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Subaru Legacy/Outback



  • krzysskrzyss Posts: 845
    do not buy AWD.
    If you do most city driving then hybrid might be worth the money.

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,908
    In strictly city driving, my guess is that 18 is about the best you will see. Subaru is probably not the best choice if gas mileage is a major concern and AWD is not exceptionally important. In this case, you might even be better off considering something like the hybrid Ford Escape. They claim near 36 mpg in strictly city driving, though it drops to around Subaru mileage on the highway (26-27mpg?). Capacity-wise, it would feel somewhat similar to the wagon.
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,908
    Hahaha, there's a compact way to restate. :blush:
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • ddunbarddunbar Posts: 31
    We get the same mileage on our 2003 Legacy Wagon LE with the automatic transmission -- 16-18 in the city and at best 26 on the highway.
  • krzysskrzyss Posts: 845
    Polish or English ;-)


    PS There must be some truth in our statements as they are surprisingly similar.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The Forester is lighter but I do better in the city, in fact the EPA numbers for mine are about on target (21/27).

    I've only dipped below 20mpg twice in 9 years, and both times I was towing a trailer.

  • luvmbootyluvmbooty Posts: 271
    I guess I could do a lot better gas mileage with other cars. Too bad. I like the Legacy sedan. It's got a classy look, very dependable, strong 4cyl (175 Hp), and good crash tests.

    I wonder, if it was made in 2WD, crash test result would change. I figure it might because the loss of weight, but gas mileage would improve. I know you guys like the AWD, just to make a choice between the two, at least for the sedan. I'd be happy with that.

    I've researched a little more and I also like the Mazda 3 5 door. Crash tests aren't nearly as good. The Civic is having problems. The Impreza also has AWD and I think the Legacy's a better looking sedan. The Prius is too expensive (going for MSRP and above). The Chevy Cobalt, I hear, is not reliable. The Mini Cooper is TOO small and uses premium gas! I think the Corolla is a bit too femme. The VW New Beetle is also WAY too femme and too small. The Ford Focus also too femme and not as good of a reliability record as the 3. The Suzuki Aerio also isn't reliable, gets a POOR side crash rating even with side airbags, and the 3 is better overall. The Mitsubishi Lancer has the same crash test rating as the 3 by IIHS but the 3 has a better ride and fit and finish according to Edmunds and Consumer Reports. All other rated small cars by IIHS are too risky.

    If only the Legacy came in 2WD! :cry: :cry: :cry:
  • Hey luvmbooty, you're doing too much research (as if that's not good). By the time you finish, all the 2006s will be gone. :blush: The regular Legacy SE sedan will give you decent gas mileage. My new SE wagon is giving me 30-31 mpg hwy, no lead foot or overly aggressive driving (70 mph max), regular gas. I never go by the trip computer - I just do plain old math. Go buy the car and fuhget 'bout it.... :shades:
  • luvmbootyluvmbooty Posts: 271
    Almost all my driving is city driving. Do you think the 2007 will be much different?
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    Have you estimated the operating cost impact of fuel milage? Assuming you drive 15K miles a year and that gas costs $3/gallon, a 10 mpg difference in fuel economy amounts to $750/year or just over $60/month more. Could you justify going with a lesser featured and less crashworthy vehicle for this difference?

    $60/month is not trivial but neither is vehicle content and safety! If you can swing it, I'd get the Legacy. :-)

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,908
    Yes, I think I would have to offer similar advice.

    Do not settle for a vehicle. Decide on your priorites and which vehicles you would like to own. Rank them based on priority, test-drive the subset that makes the cut, and then buy the one with which you are most content.

    I think that if you end up buying something for which you settle, you will end up with buyer's remorse and/or prematurely trading it for something different. In the grand scheme of things, fuel economy is just one factor and is often not even the most expensive one. Heck, insurance can have greater disparity than fuel operating cost. It sounds to me like safety equipment / rating is your #1 concern, so rank it accordingly.
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • luvmbootyluvmbooty Posts: 271
    Good advice! Thanks! ;)
  • luvmbootyluvmbooty Posts: 271
    Think there's on in the future?
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    I wonder, if it was made in 2WD, crash test result would change. I figure it might because the loss of weight, but gas mileage would improve. I know you guys like the AWD, just to make a choice between the two, at least for the sedan. I'd be happy with that.

