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13' OB 3.6R Limited , SAP, BBP
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116 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First time Subaru owner here!

So far my Subaru experience has been great.

A bit of background

I have owned various cars throughout my life and the majority at this point have been of European manufactures. One of my favorite family haulers was the Audi allroad. Though with age and its problematic air suspension issues, it had to go. It was then replaced my none other than a Honda Odyssey lease. I must admit, the Honda Odyssey had tons of room and practically but the reality was that we didn't need all of that room with just two kids. Our original plans with the Odyssey with the additional seating did not happen as often as we expected. By year one of our lease we had expectations on returning the Ody and replacing it with something smaller and with better fuel economy. It was then when I started to look into the replacement and was thinking about an Outback. To be honest, I was not sold into the Outback right away. What I really wanted was a Legacy Wagon. I looked into the fourth generation Legacy GT wagons but felt they were a bit smaller than my old allroad. At one point, I looked into the fifth generation Legacy Wagons and was disappointed that there were no plans to bring them to states. Therefore the Outback was the closest I can get to a wagon in the Subaru brand. Fast-forward a few months and I had the opportunity to rent one with a 2.5 while I was in Colorado for a week and put on about 700 miles. I had to wait till my lease was over on the Ody and I am glad I did. I prefer the 2013's due to the added features and color selection.

Sometime last fall, I was on this site looking at all of the new 2013's and there was one particular one that just stood out. It was a Brilliant Brown Pearl exterior, SAP with the saddle brown interior. I said " Wow, that's the color I want when my lease is up in April". Come January, something told me to start looking into pricing and availability for that car. It was then when I realized by reading multiple threads on this site that the BBP SAP was a limited production color. I then used TrueCar to help guide me with the pricing of the car and was getting emails and phone calls that same day. I decided to contact my local dealer where my brother had purchase two Subarus from. I mentioned to them that I was looking for a particular configuration (BBP SAP 3.6R). The salesperson said " My manager has the same exact configuration and will be available in February to be sold as a Demo." That's when I decided to take a look at it and get a price. The wife and I test drove it and really loved every bit of it. There was one exception, the price. I was not pleased with the price that I was given for a Demo that will have 5000 miles knowing that I can get a new one using Truecar for just $600 more with more options. I went back to the dealer two days later to have them look at my Ody as a trade in and get a number from them. They gave me a number and would not want to budge on the sale price of the Demo.

This was the turning point. Although I had received a great price guarantee from Truecar, there was no guarantee that the listed dealers would be able to honor that price for a car that was no longer in production. The dealer that had provided me with the best price was certain that he could get that combination but I felt that there was not a chance to place such order based on information provided here. So, I gave a go and placed an order with that dealer and within 15 minutes I got a call back. They couldn't order that vehicle from SOA. it was not longer available. There was one good thing that came out of this. The salesperson suggested that I contact SOA to see if they can locate an outback with that package. I made the call and the person at SOA was very helpful and was able to provide me a few dealers within 700 miles that had that car. The closest one was located 360 miles away in Maine. This was the only one left in the Eastern Seaboard.

I contacted the dealer in Maine and asked for a price for the car. They contacted me within 30 minutes with a number that was great right of the bat. However there was one issue. I still had a lease that I needed to terminate or trade in. They were 360 miles away and that may my trade in appraisal a bit more complicated. I asked if I could take very detailed pictures of the for them to provide me with at least a ball park. They came back with a ballpark number were the difference between the low and the high was $500. However whichever number I got from them still gave me equity on my lease and I wouldn't have to worry about taking care of the last 3 payments to fulfill my lease terms. This was another plus and it was enough incentive to plan to take the trip to Maine the next day. How come I could not get this type of service close to home?

I grabbed the wife and kids and a road trip we went to take care of this deal. Pleasant drive up to Maine it was. Once we arrived at the dealer, my family and I were treated with respect and made us feel at home. We started to take care of business such as the in person appraisal of the Ody, took a look at the Outback and the paperwork began. I really wanted to have some additional options installed on the Outback but the dealer did not stock any of the items that I wanted. In hindsight this was the best way to go since I was able to buy everything at a fraction of the cost and do the install myself. The staff at the dealership provided us with a nice garage to bring both cars in to swap over everything from one vehicle to another. It was a nice gesture for them to do and it kept the kids from going outside at colder temps. The drive home was great considering we just did a one day trip to Maine.

