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Outback VDC vs. XC V0

pringo46pringo46 Member Posts: 2
edited March 2014 in Subaru
My wife and I are trying to decide between these two wagons. Consumer report shows almost identical stats on these cars but here are some direct questions to the board:

1. We are interested in the VDC model wagon but the dealers simply don't want to invest in the car and there are only 11 in New England. I'm wondering what could be wrong with this because if the dealers don't want to invest why should I?

2. The XC drove like a tank and was very stiff compared to the Outback. Anyone else think and feel that way?

3. Safety is very important and the rankings from consumers show comperable safety. Volvo is known as being a safety first company and am wondering what others think of in terms of that

4. We want navigation. Anyone have any insight into Subaru's nav system?



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    rshollandrsholland Member Posts: 19,788
    You might want to post your NAVI question over on the B9 Tribeca tread, as there are several B9 owners who have navigation, and who could better answer that question.

    As to why there are so few VDC-equipped Outbacks in New England? I don't have an answer for that. Maybe customers in that price range are opting for the Tribeca which has VDC standard? Again, you may want to ask some owners there about VDC.

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    retro7retro7 Member Posts: 1
    We bought a 2005 VDC last September. We love it. They are more rare then the LL Bean but absolutely available. You just need to call dealers till you locate one. My guess is that people do not want to pay the differential for the stability control.

    We drove the Volvo and Subaru and there was no comparison. The Subaru is a blast to drive, the Volvo feels like you are driving a station wagon. Our feeling on the Volvo was that it could not get out of its own way. The Subaru was quick and exhilarating to drive.

    In terms of safety, compare the crash tests.

    I got a 2005 because I did not want the navigation (I did want the VDC). With the 2006 no navigation is not an option. Not a problem for you.

    We will need to purchase another car in about a year and it looks like we will buy an LL Bean. I have driven some of the small SUV's but none of the vehicles I have tried handles anything like the Subaru.
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    pringo46pringo46 Member Posts: 2

    Thanks for the feedback. We feel the same way about the Volvo. It drove like a tank where the Subaru was much more sporty in its feel. I guess I am still pondering the VDC as I don't like the feeling of purchasing something that few people want to invest in (dealers and customers a like). I learned a long time ago to never buy a first year run car or a car with first year major additions as they are still likely to be working out the bugs at the expense of the existing customers.

    What is it about the VDC that makes you love it so?

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    tzarinatzarina Member Posts: 6
    I just bought a 2006 VDC wagon last month. I previously had a Saab Aero wagon, which is a FWD 4 cyc turbo. The Saab was awesome to drive (like a rocket) and very good in snow but the lease ended and it was expensive so I bought the Subaru. Neither the VDC nor the Volvo can touch the Saab in terms of sheer fun to drive factor but resale stinks and they are expensive, unless you lease the car. The Outback XT is probably close but does not have VDC.

    No comparison in terms of value between the Subaru and the Volvo. The Subaru is fun to drive, safe, looks cool and the nav system is excellent. The Volvo is also safe (maybe even a bit safer), somewhat roomier and much more luxurious, but drives like a tank. It's relatively slow and turns llike a tractor trailer. My VDC wagon has an excellent turning radius. Also, the Volvo has very questionable reliability whereas the Subaru has excellent (above average) reliability and good resale. I think that a traction control/stability system is an add-on for the Volvo, rather than standard equipment.

    I chose the VDC model instead of the LL Bean. Consumer Reports (as well as Car Talk) highly recommends vehicle stability control systems and considers it a "must have" safety feature. For a couple of thousand more I got that plus nav. This is different than AWD and some of the Subie salespeople will try and convince you that you don't need VDC and AWD. Don't believe it. They are trying to sell what's on their lot and Subie makes a limited number of VDC models because most Subaru buyers tend to be cost conscious. You can easily get a VDC if you shop around. Suggest you call Manchester Subaru in Manchester, New Hampshire. I got an awesome deal way below invoice from them and it was easily done by phone and e-mail. They even ordered the car for me in the color I wanted. Perhaps it was because I bought at the end of December but I think they are a volume dealer. Good Luck!
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    ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    Keep in mind the Legacy made the IIHS Gold Top 10 list, something not a single Volvo managed to do. The Legacy is quite safe. I'm not saying the Volvo isn't, but this certainly is not a disadvantage for the Subaru:


    Below is a pic of a Forester and a Volvo that hit head-on, the Subaru actually fared a bit better, but both passenger compartments were completely intact. The Subaru owner is a member here and walked away from this horrible crash.

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    twobigdogztwobigdogz Member Posts: 14
    Both are good choices, and I think comparable on safety. These items tipped me to the V70:

    1. The rear seat toe space on the Legacy is terrible. With a rubber floor mat in place, you can't stick the toe of a normal size shoe under the front seat, making the rear seat feel very cramped.

    2. I have 2 80 pound dogs, and there is more room in the back of the V70 for them.

    3. It is mainly for my wife to drive, and she prefers the more sedate driving feel of the V70.

    4. by the 2005 model, which I bought, the reliability ratings seemed to have improved substantially over earlier models. I probably would not have purchased one of the earlier model V70s (2002-2004), with lesser predicted reliability.

    I did, however, love driving the legacy, and if the driving experience were the main criteria (which it wasn't), and I were the main driver (which I am not), I would have purchased the legacy (which I didn't).
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    paisanpaisan Member Posts: 21,181
    Toe Room. Funny you mention this, my mother-in-law kept complaining about that on my bro-in-law's 06 Outback. Of course she was comparing it my Armada so it's kinda not fair for her to compare them!

    I will have to see how the toe room is on the GTO. The back seat is actually pretty comfy from what I hear for a coupe.

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    xwesxxwesx Member Posts: 16,826
    I have to agree with the "toe room" comment. To me, the entire passenger cabin in the new (05+) Legacy/Outback feels cramped, and I am comparing this to a '96 Outback. I think a lot of that has to do with the much bulkier seats and the thicker frames around the doors for the airbags.

    I do not mind if the front seats are close to the back seats in terms of knee room as one can work around that, but not being able to stick toes under the seat sure makes the ride feel real cramped, real quick; and, there is not much clearance there.

    The Armada, though.... I am not sure how anyone fits in that little thing! :P
    2018 Subaru Crosstrek, 2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2013 Subaru Forester, 1969 Chevrolet C20, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250
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    paisanpaisan Member Posts: 21,181
    And my inlaws are 5'0 and 5'3 respectively. For them the Armada is HUGE, for me it's big. Haaaaa I'm still amazed every time I get in it how much room there is in the 2nd row even with the front seats in the back-most position!

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