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Subaru Legacy/Outback 2005+

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Comments

  • saedavesaedave Chicago, ILPosts: 683
    Be aware of parts cost for the VW Passat..like over $100 for a pair of wiper blades! I dumped a Passat W8 wagon for reliability reasons when it was only two years old.
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    Ah, I like that "diamond gray" available in the XT, with black interior. But I bet it would show dirt/scratches/etc more than I like (I have been gravitating to lighter grays, silvers, golds recently).

    Since I have been looking at the RDX, I have been real interested in the MPG. I would like the MPG of any future vehicle to be no worse than my OB XT, and hopefully better. My 05 XT is rated 19/24 (07 models are 20/26) and I generally get 21 MPG in my mixed driving (which is heavily highway biased). On long trips I will get 24 MPG. Though I rarely do heavy city driving, I used the trip meter to get the avg MPG on a recent all-city sprint, and it was 12-16 MPG. These numbers are more or less inline with MPG numbers the RDX trip computer reported during one of my test drives.

    The XT will do better than 24 MPG at reasonable highway speeds. Unfortunately, around here the flow is in the 70-80 mph range (I usually cruise in the middle at 72-75).

    I think the RDX is a little smoother and quieter than my XT, but does have a stiffer ride. The XT's ride is a bit wallowy. So the vehicles are on different sides of what can be considered smooth. Most of the time the XT is just fine, but occasionally I wish it were a little more composed on rough/irregular roads. Comes down to the classic ride/handling tradeoff. The RDX falls on one side of the line, the XT the other.

    If you can wait until next spring/summer, the 08 Outbacks will have some new features and refreshed styling inside and out -- you can see it now on the current 07 models in Japan. It remains to be seen if we will get the same bumpers however; in the past, the US Outback/Legacy models have always gotten longer, more obtrusive bumpers, presumably to satisfy US crash requirements. Either way, it will look different than the 05-07 styling.

    Personally, I am always on the lookout for the perfect vehicle, and it's been hard to find. The OB XT is close, but I would like better MPG and slightly better handling.

    Craig
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 7,853
    Be aware of parts cost for the VW Passat..like over $100 for a pair of wiper blades! I dumped a Passat W8 wagon for reliability reasons when it was only two years old. Now that the aero wipers are available at places like autozone, they're only about $30 a pair for the OEM Bosch units.
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    Chiming in here, I think the most restrictive criteria you mention was reliability. Other than the OBXT I would not have much confidence in the other makes.

    Personally, I really like the V70R. It's pricey but I love the boxy styling, the Volvo comfort and the fact that it has room. However, what made me go to the LGT Wagon this time around was reliability. If you go to any of the Volvo enthusiast forums, you'll see quite a few alarming reports about major repairs in the powertrain that surface above the usual complaints you hear.

    In contrast, the 2005+ OB/Legacy really haven't had any major problems. My 2005 LGT has had 33K miles without any major unscheduled maintenance.

    I think Craig's advice to wait for the 2008 is a great one. The only downside is that I don't think the 2008 will offer you any more room.

    Ken
  • jeffmcjeffmc Posts: 1,742
    I have an '04 Outback and '06 Legacy, each w/2.5L & AT. Difference is night & day. OB feels sluggish & the Legacy is very responsive. The improvements they made to that engine are great. After driving the Legacy for a day and then getting back into the OB, I had to check to see if I had left the parking brake on, it felt soo restrained in comparison.
  • zman3zman3 Posts: 857
    Is it the engine, or weight of the vehicle? I am not a big spec's guy, but I thought the 00-04 OB's were a little on the chunky side compared to previous and current generations. I would think that a Legacy is lighter than an OB.

    I never even drove a 2.5L in the new body style since I disliked the 98's power so much.

    Karl
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    In comparable trims (say 05 XT Ltd and 05 GT Ltd wagons with 5eat) the Outback is 75 lbs heavier. Not a lot, but that's like having an extra kid on board. Some of it is due to extra equipment, so it's not a perfect 1:1 comparison.

    I believe both the OB and Legacy got lighter with the 05 redesign, so an older Outback and newer Legacy would have a bigger weight difference.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,507
    I just took the opportunity to look at SoA's website for the 2007 lineup, and all I can say is what are they doing with their exterior colors?! There are almost no options and those that are available are, well, less than appealing for the most part. Bleah! Whoever is in charge of selecting the MY's color lineup should be slapped... repeatedly. What, did they hire Henry Ford? "You can have any color you want, as long as it is :sick: !" :(
  • edwardsfedwardsf Posts: 187
    Craig says: Personally, I am always on the lookout for the perfect vehicle, and it's been hard to find. The OB XT is close, but I would like better MPG and slightly better handling. Um, Craig, you are supposed to solve this riddle! I am coming from a Saab 900SE with a good ergo interior, lots of room (2 mtn bikes and luggage - inside!) and very good highway power. So I want all that I have plus good gas mileage; apparently, as you disappointingly report, it does not exist.

