Subaru Outback Forums banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
32 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
currently own 07 passat wagon. me and my wife are both into mountain biking and hiking here in colorado, some trail heads are only accessible via pretty rough jeep roads. i am not going to do any serious off roading just need to be able to handle some rougher terrain and passat is very limiting in this way. also have dog so hatchback is what i am looking for and outback looks apealing and sort of comparable to passats wagon interior space and trunk space.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
103 Posts
the outback can hang on pretty sketchy turf, meaning the awd system's are flawless as far as traction goes but ground clearance wise, the outback can hold you back on some of the "funnest" trails... meaning its no 4runner. they sell lift kits for both the passat and the outbacks. my sister has an 04 passat tdi wagon FWD that she tore 3 oil pans out of in less than a year traveling the hills of northern cali, her problem was ground clearance, not traction. we finally convinced her to get the lift kit and skid plate kit which allows her to travel into the toughest of boonies mind free of taring off the bottom half of her car.
your call, if i were to get something different i would get a lifted yota or 4runner in your case for the dogs:29:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Good point with the skid plate, but brankulo didn't state whether they wanted a new or used. Either way, 4Runner will be more expensive...

My brother-in-law owned a 95 4Runner until it died. Then owned a 2002 until it died. Then went to Jeep, then finally a 2007 OB. He loves the OB.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,926 Posts
If you know the 4-wd road to Huron Peak out near leadville, we were able to get back there with our 05 XT. One big dig that had me worried, but we made it no problem!

Tom
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,043 Posts
currently own 07 passat wagon. me and my wife are both into mountain biking and hiking here in colorado, some trail heads are only accessible via pretty rough jeep roads. i am not going to do any serious off roading just need to be able to handle some rougher terrain and passat is very limiting in this way. also have dog so hatchback is what i am looking for and outback looks apealing and sort of comparable to passats wagon interior space and trunk space.
One example I can give you that I drove last year, was on Gothic Rd or CR 317 where there are two trailhead parking area's for the 401 trail and the second one has a creek crossing and a sign that states 4x4 high clearance only. My OB made it without an issue as did the 4 other Subarus that were parked there. We got an applause from the other people as the only other vehicle there was a lonely Jeep....
I have also done Yankee Boy Basin in Ouray,
Not my vid but it gives you the idea...
I have raised my OB a bit and skid-plates are a must have item.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
32 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
would be looking into used, probably around 3 year old. another reason i am looking at outback is fuel economy, would want something close to passat. my wife wouldnt be happy if i told her about getting 4 runner:)
now how much impact has raising outback on its fuel economy? and on its handling while on road? is it something i can handle installing?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
97 Posts
I just took mine on some old log roads in Minnesota and ended up going so far that they turned into four wheeler trails. I had no problem. There were big rocks I went over and some around. I went through some super deep puddles that had super deep mud, definitely would have had water up to the doors. I went through kind of fast to avoid getting stuck. AWD kicked in and I had no problems. That is all pretty slow driving but pretty fun. Also, it had been raining all day. It was a great day to see the fall colors. I would have been lost without my GPS too!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
232 Posts
I have a Passat, a Jeep and had and now have again an Outback.

Usually I go offroading with my Jeep, but a few years back I wanted to see how far my 2003 Outback would go. I took it with me to Moab and tried several trails. it had no problems with the White Rim Trail, Potash and Shafer trail, and it made it almost to the Gemini Bridges (one could drive all the way to them). The only mods I had made was a set of AT tires .

I can tell you that the current Outback, which has more grond clearance than my 2003 had, will drive circles around your Passat and will still be going strong on bad trails, when the Passat has thrown in the towel long agao.

The fueleconomy is similar to the Passat, but it runs on regular, not on the expensive premium the Passat needs.
The Outback is the ideal vehicle for your driving!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
514 Posts
As much as you like, depending on how much of the lower-portion of the body and undercarriage you care about (or don't care about).

Hit a large enough rock with one hit under the doors and the doors may need the jaws of life to open them! Then you could use a bungee cord to keep them closed.

I know I certainly would not want my Outback driven like that, the thing has 120K miles and still looks NEW!:17:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,043 Posts
The OB is definitely not a trail-rated off-road rock climbing go anywhere machine but it isn't your mother's Oldsmobile either...
With a good driver behind the wheel and a few precautions such as the right tires, skid-plates and maybe a lift, the OB can go places that most people can only dream about. During my trip to Yankee Boy Basin I saw a guy with a Jeep who wished he had brought his OB as his Jeep had overheated on the way up... This can happen to any car, but the point is that with caution the OB is actually quit capable of doing things regular wagons can't...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
514 Posts
When I was young and stupid (knew everything), I had an ordinary small 70's new car. After a while I was driving it places like down trails, in woods, etc. Finally, getting stuck with five people in it at midnight up in a cornfield with pouring freezing rain. I thrashed that transmission for hours trying to get the car "un-stuck."

