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VW Passat Wagon vs Subaru Wagons

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Comments

  • kieltkielt Posts: 3
    Passat reliability isn't an issue. It is Consumer Report's mid-size sedan of the year (tying the boring Camry)and I've not come across any rants against the car (unlike the Ford Explorer). Concerning N.E. driving, I've lived in Boston for 9 years and believe me, front wheel drive, skill and common sense are all you need to make it through winter. The Passat also has standard traction control to help matters.

    I just bought a Passat Wagon last week. It's an incredible value given the standard equipment, quality construction, European handling and sophisticated looks. The Outback is too utilitarian in appearance for my taste, though that's totally subjective, of course. It really comes down to the driving experience that you're looking for and image you want to project, if you are at all concerned about that.

    Good luck with your purchase and your move to Massachusetts. This is an incredible place to live.
  • barresa11barresa11 Posts: 277
    There is a big difference in handling on slippery roads w/AWD vs FWD & traction control. I have driven a 99' 1.8 Passat wagon (no significant changes in 00') and an 00' Outback through winding roads in rain that varied from mist to heavy downpour. The Outback was surefooted mostly throughout. If I experienced any slippage then I gave it a little gas and the power was transferred to the wheels that needed it. The Passat wasn't nearly as surefooted and experienced some understeer. It was a little disconcerting to feel that the rear end was becoming a bit squirrelly.
    What a person may need to drive to get through adverse conditions and what is actually safer are two different things.

    Stephen
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Well put.

    You should also consider where you are going to take your vehicle. If light trails to lakes and camp sites are in your plans, the extra ground clearance and traction from all wheels will come in handy.

    -juice
  • During rain, snow or other slippery surfaces the AWD advantage shines more brightly, but even on dry roads you have twice the traction and it is a clever traction delivered to the better gripping wheels, another factor is engine braking also transferred to 2 more wheels, twice the traction.
  • glxwagon4moglxwagon4mo Posts: 121
    For your entertainment pleasure...here are a few commercials from oversees that tout VW/Audi Quattro technology. You'll need Apple Quicktime 4.1 in order to view these clips.

      Audi Wakeboard
      BORA 4Motion Downhill Run
      BORA 4Motion Uphill Run
    Enjoy,

    George
  • car4labscar4labs Posts: 5
    I am stuck deciding between the outback and the passat. A wagon makes sense because I own 2 medium size labs, however being single and 30, it is hard for me to accept the fact I might probably end up driving a station wagon. So much domestication this guy ain't quite ready to face. So I haven't fully dismissed the Passat sedan from purchase.

    I test drove the Suburu Outback Ltd and Passat wagon GLS 6-cyl. Both in auto, but whatever I buy will be manual trans. Both drive fine, with course more pickup in the passat but the Outback seemed adaquate. My dilema is: the Outback seems more practical, but the Passat is smooth looking inside and out. The price difference is minimal so which do I buy?

    George (glxwagon4mo) I noticed you are also in Bham, did you use a local dealer, ie Crown, or go out of town for the glx. I will appreciate any advice I can get. This is the first time I will buy a vehicle solely on my own so I want to avoid bonehead mistakes.
  • barresa11barresa11 Posts: 277
    I, too, preferred the styling of the Passat over the 2000 Outback. The interiors were a draw. The things that won me over to the Subaru (Ltd wagon w/auto)was the AWD, price (compared to AWD Passat), proven reliability of motor w/drivetrain (AWD), added ground clearance, ability to use more than just premium gas. The plusses of the Passat w/AWD were exterior styling (subjective), handling, better acceleration, and the fact that it's a bargain compared to Audi w/sychro & v/6.
    I've had my OB Ltd since Feb and have had no problems. Gas mileage has yet to meet the EPA estimates in town but hope it improves as I amass more miles(currently 1700 on odometer). The acceleration would be better w/a 5speed but I opted for the ease of an auto in our crazy traffic in Seattle. I love the dual sunroofs, heated seats, weatherband radio, winter pkg w/heated mirror, wipers and Ltd slip. I also have a neat auto dimming mirror w/electronic compass. The ride is as smooth as that of the GLS v/6 2wd Passat wagon I test drove. The safety ratings in an off center frontal collision at 40mph have been close if not as good as the Passat. The ltd OB comes w/side airbags as std.
    I hope this helps any. For additional info on Soobs, check out the Subaru Crew in the Owners' Club forum.

