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2014 2.5i Limited pzev
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Discussion Starter #1
hello,

I have been reading some on the different kind of awd systems used in the OB. The 3.6 has a VTD. What kind of driving conditions would give a 2.5 trouble that the 3.6 could handle? Or is there any? Conditions such as snow drifts, mud, sand, hill climbs off road?
 

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2012 Outback 2.5 i Premium
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What are you pulling? A steep incline would slow down the 2.5 but that's about it.
 

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Outback Executive 3.0 MY08 (VTD/VDC/LSD)
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hello,

I have been reading some on the different kind of awd systems used in the OB. The 3.6 has a VTD. What kind of driving conditions would give a 2.5 trouble that the 3.6 could handle? Or is there any? Conditions such as snow drifts, mud, sand, hill climbs off road?
Its more about behaviour. VTD is more predictable und smother und faster due to the differential. It is also more the feeling of a RWD car. Drifting is also more interesting :D

But the whole topic has repeatedly been beaten to death, please use the search. The last time even the topic title was identical to yours.
 

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2012 Outback 2.5i CVT
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468 Posts
This subject has been discussed at length in the Gen4 section. I encourage you to try some searches in there to see what comes up.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited pzev
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Discussion Starter #5
ok I'll do some more digging. To answer your question there4igraham at the moment I'm not pulling anything. But I do want to buy a small sailboat and build a teardrop camper. Both of these would be within the 2.5's rated towing. I live in flat southwest Kansas. We do have strong headwinds, tailwinds, and crosswinds (did I mention strong winds?:D).
 

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You may want the six for pulling. Driving around the Midwest shouldn't give you too much trouble with the 2.5 but I think you'd be okay with either.
 

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2013 Legacy Lim CVT Car: 2011 OB Prem 6MT Car: 2006 Miata GT 6MT mc: 2003 Honda GL1800A * Reunite Gondwanaland *
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We do have strong headwinds, tailwinds, and crosswinds (did I mention strong winds?:D).
How 'bout a 2.5 with a roller jib?

.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited pzev
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Discussion Starter #8
Looby, I probably should know what you mean by a roller jib (job?) but I don't. Could you explain what you mean?
Thanks
 

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2011 Tacoma TRD Sport Double Cab Long Box
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The AWD system differences probably aren't enough to dictate whether you can or can't do something.

Power, cost, gas mileage, and transmission options are the primary differences between the two engines after that. I'd definitely suggest that you drive both cars. If you're coming from a 3.5L Altima, you might be disappointed by the 2.5L Outback, but that said even the 3.6 won't touch the Altima's acceleration.
 

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If you plan to tow like I do (2200 lb trailer) I would go with the 3.6R for the transmission. They do not put the CVT behind the 3.6R most likely because it can not handle the torque. The main reason I went with the 3.6R and from reading this forum my fuel economy is very close to the 2.5.
 

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2013 Legacy Lim CVT Car: 2011 OB Prem 6MT Car: 2006 Miata GT 6MT mc: 2003 Honda GL1800A * Reunite Gondwanaland *
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2014 2.5i Limited pzev
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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks, everyone for replying. As far as the power of the engines I don't really need the exceleration of the Altima as I very seldom use all of it. I have driven a 4 cylinder Toyota Tacoma single cab, 4x4, 5sp MT for 13 years. It is rated at 150hp and 177 ft/lbs of torqe. The OB is rated at about 173hp and 173 or 4 ft/lbs of torqe. So my truck has less hp but almost comparable torqe. The truck is lighter I think. I'm not sure if the OB would be comparable in performance or not. Then you have the CVT/5sp MT variable to. Some people say all that matters is hp. If that's the case the 2.5 would probably be fine. Others say torque is what matters. If that's true then the 2.5 may not be enough for me once I get the wife, 2 kids, luggage, and all the other junk one has to haul around. I don't know. I am going to test drive next month. My nearest dealer is 3 to 3.5 hrs away. Is having a dealer that far away a big problem or not?
Thanks
 

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Thanks, everyone for replying. As far as the power of the engines I don't really need the exceleration of the Altima as I very seldom use all of it. I have driven a 4 cylinder Toyota Tacoma single cab, 4x4, 5sp MT for 13 years. It is rated at 150hp and 177 ft/lbs of torqe. The OB is rated at about 173hp and 173 or 4 ft/lbs of torqe. So my truck has less hp but almost comparable torqe. The truck is lighter I think. I'm not sure if the OB would be comparable in performance or not. Then you have the CVT/5sp MT variable to. Some people say all that matters is hp. If that's the case the 2.5 would probably be fine. Others say torque is what matters. If that's true then the 2.5 may not be enough for me once I get the wife, 2 kids, luggage, and all the other junk one has to haul around. I don't know. I am going to test drive next month. My nearest dealer is 3 to 3.5 hrs away. Is having a dealer that far away a big problem or not?
Thanks
Mega- the 2.5 in the OB with CVT will feel like a rocket compared to the Tacoma. Why? Simple its sleeker and has far better gear ratios to put power to the ground. Coming from a 3L V6 4runner to a 5spd MT 2.5 subaru years ago that car felt like freaking rocket compared to the 4runner. You'll have the same experience. The Tacoma has the profile of a brick wall LOL

