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Subaru Legacy/Outback 2005+



  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,910
    Yes, it definitely has space in different areas. In the wagon, through '09, the passenger space was a little cramped compared to an Odyssey. It was like a typical economy sedan (Camry, Accord, etc) of the 80s/90s: easy access, but not overly generous quarters. I grew up riding in the back seat of 80s sedans and I never felt slighted for space, but there wasn't much room for anything but passengers.

    I suspect cargo room is either on par or exceeds that of the Odyssey. The LGT is a nice machine, and it was the only year it could be had wiht a turbo in wagon form of the '05-'09 generation (which is definitely most visually appealing iteration to date).
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • plim77plim77 Posts: 46
    I recommend going to a dealership and bringing a car seat with you to see if it will work for you. I am the proud owner of a 2005 Subaru Outback wagon. I just put in an infant car seat and honestly, there's not much room left on the side that has the infant seat. The distance that the front seat can go back was significantly limited. My wife and I are both under 5'4" tall, so this works for us, but taller people would have no leg room in the front (or the back). I love the wagon...but honestly it wasn't designed with an infant car seat in mind; a toddler car seat facing forward might work though.
  • scottinkyscottinky Posts: 194
    i have two toddlers in forward facing seats. I am going to check one out this morning and see. as far as cargo space goes, cant really think of much that can beat the Odyssey with the third row seats folded down.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,910
    Oh, geez. my apologies! I was thinking CR-V... not Odyssey! Hahahaha; how silly of me. Yeah, a minivan beats the pants off any SUV, hands down. :blush:

    That said, my family just moved from a Caravan to a Forester. In the standard configuration, passenger space is comparable in terms of leg room, etc., even though the Forester's front seats do not have quite the upright stance of the van. We gave up a lot of cargo space, but we did not use it all that often in the van, and we can make up some of that by using the roof rack more frequently along with a hitch-mounted storage tray. Considering avg. fuel economy is 6-10 mpg better than the van, and the AWD of the Subaru is multiple classes above the van's, I'd say it was a tolerable move.

    If you're keeping the Honda, perhaps you get the best of both worlds?
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    My Sienna has 99 cubic feet of space behind the 2nd row with the 3rd row folded, and I'm sure the Ody is close to that.

    That's more than any Subaru offers behind the first row! Even the Tribeca.

    So you will sacrifice some space, no question.

    Having said that, newer Subarus have grown significantly. The 2009+ Forester is a lot roomier than its predecessor, and the new 2010 Outback feels huge as well.

    Try them out. The Forester has a nice fold-down arm rest, plus a fold out cup holder at the base of the seat. This keeps 2 kids separated so they don't fight, plus you get 2 cupholders and some space for their toys. We have 2 kids (ages 7 and 10) and it's right-sized. Cargo room is a lot better than a mid-size sedan, but can't touch a minivan's. Still, it's enough for the 4 of us most of the time.

    The Outback is similarly roomy.

    I still do road trips in our van - can't beat the space. But when it's snowing we know our Forester can take the 4 of us anywhere in comfort.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,910

    Scott is speaking specifically of a 2005 Legacy GT wagon, so the new models really don't do him any good. :(
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    And I'm recommending the super-sized newer models, made for people just like him. ;)
  • After 6 long weeks of being without my own car I finally have it back and it is running. Turned out to be the Climate Control Module of the Body Integrated Unit. According to the local Subaru place no where in the tech manuals is it ever mentioned that the failure of that module could cause all the other issues!!!
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Very strange, noone would ever have guessed that... :confuse:
  • Yes, the brakes on the GT models are larger and only 17" wheels will fit. I believe some folks have been able to fit 50 profile tires on there with no problems. A better option may be the Outback XT though. Turbo engine and room for MUCH larger tires. ;)

  • morin2morin2 Posts: 399
    I have an 09 Outback and worry that the large fog lights are in such harm's way with stones, etc. Is there an after-market fog light grill that might stop some stones from breaking the lamp? There seems to be enough room for something that might snap into place around the lens.
  • samiam_68samiam_68 Posts: 775
    This might be a good alternative to grilles:
  • sg447sg447 Posts: 3
    I have a 2006 legacy wagon SE with less than 24,000 miles. About a year ago, there was a creaking noise from the steering when turning in low speeds (in a parking lot for example). The dealer found a leaking power steering pump and it was repaired under warranty. It was all right for a while after that but the now the same noise comes back from time to time. I took it back but the mechanic did not seem to hear it. Any idea what the problem could be? I have noticed that it is louder in rainy, humid conditions.
  • morin2morin2 Posts: 399
    Thanks samiam,

    They show their 40 mil product for exactly this application - looks worth a try!
  • idearequestidearequest San Mateo, CAPosts: 12
    My 2005 Legacy Outback Sedan had a noise that I described in the same way from around 19,000 to 21,100. It turned out to be the front wheel bearing, first one, then the other - that's why the range. So far the noise hasn't recurred for the 1000 miles since the second one was replaced. They tried adjusting them first and then replaced them when that didn't work, all under warranty. Good luck.
  • sg447sg447 Posts: 3
    Thanks very much. I did some online research, and indeed that seems to be the consensus. I bought the extended warranty so it should be covered - but convincing the dealer/ mechanic will be another thing as the noise is intermittent.
  • easypareasypar ColoradoPosts: 192
    My neighbor's wife is no longer able to drive and he's offered me his '09 Legacy. Leather, sunroof, etc. It seems like a pretty typical unit for a Limited. Less than 10,000 miles and I can have it for $20K.