    Stephen
  • glxwagon4moglxwagon4mo Posts: 121
    I know that the idea of a wagon doesn't generally make the statement of I'm single and like to have fun, but both of your choices certainly have enough character that goes well beyond the typical wagon stereotype.

    As to which one to buy, go with what you think you'll be happy with 3-5 years down the line (assuming you are going to buy). One thing to take note of, apparently a facelifted Passat is probably under 2 years away (ie 2002 MY) from N. American shores. I can tell you that a month later and with 900 miles gone by, my wife and I are very happy with our decision. If you visit www.vwvortex.com and the Subaru crew boards here, you'll find many satisfied Passat and Subaru wagon owners (and quite a few who are single with dogs!!)

    I did go thru Crown initially for my test drives. (Serra never had a GLX (or 4Motion) in stock.) The salesperson was very curteous and helpful during this process. They located the car we wanted -- but it turns out it was the one in stock at Jeff Sikes (in Huntsville). Before, I had begun the negotiation process with Crown, I actually went thru www.stoneage.com and was refered to Jeff Sikes. My experience with Jeff Sikes was great -- they finally agreed to my offer with little hassel. Crown, on the other hand, turned out to be like most other dealerships when it came to the negotiations. I was willing to put up with it a little, since I generally like to deal with a local dealership (in case there are any problems that creep up afterwards). But in the end, the nitpicking and the fact I would be paying $400 more for the same car made me go with Jeff Sikes.

    Hope the info helps. Let us know what your final choice is !!!

    George
  • car4labscar4labs Posts: 5
    What quick response. Thank you Stephen and George. I will be buying in May either the Outback or the V6 Passat wagon. I have given myself a month to sell my 94 Montero myself before accepting a trade in, but with gas prices and no snow, the market is dim at this time. I have enjoyed looking at the different message boards about both Passat and Outback. Passion and pride describe both drivers. I will keep you posted on which direction I take.

    Thanks for the info on the dealers George. Originally from Huntsville, I am familiar with Sykes so I will keep them in mind when I start negotiating.

    Jeff
  • tedescotedesco Posts: 5
    My wife and I picked the Outback. It may be more practical (if practical means that it fits your needs better), but i thought it was a lot cooler than the Passat. In fact, I think the passat is quite a bit more the car for the soccer car pool or the real estate agent. I thought the Outback was great and I like it more now. Price was a lot lower because our dealer gave us a great deal (200 under invoice). I was also extremely concerned about reliability of the Passat and the 2-year warranty did not help allay those concerns.

    On the dog issue, we also have two that love to romp and eat dirt and roll in mud (Lucy likes to submerge her whole head under the mud). The cargo mat in the back of the outback is GREAT at keeping hair and dirt off the car (just pull it & hose it), plus we added the dog guard which also is terrific. They cannot really destroy anything back there now (knock wood).

    If the choice was between the Legacy and the Passat, I dont know. But the Outback styling certainly does not say "I am old and stodgy."
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I don't buy in to the image stuff anyway. Wagons are just plain better. More passenger room, cargo capacity, even styling in many cases. I think the Outback wagon looks BETTER than the sedan. With the Passat, it's about even to my eyes.

    Enjoy whatever you choose.

    -juice
  • car4labscar4labs Posts: 5
    Well I opted for the Outback Limited Wagon 5-speed. It was tough deciding between it and the Passat, but I felt the Outback offered more for a few less dollars. Plus I will feel more comfortable driving it on a dirt road to get to a stream si I can flyfish. I've had it a week now and must say I am enjoying the experience. Thanks for all the input.

    Jeff
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Congrats, Jeff. Now go fish! Sounds like fun...

    -juice
  • barresa11barresa11 Posts: 277
    I bought my 00' OB Ltd w/auto back in Feb. I came to the same conclusions you did and haven't regretted it. Enjoy your new ride and come over to visit the Subaru Crew site. There's plenty of info about Soobs and the folks that own them.

