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Subaru Legacy/Outback 2005+



  • Ken, I got the 5EAT. I was essentially neutral between the manual and the 5EAT, and the one they had available is 5EAT. I drove a 2005 OB with the 5eat last month and thought it was fun enough that I wouldn't miss the manual...
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,661
    I agree, the media coverage on the new Legacys and Outbacks to date has been nothing but lousy at best. I don't know if SOA's marketing dropped the ball or what.

  • zman3zman3 Posts: 857
    FWIW I think the C&D article was an Outback XT with the 5EAT. The only gripe I concluded from the quick scan of the article was the speed in which the auto kicked down when pushed. They seemed to have a favorable opinion on the manual feature of the auto.
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869

    Part of my responsibilities here at work are managing new product introductions. One of the tasks I need to do is make sure we have good media coverage when we intro a new product. I work with our PR agency to pitch our product and story to various publications to get in queue for future issues. Unless it's a very visible product with high anticipation, we need to do quite a bit of selling to get on the editors' lists.

    Maybe I should go work for Subaru and get some Legacy and OB reviews written!

    BTW, have you seen any of the new TV ads? They're different from what Subaru has done in the past, but I'm not sure it grabs my attention. "I have X-ray vision" -- really?

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I like the buttons on the wheel - in aggressive driving you don't have to take your hands off the steering wheel, like for shifting on a wide turn.

    However, the tranny is smart to begin with so the manual mode becomes far less important.

    John: $2000 max for one transaction, like a new car purchase. I don't think that's the lifetime maximum.

    You could pay for oil changes, tire rotations, and the 30k service and still have some left over. Then you could begin accumulating more credit to pay for the 60k service later on. I think the Subaru Bucks coupons are valid for 4 years.

    I like the ad with two views of Lance and the Outback, it's pretty neat.

  • goneskiiangoneskiian Posts: 381
    I got to test drive both this past weekend and to say I'm impressed would be an understatement.

    A little preface though, I haven't driven nearly as many cars as some of you on this board and I'm coming from a 1997 Honda Civic and my wife drives a '93 Acura.

    XT impressions:
    It was a limited model with the 5EAT wearing the Atlantic Blue Pearl with Granite Gray cladding and charcoal leather. I drove this first and was hard pressed to tell it was 8.7 inches off the ground. It felt very smooth and NVH was nearly non-existent. The auto tranny felt very smooth compared to my wife's Acura (the only other automatic I have a lot of experience with). I got it on some twisties but this is a route with a lot of bicyclists (I know as I ride these roads all the time on my bicycle) so I didn't open it up too much. Didn't seem to roll all that much (more on this later). I didn't play with the manual funcion of the tranny as much as I could have as it felt strange to me to not have a clutch involved in the shifting process. I'm sure I'd get used to it though. On the other hand, I don't know that I'd use it all that much because the "sport" mode felt great to me.

    GT impressions:
    I actually drove an automatic sedan limited (Atlantic Blue Pearl with charcoal leather and a spoiler) right after the XT and then the next day found a manual wagon (also limited in Atlantic Blue and charcoal) at another dealership in my area. The first noticeable difference of course is the suspension. The GT felt much "tighter" right off the bat. Just going over some rough pavement leaving the dealership I could tell this was a different animal all together. Still a very quiet and smooth ride. You definitely feel the road more in the GT though. Not in a bad way, in a more connnected to the pavement sort of way. Likely the slightly more taught suspension set up and lower profile tires coming into play.

    The manual transmission felt just great. I thought I might have trouble like I did with a friends brand new Audi S4 which I killed at a stoplight a couple times before getting the hang of the clutch. No problem in the GT. It was plenty smooth and not grabby in the least.

    I was really happy I fit with that big moonroof in the wagon. With some of the reviews in this discussion saying they didn't have enough head room I was worried. No problem though as I'm 6'1" with a 34" inseam. The seats felt good. Not as aggresively bolstered as my wife's Acura, but she's had complaints from co-workers who are a bit more rotund than I that they're too tight. So I guess I'll have some room to grow. ;-)

    My only complaint is the lack of adjustability in the front passenger seat. A tilting seat bottom would have been nice as would an inch or two more rearward. I wasn't able to stretch my legs quite enough. Definitely NOT a dealbreaker. Maybe the seat rails can be modified for a bit more room.

