Subaru Outback Forums banner
1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, father of 2 here. I'm considering buying an outback as our next family hauler. I've always bought Toyota's but with the current car market the way it is Toyota is now out of our price range ($18,000). I've always heard good things about the outback but also have been warned to stay away from them with over 100,000 miles. Our mechanic, and family friend has told me to inspect behind the front wheels and underneath for signs of rust (we live in central Illinois and according to farmers almanac due for a crappy winter).
My wife commutes 40ish miles round trip for work, as well as hauling the kids around to their various activities. I've researched carcompliants.com for the best model yrs, but would also like to get the opinions of current and former owners on years to avoid ect.
Thanks in advance
 

·
Registered
2021 MGM Outback 2.5i Premium with Tungsten Grey seats
Joined
·
4,252 Posts
Biggest question - what's the price range you're looking at and what years are you interested in. Some years/generations have their own pros, cons, gotchas and pitfalls.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
I think there's a reason Outback's are so common in so many places. They are just solid vehicles. This is why I went with one after having a Toyota Tacoma for 13 years.
Maybe my "sample size" is not large enough having only owned my new Outback for a few months, but I'm really loving it so far.
I'm about 5'-11" and have friends about the same height as me and I've packed my Outback with all of them and the backseat room was great; this was honestly a HUGE deal for me; I hated riding in cars and having to sit in a cramped, uncomfortable back seat.
Also, there is so much room in the trunk even before the seats are lowered. My tacoma had literally all my camping gear in the bed, and when I sold it I moved it all into the Outback and had room to spare.
The roof rack is amazingly simple to have the crossbars "setup" and "broken down". Another brownie point.
Fuel economy is good. Reliability is supposed to be great. Price is also great for what you get.

What color are you getting? ;)
 

·
Registered
2021 Touring XT
Joined
·
233 Posts
I am not an expert on the model years and their pros/cons, but I’m on my third Subie: 1) 2005 Outback, drove it over 150k miles before trading it in, no issues whatsoever over lots of commuting, lots of adventure and tons of snow driving; 2) 2014 Forester, drove it 88k miles before trading it in; and 3) now I have 2021 Outback XT and other than the stock battery being garbage, it’s been great through 14k miles.

So my opinion is that they are very reliable cars. Consumer Reports regularly rates the Outback and Forester at or near the top of their rankings. And generally they rate reliability as very high, except somewhat lower ratings for the electronics in recent years.

I generally think the Outback is an outstanding car. Very much preferred both my Outbacks to the Forester I had - smoother, quieter, more practical cargo space (for my needs).

Good luck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think there's a reason Outback's are so common in so many places. They are just solid vehicles. This is why I went with one after having a Toyota Tacoma for 13 years.
Maybe my "sample size" is not large enough having only owned my new Outback for a few months, but I'm really loving it so far.
I'm about 5'-11" and have friends about the same height as me and I've packed my Outback with all of them and the backseat room was great; this was honestly a HUGE deal for me; I hated riding in cars and having to sit in a cramped, uncomfortable back seat.
Also, there is so much room in the trunk even before the seats are lowered. My tacoma had literally all my camping gear in the bed, and when I sold it I moved it all into the Outback and had room to spare.
The roof rack is amazingly simple to have the crossbars "setup" and "broken down". Another brownie point.
Fuel economy is good. Reliability is supposed to be great. Price is also great for what you get.

What color are you getting? ;)
Dunno yet. Depends on what's in the vicinity of my location, and what my wife wants. It'll be her vehicle mostly.
 

·
Premium Member
01 VDC, 05 R Sedan, 06 BAJA EJ257
Joined
·
18,807 Posts
7 Subies at my house. Gen 2 Outback, Gen 3 Outback R, 2 BAJA XT, 11 Impreza Outback Sport, 11 WRX and 18 BRZ. Gen 2 Outback and 11 Sport are over 200k miles. 05 BAJA about to cross 200k, R @ 149k, 06 BAJA and WRX @ 100k and the BRZ at 12k.

All of them have their uniqueness. Tough, reliable and I will walk away from any accident. I would get in either of them and cross the country without worry. Easy to work on when things wear out.

Your price cap puts you in Gen 4 or 5 territory.

2.5 will have a CVT and unless you find one that's had the block replaced, upto 2014 FB 2.5 engines had ring issues and used oil; not all, but a lot. Otherwise the FB engine is a good engine. Overall maintenance cost is down since it's a chain drive engine instead of a belt and the CVT helps conserve fuel.

The 3.6, depending on what you find, will have a 5 speed auto or CVT. Lots of torque, reliable and good mpgs.

Either is a comfortable ride.

When you find one you like, have it looked over by someone that knows Subarus, not necessarily the dealer. If you find one at any manufacturer dealership, definitely get it checked elsewhere.

Plenty of post on this forum from owners on their 1st Subie and they love it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you for the all the advice and opinions. In the past I haven't had any luck with vehicles that haven't been Toyota's ('82 Merc Lynx faulty spark plugs and wheel bearings, '84 Nissan Sentra caught fire/electrical, '00 Olds Alero transmission, '08 Nissan Altima cvt transmission, '05 Nissan Pathfinder 2 cvt transmissions, '02 Jeep Grand Cherokee engine overheating) and therefore am xtra cautious when it comes to researching future family vehicles.
 