    Stephen
  • what5what5 Posts: 15
    Well, i saw a post a while back comparing the A6 2.9 avant to the passat GLX wagon. Now, if i may list the differences that one is paying for
    -Longer warranty 3/50 (4/50 for 2001), this includes everything, Brakes, wiperblades, oilchanges, clutches, ect...)
    -warm Weather package (Solar sunroof that cools car in warm weather when parked, and includes power rear and manual side sunshades, might be sedan only for rear...)
    - cold weather pkg with front and rear heated seats +steering wheel
    -first aid kit
    -for 45k 200 watt bose am/fm cas/cd with 12 speakers and sub
    -dual zone auto climate control with sun senson, pollen/dust filters (1 zone for passat)
    -12way power seats with 4 way lumbar (8 way in passat)
    -alot more wood trim, full leather seats
    -first aid kit =)
    -rear armrest (vw should have this)
    -nav system
    -xenon lights
    -a much more upscale feel (IMO)
    Of course, i am buying a passat gls v6 wagon tip (not 4motion), but if i was buying an a6, i would get a A6 2.7t 6-speed *drools*

    BTW there are more things, i just cant think of them...
  • what5what5 Posts: 15
    doh....2.8 avant =P
  • we are looking at vw passat v. subaru outback but are concerned about space in rear seat for three children IN CHILD SEATS. also subaru does not have child seat anchors. can these be installed? any experience?
  • glxwagon4moglxwagon4mo Posts: 121
    Karen,

    First of all, kudos for looking into wagons for your next "family car." All of the choices that you mentioned in your profile are all excellent, albeit significant variability in price and amenities. Of the VW and Outback you probably are already aware that they both received the highest crash test ratings by the IHSS for their respective test category -- therefore, either are excellent choices.

    As for your delemma, I can't comment about having three seats in the back (only have one child). But, since there is considerable variablity in car seat dimensions, I would suggest trying to fit your car seats in the cars at the dealership --you wouldn't have to secure them in, but just make sure three abreast will fit with the doors closed ;).

    Finally, although I certainly recommend my Passat to small families, I am always hesitant to recommend a wagon to families with three or more children. Assuming three car seats fit abreast in the back (of any of the wagons you mentioned), most famillies I know who have been in that situation say that all but the short trips to the local store becomes a small "war zone". Kids just seem to need a little more personal space between them. You may need to consider another alternative, ie minivan or SUV with third row seating. While the Volvo and Audi A6 have an available optional rear facing third row seat, you can't use them with a car seat, and it's probably not practical for everyday use.

    Hope the info helps,


    George
  • iscottsiscotts Posts: 28
    First of, the Outback (at least the 2000 models) does have child seat anchor tethers... our child seat is attached to one.

    However, I have to agree with George that putting three child-seats in regular car or station-wagon will be tricky. If you have three SMALL seats, you may get away with it, but putting the middle kid in will still be tough!

    Perhaps, alas, a minivan is in order. With three kids, it is almost inevitable, and has the advantage that you will also be able to transport a relative or friend etc. with the kids and you.

    Good luck,

    Martin
  • Thanks George and Martin--the car seat anchors in the Subaru made the difference for me. I don't understand why everything I read on line about the Subaru didn't mention them (I guess one can't depend on non-dealer detail.) We did buy the Subaru based on the extra inch in width and the reliability factor I keep reading about in Edmunds. Actually we usually only have two kids in back--the third is for short trips with a friend. I just thought I'd mention that the third seat in the A6 2000 Audi is very different from that in the Volvo. The Audi seat this year is classified as an "integrated" child seat and doesn't require a car seat. It's a very sturdy child's seat for two with child sized harness belts. I was impressed by that feature (which requires minimum booster size for child) and considered it far superior to the Volvo seat which didn't seem safe to me. If I didn't live in town with a size constrained garage I would have been more tempted given the seating for seven. That was another problem I had with the minivan...
  • div2div2 Posts: 2,580
    I've been looking for a GLS 4Motion with only the Leather Package; dealer response has ranged from arrogant to sympathetic. One dealer I trust told me that you can't order a Passat- you have to select out of the dealer allotment(He didn't have any 4 Motions at all, BTW). Furthermore, a dealer trade is unlikely due to the popularity of the 4Motion models. He gave me a very short list of honest dealers in the area to contact regarding their inventory. Result? Nada, zip. VWoA's refusal to allow me to order a car has about convinced me to look elsewhere. Subaru has no problem letting me order a Legacy GT, and BMW will be happy to build a 323Xi wagon to my specifications this fall. So once again, I think it will be adieu, VW...
  • evilizardevilizard Posts: 195
    Passat Vs Subaru Outback Wagon

    Recently I was in the Market for a new wagon. I looked at the Subaru, Volvo V70 and Passat.
    These were my impressions of the Subaru vs. the Passat. I drove the Subaru Outback VDC, the Passat GLS FWD wagon and a Passat GLX 4 motion Sedan.

    Going in my criteria was Safety, Reliability and Price (all of similar importance).