    As a comparison I also drove a Volvo V70R automatic. I didn't get to push it in the least as the salesman was along for the ride. While it did feel quite good, it wasn't $12,000 better so I'll be going with a Subaru.

    Overall, very impressive offering from Subaru. Like I said though, I haven't driven many comparable vehicles besides the V70R and S4 Avant.

  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,661
    Yeah, you got my vote for heading SOA's marketing.

    Yes, I have seen the TV ads, and I like them a lot. I also just saw a double-page Outback ad in R&T, and I think it's the best ad I've for Subaru to date. It's very well designed, and Subaru (the brand) looks very sophisticated and positions Subaru as an upmarket brand. Very nice indeed.

  • The 2005 outback is sweet. period. the interior is much nicer than my 2000 outback and I'm very impressed with the styling revisions. But in terms of advertising, Subaru needs to get on the ball! I, a current owner, didn't know there was a new model at all until I just read these forums today and as a result researched on the web. I want to see some ads in TIME magazine, Newsweek and other magazines that people read. AND a catchy TV commercials like Nissan, Cadillac and Acura all do. C'mon Subaru, get advertising!!! Or this new model will be a flop :( no matter how good it is.
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    I had a little time before a meeting so I drove down to the nearby dealer. They had just received a GT Ltd sedan and wagon. Although it wasn't PDI'd, the salesperson let me take a quick drive on the wagon.

    The wagon was a silver 5EAT, just like the one I have on order. Despite the Check Engine light blinking, no AC, no stereo and plastic sheets on the exterior and interior, I was all smiles.

    We couldn't go far so I had about 5 minutes on local streets where I could not go above 35 mph. Even then, I was able to notice the difference between Sport and Normal modes. I even had a chance to try out the wheel mounted buttons too. With just mild throttle application, I could feel the car start to pick up speed. Nice.

    The only thing that I noticed, and perhaps it was due to being pre-PDI, was that the brakes felt a bit soft. I've read about the improved brake booster feel and was hoping for a real demo today.

    Oh, and the dealer was asking 3000 OVER MSRP. I looked at him as if he were crazy and he quickly came back with "don't worry, we can work that out".

    The dealer's lot was filled with OBs and 2.5is. The wagon I drove was parked next to an OB XT so I was able to get a very good side-by-side comparison. I like the appearance of the OB better from the front. The thicker bumper, bigger fogs, chrome bar and fender flares give it a very muscular Allroad-esque look. However (and this is my biased opinion), the GT lines flow a lot better from the side and to the back. The 2.5is did look a bit underwhelming -- I think it's the wheels.

    My waiting just got even more painful!

  • check this out....the subaru products come in limp mode from the the base of the passenger footwell the panel there pulls off and inside is a wire plug that must be disconnected to be a full power on daily use.subaru does this so the cars dont load up in the little use they get until sold.secondly in the fuse panel under the hood is a 15 amp blue fuse that is 1 spot over in the dead position.this moved to its correct spot will activate all electrical all takes about a minute to set the car up to run rite.most salespeople should know this and should never test a limp mode car.hope this helps...charlie brown.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    I think people here need to just allow a bit more time for the big advertising push associated with these vehicles. Dont forget, they are still fairly trickling into dealerships, and most are not NEARLY at full levels of inventory.

    Im not in the auto industry (YET!), but marketing is a ramp-up effort for many of the products Im familiar with, and I'd bet we are going to see A HUGE PUSH from SoA on the new Legacy/OB once they are more readily available- say, late summer.

    Somewhat unique in the market of non-luxury automakers, Subaru has the status of being a car with strong loyal following, whose ownership experience purports to, and does indeed, include a feeling community, and to some degree- reasonable exclusivity. It is because of this, that I feel a soft initial introduction can be well to Subaru's benefit, as its loyal following spreads word of mouth opinion on, and factual information about, these new and exciting vehicles. This in turn, continues the feeling of community (the Subaru fans are the ones that know about the car first, purchase the car first, enjoy the exclusivity, etc.), and re-inforces owner loyalty, whether or not the owners realize it- its nice to have something before everyone else.

    Afterwards, once the vehicle is fully stocked, more REAL PR is necessary, and Im sure it will come.

    Just my .02.

  • cptpltcptplt Posts: 1,075
    Had a drive in a 05 Bean today, was actually hoping to find a GT but no dealers near me seem to have seen one yet or even an XT!