    The Audi A4 Avant 2.0T AT also comes close. It gets 22 and 30 with reports on the higher end of mileage (as opposed to the many reports on the RAV4 and OBXT under the EPA ratings). The Avant has great handling, ride and acceleration. You can get a cloth interior and CR recommends the A4 as it is average for repairs (not the case with the V70 or Saabs).

    The Audi's downfalls are lack of huge luggage room (it is close to but less than the OB), little clearance, and a growl when accelerating (um, I don't cruise the strip anymore). I believe, it's price is comparable to the V70 and Sportcombi. Cloth/no sunroof and Leather/sunroof would go for around 31/32 with no tech toys. Lease rates are better than most other makes.

    BTW, my Saab and new ones are noisy and the new ones (GM!) have poor reliability.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,507
    the new ones (GM!) have poor reliability.

    Hahaha... has Saab ever been known for anything but?
  • Hi, I own a 05' LGT limited. If your car is stock, it shouldnt have rough idle; manual car gets a bit of idle when you get into first gear. Same as any other car.
    The clutch is good if you drive normally; if you launch it 50 times like i did, you'd be changing your clutch/flywheel/cover in your first 8,000mile(which i got for free from the dealer because of the goodwill policy).
    Subaru does have bad wheel bearings; most of the time is the rear. Your front dont go bad unless you have negative camber or you hit the curb or something. But if you check out the 05+ STI, their rim pattern is now 5x114 instead of 5x100. The reason why they changed to that is to lower the stress level on the bearings.
    Shifter problem can be fixed with a front shifter bushing + STI groupN tranny mount. After my tranny mount was on, every shift is smooth and weightless.
    WRX Seats are meant to keep you still i guess, so not really comfortable, the 06+ newer legacys have wider seats, and the new 07 specB has better leather too. I sat in one and its great. But, my current 05 lgt leather seats are still good and i have a bad back; so if im not complainig.. i dont see a reason for improvments.. but i guess subaru did it anyway.
    I think the only bad thing about the control is that the shifter gets in the way, other than that.. its alright.
  • edwardsfedwardsf Posts: 187
    If you are going to laugh at your own jokes you might want to bother to them back up. Consumer Reports rates the 900/9-3 for '96 to '02 as average in reliability. While the 9-5 has had problems, I was talking about the 900. So yes, some Saabs were reliable. If you are defending GM, you walked into that one.

    Or maybe you are dating yourself. In the late 70's and early 80s, many Saabs had tranny and turbo problems. By the late 80s and early 90s, those cars were rock solid. I had an '89 900S with 135K on it - original engine, tranny, turbo, etc. and that was typical. That was a great car - turbo fast, held 3 mtn. bikes inside, and got 30 mpg averaging 75 mph. There was and is no car like it.
  • erics6erics6 Posts: 684
    Pre-GM Saabs were pretty reliable. My 85 900 had over 200k with the original turbo AND clutch (the 1st owner was all highway... salesperson). Newer ones are okay. All pretty spendy to repair though. Only Saab I'd buy now is a leftover Saabaru 9-2X.
  • aaykayaaykay Posts: 539
    I think Craig's advice to wait for the 2008 is a great one. The only downside is that I don't think the 2008 will offer you any more room

    One of the Legacy wagon variants - the 2.5GT - may not re-appear for the 2008 model year, even though the sedan will still be available. The XT will be available though.

    I would have preferred the Acura RDX, if I had a choice. It is a bit rich for my blood with current prices though and in comparison to other cars like the Legacy GT. Got to say that the handling is superb, though.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,507
    No interest in defending GM - they bought a marginal company to start and are now working to assimilate it, thus destroying much of the identity it once had.

    Judging by how poorly Saab vehicles hold their value, I would surmise the term "rock solid" applied to individual cars rather than models as a whole. You can love whatever car you prefer, but that does not make it the best car on the road.
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    The A4 Avant is a nice model. I've always loved Audi's design but the only thing that has kept me from going their way is the fear of long term reliability and repair costs.

    But if Subaru does drop the LGT wagon from it's line up, I may need to look elsewhere for my next car.

    Ken
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    My dad had a 900S from the early 90s (can't remember the exact model year). While the tranny and engine were fine, we did joke at the cheap construction of some interior parts. On the first day my dad took delivery of his 900S, the driver's visor as well as the glove compartment handle both snapped off. While it was an overall solid vehicle, it was strange how some parts were so solid, and others yet so fragile. We just joked that it was all the GM parts that failed prematurely.

    But I digress...