    Safety - Divided up into two categories, passive (crash ratings) and Active (performance).
    As far as the crash ratings a look at www.crashtest.com showed they both did very well. The Passat came out slightly ahead but the difference was only 2-3%. The Passat does have a side curtain airbag. These seem to mainly help you from flying glass with a broken window and to keep you in the car in a rollover.

    Both cars are about the same weight so there was no advantage there. The Passat is a few inches shorter in overall length and has a larger passenger compartment as a proportion of the vehicle. (the driver is closer to the wheels). This might indicate less crumple space but I doubt it is significant.

    One additional factor in the safety consideration is a raised suspension. I live in Austin, TX. The locals have a habit about driving pickup trucks to the local 7-11 and every Yuppie Come lately that moved in from California during the tech boom HAS to drive an SUV. The bigger the better. So on a typical day you will see Buffy Driving around in a Green Grand Cherokee talking on the cell phone with both hands oblivious to who she might kill (because she feels safe and in control). Having your frame a few inches higher off the ground can make the difference whether or not their oversized trucks connect with your frame (thus absorbing the energy) or roll over you like a cockroach. I don't have any numbers on what the difference is but I know when I am sitting in my wife’s Honda Accord at a stoplight and I look to the left and I am eye level with a trucks headlight its not a good thing. On the flip side higher suspension means less handling and a greater chance of flipping. So you might call it a wash. Still I have never flipped a car but I have almost been creamed by Buffy on several occasions. Still the Passat felt very substantial in its ride position and reinforcement. The two are very close.

    Winner -Subaru (because of the raised suspension alone). The Passat is very close

    Active Safety (performance). This consists of things like acceleration, handling, breaking and visibility.

    Acceleration -The Passat seemed to have more low end get up and go but once both of them hit their powerbands it was pretty equal, maybe a bit in favor of Subaru (not enough difference to tell in a test drive). I tried a FWD and a 4 Motion. The 4 Motion did sap some power out of the system but faired better in some aspects because you could not spin the tires and you didn't get the torque effect when you would accelerate and turn. At highway speeds the Subaru with its more powerful engine seemed to pull ahead. The 4 motion seemed to run out of juice trying to pass those trucks at 70 mph. The FWD version didn’t seem to have this problem though. The tiptronic shifter on the auto seemed to make a difference in responsiveness.

    Handling -The Passat wins this one without question. It could corner tighter and whip in and out of traffic more easily. I felt much better with the 4 motion than the FWD model. Both the 4 motion and the Subaru VDC were equipped with traction control and variable power distribution. The steering on the Passat was noticeably heavier and the steering wheel smaller.

    Braking -Both seemed pretty good at breaking. Specs have them within 3 feet of each other. Tires probably would make a bigger difference than the car itself.

    Visibility -This was one area the Subaru came out ahead. It has Outstanding visibility in all directions. The thicker pillars on the Passat combined with the more compact design didn't afford as good a view, especially in the back. The Passats visibility was still very good though.

    Winner -Passat.

    Reliability -
    I looked at Consumer reports, JD Powers, Edmund’s and various chat rooms and word of mouth experience. The Subaru’s came out ahead in the reliability department ratings wise and from what I have heard in general. The passats reliability does seem to be pretty good but its 2yr warranty was uninspiring.

    Winner -Subaru

    Price -
    Or rather should I say availability.
    I was comparing the Subaru Outback VDC with the Passat GLX 4 motion wagon. Both have an almost identical feature set (the Subaru has a better stereo, the Passat memory seats and a trip computer). Both have leather, traction control, moonroof, AWD, heated seats and power everything.
    The Subaru listed for 32K but was going for 29K. The VW listed for 33K and the dealer didn’t have any.
    They could TRY to get me one but they couldn't make any guarantees about color both interior and exterior. I would have to wait indefinitely and pay full MSRP.
    10% more, unknown wait and not the color you want. Hello Subaru.

    Winner -Subaru

    Other factors
    Style -This is purely a subjective trait that varies from person to person. The Passat had a lot more style, both inside and out. Little things like the pull out handles for the door, grab bar and hood release, flip out key (don't loose that sucker, those are $75 to replace) and other knickknacks really appealed to me. The hump storage compartment was way to small but the foot room in the back seemed to be very nice. The trip computer was fun and amusing. I think it needs work, sometimes when I would go down a hill and take my foot off the gas I would be getting 178 MPG! The fit and finish seemed better, things more integrated. I think the little antenee on the back is cute (however the Subaru internal antenna traced to the right rear window is way more practical).