    I doubt you will ever see a 2WD Legacy again. Subaru's worldwide branding vehicle identity is 99.9% AWD. In Japan they offer a few bottom-feeder Imprezas and tiny 660cc JDM-specific models that are offered in both FWD and AWD, but that's it. Outside of Japan every Subaru sold is AWD.

    Being virtually all AWD is what they known for. It's part of their DNA and a huge part of their marketing. It goes to the core of what a Subaru is all about. I don't expect that to change.

    Offering a FWD alternative will weaken their brand image. Subaru has been saying for years that AWD is the best drive system out there. If they offer FWD, in a way they're saying that what they've been promoting all along may not be true. It's sending mixed signals to their customers. They would be shooting themselves in the foot. Let the other brands offer a variety of drive systems. Being 100% AWD is another braggin' right feature they can sell to the public.

  • luvmbootyluvmbooty Posts: 271
    As prices rise and dino fuel becomes scarce, AWDs will cost $$$. What happens when gasoline prices reach $5? Unless they start using alternative fuels like diesel.

    All 2006 automatic non turbo models EPA mpgs:

    Legacy sedan/wagon: 23/30
    Impreza sedan/wagon: 23/28
    Forester: 23/28
    Outback: 22/28
    Baja: 21/28
    Tribeca: 18/23 premium only

    As of right now, these mpgs aren't bad, but I live in the city and really don't need AWD. People who live in an area that needs AWD, these mpgs are probably the one best you can find (except for the Tribeca).

    Interiors of Subarus could be a little roomier for people who have families. Like the Legacy, with a 93 cu ft interior, is classified as a midsize sedan, but for a growing family of 5 I think would need at least 100 cu ft interior.

    Otherwise I think Subarus are one of the best and original makes out there. There are AWD alternatives though like Toyota Matrix/Pontiac Vibe, Dodge Caliber, Ford Five Hundred, Dodge Magnum, 2006 Toyota Rav4 (which has an optional 3rd row), Honda Pilot (with standard 3rd row for a total of 8 passengers), and others.
  • luvmbootyluvmbooty Posts: 271
    How about if they offered a FWD with standard traction and stablility? This would allow mpgs to rise, would help prevent skidding and keeping it standard like the AWD. ;)
  • jfljfl Posts: 1,385
    Subaru in the US almost folded when they tried competing against Toyota, Nissan, and Honda in the 2WD category. They were rescued by AWD and the Outback campaign. It's unlikely they will venture down that path again. Subaru simply does not have the volume to compete in that specific arena. Today's challenge is to retain their niche (and market share) while everyone else is coming out with AWD vehicles.

    MPG should really be compared between like vehicles.

  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    You're missing my point. It's all about marketing and positioning the brand. Subaru has spent a ton of time and money marketing themselves as the only company in the world that's 100% AWD. They're not going to change that.

  • luvmbootyluvmbooty Posts: 271
    OH, O.K. :P :blush: ;)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Subaru is tiny compared to Honda and Toyota, and can't compete directly with them. Last time they tried they nearly went bankrupt, sales took a nose dive to 100k/year back in 1995.

    Where they'd succeeded is at being a niche player, AWD wagons mostly. The OB and Forester have done quite well and now sales are nearly double that level, selling more profitable cars at that.

    Remember something - common sense does not apply to Subaru. Think about it, they DROP half their lineup (all FWD, Justy, SVX), increase prices dramatically, and sales DOUBLED! :confuse:

    Sure, they could come out with a FWD Legacy, but it would probably still not match the Accord's 26/34 mpg and so the fuel misers would still buy the Honda. They could probably get about 25/31 out of a FWD Legacy, but it would be smaller than the Accord and they have only half as many dealer outlets to sell them from.

    Now, look at it differently. You're shopping for an SUV that gets 16mpg, and suddenly an Outback's mid 20s mpg seems quite reasonable. It is a legit alternative to what most people use SUVs for. Bingo. Jackpot.

    Forester's 23/28 doesn't seem that great? Well guess what? It's best in class, matching the 4WD RAV4 and besting the CR-V, which takes 3rd place. Bingo again. Jackpot #2.

    Those are the models that sold well. FWD Legacys from 1994 and earlier were a disaster Subaru is better off forgetting about.

    A FWD Legacy is less efficient than an Accord.

    An AWD Outback/Forester is more efficient than an Equinox/Vue/Escape. That's why it works.

  • krzysskrzyss Posts: 845
    Subaru is piggy backing on SUV craze.
    It seems to be ending so what will be the next move?

