengers, and even those in the second row might feel a little cramped -- a rear-facing infant seat barely fits. Fortunately, cargo room with the seats folded was a bit more generous, with up to 74 cubic feet available.
In general, we found the Subaru B9 Tribeca to have too many flaws to be recommended as a used SUV purchase. Power was improved with the subsequent Subaru Tribeca, but it, too, remains an also-ran as more impressive crossovers have arrived on the scene.
User Reviews:Showing 1 through 10 of 225.00
Great in Snow. Fun to Drive - 2006 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By Tommy K - December 17 - 11:33 pm
I bought mine in January and had 2 snow storms to deal with. It handled the snow better than my previous Mercedes ML350 did or my current Hummer H3. Great handling, safety ratings, comfortable for all. Tiptronic steering lets you accelerate very quickly when needed.
Very Nice! - 2007 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By Jason R. - December 15 - 8:06 pm
I recently purchased this car, so I don't have many miles on it yet. My first impressions are it has a very nice build-quality, perfect for the family, and the (AWD) all-wheel-drive is spectacular! I previously owned a BMW 528 and going to a cross-over like the Tribeca was easy.
Disappointed - 2006 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By MJ - December 14 - 12:36 pm
Interior is so comfortable and it has all the bells and whistles. However, the performance is horrible. When attempting acceleration at any speed including highway entering the engine revs to almost 7000 rpm before it kicks in and sometimes I can have the pedal floored and it still doesn't accelerate. Like others mentioned there is a problem with the headlights and poor visibility. Also, blind spots are very dangerous, almost hit 2 cars. And tire pressure light has been an issue since day 1. Goes off for a day after filling tires and then starts flashing again. Had a 2005 Ford Escape with 170K miles, should have stuck with Ford.
Great car - disappointing build quality - 2007 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By Subarusud - December 11 - 3:13 am
Love the looks and the design the best. Drive is nice on highway, but bumpy on urban streets. I have had a lot of rattles and they appear to be with the rear seat and the rear hatch. Dealer can't seem to get it right. Otherwise all of the features of the car are great! Would be very happy but for the bumps and rattles. Subaru should offer standard features on certain trim levels. When buying this car it seems like I could never find the same model with the exactly the same features twice.
Underwhelmed - 2006 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By A. Grupp - December 10 - 2:20 pm
Overall, while I like the car and feel very safe driving it, I have been disappointed with a few issues. First, I agree with others citing the headlights as an issue. Not only is the low beam ineffectual, but I have had to replace the bulbs numerous times. Second, the heating has failed so I will need to spend $1K+ to fix it. And,now,the A/C is an issue. Third, there is a blind spot on the passenger side due to the small rear window. Fourth, the electrical system has been causing problems. I am sold on Subarus, just not on the Tribeca. I own a Forester and have owned the Outback. Love/loved both. Will revert to one of them moving forward.
2007 Limited 7 Seater (Diamond Gray) - 2007 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By Ed G - December 7 - 12:43 am
Sleek exterior and diamond gray color is awesome. Front grill is toned down with less chrome. Interior ergo is good and quality is up there with European cars. Ride is comfortable yet firm enough to handle twisties easily. Quiet ride as well. Brakes good. Could use a bit more power but adequate for an SUV. Honda Pilot a bit roomier since it's a box but after test driving both, you'll take the Tribeca for everything else it offers that the Pilot doesn't.
SUV Subaru at last - 2006 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By narotam - November 28 - 5:10 pm
Excellent driving experience in snow and tarmac. Good power, excellent AWD and traction control. Windshield wipers obscure view of nose and headlights.
B9 Review - 2006 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By RMB - November 22 - 10:56 pm
Car drives really well. The AWD is really stable and the car handles excellent for an SUV. Car is comfortable, but still communicates a lot of info to the driver. Navigation is very well implemented and the stereo is top quality.
Great ! - 2007 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By Mike - October 1 - 11:33 pm
This was my first Subaru. We got this vehicle because of ist outstanding safety ratings. Only 6k miles so far it's been all good. The front end (exterior) is different, but it grows on you quickly. The interior is just great. Rear seats are on sliders like front seats, it makes for plenty of room even taller people. The AWD and vehicle stability control features make it sure footed in the northern winters. I'd recommend this vehicle to anyone.
2006 Subaru B9 Tribeca Review - 2006 Subaru B9 Tribeca
By Max - September 10 - 5:36 am
My first Subaru. Fun ride. Comfortable as it can get. Strong body. Streamlined design. Bad fuel efficiency.