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2005 Outback R LL Bean 3.0 H6 w/ 5 speed sport shift
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 05 Outback 3.0 LL Bean wagon (5 speed auto/sport) currently has a rear differential that has the numbers VA2RHL-XU / 979167.

I have found a possible replacement whose numbers are: VA2RHL-XU / 086672. This diff is from a 06 Outback.

I've tried my local dealer and parts guy but nobody seems to know for certain is the gear ratios are the same. Any help is greatly appreciated!
 

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According to FSMs for 05 and 06 the "XU" designation corresponds to a 3.272 final ratio. "XU" differentials were used only with the 3.0 and the 2.5 turbo with automatic transmission (but not manual).

A double-check, therefore, would be to also confirm the engine/transmission combination of the donor car, but it does look as if the 06 one should work.
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 3.0 VDC Wag + 2018 2.5 Leg Ltd
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26,843 Posts
I think you are going to be isolated to 2005-2006 H6 ouback LL Beans. = without VDC.

as on the the 2007-2009 all of them have it. (edit: not so clear as to what subaru did with the rear diff on this series/ type ??)

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did yours get smashed,...or loss of lube? rare do I read anyone swapping one.

and you might be out buying parts from colorado where H6 are plentiful

car-part.com for lots of junkyards/ warehouses.
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 3.0 VDC Wag + 2018 2.5 Leg Ltd
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26,843 Posts
I was just checking on car-part.com and it did not give me the question about engine. (sadly). thus lumping all the plain 2.5, turbos, and H6 in.

and did not differentiate the years either.

I then went to quirk parts, which is a big dealer using revolution software,

and it gave some the parts numbers, and the rear seems to go on a few cars from 2005-2009???

https://www.quirkparts.com/?p=catalog&mode=search&search_in=all&search_str=differential

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I guess one can replace the whole thing, or the insides, etc?
 

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2005 Outback R LL Bean 3.0 H6 w/ 5 speed sport shift
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598 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Thanks for the quick replies. I've been trying to get some further info and the only thing I've found to make me pause on buying the 06 I've found is Parts Geek lists different rear axle numbers for the 05 & 06 with the H-6 engine. That makes me think they may not interchange?

To answer the question about damaging the diff, I replaced the CV axles all the way around and later thought my tranny was going out. So, I took it to a local transmission shop who told me it was shot. They have a good reputation so I didn't really question their conclusion. After shopping around and finding a salvage tranny with only 12K miles I started to lube up all the nuts and bolts to prepare for removal when I discovered one of the axles had slipped out of the splines on the differential. I pulled the wheel and bearing then popped the axle back in place with a hammer and wooden block. Now, I have a growling and I suspect I've ruined a bearing or the end of the axle. I believe it's the bearing since the axle slid into the spline with no resistance. Rather than try to rebuild the diff, I thought it may be easier to swap it out. I have found an 06 with only 16K but I've got to be certain it will work since I don't want to have an extra tranny AND diff sitting in my shop!!!!!

Oh, and by the way, the tranny was fine.
 

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2010 Forester 5-spd, 2012 Outback CVT
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Some of the difference between years/VDC/part number may be due to some being LSD and some being open. Personally, if the ratio was the same I'd be comfortable swapping to the other style if I couldn't find the right one.
 

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Thanks for the quick replies. I've been trying to get some further info and the only thing I've found to make me pause on buying the 06 I've found is Parts Geek lists different rear axle numbers for the 05 & 06 with the H-6 engine. That makes me think they may not interchange?
There are Subaru dealer parts lists on line, such as OEM Subaru Parts Online | Subaru of America, that I think would be more reliable for this type of research than aftermarket suppliers' lists.

Moreover, I'd not rely on the rear axles to determine interchange suitability of the differentials. The rear axle for your 2005 H6 LLB Outback is shown as p/n 28421AG02C. It fits a wide range of 3rd generation Outbacks and Legacys, including base 2.5s with manual transmissions. As some of these other models have different rear differentials (e.g., a "T" or "VA-1" type), and different gear ratios, using the axle part number would clearly not be a reliable indicator of the interchangeability of the differentials!

In regard to the differential, according to OEM Subaru Parts Online | Subaru of America, the rear differential for your 2005 H6 LLB Outback is p/n 38300AC210. This differential was used in a number of 3rd generation Legacys and Outbacks, all of which have the 5-speed automatic transmission. This is consistent with the factory service manual specifications for the rear differential that I mentioned earlier.
 
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