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Subaru Crew Cafe



  • saedavesaedave Chicago, ILPosts: 683
    I hate the idea of another overly complex substitute for something basic that works and didn't need fixing.

    Agreed. Another reason to buy the Forester rather than the Outback. I have also used a hand brake on older cars to provide a crude limited slip rear differential!

    The CVT might be prone to failure starting up with a fully applied handbrake...hence the system on the Outback.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I've driven a lot of miles in automatics and never ever used the parking brake except on very steep inclines. To date, I've never had a parking pin break on any of them.

    As for "emergency brake", I'm not certain that one could modulate them as most cars have gone to the auto-locking down style where you need to push it to the floor to release it.

    Interestingly enough, my CTS-V has a foot activated parking brake with a manual release, and it's a 6MT! It's very weird doing a foot brake for the parking brake on my V.

    On a side note, do most of you guys who drive MT cars park it in gear? I never do and always use the parking brake on those cars. Only time I put it in gear is if I'm parked on a hill.

    As for "another reason to buy an Outback over a forester" I don't think they really compare in terms of what they are. I was just in a brand new forester and since it's built on the Impreza chassis it's got the similar road/tinny sound that the Imprezas have. The Outbacks are considerably more refined/quiet IMO.

    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I hate the idea of another overly complex substitute for something basic that works and didn't need fixing.

    The same could be said for things such as:

    GPS (Maps work real well)
    Power Windows & Door Locks (No need for them at all)
    Auto Start (That's what children are for!)
    Heated Seats
    Air Conditioning
    Power Seats
    Automatic Transmissions
    Power Steering
    Dual Exhaust pipes in the rear (I mean that's 2x the mufflers)
    Keyless Entry
    In Glass Antennas
    Leather Seats
    Power Mirrors

    The list could go on and on and on...


    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • volkovvolkov Posts: 1,302
    Well, I will agree and disagree at the same time Mike.

    GPS (Maps work real well) - no question
    Power Windows & Door Locks (No need for them at all) -yep laziness
    Auto Start (That's what children are for!) - we use our kids to do that for the truck which lives outdoors all the time!!
    Heated Seats - sorry, couldn't disagree more. What do they replace? As a guy who regularly drives vehicles in -30 temps, heated seats are the greatest invention EVAR!
    Air Conditioning - ever get stuck in traffic on a 90 degree day in a car without A/C?
    Power Seats - yes, but only if they don't have memory. A vehicle which resets the seat of the family vehicle where I want it when I use my keyfob is pretty cool
    Automatic Transmissions - yep
    Power Steering - no power rack and pinion is my fave. Do they exist anymore?
    Dual Exhaust pipes in the rear (I mean that's 2x the mufflers) - form over function 95% of the time
    Keyless Entry - yes
    In Glass Antennas - yes
    Leather Seats - Ever try to get milk, melted crayons, melted lollipops or dog hair out of cloth seats? Leather or pleather rules.
    Power Mirrors - with more than one driver, they are a blessing IMHO

    After all that, I still want a manual hand-brake. You can't optimize rally turns or winter do-nuts without them.
  • colin_lcolin_l Posts: 591
    Actually I would not at all be surprised to learn Subaru is using the electronic e-brake to prevent center differential damage caused by people overly aggressive with the handbrake...
  • samm43samm43 Posts: 195
    edited February 2011
    Yes the parking brake saves the transmission pawl wear and tear and the debris from clunking it out on hills will go into the fluid. Owners who trade up every 3 years probably never realize that that transmission likely didn't last as long for some later owner down the road. And parking lot bumps can exert a lot more force than a steep hill but I suspect few people think of that aspect.

    I think baby boomer aged drivers resist using the park brake because in the old days they were not built with as much resistance to freezing on in the cold. I leave my car in gear also in my present car as the p brake isn't as strong as others I have had. I have found that cars with rear brake drums seem to have the strongest p brake without having to test the strength of the cable every time you apply it.

    Someone mentioned the CVT and p brake consideration. I had never thought of that. Are CVT's that prone to damage if not turning? When they first came out in the Audi's they had torque limitations. I think they still do because in the flat six cylinder it has a normal 5 speed automaytic. They don't impress me with much long term confidence if torque considerations are that limited.

  • saedavesaedave Chicago, ILPosts: 683
    The Outbacks are considerably more refined/quiet IMO.

    My test drives of the 2.5i CVT compared very unfavorably with the XT Forester. The normally aspirated engine Forester is as you describe...with an exhaust rap even more annoying than the exhaust drone and transmission whine of the CVT in the Outback. Plus the Forester's inadequate power without rough downshifts. The 3.6R Outback was great on a test drive, however. The 3.6R's price was several thousand dollars more when similarly equipped to my XT.

    It will be interesting to see if the 2011 normally aspirated engine changes in the Forester make a significant difference.
  • Broke the parking brake release cable on the Suburban last year, and we were the last car out of the ski area parking lot. Head in the footwell, flashlight in one hand, trusty Leatherman in the other, I was able to trip the release. My point: I wonder if such a 'field fix' procedure would even be possible on an electronic brake? Pull a fuse?

    I use the hand brake to park the Subaru (MT) all the time, and park it in 1st gear. Don't usually use the parking brake on the Suburban (AT) unless it's on a slope.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Off on a slight tangent, I was watching Ultimate Factories and they said power windows can actually weigh less than the hand-crank type. Wonder if that's true or not.
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 7,744
    On a side note, do most of you guys who drive MT cars park it in gear? I never do and always use the parking brake on those cars. Only time I put it in gear is if I'm parked on a hill.