  • bat1161bat1161 Posts: 1,784
    A little late to chime in here but I can tell you that I have a 06 LL Bean Wagon (H6) and have been tracking my mileage since I picked it up at the end of October. overall I am getting 17.396 mpg with the worst being 13.31 and the best 26.06. It is an AT, and I live on Staten Island.

    Hope this helps. Good luck with whatever you decide.

  • jay_24jay_24 Posts: 536
    Sorry, I'm going to have to disagree. At least partially.

    The Vue and Escape have hybrid versions that get hwy milage in the 30's. Yes they cost more $$, but the milage is there. Even a Chevy Tahoe is improving mpg (up to 22 mpg)
    The new GMC/Saturn/Chevy SUV coming out soon is an 8 passanger that is reported to get about 24 or 25 mpg. Its an improvement over the old Trailblazer and 22mpg. I wonder what the hybred Tahoe will get? maybe 24mpg? The RAV4 can get 30mpg and can carry 7 passangers. The v6 4wd RAV gets 28mpg. Size and power wise thats more like a Tribeca.

    Yes most big SUVs are still less than a little Forester, but 4 to 6 mpg isn't a big deal.

    Recent years Subaru has gone more to worse MPG for sake of performance. Look at the turbo models.

    How about a Hybred? or Flex Fuel model? or something that gets slightly better MPG.

    Most (All?) the other companies are showing improvements in MPG. Where is the improvement from Subaru?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The next craze is crossovers, which is sort of what Subaru has been doing all along.

    The products are well positioned, the only question is how much new AWD competition will appear and how will it affect their sales.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Escape hybrid is too pricey. $28 grand plus is too much to pay to save a little fuel, when "normal" models cost $6 grand less.

    Saturn Vue Greenline will be a hit, I predict. The price is right - under $23k. But....we're talking very limited supplies, here. It won't put a dent in anyone's market share.

    The RAV4 that gets 30mpg is FWD. The AWD model in automatic gets the same 23/28 as the Forester auto. The next-gen Forester is coming soon, so we'll see how Subaru responds. The RAV4 is a hit, sales have boomed.

    I think the Forester is competitive. It needs to grow a tad, else people will cross shop with the cheaper Jeep Patriot. The Jeep even LOOKS like a Forester.

  • jbrew7jbrew7 Posts: 17
    Ok, this may be a stupid question, but what is the general difference between the Outback wagon and Legacy wagon? I know about body style, but what else. Generally, Legacy's do seem to be a lot cheaper. Is that because they are not as good.
    Also, just got a quote from a dealer in Sac saying he will sell for 100 dollars over invoice, plus the rebates for both the 2006 Legacy and Outback wagons. Good deal?
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    It's not a question of one being better than the other. They're aimed at different customers.

    Think of the Outback as a heavy-duty Legacy. The suspension is HD and raised, and it has larger tires. If you travel a lot of bad roads the Outback the better choice. if, however, you prefer great handling, the Legacy is the better choice.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Agreed, and I'll add a few things.

    The OB is pre-wires for trailers, so if you tow that's the way to go.

    You also get the roof rack w/cross bars. Fog lights and that sort of thing. Heated seats are standard on the 06s, as are heated mirrors and wiper de-icer up front.

    So the price is higher but so is content. If you can make use of those things, it's probably worthwhile.

    The Legacy is a better value if you do not need those items.

  • I just got a Legacy Wagon 2.5i SE for invoice -$2000 Rebate from Subaru and 4.9%apr. Salesmen said that they sell 10 times as many Outbacks as just standard Legacy Wagons so they seem ready to deal on them. Invoice for my car said they purchased it in Nov '05 so it was sitting on the lot for a long time. They also gave me a fair price for my 2001 VW Passat in trade. I am really happy with the deal that I got and love the car so far.
  • alysonalyson Posts: 3
    I need advice! I am getting "graduation present" from college 2 years later--once I get the car I have to pay for everything else--I am between a Lexus IS 250 or a Subaru Outback Wagon 3.0 (I know, pretty different), I'm moving to San Francisco and will use it mostly for weekend trips to Tahoe, camping, Napa etc. Which car is going to be less expensive, more reliable, last the longest etc in the long run? I've heard great things about both, I worry that since Lexus is a foreign luxury car replacing every little thing can get pricey. (not to mention higher insurance rates)
    Any and all thoughts are welcome!! THANKS.
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