    We were one of the unfortunate owners of a '98 with the head gasket problem, before subaru admitted it we had moved on though. I've read most of the posts on here the last couple of days and there don't seem to be any grave issues with this model and it's a lot less than I can get a comparably equipped 2010 model for (about $26+) and local dealers aren't really discounting much.

    I'm going to call the dealer tomorrow with a couple of questions but thought I would post them here as well.

    It doesn't have the "homelink" garage door opener and we really do like that on our other cars. I've still got the old transmitters but I was wondering if the "homelink" on Subies is on the sun visor like my Maxima or built into the overhead like our Lexus?

    He's got a "gold plus" extended maintenance program, I can't figure why they did this, they almost never put 8,000 miles a year on a car and they usually trade every 3-4 years. Is this transferrable and if so is it free to do so or is there a charge? I have a feeling it's a charge thing since dealers make a lot of coin on extended warranties.

    Thanks in advance

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,910
    Subaru "Homelink" is located on the rearview mirror, if so equipped. Those mirrors (auto-dimming w/ compass & homelink) can be added fairly easily at any time. There is a connector under the headliner.

    The warranty is transferable, but I am not sure if there is a fee involved. I don't think so, as the warranty follows the car, but I do think the person who purchased the warranty has the option to cash out the prorated value of it if the car is sold while the warranty is in effect; as such, perhaps there is a transfer fee? The Subaru website should offer information on warranty transfer.
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    If your neighbor never used the warranty they can actually get a refund.

    I do think there is a small fee to transfer the warranty. We sold a 2002 Legacy with a 7/100 warranty and I paid it when I sold it, but it was negligable, $25 IIRC.

    The buyer was delighted and said that was one of the main reasons he bought the car.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Is this transferrable and if so is it free to do so or is there a charge?

    Yes, and the fee is actually $35, I just checked.
  • Make that 3. I just got diagnosed with the head gasket problem. No symptoms, just in for an oil change. The dealer wants over $2300 for the head gasket repair and timing belt. I have a 2005 Outback with 109,000 miles. I am the original owner and faithfully took it to the dealer for oil changes since it was included in my purchase deal. Any options besides giving the dealer $2300 of my hard earned cash? I have purchased a new car every 5 years and have never had a major repair like this with Chevy, Dodge, or Toyota.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Sorry to hear that, that's not common on an 05 either.

    Call 800-SUBARU3 and ask if they can help out at all, but be nice. 109k miles is a whole lot.
  • Make that 4. The same thing happened to me in March 09, had to get towed to the dealership. They wanted $3000 just for the head gasket and cylinder. I asked them if Subaru would pay for it and he said he didn't know. I called Subaru corporate and opened a ticket. The next day the dealership called and said they were paying for all but $250 courtesy charge. Each dealership has a certain amount of $$ allotted for these types of things. I suggest asking them to help. Mine also is a 2005 and had about $80K when it happened. A lot of people feel that bullying people at a dealership is going to get them somewhere. They are people too just trying to make a living so my advise is to not get upset and they might help you out. Good luck.
  • Call Subaru customer service and explain your situation. Since your car is relatively new and properly maintained, they might be able to work something out for you.

    1-800-SUBARU3 (1-800-782-2783)
  • Called Subaru (I was extremely nice and polite) and they said they would not help me at all with the repair cost. I am extremely disappointed with this company. I know the car is over 100,000 but it is all highway in about 4 years. Researching the problem, it looks like they have had this head gasket problem for many years and they have still not resolved it.
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    My head gasket went at 140,000 miles on my 1997 Outback which had been maintained by the book. Cost me $CDN7,000 for a whole new engine at an authorized Subaru dealer's. Subaru did not contribute one thin dime to the repair. Also they did not even provide me a courtesy car for the time I was without mine.

    I have come to the conclusion that Subaru engines are unreliable. Look at the Forester XT (and Outback XT) turbo engines imploding in '08 and '09. And the head gasket problem was supposed to afflict the '96 to '98 Outbacks but obviously involves other years, too.
  • It's tough to get assistance when the car has 100K+ miles on it. Shame on Subaru, though, for not offering any concessions since they know quite well that their engines are very susceptible to head gasket failures.

    I would shop for an independent mechanic - they might be able to do much better on price. I wouldn't give your dealer any more business since he is being unsympathetic and not at all helpful to a loyal customer.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You'd be lucky to get 140k out of many other manufacturers' cars.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085

    Even the diety-like Hondas and known to blow head-gaskets. I had to replace (at my cost) the head-gasket TWICE in a honda Civic. This was BEFORE 90K miles.

    When all the antifreeze blows out tailpipe on the highway at -10F... it makes quite a steam-show!! Everyone behind you backs WAYYY off when their windshield suddenly gets covered with slimy antifreeze.

    The O2 sensors died a couple weeks after that....I suspect they dont like getting coverd with antifreeze either.

    You are really expecting too much and are being unreasonably harsh on Subaru.
  • natyaknatyak Posts: 1
    I'm looking at a 2005 Subaru Outback 2.5i with 108K on it. I may be posting prematurely, as the dealer bought the car at auction and as of yesterday had not thoroughly checked it out - but my question is this - Being a first time Subaru buyer, is there anything specific -quirks, warning signs, etc.- that I should be looking for given the mileage?
    Thanks for your time!
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