    It is much nicer than my 98 Legacy GT for sure. Have driven a friends VDC before and the power seems comparable to the old H6 despite the increased power . One thing for sure , the 5EAT sportshift is a zillion times better than any Audi or VW one I have used, they all seem to have this horrible delay before they actually shift.Its even smoother than on an E series Benz.

    I'm 5' 8" and no problems with head room despite the sunroof. Every recent Audi and Lexus I have been in seems to have the headliner about a half inch from my head no matter what I do with the seat in a driving position. There seems to be more headroom on the Bean. But I think I have a tall body and short legs ! Seats themselves seemed just fine for my torso though I was only driving for 15 minutes.It was in the 50s so I tried the heated seats. Hate those heated seats, makes me want to go to the you know where!

    The back seat seems to have less leg room than my 98 though! Yes, there is little footspace under the front seat for backseaters as some have found but not worse than on an E series or a LS400. Though the Lexus has oodles of leg room per se so needing the additional footspace is irrelevant for most people. The back seat headrests are perfect for me! Not that I will be back there much.I can also actually see quite a lot out of the back unlike every other wagon I have tried in recent years except for a V70!Having had a succession of wagons and hatchbacks for the last 2 decades as my main driver I have found all sedans very claustrophobic in the rear view mirror and it seems to be getting worse with recent cars. The vertical dimensions of the back window seems to be edging towards non existent in almost every sedan I sat in at the Chicago autoshow!

    Much less noise than my WRX! But the WRX feels more "tight" on curves and while I didn't go above 4500rpm I doubt the H6 could snap my head like the WRX can if really pushed it. The Bean is definitely the "luxo" cruiser compared to a WRX!

    I think the GT will definitely be replacing my 98 in the future here. Will wait till next model year though to see what additional goodies they add. Only problem with the GT is that it will need 17in tires for winter. Major $$ compared to 16 in wheels! Guess I'll have to go back to 16s all year on the WRX and move my 17s to the GT!
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    charlie brown, thanks for the info!

    Re: the marketing, I do agree that Subaru should be low key until they have a good supply of vehicles in dealers. Nothing angers customers more (especially loyal customers) than not being able to get the product they are excited about. I have watched Apple blow it numerous times by announcing and hype-ing up a product and then not delivering for weeks or months.

    Dennis -- you could certainly use 16" wheels and winter tires on a GT, assuming 16" wheels clear the calipers (surely some will).

  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    Good info, Charlie. If I was only in limp home mode, I'm impressed!

  • shizumaatshizumaat Posts: 12
    Hey has anyone driven/seen an 05 Outback XT with manual transmission? I'm wondering because the auto has shifting controls on the steering wheel, I'm hoping the manual trans version has stereo controls...

  • kmartinkmartin Posts: 427
    I am thinking that perhaps the ads will come once a few more of the OBs show up at the dealers. Maybe we're just jumping the gun a bit.
    The dealers I have visited are also really pushing the last of the '04s, and there are factory incentives which are nice deal-makers out there.

    I have seen the new ads, but mostly on HGTV, TLC, and other "homey" type channels :-) I think they are right on the money as far as targeting the right type of consumer, but they need to get the word out to other networks!

    Also, I have read somewhere recently that Subaru has fired their ad execs and are looking to hire a new company. I hope their timing doesn't affect the OB's '05 premier.
  • kmartinkmartin Posts: 427
    Charile Brown, maybe you can solve my previously-posted seat belt chime dilemma. Any way to disable the nuisance chiming that keeps going on and off even when you're in park? Thx! -km-
  • "Oh, and the dealer was asking 3000 OVER MSRP. "...

    Ken, I'm paying $30,400 for my 5EAT GT LTD Wagon (plus tax and title)... a few % over dealer invoice, I think. Good luck "working it out" with your dealer...!
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Ian: glad to hear a tall guy fit nicely. I'm 6' tall and fit inside a Legacy GT Limited with a helmet! :o)

    Ken: that's funny, you thought it was peppy even in "limp bizkit" pre-PDI mode!

    Dennis: I also felt the 5EAT was brilliant. It really puts the H6 in its power band nicely.

  • kevin111kevin111 Posts: 991
    Yes, it is a full review with over 4 pages. Spoke very highly of the Outback, they liked the raised-car approach and the peformance.

    0-60 in 7.1 secs. (auto)
    1/4 mile - 15.6 secs. (auto)

    - Comparible to a Honda Accord V6 sedan.
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