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Net Gains: 2011 Outback to Offer Wi-Fi Capabilities
The versatile Subaru Outback is already known for its ability to take its drivers just about anywhere, and now that includes online: For the 2011 model year, the Outback is available with the Subaru Mobile Internet (SMI) system, which essentially turns the already hot crossover SUV into a mobile wireless hotspot.
Leveraging technology from the world’s first in-car Internet service provider—Autonet Mobile—the system operates on the 3G network and is compatible with all Wi-Fi-enabled devices, including laptops, netbooks, smart phones, game controllers and, of coures, the latest iPad and iPod Touch models. SMI is designed to provide uninterrupted wireless access both when the vehicle is at rest and, for the benefit of Outback passengers, while the vehicle is in motion, and it features average download speeds of 400kbps-1.2mbps, allowing users to quickly and easily check e-mail, surf the web, listen to Internet radio, post to social-networking sites and more.
The system can provide wireless service for up to 10 separate devices at a time, with a range that extends up to 150 feet around the vehicle.
SMI can be added to the options list of any 2011 Outback for an MSRP of $499, in addition to a $35 activation fee. The service also requires a one-year subscription that runs $29 per month, but Subaru will initially offer the first three months free.
It’s just another in a long line of features that sets Subaru’s award-winning crossover apart from the competition. Others include the rugged Outback’s symmetrical all-wheel-drive system, a 170-hp boxer engine that makes a robust 170 hp, a surprisingly roomy cabin and an available Lineatronic continuously variable transmission, which boosts fuel efficiency to 22 mpg city/29 mpg highway.
With all this and an MSRP of $23,195, the 2011 Outback is available now at Subaru dealerships across the country.
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