    I park my MT in gear and use the parking brake. Is that bad? I've done that for over 25 years.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 27,671
    MT always in reverse, and with parking brake on.. I think the original thought was reverse was a lower gear, and more likely to hold the car on an incline.. but, as time went on, it was always good to hop in, and know what gear you are starting in...

    Automatic... always use the parking brake. I was a commercial driver for quite a few years, and every place I worked required it. Now, it's just habit (a good one).

    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • subearusubearu Posts: 3,613
    DW & I still use the parking brake. Both the MPV and my Fusion Hyrbid have hand parking brakes. The MPV one seems much easier to modulate with rear drums, the Fusion is more touchy. I'll still sometimes use the ol' e-brake steering while parking in the snow, LOL.

    We're both avid users of the parking brake on hills, even with my hybrid having the CVT. We both also always parked our vehicles that had MT's in gear (1st usually) and also the brake.

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    My guess is the electronic parking brakes as someone else mentioned above, is to prevent folks from using it to "get the back out" which is VERY bad for the center diffy.

    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    A few weeks back during the ABS discussion, I mentioned that while the use of the e-brake is an effective way to shut down the ABS system on many cars, it is probably hell on the center diff. It is fighting to overcome the difference in torque distribution that you've induced. I've limited my use to real emergencies, and not just for the convenience of quick turns on snow pack.

    If that is the only reason that they went this way - protection of another system, it's possibly understandable but extremely unfortunate.

    Good engineering practice dictates that we look at multiple competing factors in our choices. A change in form or functionality should address a specific need, while considering & balancing a wide range of issues. These typically include regulatory rule changes, cost reduction, safety enhancement, reliability, protection of other systems, user convenence, enhanced appeal, serviceablity, general complexity reduction, weight & materials reduction, ease of use & effort reduction, standardization, etc.

    If you go back to your list of changes from yesterday, most (not all, but one can make an argument for anything....) meet sufficient criteria to be adopted (at least as a purchase option) without serious objection.

    Ultimately, it is the marketplace that decides. We 'vote' with our dollars.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,391
    Unless I am parked on a slope (more than a couple degrees) or idling, I don't use the hand brake. My cars rest in first gear. I once used the brake religiously, but living in the subarctic quickly taught me to re-think that practice. After nearly fifteen years, I can't figure a practical reason as to why I ever did it the other way.
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    We've begun the process of shopping to replace our 9+ year old Odyssey EX that now has around 137k. We occasionally get 'tranny early warning signs', and the prospects of dropping $4k into her isn't particularly appealing. We've been lucky as others on the Edmunds Ody board are on their 3rd or more unit at this mileage. We're on #2, which I guess is pretty good. Tranny issues on larger Honda vehicles is like HG's on Subaru - their Achilles' Heel.

    This would be our 4th minivan, so we have certain priorities and expectations. We really don't like the new body & interior styling of the 2011 Ody. It seems as though they've tried to make it more appealing to the SUV buyer and it's lost some of the minivan character that we've grown to appreciate. Outward visibility from the drivers seat was simply awful given the higher beltline and thick D pillars.

    We were equally disappointed with the Sienna. I thought maybe it would grow on me, having rented one in Florida last month for the drive between Cocoa Beach & Orlando. Unfortunately it hasn't. Wallowy ride, detached steering, poor rear visibility (again, a smallish rear window & larger D pillars), poorly shaped 2nd row seats. Our two adult mid row passengers were happy to get out after only 50 miles! The only thing Toyota has going for it is a low price on the LE series that is quite well equipped - if you can live with the detractors. We looked at an AWD LE, but they come with runflats and no spare. I haven't heard much positive about them.

    We even went so far as to have the Honda Used dept do a search for 2010 program car (last gen body style that Beth really likes). Unfortunately, it doesn't make much sense economically. Prices for a used Ody in this area rival new car pricing on a comparably equipped Sienna.

    We did a quick stop at Nissan to look at the new Quest, but the lumpy load floor with the fold-forward rear seat (doesn't go into the well!) was disappointing. Next stop is the Kia dealer to look at the value leading Sedona.
  • Ours have frozen up a time or two. Always managed to un-stick them.
    Good point.
  • tsytsy Posts: 1,551
    Hey Steve

    You could look at crossovers like the Ford Flex, which I think is a reasonable Minivan substitute if you really don't need the extra cargo room. You can also get it in AWD which is a plus.

    The Honda Pilot is basically an Odyssey jacked up with AWD as well. Kinda ugly though (like most Honda products these days!) and like the Flex, less cargo room.

    The Sedona is a reasonable Minivan but certainly not "nice and refined".
    But quiet and comfortable. (I had a rental for a few days) I don't think it gets the greatest gas mileage though.

    Then there's always the Suburban . . . ;)

  • tsytsy Posts: 1,551
    I always put it in gear unless it's in my garage. I had my STi on a slight hill once and just pulled the parking brake. I stepped out of the car and then it started rolling away!!!! :surprise: Luckily I jumped back in before it hit anything!

    Same thing happened to a friends acura- it's weird how parking brakes can initially hold and then slowly start slipping.

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    Tom, when Ford builds a Flex with sliding side doors (and they must be motorized!!), she'll be interested!

    We never learned the concept of 'traveling light'. It's been said that we look a lot like the Beverly Hillbillies on most of our trips. And when we cannot cram it inside the van, I just attach the Yakama bike rack on the receiver hitch and the Thule roof box onto the roof rack for yet more junk capacity!!

    My sister had a Pilot, and Beth's opinion was that it was way too small inside!
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