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Subaru Legacy/Outback



  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    You said it before - the most HP and leather seats does not make the best car or driver. I prefer good HP with excellent handling characteristics. There is always the next car coming that is quicker. Witness - the WRX STi.

  • nematodenematode Posts: 448
    In relative terms IF it really comes with 350hp, AWD, leather, massive brakes, HID, traction control, stability control, manual transmission or better yet SMG-like shifter, and is at least the same size (or a little bigger) as the current Legacy, it would be a great deal.

    Other options:
    The S6 and RS6 Avant are not realistic even though I dream about them all the time (are $60-80k if you can find one). Granted they have V8s and are a premium brand but the price is too high for me. I did consider saving for the S6 but the price just floated too high.
    I always thought there should be an M3 wagon BUT such a beast does not exist so the 330Xi is all thats left. BUT at nearly $45k loaded its not that interesting to me.
    Mazda will release a Mazdaspeed 6 wagon at some point (I hope) but if its not AWD I will not even look at it. I like my 01 Protege ES but I dont like big power FWD cars.
    Subaru will have an STi WRX wagon but its too small and I really really dont want the wing and all the gold stuff.

    On the other hand a 2.5L 225hp Legacy GT turbo for $27k would be fine with me.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    But for me a 45K subie better be like a poor man's A8, maybe with an H6 rather than an H8 :)

  • tamara6tamara6 Posts: 38
    Our local Subaru dealer has very low mileage (6000-7000-8000 miles) Outback wagons (basic wagon, no cold weather package) priced at $19350 or so. This is about $1000 less than the Legacy L/SE wagons.

    I am wondering what the differences are. Aside from the body cladding (OB) and sunroofs (L/SE), I don't see much of a difference. Can anybody help me? Should I see one as a much better deal than the other?

  • hashmanhashman Posts: 33
    have a heavier duty suspension and bigger tires. Compared that to the Legacy wagons.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I believe their tires are larger, but the shocks/struts just have higher mounting points. I don't think it's heavier duty than that.

  • A while back I offered the plastic wood from my 01 Legacy free for the asking. I had swapped it out for the standard L black/gray dash pieces. I had a response but lost it. Anyone interested? The pieces include:

    Shifter surround
    HVAC surround
    Left side of wheel fog/cruise panel.

    (sorry for the cross post)
  • jay_24jay_24 Posts: 536

    There isn't much difference. You can do a comparison on the Edmunds main page to see all of them. Basically the Outback has a slightly raised suspension and higher profile tire. It also has more head room due to power driver seat and no sun roof. The outback also has the outside plastic trim/cladding. Otherwise there are just a few little odds/ends but overall they are the same vehical. Both are great.

  • bkaiser1bkaiser1 Posts: 464
    About the only "functional" difference that I can think of (aside from the additional ground clearance and larger tires) is the standard limited slip rear differential on the Outback -- it's not available on the Legacy LSE. Otherwise, they are going to be VERY similar vehicles.

    I specifically chose the OB over the Legacy in 01 when I bought my OB because of the LSD rear end...I think it's a very worthwhile feature to have in the really nasty stuff. Having said that, though, I would probably choose the LSE if I were walking into the showroom today. It's an outstanding value, a bit more fun to drive than the OB, and doesn't have the 2 tone cladding (which I've never really fallen in love with). Either one, though will be a great choice!

  • tamara6tamara6 Posts: 38
    Thanks for the responses. I didn't realize the OB base wagon had the LSD. That does seem to tip the scales a little bit.

    Where do people store their cds in the Legacy/OB? I think I tried to put a case in that little storage compartment under the radio, and it didn't quite fit. Do people keep their cds in the center console?

    Thanks again,

  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    I keep my CDs in the console. Of course, between my wife and kids, none of the CDs are in their right box (Drives me nuts, no pun intended). As for OB vs. L/SE, choose the one you like. Let your emotion have a little fun.

    01 OB in Winestone /mud/sand/salt/ice
  • ffsteveffsteve Posts: 243
    CDs in the console. After almost two years of juggling the individual cases (and trying to match up the right CD to the right case) I bought a small zipper book that can hold about 40 CDs - it slips into the center console just fine and best of all, does't slap from side to side like the cases would when cornering. Cases are now stacked in a closet at home.
  • scubazscubaz Posts: 4
    I recently bought a 03 LL Bean. I have a dog gate from my old OB that used pressure top and bottom for the gate. Can I use this with the Bean? If not, why not? It looks like it would press far enough away from the moonroof.