A Jeep tried tugging on the thing and it was up to the frame. I don't remember how we got the car out, but I remember driving home the next morning and the thing was all screwed up, shifting, revving, etc - in Drive.

Live and Learn I guess. I wish I would have learned earlier instead of ruining a perfectly good car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
32 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
resurrecting an older thread here. is 2.5 engine enough for all around riding or should i go for 3.6?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
resurrecting an older thread here. is 2.5 engine enough for all around riding or should i go for 3.6?
I have a 2000 2.5 liter outback and I have had it loaded completely full and it didn't seem to care that much. It is "only" a 4 cylinder engine but the thing you have to remember is that these horizontally opposed engines give more torque than other 4 cylinders so it is quite capable of pulling more weight than you might otherwise think.

It is our only car and we have never really felt it to be lacking in our daily driving and is plenty zippy for a 4 cylinder car. Going down the highway at 80 mph it doesn't seem to struggle much either. Going up hills it does struggle a bit, but not nearly as much as the puny 4 cylinder engine in our old focus. Because of that torque the engine provides you find that the 2.5 engine doesn't have to "work as hard" as other engines the same size.

I was primarily talking about pavement driving but I have taken it out onto dirt and I haven't felt the need for more power. Though I haven't done any serious off roading with it, just going out to some caves and such.

I love the 2.5 engine in my outback. The 2.5 will use less gas too. The only thing I would say to consider is that I hear the 3.6 H6 engine was not as prone to head gasket failure as the 2.5 was. If you are looking at new models though, I don't think it is an issue anymore anyways.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,836 Posts
The older 2.5's and even the H6's due to the wedge style body shape all had one major weakness regarding cooling capacity. Everyone be it the 2.5 owners or the H6 owners who push the cars hard regarding loaded and hot temps have found that power was never really the issue but cooling capacity was. Lots of years living with the 2.5 towing and hauling heavy camping trip loads etc in Hot California summers power WAS NEVER an issue Cooling WAS always an issue! The 2000 through 2002's were more sensitive to hot temps and cooling than the 2003's - the 03's had some minor tweaks to help with this better exhaust gas and heat management primarily. 2005' update helped more with some more tweaks here and there also exhaust system changes again. The cooling issues were better from 05 through 09 but you could still find the limit in hot temps and heavy use or higher speeds and big head winds etc.

The 2010 redesign gave better frontal surface for better cooling capacity - and they enlarged the exhaust porting. The cold 2.5 today sounds like a MAC truck till it warms up given the large Exhaust porting to help address heat issues. The changes they made 2010 and newer along with the CVT have GREATLY GREATLY improved the cooling system issues and the 2.5 paired with the CVT has been really good at doing the grunt work for us. 50,000 miles of hot CA trips hauling boats, tent trailers etc and so far the cooling system is Light years better! Power is better due to far far more gearing options via the CVT. The 2.5 with CVT in the OB is a pretty nice combo for the typical OB use of camping - hauling small trailers and otherwise being the family truckster.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
32 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
what my main worry is hills here in colorado. my current passat 2.0 turbo is great on highways and going over passes. enough power to pull 4 people, loaded trunk and bikes on hitch rack. it is always hard to go to less power. not trying to say that OB 2.5 engine has less power as i have no idea, that is why i wander 2.5 vs 3.6. maybe i should go and test drive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,836 Posts
what my main worry is hills here in colorado. my current passat 2.0 turbo is great on highways and going over passes. enough power to pull 4 people, loaded trunk and bikes on hitch rack. it is always hard to go to less power. not trying to say that OB 2.5 engine has less power as i have no idea, that is why i wander 2.5 vs 3.6. maybe i should go and test drive.
The 2.5 starts to suffer altitude sickness at 6000ft - works fine but you can tell its starting to get short on grunt. Only reason I would ever go 3.6 in the OB would be for lots of high altitude use. Which sounds like you might be in that type of use pattern. Our regular trips to Tahoe at 6000-7000ft the 2.5 does fine but if I were doing higher altitudes on a pretty regular basis the 3.6 would be nice if the price bump wasn't a big deal.

Turbo is king when it come to not being as sensitive to Altitude given it gets force fed air. Diesel Turbo is even better hence why Colorado is the #1 state in the US for TD cars and trucks.
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
About this Discussion
22 Replies
11 Participants
CaptainOHair
Subaru Outback Forums
Welcome to the Subaru Outback Owners Forum, we have tons of information about your Subaru Outback, from a Subaru Outback Wiki to customer reviews.
Full Forum Listing
Top