The following day I gave the Outback a bath and nice thorough interior cleaning. I ended up ordering what I wanted originally from Flemington Subaru since their prices where competitive to the other places considering the shipping savings I got , which was free. I ordered a Smart Key remote start, rear seat back protectors, wheel arch moldings, front license plate mount and body side moldings.

In additional to these options I have been keeping my eye on the boards as to what to do about the suspension. I do admit that I was happy with the stock suspension although there were sometimes where the body roll was a bit too excessive. Coming from a background used to having wagons, I stumble across a thread here on these forums regarding a 3.6R Outback being lowered. I started to do some research and I was able to score some Legacy GT struts and springs with limited mileage on them. I was able to pick these up last week and got to work on the right away. Although they had limited mileage, the struts had suffered scratches introduction the opportunity for corrosion. It was then when I decided to do something out of the box. I wanted to somewhat color match the struts and shocks with the SAP accents color with paint that was available. I sandblasted the struts and noticed that there is little to no paint on these suckers. Got them primed and painted with some aircraft grade epoxy base paint that should outlast many other components' paint. I got everything back together and it was time for the tear down and install of the suspension. The install was a breeze. Working on this car is extremely easy. The install took two hours from the before and after pictures.

I am pleased with the results though there are some issues that need to be addressed such as the ability to adjust the camber at the rear. I am currently looking at my options and will see which one would suit me best. So far enjoying every minute of this adventure. Also, I am quite impressed on how well this car can do with fuel economy.

Here are some pictures of the vehicles it replaced as well as pictures of since the day I picked it up and its current condition.

2001 Audi allroad


2012 2.5 Limited rental in Colorado


2010 Honda Odyssey


At the dealer




First drive with snow


Remote Start Wiring


Wheel Arch Moldings


All Highway Fuel Economy 150 miles


Suspension Modification
OEM Legacy GT Suspension


Disassembled


Sandblasted


Primed


Painted


Color Comparison (close but not an exact match)


Before


Before assembly


Assembled


Passenger Side Front


Front Strut Comparison



Installed


Passenger Side Front


More Comparison



Installed


Driver Rear


Rear Comparison



Installed


After


Washed


Body Side Molding Installed



Thanks for looking!

Rich
 

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1,142 Posts
:6: Wow, I am totally impressed. Great work!!!

I too come from a long line of European cars and I totally understand where you are coming from.

Thanks for sharing the photos, I look forward to hearing your progress w/ the rear camber. :29:
 

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2011 Subie 3.6R Limited 2013 Cmax e=nergi PHEV
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824 Posts
Great thread. Awesome clean work and strut comparison. Welcome and thanks for the great pics and information.

Beauty Rootbeer OB. I dig that color especially with the SAP brown leather.
 

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13' OB 3.6R Limited , SAP, BBP
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116 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
:6: Wow, I am totally impressed. Great work!!!

I too come from a long line of European cars and I totally understand where you are coming from.

Thanks for sharing the photos, I look forward to hearing your progress w/ the rear camber. :29:
Thanks Nickshu for your comments and understanding! I will update this thread as I make progress with the camber situation.
:29:

Great thread. Awesome clean work and strut comparison. Welcome and thanks for the great pics and information.

Beauty Rootbeer OB. I dig that color especially with the SAP brown leather.
Thanks Altabrig. Is my time to give to this forum!

BBP is what made me drive so far to pick up. Well worth it.
 

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DBA-BRF EZ36D SAP
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16 Posts
Great first project and a unique look in the process!
I'm not sure if that significant drop affects your suspension geometry though, did you have to do an alignment after to track straight?
 

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'13 OBW SAP 3.6R
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416 Posts
Nice! I might think about doing this after my warranty is up.

How does it ride? Any major issues you have noticed so far? I'll be watching this thread.

Oh yeah, welcome.
 

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2019 Bronze Limited
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205 Posts
Wow! Amazing work. I personally am not a fan of lowered cars, but I definitely can appreciate good workmanship!
 

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13' OB 3.6R Limited , SAP, BBP
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116 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Great first project and a unique look in the process!
I'm not sure if that significant drop affects your suspension geometry though, did you have to do an alignment after to track straight?
Thanks! This drop does significantly affect the suspension geometry thus the need for means of camber adjustment on the rear. As far as the alignment, I have not performed one as of yet though I am tracking straight dead on. I did however note the position of the eccentric bolt markings relative to the indicating mark on the strut and i made sure i put them at the exact location as the stock suspension.

