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VW Passat Wagon vs Subaru Wagons

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  • K9LeaderK9Leader Posts: 112
    The non-silver OB was his story and he stuck to it. Maybe it was just a convenient explanation, maybe he didn't know about the silver option (or didn't go looking and just assumed it wasn't available), or maybe he was only interested in the Limited. As you can probably tell, $$$ appeared not to be a concern.
    --K9Leader
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You da man, Eric. That was brilliant.

    I find my wife's Legacy has enough legroom for my 30" inseam. In fact I don't even have the seat all the way back.

    -juice
  • Eric,
    You mentioned you got a seat rail modification that gives your outback's seat(s) 2 more inches of travel. Who makes it? How do I get one? How much does it cost? We had (sadly) written off the Legacy line because the seats won't go back quite far enough.

    Scott
  • eric102eric102 Posts: 122
    Its a do it yourself mod. that only works on the electric drivers seat. The passenger seat looks more difficult, I haven't tried it yet.

    The drivers side is fairly easy. It just requires pulling the seat out of the car, removing 4 bolts that hold the seat rails together, drill a couple new holes in the rails about 2" further back, and then reassemble to the new position. No $ spent, just a 1/2 day of your time.

    I gave a more detailed description about a year ago, probably in the Outback or modifications thread. If you can't find it with the search function and need more details, let me know.

    Eric
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I think it was in the Legacy & Outback thread under wagons. If not, try Subaru Crew - Modifications under Owners Clubs.

    -juice
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    I actually prefer the OB now that I have it - my wife says the Passat was too "yuppie car of the moment" for us anyway (we like to hike, backpack, snowshoe & XC ski - plus she is an environmental engineer). The only thing I really miss from the Passat is the front seat and leg room - so comfy for a big guy like me. Anyway, I have had more fun in OB this winter than in any other car!

    I find myself having that same internal debate. I've admitted to myself that I don't ever do any real offroading, and don't need a true SUV, but there's part of me that just kinda hates to admit that I am a yuppie (a lawyer with two kids who lives in a zip code that was featured in National Geographic as the embodiment of American Suburbia). I like to get to the mountains whenever I can, but that's really not more than a couple times a year. My heart yearns to be an Outback person, but my head tells me I fit the Passat description a lot more closely. What's a yuppie in denial to do?
  • Here in Boise, the Subaru Outbacks are almost more "yuppie" than the VW Passats. The Outbacks are everywhere it seems while I see very few Passat wagons on the road here in comparison. By far, my wife has the stronger "yuppie gauge" than I and she didn't feel the Passat fell in that category at all. Now, the Volvo... don't get her started ;~)

    Ultimately, we test drove both the Outback VDC and Passat 4Mo wagons for an extended period. We chose the vehicle that we felt most comfortable in, and went with the dealer that provided the best sales experience. The VW won easily in both categories. We also like to get out of town for camping, hiking, and skiing adventures. So far this winter, the Passat has easily taken us everywhere our '89 Subaru 4WD wagon used to, up and over snow-covered passes to our favorite ski destinations.

    Granted, if we hadn't liked the feel of the Passat as much, the VW dealer hadn't been so pleasant, and/or the Subaru dealer hadn't been such a..., well unpleasant, we could just as easily have chosen a new Subie.
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    That's probably how it's going to shake down for me as well when I finally get ready to pull the trigger. I've researched both of those to death, and it will ultimately come down to which I like better when I ride in one. Out of curiosity, however, which stereo did you think sounded better - The McIntosh or the Monsoon?
  • I didn't pay a whole lot of attention to the stereos while we were test riding these two cars. I kept them off for the most part so I could listen to the other sounds within the car over bumps and on the highway. However, if I do recall correctly, the McIntosh radio tuner may have sounded better.

    Now, after almost three months of ownership of the Passat I would comment that the Monsoon radio tuner provides rather "boomy" sound while the in-dash CD player provides much better sound. When listening to the radio I just make sure I turn down the bass and increase the treble.

    Good luck with your decision.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    What's a yuppie in denial to do?

    Get the H6 Outback with cloth. It's a new model. On the surface it's decidedly unpretentious, but underneath you sort of get it all.

    I cracked up when Lucien said he thought the Passat interior was "too nice" for hauling his mountain bikes around.

    -juice
  • frapzoidfrapzoid Posts: 127
    Where did everybody go?

    Gary
  • allhorizonallhorizon Posts: 483
    They are driving in their Passats and Subarus and are having fun.

    - D.
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    I'm still debating over these two, but will probably wait to see the new iteration of Outbacks next model year. I should probably go test drive both of them right now, but hate to do it when I'm not going to be buying anytime soon, I feel like I'm being disingenuous to the salesman (not that he wouldn't do the same thing to me).
  • dcm61dcm61 Posts: 1,470
    "but will probably wait to see the new iteration of Outbacks next model year."

    '04 Outbacks are expected to be the same as '03; maybe minor cosmetic changes. I saw an '04 LL Bean at the NY autoshow and the only differences that I saw was silver badging (Outback & AWD) instead of gold and Baja wheels versus the H6 gold wheels. However, there could have been a revised H6 under the hood. :-)

    DaveM
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You can pre-view the next Legacy, it's been talked about a lot in the Subaru Crew - Future Models topic.