As for hauling ability the CVT gear ratios make it very easy to forget that you only have 173Hp up front given its got a gear ratio for every need. Unlike 5spd MT or other non CVT transmissions where you always have a flat spot where the gear is not ideal for the power and load your hauling. The CVT interestingly rarely has that type of situation.

Take some people with you and pack some weight into the CVT for a test drive. You might be surprised what having lots of potential gear ratios does for a car and engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
thanks a lot sailer. That's was kind of my gut feeling about the CVT and its ratios vs an MT or other non CVT trannies. Like I said most of the time I don't need as much power as the Altima has. When my roads are bad most of the time its not power that I lack, its traction.
 

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2019 Bronze Limited
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Mega - this past Saturday I hauled myself, my wife, our 6 yr old girl, her best friend who is visiting from NYC, and her 11 yr old daughter, as well as their luggage (which I think included the kitchen sink) from the airport around Milwaukee and then a few hours home. People weight I am looking at around 800-900 lbs and then at least a 100 lbs in the back (probably more).

I averaged 28 mpg running 68 mph and the car felt no different accelerating than when it is just me in it.

I came from a 310 HP VW Touareg with full time 4WD and transfer case. I was seriously afraid the OB would feel too weak to me, I mean its only a 4 cylinder. Surprisingly it has not. The part of me that is a adolescent school boy missed the raw power and capability of the VW, but my wallet loves the increased fuel economy and lower operating costs of the OB.

As others have said though, try to drive both in as numerous conditions as you can.
 

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thanks a lot sailer. That's was kind of my gut feeling about the CVT and its ratios vs an MT or other non CVT trannies. Like I said most of the time I don't need as much power as the Altima has. When my roads are bad most of the time its not power that I lack, its traction.
The Nissan 3.5 is a nice engine lots of giddy up and go in that car. LOL
I have three cars out front 1.8T 5spd Jetta, 4.7L v8 Sequoia and our 2.5L CVT subaru OB.
The OB sees the daily grind hauling two kids and often times two adults around. At least once or twice a week it has three adults and two kids along with various crap in the back.

When its just mom and dad + kids for road trips the local grandparents are not going we always take the OB. It's simply more comfy, nicer ride and has plenty of hauling ability even when we take the 900lb camp trailer and all the camping crap with us. The Sequoia is used when everyone - grand parents etc are going and we need the seating room.

The 2.5 and the 3.5 more or less have the same hauling ability only the 3.5 offers a little more seat of the pants grunt for those people who might be coming from a V8 truck or SUV and think they need as much power as they can buy etc. This is our second 2.5L subaru. First one was used as our truck for 11yrs and 180,000 miles for the wife and I + the dog. When the kids showed up the new Gen4 with the much larger back seat was too hard to pass up. Never even considered the 3.6 given we already knew the 2.5L had hauled boats - bikes- camping crap + boats all up and down the West coast over the Sierras with no issues. We only found the limits when we got a bigger boat we went from 600lbs behind the car to 1700lbs which case cooling capacity was the issue not power oddly enough the 3.6 has more or less same cooling limitations when you start talking heavy hauling trailering needs. LOL

So if you don't need the seat of the pants kick from the 3.6L then the 2.5 is very much capable of doing the job.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
thanks again everyone! I have access to a Chevy Suburban that sits in my shop most of the time. It gets used when my family and grandparents go too. It sits enough of the time we keep a trickle charger on the battery. If I need a V8 I can use it or my Dad's truck. I live in Chevy truck country so if I get a 4 cyl Subaru I'm sure some will think I'm out of my mind.

I know Looby has talked about torque vs hp a number of times. Here's my simplified take on it. Torque = work. Hp = how fast the work gets done over time. If person A put 100 lb/ft of torque on a nut to tighten it and it takes 10 sec, then person B comes along and puts 100 lb/ft of torque and it takes him 5 sec to tighten it then person B has more hp but the same torque. Both people got the job done with 100 lb/ft of torque but the person with more strength accomplished it faster.

I want to lean toward the 2.5 because it will keep my wallet happier. I will test drive when I get a chance then report back
 

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Here's my simplified take on it.
Torque = work.
Hp = how fast the work gets done over time.
Pretty close, except that torque without rotation is not work.

torque = mechanical work per shaft rotation

power = mechanical work per unit time

...1 megawatt = 1341 horsepower (with or without torque)

Looby
 
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