·
Premium Member
01 VDC, 05 R Sedan, 06 BAJA EJ257
Joined
·
18,807 Posts
Nissan and Ford CVTs suck. Average lifespan on them is 60k miles before they need rebuilds or in the case of the Fords, replaced due to damage to the case caused by shite design.

Any manufacturer is going to have issues, but at least with Subaru they don't wait until they've lost a court case to do something about a problem.

Keep inind, buying used sometimes means buying a car with issues that may have been due to neglect. That's why it's imperative to have the car checked by a reputable shop prior to purchase. If the seller doesn't want you taking it to be checked out, walk away.
 

·
Premium Member
2021 OB Touring, 2011 OB Premium
Joined
·
2,205 Posts
I am another supporter of looking for a low-mileage (if possible) Outback with the 3.6 engine and 5EAT transmission. This is an unbeatable power train combination. You might possibly find a good, older (2012 - 2015) Outback with this power train within your budget, but it may be difficult, as these models tend to hold their value well.
 
  • Like
Reactions: joelabone81

·
Registered
22 Outback Onyx XT "Lord Vader"
Joined
·
171 Posts
I have to chime in that for a family hauler and mom commuter, you cannot get much safer for her and the li'l ones, than a Subaru Outback. Even without Eyesight, they're very, very solidly made and so very well designed with safety of the occupants clearly priority one. I am ALWAYS amazed at how minor the damage always seems to look in nearly every Outback collision photo, especially in comparison to descriptions of the crash by the driver. And remember, the Subie will have full-time symmetrical AWD as standard. Most other maker's AWD is really two wheels diagonal (1 front, 1 rear) til the other wheels are needed. Phoooey to that! :rolleyes:

Outbacks are well known as solid, reliable (overall), safe vehicles that will get you thru stuff many other SUV's will get you stuck in. And in most cases, if you maintain it, it will be reliable.
Good luck in your search and purchase, whatever you decide on! (y)
 

·
Registered
2014 Subaru Outback 2.5 Premium
Joined
·
862 Posts
Don’t be afraid of them over 100k they are super reliable cars compared to what you listed that you had issues with. The CVT are much better and even though some had problems most didn’t. They are safest cars andeillliterally go through anything weather wise. You can easily get into a Gen 4 maybe a Gen 5. I would say stick to 2013 and up for the 4 cylinder if you go with the 3.6 you can go any model.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
102 Posts
Hello, father of 2 here. I'm considering buying an outback as our next family hauler. I've always bought Toyota's but with the current car market the way it is Toyota is now out of our price range ($18,000). I've always heard good things about the outback but also have been warned to stay away from them with over 100,000 miles. Our mechanic, and family friend has told me to inspect behind the front wheels and underneath for signs of rust (we live in central Illinois and according to farmers almanac due for a crappy winter).
My wife commutes 40ish miles round trip for work, as well as hauling the kids around to their various activities. I've researched carcompliants.com for the best model yrs, but would also like to get the opinions of current and former owners on years to avoid ect.
Thanks in advance
you will love it !!!!!
 

·
Registered
2013 OB Premium, 4-banger, 6-stick
Joined
·
158 Posts
I bought a new 2013 2.5L, 6-speed manual transmission. All I was looking for was a dependable car. Hunted for a stick shift because they're more fun. One day I spotted a Forester with a stick on a Tesla dealer's used car lot and that was the first time I ever even considered buying a Subaru. I don't remember reading of problems with stick shifts on this forum. Quite the opposite with CVTs.

Granted, I have low mileage for a ten-year-old car (35000), but that does include a ten week 14000 mile road trip. No issues then, no issues since. It runs like the day I bought it.

And stick shifts are not only for guys. My girl friend at the time told me she felt special driving a stick because most people are afraid of them. Little secret here - they are not difficult to drive.
 

·
Registered
2010 Outback 3.6R 2014 Legacy 2.5i
Joined
·
4,101 Posts
2010-14 3.6R preferably 2013-14. The only possible downside is the torque converter. Mine was done at 168K so for $1500 got a new Subaru one installed. Another issue may be front timing cover
 

·
Registered
2012 OB , 2017 Impreza
Joined
·
4,749 Posts
A lot of folks rooting for Outback.
Here are some other considerations:

Pretty much any vehicle will last over 10 years/150K miles. Anything less would be unsuitable for the American market.
Unless you NEED the world-class Subaru AWD system or higher ride-height... you may not need to be 'sold' on Subaru Outback.

At the same time, be aware there are some automakers which are less expensive and may compromise too much.

Be aware that ANY AWD system weighs more and has more moving parts than FWD. The MPG will be negatively impacted. If you do not NEED AWD, you would be wise to also consider other excellent vehicles on the market.

After many months of searching, my wife chose the OB due to the ride-height. She found the easier entry/exit to be high priority for her. The AWD eliminates the cost and fuss of dedicated winter-tires which must be stored/swapped 2x year.

In the end --> Get what makes you happy. Life is too short for anything else.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top