    Looks good, too.

    -juice
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    Sorry, I wasn't clear about what I meant. I meant the model year that comes out next year (2005). I know the MY 2004's (which should be out fairly soon) won't have any major changes.
  • According to Edmund's reviews of each audio system, the McIntosh system in the Subaru got a 6.0 (http://www.edmunds.com/reviews/comparison/articles/70543/page004- .html) while the Passat's Monsoon sound system got an 8.0 (http://www.edmunds.com/reviews/comparison/articles/68202/page006- .html)... I own a 1997 Outback and the stereo system is terrible, if that matters... no experience with the McIntosh stereo but I hope it's better than the 80-watt Panasonic. I've experienced the Monsoon sound system and it rivals some of the best out there in this price range. Edmund's also put the Monsoon Sound System in the Top 10 for under $30,000 (http://www.edmunds.com/reviews/list/top10/55745/article.html); I quote:

    "Believe it or not, the Monsoon stereo in the VW Passat is manufactured by Delphi, a division of Delco Electronics. Even more amazing: It sounds really good. Volkswagen takes a somewhat different approach to audio in all its vehicles, which is evident throughout the product line, from the Passat on down to the Golf. Rather than mounting large 6-by-9s on the back deck, the VW folks opt for 6.5-inch drivers in all four doors. The doors act as speaker enclosures, accentuating bass response and smoothing out the rough edges. Top this off with an elegant pair of front-mounted tweeters, and you have a recipe for good sound."
    Hope this answers your question.
  • I will never buy another VW!!!! Unfortunately I found out that my Passat isn't deer-proof!!! A month and a half ago I ran into a deer or vice versa. I knew I should have bought a Subaru! I know they make a deer-proof car, don't they? Just kidding fellas. I did have some issues with a deer but I'm still glad I bought the Passat. The insurance company had to cover $4300.00 of damage.

    Gary
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Whoa, everyone was OK? That's some serious damage. Did any air bags deploy?

    I had a deer run into the side of a K-car I rented a long time ago, it was bizarre. It stunned him, we stopped, then he got up and ran off!

    Would an Outback be more deer proof? LOL. Well, it is a little taller, so you might have a small advantage there.

    -juice
  • I didn't get hurt but the deer didn't do so well. She was killed instantly. No, the air bags didn't deploy but then I didn't feel a thing when I hit the deer. It made some noise but I didn't feel the impact at all. The deer was a good size but the Passat is a relatively heavy car. A smaller car would have been toast. I was going 35 mph and the deer was running full speed. She didn't have a chance...

    Gary
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    :-(

    Oh well. My nanny's daughter just got a Passat. V6 Tip sedan in red. She brought it by yesterday, to take her kid and my kid out to the mall.

    I had to cinch up a couple of child seats, no problem there.

    She should have chosen a wagon, the two strollers took up the whole trunk.

    -juice
  • WarpDriveWarpDrive Posts: 506
    You should have bought the Outback. Outbacks equipped with optional roo-bars are definitely more deer proof :)
  • frapzoidfrapzoid Posts: 127
    Are roo-bars something that are only sold in Canada? I'm not familiar with those. I think my Passat sustained less damage than a WRX would even with those roo-bars... ;-)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Australia is a good source for those.

    Subaru has about 10 times as much market share there, and despite what people say they are used off road extensively. There are all kinds of clubs, and more than one vendor selling skid plates and 'roo bars.

    Or should we say, 'ru bars?

    -juice
  • WarpDriveWarpDrive Posts: 506
    But any vendor in austarilia will sell those as an option.

    They definitely work, as roo collisions are so common. http://www.subaclub.com/TechTalk/roobar.htm
  • spcanfspcanf Posts: 5
    I am trying todecide betwen subaru and passat gls 1.8 auto. wagon. I am concerned about hesitation of passat when initially accelerating. Dealer told me it was because the car had to learn the driver and after I drove it for awhile, the hesitation would go away? Does anyone know if this is true? I like the smoothness and quiet of passat - but the hesitation would drive me nuts if it didn't go away. Thanks
  • It is true that the transmission adjusts to the driver. So it depends on who has driven it before. It takes a while to adjust, and may require the battery terminals to be removed (and the remaining voltage to be drained by e.g. applying the brakes (lights) to reset to default.

    On the other hand, the auto - 1.8t combination is notorious for having a bit of a lag. This is under most circumstances not the turbo lag many people accuse it of. It is just a mismatch between the two, where the AT is optimized for fuel consumption and does not upshift early enough. If the car has the tiptronic, that makes it easy to shift it yourself, instead.

    - D.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You sure you can't learn stick shift? The 1.8T is far more satisfying with a manual, IMO, buttery smooth.

    I think the 2.5l in the Subie is torquey and actually mates better to Subaru's very robust automatic. That same tranny handles 300hp reliably in modified WRXs. The trade-off is that it only has 4 speeds and no manual controls on most models.

    -juice
  • frapzoidfrapzoid Posts: 127
    I didn't like the 1.8/Tiptronic combination either. I liked the V6/Stick better. Liked it so much that I bought it. Try the stick with the 1.8 engine. You might like it better.

    Gary
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