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Subaru Legacy/Outback



  • subaru_teamsubaru_team Posts: 1,676
    don't forget to use minnows with that squid! Have a great trip!

  • carseeker4carseeker4 Posts: 228
    I think I'll pass on the minnows for now! Don't know if the wife could deal with that!
  • bird19bird19 Posts: 10
    hurler4, here is a url of a photo and text describing the '03 Legacy models:

    This next url shows a photo of the 03 Outback.


  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Is the squid bait? You may catch flounder there. Tasty.

  • hurler4hurler4 Posts: 104
    Thanks, bird19. Boy, the 2003 doesn't look much different from the 2002, does it? I'll be interested to see the new SE model.

    Anyone hear anything about new exterior colors? I loved the bright red that Subaru had a couple of years ago when the new model just came out. Don't know why they got rid of it...
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,652
    The text pertained to the Legacy, not the Outback!?

  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,652
    sounds like last year's (base) GT, minus the sport suspension, or, like (earlier) Legacy LS models.

  • subearusubearu Posts: 3,613
    The '03 Legacy wasn't supposed to get a new look - just a refreshening. It's the '04 that will reportedly get a newer look (and a turbo would be nice ;) )

    I'm also a bit interested to see what the special edition brings to the L lineup.

  • lark6lark6 Posts: 2,565
    Oh, the new 2.5GT wagon sounds nice. Sportshift, VTD and cold-weather package standard? I'll have to go look at one, even if it still uses the 165hp EJ25. This car is crying for 200+hp!

  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,652
    is due for MY05, I believe.

  • subearusubearu Posts: 3,613
    '04, '05, I thought I was getting it mixed up. It'll be a '05 introduced sometime in '04.

    I think I may even take a look at the new 2.5GT, just for giggles. If only the Blitzen motor was in it...

  • wjh2wjh2 Posts: 4
    My 2002 Outback Legacy 5-sp has a decent amount of clutch chatter or shuddering for the first 5-6 starts from stop. I started noticing it at about 3k miles, took it to the dealer, they verified the concern and said that the factory knew about the problem but did not have a fix worked out yet. The car has 11k miles on it now, and still chatters when cold. On a recent return visit, the dealer now says this is a normal characteristic of the clutch and no fix will be approved.

    I have seen a smattering of clutch related posts on this and other message boards. I was wondering if anyone knows more detail about this problem and potential Subaru remedies.

    The problem itself is mostly an annoyance, especially on such a new and otherwise great car. I have not ever experienced such a problem on other manual transmission vehicles I have used. My biggest concern is that this problem will affect the clutch life span. Any advice or further information would be greatly appreciated.

  • My 01 GT wagon has had a mild amount of clutch chatter forever. 20k miles now and no change. Like you say it can be annoying. Funny how it is so erratic. Some days none, some just once and some days it is the first 4 or so engagements. But that is the way it has been for maybe 17k miles.
  • cptpltcptplt Posts: 1,075
    That pic of the new Legacy looks like it has WRX wheels. Just like mine now!
  • bkaiser1bkaiser1 Posts: 464
    My 01 Outback has been the subject of many, many posts here because of it's persistent clutch problem. The car was purchased new in 1/01 and now has 32000 miles on it and the clutch has given me fits since it was new. The shuddering used to only show up when it was cold outside, but now does it all the time, regardless of temperature. It's 106 degrees today, and it shuddered horribly on the way to get lunch, then settled down for the trip back to the office. The problem is amazingly erratic -- after all this time, I still cannot anticipate the problem or reproduce it at the dealer. It's an unfortunate problem for an otherwise fine car, but I will never own another manual transmission car from Subaru because of this. I've been told that Subaru uses an unusually hard clutch disk material which, combined with the 5 driveshafts of the awd, tend to magnify the vibration in the clutch at times. Others have had the problem for over 100K miles and just lived with it. I get the feeling I'll be living with this clutch for quite some time. The only temporary remedy that anyone has been able to suggest is to slip/burn the clutch a bit on takeoff when the shuddering is persistent. After a few high rpm shifts, too, the clutch will usually behave for the rest of the day. I normally upshift the car around 3K or so, and when I'm mad at the clutch I'll wind it up close to redline in 1st and 2nd -- seems to work for me anyway. It's disappointing, though, that a new car has such a prevalent defect that the manufacturer doesn't seem to care about. Email me if you want more details...