    Ken
  • edwardsfedwardsf Posts: 187
    LOL on the premature GM parts.

    Wesx, my term rock solid did not mean that the preGM 900s were similar to a Corolla in reliability. They were AVERAGE as Consumer Reports reported (not me). I just reported a great experience to back up CR. As Ken has pointed out, these cars did need a dermotologist but the engine, tranny, chassie, suspension and even electrical were quite dependable.

    Saying there was no car like it does not mean that it was "the best car on the road." It means... that there was no other car like it.
  • While not sure that I'm getting closer to clarity and a decision, lots of interesting and useful information. Good humor, too. Nice to be back in this forum.

    Really like the A4. It was a 'finalist' when I bought the '05 VDC wagon. However, driver's seat was small-ish and the console really restricted my movment. Might look at it again.

    OTOH, if $$ were no object, how do you feel about the A6 Avant? Or, BMW 3-series wagon. I know the dimensions, on the latter, are smallish - but, it 'fits' pretty nicely.

    Peace.
  • krzysskrzyss Posts: 843
    "Be aware of parts cost for the VW Passat..like over $100 for a pair of wiper blades!"

    This statement recalls me a joke.

    Two new rich are talking. One boasts about his new Armani suit.
    "I paid $ 1000.00 for it!" - first exclaims.
    The other looks at him with pity an says:
    "I went to Milan and bought the same for 2000.00".

    It is not my fault that you had been had. I bought a set at AutoZone for 25.00.

    Krzys
  • saedavesaedave Chicago, ILPosts: 683
    It is not my fault that you had been had. I bought a set at AutoZone for 25.00.


    But they were not available at AutoZone in 2004 :cry:

    Perhaps not every owner will be able to find the correct replacement bulbs for specially numbered tail lights, etc. that VW uses...No as an engineer I did not have a problem.

    As a past owner of at least twelve VW and Audi cars over many decades I can authoritatively warn those who don't know what to expect. They are great to drive but a problem to own. My patience just ran out.
  • Really like the A4. It was a 'finalist' when I bought the '05 VDC wagon. However, driver's seat was small-ish and the console really restricted my movment. Might look at it again.

    OTOH, if $$ were no object, how do you feel about the A6 Avant? Or, BMW 3-series wagon. I know the dimensions, on the latter, are smallish - but, it 'fits' pretty nicely.


    I feel the new Audi grille is an immense step backwards. It looks odd now and I think it will age even worse.

    The new BMW 3 series is attractive but the BMW AWD drivetrain just seems much too complex. And the dealers are very, very proud of them.

    You're far under the radar screen with an H6 OBW; many dollars ahead; and performance is very good once you lose the stock tires.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I don't like the mouth-agape look on new Audis either. Plus the prices are creeping to ridiculous levels, go price a loaded A3. :surprise:

    -juice
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    The A6 Avant is nice, but doesn't quite have the character of an A4 Avant. If $$$ and reliability were not issues, I would also take a look at the Allroad. Wasn't Audi going to bring it back? There you have A6 Avant room but go-anywhere suspension/drivetrain and the ability to change the settings.

    Ken
  • I had been thinking about a low-mileage allroad. Any experience/chatter on reliability, etc.?

    I must say that I think the A6 avant is one of the most striking vehicles I have seen - even with its snout. To each his/her own, I guess.

    Juice, won't the A3 be as small, inside, as the A4?

    Thanks.

    Peace.
  • saedavesaedave Chicago, ILPosts: 683
    I had been thinking about a low-mileage allroad. Any experience/chatter on reliability, etc.?

    The earlier ones that used the 2.7 liter turbo engine will share the problems with that engine (discontinued by Audi with good reason).
  • The 2005's seem to have the 2.7 turbo. Same engine...problems?
  • saedavesaedave Chicago, ILPosts: 683
    AFIK that engine is now extinct. It was a smaller bore version (to permit thicker cylinder walls) of their old 2.8l. I can't remembeer details except that there were standard trans failures in A6 models that used the 2.7. The auto trans, if I remember correctly, was the same marginal one that was in my 2002 W8 Passat wagon. The A6 with 4.2 liter engine used a much heavier duty auto trans.

    I would not want to own a vehicle with an engine that is out of production.

    Any bargain price on an Allroad will probably be increased by high routine maintenance and eventual catastrophic failures.
  • dbtdbt Posts: 298
    Juice, won't the A3 be as small, inside, as the A4?

    Actually, no, the A3 has a slightly larger interior than the A4. I (6', long legs) can sit in the back of our A3. Not so in the A4. The trunk in the A3 (with seats up) is pretty small though.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Stay away from the 2.7T.

    A lot of former S4 owners bought WRXs when those came out because of nightmarish issues with that engine.

    Unless your best friend is an Audi mechanic or something.

    -juice
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