Nice! I might think about doing this after my warranty is up.

How does it ride? Any major issues you have noticed so far? I'll be watching this thread.

Oh yeah, welcome.
The ride itself is descent. It appears to handle turns much better due to its lower CG. It is comfortable but stiffer at the same time. I due feel that the rear may be a bit loose. I believe a larger diameter RSB will help but I will not make any changes until I get the camber corrected and see if that affects the rear suspension behavior for the better. One other issue that I have noticed is that since I have I added the wheel arch moldings and the flanges on the moldings sit further inside than the the lip on the inside of the fender, under hard cornering and fully loading one corner it rubs the wheel arch molding inner lip. This has only happened once but I typically don't take those type of turns with the family hauler. I will look into performing some trimming to the inside of the molding to reduce the risk of damaging the molding or the tire itself.

Thanks
 

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2019 Forester Sport. Love the Orange.
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4,018 Posts
Wow, Amazing first post. Nice pics. Congrats and welcome aboard.
 

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13' OB 3.6R Limited , SAP, BBP
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116 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Wow! Amazing work. I personally am not a fan of lowered cars, but I definitely can appreciate good workmanship!
Thanks WiBrewDude!

I would not expect everyone to like a lowered Outback. I respect that. However, I am not trying to go below the normal Legacy GT height. I had my share of very low cars in the past and sometimes they were just annoying to deal with. My goal is to not get it to that point and still achieve better handling and a preferred look.

;)

Great job! Subscribed for updates.
Thanks!

:29:
Looks amazing ! Congrats on the purchase !
Thanks!

:D
 

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2012 Outback 2.5 Premium - Former: Golf TDI
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466 Posts
Excellent looking OB and welcome :29:

In my opinion, you need to score a set of the EU-issued roof rails (or remove them all together) and some smooth rocker panels for below - the lowered look would flow a lot better with some cleaner lines. If you did this, you would be the absolute idol of about 60% of this forum haha

 

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13' OB 3.6R Limited , SAP, BBP
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Excellent looking OB and welcome :29:

In my opinion, you need to score a set of the EU-issued roof rails (or remove them all together) and some smooth rocker panels for below - the lowered look would flow a lot better with some cleaner lines. If you did this, you would be the absolute idol of about 60% of this forum haha

Thanks!

I actually debated on getting the EU rails at one point. I would still need the functionality of the rails since I will be using a bike and a snowboard rack. As far as the rockers that is one to think about. I don't see it happening any time soon.

Rich
 

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Thanks!

I actually debated on getting the EU rails at one point. I would still need the functionality of the rails since I will be using a bike and a snowboard rack. As far as the rockers that is one to think about. I don't see it happening any time soon.

Rich
Sounds great but I have yet to see some one on this board who can get them for a reasonable price. There used to be a dealer in the UK who was willing to sell and ship to the USA but they have since closed and been merged w/ another dealer.

Let us know what you find....most have cost more to ship than the cost of the parts.
 

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2013 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited, PZEV, Satin White Pearl, SAP, OEM Hitch, Body Side Moldings, Door Edge Guards, Wheel Arch Moldings, Splash Guards, Rear Seat Back Protectors, Rear Bumper Cover, Pin
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88 Posts
Great work on finding the car you wanted even though they ended production of the SAP in the brown. The mods look nice as well, good read.
:welcome2:
 

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13' OB 3.6R Limited , SAP, BBP
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116 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
So I was able to get access to a Legacy 3.6R to do a comparison of the rear suspension earlier this evening. It appears that the lower control arms on the OB are identical to the Legacy 3.6R. The arm that ended up being different was the upper control arm. The Outback's upper control arm is about 1/4" shorter than of the Legacy. Therefore all I need to pick up are the rear legacy GT upper control arms. That should resolve my camber issue.
 

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13' OB 3.6R Limited , SAP, BBP
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
With the help of forum member "ntippet" on part number comparisons between the LGT and a Legacy, there is no need to get the LGT specific control arms. They are the same part number. Controls arms are on order and should be here sometime this week. Will update once the parts arrive and get installed.
 

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2012 Outback 3.6R Premium
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Hey bluer3204, any updates? Interested to know if everything is good. Also, any issues with the tires clearing the bottom spring perch on the struts and shocks as some have reported? Thanks.
 
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