  • I was very tempted to go for the L SE. Still am, but...

    The base OB has the All Weather Package. The OB has larger breaks, better suspension (IMO, and I believe the seat is height adjustable. You are giving up on the dual moon roofs.

    I think the price is now more comparable as you can snag a Base OB for about $20,300-$20,500.

    Has anyone had problems with the headroom in the rear seat of the OB? I sat in the Legacy GT and was almost bumping the roof.

    Decisions Decisions... Wish it could be one of each. lol

    - Lou
  • tamara6tamara6 Posts: 38
    Lou - where can you get a 2003 OB for $20300? The MSRP is over $23000, and Edmunds lists the TMV at about $22000.

    The 2002 OB doesn't come standard with the all weather package. I have found one at a dealer about 2 hours away - new, but with 3600 miles on it, manual transmission, for $20500. If I could get a 2003 for that price, I'd go for it! (I live in Arkansas, so shopping at a car dealer in the DC area is definitely out - unless they deliver)

    In fact, I was going to write to ask the list if the $20500 price sounded reasonable for a car like this. I guess I'd still like to know what people think....

  • Here are the links...

    Liberty Subaru Base Outback with 5 Spd. The 20,299 is on their "specials" page. Unfortunately, I don't think they deliver to Arkansas.

    Van Bortel Subaru

    The Van Bortel site reports a $500 cash back incentive although their prices are higher.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    What year was your other OB? If its 00->03 then it should fit w/o a problem. Pre 00 had a different body style so I dunno if it would fit.

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,775
    My local dealer in NY was running ads for '03 base model OB wagons with automatic for $21.6K, about $800 less with stick. And the '03 included the AWP and CD. That is in your ballpark, and you would be getting a new model. You are currently comparing a year old used OB with a new Legacy.

    Last year I was willing to go $2k higher for the OBW over the Legacy L wagon (neither had sun roofs then) for the following items std on the OBW:

    Limited slip rear and more ground clearance (I live with snow), power drivers seat, upgraded headlamps (4 bulb vs 2 bulb) with fogs (which I re-aimed for more 'down the road light'), better roof rack, larger tires on alloy wheels, rock salt and stone resistant lower body cladding.

    You have to decide whether these items are important to you (or maybe even fall in the negatives category).

  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    Like the idea of realigning the fog lights. I might give it a shot.

    Tamara - can I ask which one you like emotionally? and what color?

  • tamara6tamara6 Posts: 38
    I like the Outback! But, until now, I didn't think we could afford one. The Legacy is nice, but sunroofs/moonroofs don't speak to me. I like the strange two tone body. I like the look of the raised suspension. I like the idea of the rear LSD (even if I never use it here, which might be true). I'd love to have the all weather package. I don't need it much, but sometimes (like tomorrow morning when it will be 7 degrees outside) it just seems like it would be handy.

    I am not sure, however, that I can get my local dealer to match prices with dealers in NY, NJ, or DC. I will go and ask, but I'm sure he'll just laugh at me. That is why we are considering last year's model at another dealer 2 hours away. It would be a way to get into an Outback.

    Also, the local dealer has those low mileage 2002 OBs that we may go for. They are automatics, which we don't really want. It is a tough decision, drive 2 hours for a car we'd like better or buy local and save the hassle.

    As for the colors, I really like the red and white ones, the seamist green is OK. The dark blue is OK, too. In a perfect world I'd get a red one, probably.


  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    might be worth it if you get what you want. Plus, the 2 hours back in your new car can be fun. Of course, I know how hard it can be to find that time, especially if you have kids. Keep in mind the blue has the gray interior.
    My wife and I like the funky look of the OB too.

