People who own a Subaru tend to be a loyal bunch who keep their cars for quite a long time, only getting another one when they are persuaded that its time for a change.

Unlike other Japanese manufacturers who look for export markets for their profits, 75 per cent of Subaru cars are sold to Japanese customers, although there is now a large factory working out of the USA.

The company manufacturers more than one million vehicles a year, including both cars and trucks.

The name Subaru is the Japanese name for the Pleiades, which most people know better as the Seven Sisters, the bright stars that shine nightly in the dark sky.

But with typical Japanese logic there are only six stars in the Subaru logo because one of the Sisters is invisible to the naked eye!

One of the best Subarus on the road at the moment is the Outback which is both practical and rugged. Four wheel drive comes as standard.

The serious motoring press like Auto Express, Autocar and What Car? generally like it, giving it between four and a half or three and half stars out of five.

It comes in between £32,000 and £34,000 depending on the model and it can tow almost two tonnes if necessary.

There is a choice of two engines – a two litre diesel or a 2.5 litre petrol model with the diesel doing 50 miles to the gallon and the petrol comes in at around 40.

One of the best things about the car is the amount of room it has, and the amount of kit which comes as part of the deal.

There is bags of room which can easily accommodate five adults for a long journey because there is excellent shoulder room as well.

The boot is enormous and nicely shaped. The spring-loaded rear seatbacks fold easily, via a lever in the boot, to leave a flat load area which gives you 1677 litres for your packages.

On the kit list the entry-level SE versions get sat-nav, climate and cruise controls, LED headlights, a rear-view camera, heated seats, automatic wipers and alloy wheels.

The SE Premium adds a sunroof, leather upholstery, a powered tailgate, keyless entry and engine starting, and larger wheels.

Models with the CVT gearbox get automatic emergency braking, which functions even at motorway speeds, as well as adaptive cruise control and a lane-assist system.

Every Outback has an electrically adjustable driver’s seat, so it’s easy to get just the right driving position, and visibility is good. The dashboard puts the major controls within easy reach and there is a standard touch-screen infotainment system as well.

Driving about the steering is easy peasy, nice and light for parking and the four-wheel-drive gives excellent traction when required.

The ride tends to be a bit chunky and the suspension a little harsh but it is certainly a confident ride all way round.

The Outback’s cabin tends to be a little old fashioned and some of the items inside need a bit of a refresh. However every Subaru always feels that its construction is as tough of old boots and built to last. You know what you get with a car like this.

And of course there is a five-year warranty and a three-year roadside assistance package included in the price of the car.

The Outback is cheaper than a comparable Audi or Volvo but there are cheaper models than the Outback.

But those loyal Subaru customers aren’t going anywhere. And you can’t blame them really because the Outback is another winner from the Subaru garage.