    Comfort -The Subaru had a more comfortable ride, with an offroad suspension one would hope that it would handle bumps better. But that's more a ride philosophy than a design issue. The Passat was driving excitement. The Subaru was driving comfort. I like excitement, my wife likes comfort. The seats on the Passat were exceptionally firm. I don't know if this is good or bad.
    Size wise the two were identical up front (I measured) yet the Passat felt smaller for some reason. As far as rear trunk space the Passat was narrower and a bit more shallow. But rear passenger space seemed a tad more.

    Conclusion
    Safety was pretty much a draw. Reliability Subaru pulled ahead. The Passat got a few bonus points for fun to drive but the price and availability (which are closely related in this case) was the deal breaker. The Subaru was cheaper and had a better interest rate (5.9 vs. 7.25). If the cars were available in greater numbers and the dealer could work on the price I would have gone for a Passat. If I'm going to drop 30K on a car I want to pick the color, not have it chosen at random
  • pocahontaspocahontas Posts: 802
    try using Edmunds.com's side by side vehicle comparison for a detailed analysis of these two vehicles side by side....

    For future reference, you'll find a direct link to this tool in the Additional Resources box on the left side of the page. Happy Motoring!

    Pocahontas
    Host
    Hatchbacks/Station Wagons Message Boards
  • DSKDSK Posts: 2
    I'm new to this board- seems like the comparison needs a bit of updating with the new models, availablity, etc. I am deciding between the LL Bean Subaru (H-6 engine) and probably the GLX Passat wagon, though the GLS with leather and lux. package is similar. Currently leaning toward the Subaru, mainly because the availability and pricing is excellent. Seems like the GLX costs more without much more benefit. Here's how I break down each car.

    Subaru LL Bean edition.Pros: 4 wheel drive standard (and proven system), CD 6-disk changer available, realiable, safe, better mileage and longer warranty (basic). Available NOW at a good price (at most 27,700 with CD changer, better than TMV price).

    Passat GLX:Pros: A little bigger interior, a little nicer leather, I like the tiptronic transmission-(kind of a gimmick, but I've always had 5 speeds, so this is a nice compromise).Safe.
    Cons:? reliable, not 4 wheel drive without extra $$, only 2 year warranty, no CD standard (more extra $$), lousy availablity- (though dealer did seem to be able to locate some GLX's nearby). I immagine the limited availability will limit my negotiating power. If any one has recently purchased a GLX or GLS (V6 and other options), Id appreciate hearing about prices.

    Last question: any problem with the Firestone Wangler tires on the Subaru?

    Any input is much appreciated.Thanks
  • maulanamaulana Posts: 55
    dear DSK:

    I can sympathize with you very much. Those are both great cars. We currently have a Subaru, but in the past few months we spent a lot of time looking at the Passat.

    My own feeling is that with the 2002 passat's coming out any day (they are already in port), you might be able to make a very aggressive bid on a 2001.5. Plus, they have the good APR rate going on it. I don't think something in the 31,000 range or slightly below is unreasonable, depending on where you are and how much advertising fees, etc. you have to pay.

    The Subaru will end up being the cheaper vehicle, but I have to admit that the Passat is one of the nicest driving cars I have ever seen in my life! It just exudes performance and luxury. Unbelieveable driving machine....

    I don't think you can go wrong either way, but just wanted to share my opinion with you.

    p.s. the 2001.5 don't have the in-dash CD player, but you might find getting one of those and putting in a top of the line Cd player a better bargain rather than waiting to get a 2002 and having less bargaining room with the dealer.

    hope this helps a bit.
  • evilizardevilizard Posts: 195
    I know according to the Specs that the Passat has more interior space but I have not been able to find it. When I was looking at the two the passat just felt smaller. So I got out my tape measure and took some measurements. For the front seats the measurements are identical. For the back seat the backrest is taller and there is a bit more legroom, especially footroom, but were talking inches, not feet. The trunk however IS smaller, especially in width. Where does all the extra interior space come from?

    As far as the subaru tires go there is no problem with them. They are not the same line as the dreaded exploder tires (even though they share the same name for "image" purposes, talk about a marketing blunder). There isn't much to say about them good or bad, they are your standard issue all weather tires. You could do better, you could do worse.

    Personally I love the AWD. If its within budget you might look at the VDC, the stereo is awesome and the traction control system is even better. After $500 or so worth of options the only thing the bean has over the VDC is the two toned seat, LL Bean stamp and some free oil changes
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    Due to speculated demand, this discussion has just been moved from our archived folder back to this board.