    Good luck,
  • zman3zman3 Posts: 857
    FWIW I have a 98 Outback. It does have the cold weather package and the heated seats are darn nice. As far as LSD, I live in Minnesota. My OB does not have a LSD and I have never come close to getting stuck. It has plowed through any storm we've had. I will qualify that by saying that I don't travel off road and I have never stopped on a hill during an ice storm. We tend to get more snow and less ice here. For my usage a LSD is grossly overrated. If it was on a vehicle I already wanted then that would be great. But I personally won't let it be a deciding factor in which vehicle I buy next.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Since it's so close, I don't think you can go wrong with either. In other words, either one is fine.

    So, in this case, which one brings you a bigger smile? Let the tie breaker be emotional. Do you like the feel from behind the wheel of the Outback? The trendy two-tone and beefed up look? Go for it and don't look back.

  • You mean that with the high demand for Subaru's here in the Tri-State area, higher expenses, additional freight charge (ok it's only $10, but still, it is higher), etc., etc., that a dealer in Arkansas can't match the price?

    You need to gently pull teeth and get the dealer to open up.

    "Gee, I hear these cars really sell well in the Northeast and New England."

    Here, the dealer will extol the virtues of AWD in general and Subarus in particular.

    "I bet they go for a pretty penny there"

    Here, he'll talk about how expensive they are and how we're paying so much for them.

    Then you just sweetly mention that he can definitely give a better price than those NY dealers.

    And when he bites... TA DAA! :)

    Red is my favorite color for the OB :)
  • tamara6tamara6 Posts: 38
    Hi Lou, everyone,

    I am going to try just what you suggest. Probably tomorrow, my Wednesday evening is sort of booked.
    The dealer two hours away says that the 2002 is in good shape, but that someone backed into it once and they had to replace the bumper. Is it possible to crack the bumper and get it replaced. without damaging the car? I mean, I know that's what bumpers are for, but I've never seen one crack and the car be undamaged. What do you guys think?

  • tamara6tamara6 Posts: 38
    Are dealers more or less likely to deal on a car they've had around for a while. My local dealer has had a seamist green OB on the lot since maybe November. Am I more or less likely to get a better price on it? Or should I wait until he gets a new one in and then be on top of it the first day? What do you think?

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Lots of times bumpers get dinged and the cars don't, but look closely at the surrounding panels to make sure they are aligned nicely.

    It depends. Some times dealers sort of pay a fee to keep a car on their lot, so it may actually cost them more to keep it there a long time. That might offset their desire to get rid of it soon.

    Ask about how you can get the absolute lowest price they can offer you, it may even require that you order a car.

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,775
    Sorry, I couldn't resist ;-)

    Very few dealers today can maintain a large stock of cars on their lot without actually financing the inventory. Thus, every day a car sits unsold, the less total profit they make on that unit. Now granted, over the long haul it all comes down to averages, but I have been told that the sales mgrs get anxious when a single unit sits too long and may price it to move.

  • ladywclassladywclass Posts: 1,713
    I suppose it's redundant to say check out the prices on Edmunds for market value for area, etc ... I also think the 'longer' you go in and out of the dealer the more they realize they are going to have to 'deal' ... if you can handle doing that ... I was in and out over about a 2-3 month period while I shopped around and was able to tell the salesman what I liked about this or that model .. they definitely knew I was in the market, but not 'sold' on the Subaru (well, I WAS but they didn't have to know it!)
    Also, check the dealer's website. Mine had a "deal" posted that they didn't really intend. It said ANY new car or truck 1% over invoice. (Was supposed to say select vehicles, but I printed it out - several different days). They also had a deal for 3 free oil changes with purchase on the website that wasn't ever mentioned in the showroom. They were not going to show me the invoice, however I KNEW what it was from my snooping on Edmunds.
    In the fall of 2000 I was looking at 2000 model Outbacks, but ended up getting just as good a deal on a 2001 based on the info from the web.
    The sticker price on my 2001 Outback was around $25,400 (and remember this was when the new ones had just arrived) and I paid $2,200 less than that.
    Doing it this way, I did 'lose' one Outback in the dark blue that I thought I wanted, but I ended up with the light green which is better here in the snow and salt, and it also had a couple more options that I have really enjoyed ...
    Good shopping Tamara
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,775
    There is a lot of travel in the adj screw for each of the fogs. You can get them to do arial searches, if that is what makes you happy! I moved them up till they gave a broad spread to the front and sides for back roads deer spotting. But I only use them with no other traffic around, as they can now be quite blinding.

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