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I don't get why some cars show absolutely no symptoms. My wife's clutch is smooth as butter. Mine shows minor signs, but it's not nearly as bad as you're describing, even after 4 years of abuse (including some light off roading and towing).

    Hmm, looks like the 2003 L gets a single CD, which the wife would have liked. Still, I'm glad I got the 6CD changer, and we'd prefer that anyway.

    Lit vanity mirrors, finally. Good move. Our 2002 doesn't have one at all on the passenger side.

    Gets keyless, too, which we got, I guess as an option. We disabled the honking horn when you lock and unlock, so that chirp would be better.

    The SE looks nice, with the 16" rims and moonroofs, plus the Momo wheel. I guess it kind of bridges the gap, not quite the GT from 2002, but a step up from the L. I guess they want the 2.5 GT to be more distinctive. Those will be sweet.

    Those wheels are gonna be hard to clean, but I prefer the look. The grills is nicer too, with less chrome. It actually looks more like the grills on our 2002 L model.

  • wjh2wjh2 Posts: 4
    Thanks for your responses.

    The dealer had this to say about the problem:
    "Normal operation when cold due to the surface on the flywheel"

    If this is normal operation, then why does this behavior not manifest itself on all Subarus with this drivetrain? If I had experienced this "normal" behavior during my test drive, I would not have bought the car.

    I have read a few articles concerning the 2003 model year mentioning a new "flexible flywheel". I wonder if this is how Subaru is addressing the clutch chattering. If so, perhaps the newer flywheel could be retrofitted on older models. Just a thought.

  • jfljfl Posts: 1,335
    Many of you have probably seen this already but there's a well written article about shifting at: go to Other information / Driving tips / Shifting tips.

    When you think about it, the clutch really does have to overcome the mass of all 4 wheels and linkages to move a Subie, not just two like most other cars.
  • bkaiser1bkaiser1 Posts: 464
    Bill, I agree -- if this is "normal" for the car, I would never have raked out $25K for it. I wouldn't expect a Kia or Hyundai to behave this badly. If it's normal, why don't all 'roos do it? Ugh.

    Regarding the 03 clutch, I'll look into it...I know Subaru has updated their clutch design a few times over the past few years trying to remedy the problem, but so far they have not figured it out. I don't usually like automatics, but this experience has started to change my mind...
  • I have a 1998 Legacy Outback with 158,000 miles on it. I've had my share of problems with it, but what I am having now is the worst. The vehicle gets "stuck" in 1st gear. It will eventually come out by itself but not until it red lines the tack (7,000 rpm). It will also shift into 1st by itself sometimes when I'm driving, (I'm going 30 mph, in 3rd gear, then all of a sudden it decides that it wants to be in 1st gear.... at 30 MPH...). When this happens, I'm not putting any stress on the engine, it can happen on a perfectly straight road (not a hill) and I am just cruising at 30-40 MPH. It happens mostly from a standstill, when it's already in 1st. It doesn't happen all the time, but I can expect it to happen (from a dead stop) at least 30 percent of the time. If I manually shift it from 3rd (Drive) to 2nd when it's "stuck", it will ALWAYS shift out of the stuck 1st gear to 2nd. But I have to wait until the RPM is up to 3,500/4,000 before I shift into 3rd or it will go back into 1st again. I also have the check engine light that comes on sparatically (sp), but the light being on or off does not correspond to the 1st gear problem. I have had the light checked 3 times now and the dealer keeps turning it off and replacing an ECR module that they say was the culprit. Does anyone have any experience with the trans. problem? Any help would be appreciated.
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