    In addition to the feedback here, try comparing these two in Edmunds's side-by-side vehicle comparison. Look for a direct link to that tool in the additional resources on the left side of the page. Hope this is helpful.

    Revka
    Host
    Hatchbacks / Station Wagons / Women's Auto Center Boards
  • nowakj66nowakj66 Posts: 709
    I have been researching a new car to death for the last 18 months and have narrowed it down to 2 likely candidates – VW GLS or GLX V6 Passat Wagon and Subaru Outback LL Bean H6. My heart says go with the Passat but my head says go with the Subaru. A dark horse is the new 2002 Honda CRV – but I would rather stick with a wagon if I could.

    I want something that drives like a car, has storage, interior room and style. I am a large man (6 foot 4) so little cars like a Jetta wagon are appealing but in the end too small. I can spend $25k - $30k.

    My daily commute is short and in city but something that is a good high way driver is important too.

    My wife and I have mountain bikes so something that can carry bikes inside or on a rack would be great.

    Features I want include V6, leather, good safety, sporty drive, Wagon configuration. AWD is nice but not so necessary. I live in Ohio but have relatives we visit in Michigan and Minnesota which get their fair share of snow.

    Long term reliability is my biggest concern on the VW. I am coming from a Honda and take reliability and good dealers for granted. Honda no longer makes an Accord wagon which is too bad.

    There are 3 locak VW and Subaru dealers in central Ohio. The VW dealers seem a bit more upscale.

    Several family members and friends who have owned various VW products are warning me off of the Passat. Admittedly these are older VWs and Audis that gave the troubles. The most recent example being a 1993 Westfalia Microbus my brother bought which basically fell apart with less than 100,000 miles. Another a late 80s Sirocco. The sense being that they are unreliable and expensive to fix after 5 years or so. A/C went out on Wesfalia taking an expensive timing belt with it. I am guessing that the Subaru would be less expensive to maintain.

    If I buy a Passat wagon and it is a stinker I face the dreaded collective family “I told you so” . . . . .

    I am a buy and hold type car purchaser. I want a car I can drive relatively trouble free for 10 years and 100,000 miles or more.

    My current car – a 1992 2 seater Honda Prelude still gives me the same thrill when I first bought it used in 1994. I park it far away to avoid door dings. I wash it every week and love the sporty drive it gives me. It has been very reliable, fun to drive and should have great resale.

    The only knock on the Prelude is that it is the wrong configuration for me now. I am married, a home owner with kids expected in the next 24 months. None of these things were true when I bought the Prelude.

    So when looking at Passat GLS Wagon and Subaru – I love the interior and exterior of the Passat. It is more understated and refined. The seats are better and the back seat seems bigger.

    The road feel on the Passat is also very nice.

    I would appreciate opinions on reliability of recent VW owners and Subaru owners. Those who made similar choices – what pushed you to one vehicle over the other?

    Thanks.
  • Hi, my husband and I faced the same choice and he is at the VW dealership this morning negotiating the purchase of a GLX Passat Wagon :-)
    The things that made us choose a Passat are: my husband who is 6 ft tall cannot adjust the seat and steering wheel in the Subaru to fit him (no matter what configuration, the steering wheel is cutting into his thighs) - you should test it out being so tall yourself. We also felt that the Subaru's 6 cylinder engine was very poorly matched to its transmission (or vice versa), which resulted in jerky acceleration. The fit and finish in the Passat are much nicer and the seats infinitely more comfortable than Subaru's.
    Just as you are, we were concerned with Passat's reliability, but with the new 4 year warranty it is not as huge of an issue as it was with the old 2 year warranty. If we see any significant issues come up in the fourth year, we'll get rid of it and go for something else.
    Having said that, we have friends who are on their second Subaru Outback with absolutely no problems and they love it (4 cylinder though, not a V6).
  • nowakj66nowakj66 Posts: 709
    Thanks for the the feedback on the purchase. Good luck with the VW Passat. I am sure you will love it.

    I have driven both the Passat and the Outback on different days but I think I need to try them back to back.

    Audi A4 was just named a car and driver 10 best car for 2002 and it shares many bits with the Passat so that is a good sign.

    Honda CR-V 2002 is also a practical choice for us but lacks V6 and leather. I have to beleive the Honda would outlast the Subaru or Vw though.

    Congrats on the new car! Please let us know how you like it!
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