Best Subaru for new, teenage driver? - Subaru Outback - Subaru Outback Forums
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 02:48 PM Thread Starter
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Best Subaru for new, teenage driver?

My teenager is rapidly getting close to needing his own car. He's been learning / taking lessons on a 2007 RAV4.

Wondering about a Subaru for him for when he gets his license ... Criteria:
  • Older model for price / lower insurance
  • At least no worse maintenance than a similar older car from other manufacturers.
  • Steering / braking "new driver" friendly
  • Not so un-cool he'll not want to be seen in it.
  • Not so old he can't connect his iPod, a cable connection is fine, Bluetooth not needed

Thoughts?


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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 02:54 PM
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using the 2007 rav4 as a base line for discussion ?
do you consider that too old, too expensive, too anything vs. what you are looking for?

and as far as connectivity and old cars: $100 can add you a brand new head unit with all that you want in it.
(USB preferable vs. just a dumb aux in).


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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 03:22 PM
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In the Subaru line? I guess I'd look for a ~2008 Forester for that list of criteria.
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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eagleeye View Post
using the 2007 rav4 as a base line for discussion U { ... } SB preferable vs. just a dumb aux in).
Since he is taking lessons on a RAV4, the relevancy of that is what he will be most used to driving.

As to iPod, as long as he can connect in. Even dumb AUX with a 1/8" stereo cable would be acceptable. But as noted, the head can be replaced with whatever he wants ...

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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:43 PM
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what I would hope to give a teen, a car with Electronic Stability Control (subaru =VDC)

and the 2007 Rav4 has that as per IIHS stating it has "ESC": Vehicle details


what is nice: something to stop the teen from rolling the car and breaking his neck and killing oneself, from swerving around a toddler in the road and driving over a curb and through a ditch to do it.

maybe a 2009 plus impreza, forester, legacy, outback then. (many legacy and outbacks have it in 2008, but not foresters or impreza).

...keeping in mind such cars maybe driven as fast as possible. (so as much as I would like to recommend a EZ30D or EZ30R such maybe too fast,.. vs. say a nice pokey 168hp outback.)...maybe put a nanny in his cell phone to monitor how fast the car is going. when I was 16-17
I drove cars with less then 100hp,...and it took a long long time to crank them up past 85mph. (but I did so every afternoon).
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 09:04 PM
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I like Gen 2 outbacks, also Imprezas are a good choice. Going newer, Cross Treks are safe and underpowered so he can't get in trouble.
Forresters actually have tons of storage so he may get "volunteered" to drive if he goes camping or other activities that require space in the rear.
Subaru in general is a good choice for new drivers, they're very safe and quite dependable, he'll never learn to dig himself out of a snow bank with one.

One personal recommendation, make him learn to change a tire as part of his license test. Everyone should know how to do that.

Good luck.
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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 10:05 PM
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Avoid the smaller impreza platform which is the Forrester. The Legacy and the OB both offer the best crash survivability. The Legacy is a tank much stiffer than the OB. Also better handling than the OB. I loved the lower roof line for easy MT bike loading. The legacy can do camping trips even tow etc. Mine was tagged to haul 4 guys and mt bikes on camping trips many times. The OB is good but not as forgiving regarding handling in emergency menuvers etc. We beat the crap out of the legacy its stiff sedan body and nearly unflappable handling and really good crash score makes it a good first time driver car. EYE sight in the new cars would be my top choice given the texting risks etc. But sounds like your looking used.
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-22-2017, 01:47 PM
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I specialize in these types of questions, I really feel there are 3 main components that you are looking for and you will need to comprimise some.

* Inexpensive
* Safe
* Not uncool


Coolness factor is highly subjective. Station wagons are either totally lame or trendy - what do you and your kid think?
New cars are much much safer in a crash but are never cheap
Cheap cars can be very cool, but will never be as safe as a current model.

Ignoring coolness since you already said Subaru you really have 3 models to choose from
Legacy/outback
impreza sedan/wagon
Forester

For models made in the 2000 - 2009 these are all leaders in crash ratings. A 2002 impreza is a good example of acceptable safety for a basement price. If you want to spend more for safety then go right to the 2014 forester or impreza, these are safest of all cars on the road and it took the outback/legacy another year to get there.
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-22-2017, 02:09 PM
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spend some time on cars101.com and ask specific questions

you can easily and readily put blue tooth or aux in or whatever you want into any 1970's Subaru, that's a nonissue and shouldn't be a deciding factor on pre 2005 models. 2005+ you can still add stuff it's just more annoying and requires looking up how people did it with nonstandard integrated stereos, etc.

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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 03-22-2017, 03:59 PM
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Imprezas up through very late 06 07 ish lacked side airbags. Vs even the 01 legacy had side airbags.

Suggesting the 02 impreza which had virtually minimal modern crash systems compared to nearly all other 02 options is pretty silly.

An 02 camry/lexus is a far far superior choice in that regard.

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