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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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Discussion Starter #1
a thread idea for everyone that is stuck without the beloved Outback, be it due to a crash / maint. problem, or travel.

help your fellow reading members,...decide what is fun / usable to choose when you have a choice as to what is sitting available.

give a sentence, a paragraph, or just a emoticon.

if you find someone typing about rental cars, Please link it back here.



 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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25,813 Posts
Discussion Starter #2

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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25,813 Posts
Discussion Starter #3

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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25,813 Posts
Discussion Starter #4

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Outbrat XT, Foz, 3.0R Limited
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4,605 Posts
I didn't have a choice. The Elantra sucks balls. I should have downgraded to a compact and got a Mazda2 or Fiesta, at least they would have been enjoyable to drive.
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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25,813 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
a @rasterman list:

http://www.subaruoutback.org/forums/138-gen-5-2015-present/324401-dodge-journey-compared-outback-3-6-a.html#post3687697

a Chevy Captiva is a Chevy Equinox like thing, made cheap for fleets and not sold as new to the regular public in the US market. (turns up used from rental car companies though).

and the chevy aveo got replaced by the equally sucky Sonic,

and that got mixed in with the Spark which they say is nice to look at as a tall roof / small foot print urban beater,...but not really drive or live with.
 

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2,819 Posts
Ford Focus is my rental choice.
 

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Outbrat XT, Foz, 3.0R Limited
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4,605 Posts
Ford Focus is my rental choice.
How is the new Focus? I've only driven an SVT Focus in the last few years but before that I thought the plebe spec Foci were pretty craptastic.
 

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2013 Outback, 2.5i Limited w/ Moonroof
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1,537 Posts
While my Outback is in the body shop getting repaired from a recent deer hit, I've been driving a '14 Chevy Impala LT. I didn't get much choice on the rental, as the rental is being paid for by my insurance company and the local Hertz is a GM dealership.

My initial impression of the Impala was very positive. There is a lot to like about it. But as I drove it for longer, I found a lot to dislike. A lot of my dislikes have to do with the very typical GM interior style. And much more of my dislike is because, well, it just doesn't measure up to the Outback. So here are my likes and dislikes.

Positives:
Plenty of power. Not only is there plenty of acceleration, it is very smooth, probably as smooth as the Outback. And the power is available even at high speeds. 75-90 is very quick. So quick that I find myself going faster than intended.
Quiet interior. Very easy to carry on a conversation with my wife, with hardly a notice of ambient noise.
Very nice handling. The Outback could take a lesson at how smooth a lane change is in the Impala.
Spacious. Huge interior. And huge trunk. But that's what one should expect from a car that big.
Attractive wrap around IP and door styling. Nice accent with real stitching in plastic dash. (More about this when I get to the negative observations.)
Comfortable seats. I give them a slight edge over the seats in my Outback, although there is an oddity that bothers me. I'll mention that below.
Fuel economy. For daily driving to work at 80, it gets about 25-26. Not bad for my driving style.
Heater. Plenty of heat. And very fast at warming up the interior. But no automatic climate control. But I'm sure that's available on upper trim levels.

Negatives:
Terrible traction in the snow. Absolutely beyond description. I suspect that 75% of that is the Firestone Firehawk tires. Never, ever, buy a set of these. But at least part of it is poor traction control management. I tried driving up my driveway with traction control off. Also a bad experienece.
Electric brake button is counter-intuitive. Pull to set, push to release. At first I thought I didn't like it just because it's backwards from the Outback. But there's more to it. It's just wrong. In my mind a brake should be released by being pulled.
Terrible rear mirror/rear window view. The rear window has a lot of slant, leaving a very poor view. And the small size of the rear view mirror doesn't help.
Front seats. Ok, so the side supports on the seat bottom are ever so slightly too close together for my butt and legs, and the side supports on the seat back are too far apart to offer any support. Totally weird. This plays with my mind every morning on the way to work.
Interior styling. Way too traditional GM. The nice stitching is actually stitched through a solid plastic dash. It doesn't actually stitch anything together.
Stereo. For all those who rag on the HK system, you need to drive this car for a day. The reception is not quite up to that of the HK. But even worse, the sound is just flat. It lacks brilliance. Before anyone says I just need to adjust it, I have. And have. Sorry, but it just doesn't measure up. The HK is in a different league.
Information menus are cumbersome. Way too many button strokes to get to different settings.
Steering wheel buttons. They just aren't sized and shaped well enough to operate them without looking down and confirming your finger position. I can run the controls on the Outback without ever looking down. Not so on the Impala.
And that brings me to the key fob. Also can't push the buttons without looking at it. The buttons are too close together and aren't tactile enough.
Bluetooth hands-free phone. It has a terrible feedback problem. I can hear myself talking at a slight delay. Drives me nuts when trying to carry on a conversation.
Did I mention that it absolutely sucks in the snow?
Almost forgot. Headlight projection distance and intensity doesn't measure up to the Outback. But, once again I would be a fool to expect anything more out of a GM. GM has never spent any real design time on headlights that work well. Look good? Yes. Work well? No.
And did I mention that it has horrible snow traction? I mean bad. Not only bad compared to a Subaru. But I mean bad compared to any FWD car with a good set of tires.

I miss my Outback so much! I'm supposed to get it back tomorrow. Three weeks with a rental car is just too long.
 

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2016 OB Premium with Eyesight
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534 Posts
Wait, your OB ebrake must be backwards than mine. I am forever driving a rental as I only get to drive the OB on weekends. I don't have to take the kids around town all day, makes sense. I feel for ya...
 

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'15 Outback 2.5i Premium
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I rented a Ford Taurus while in northwestern NY state a couple of weeks ago.

What I liked:
The car wasn't bad, and it did OK; it got us to our destinations, sometimes in a near-blizzard (see: "lake effect"), with only minor white-knuckle moments, in an unfamiliar car, which ain't bad! It wasn't AWD, but c'est la vie.

It did have a fan speed knob rather than the higher-lower push buttons; I prefer the knob - I think it's easier to use (but see below for more on the heater system).

What I didn't like:
Almost every routine control except the steering, throttle, brakes, turn signal, and wipers was accessed through the center touch screen. If it was on the audio display, you had to change mode to adjust the cabin temp or change the mode among feet, dash vents, and defrost. If you are on the Climate screen, you can't select the radio station/audio source or see what it is (not that I did that a lot, but, still!) Ugh! There were others screens, too, but I was too busy to notice what they were.

[soapbox]
Touchscreens are not appropriate for driver controls in cars. You have to look at them, sometimes intently, instead of operating them by feel to get them to do what you want, while still looking at the road. Yes, you can have 36 radio presets and save the cost of the physical buttons this way, but, c'mon!!
[/soapbox]

It had pushbutton and remote start. I just don't see the big win with PB start. Yes, it saves taking the fob out of your pocket, but at least with the mechanical key-turn, you know if it's still in accessory position or not (posts here indicate this is sometimes a problem). I tried the remote start, just because I could. It worked, but I had to stop and re-start it before I could actually do anything. Maybe this was unfamiliarity, but I'm just not seeing the benefit. Then, again, I'm a dinosaur. :frown2:

This was one of the few times I took the CDW option on the rental. The weather was that bad, and it was "only" $10/day and we had the car for two days. Fortunately, it wasn't needed - probably because we had it! Superstitious? Me??
 

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136 Posts
Best rental car I ever had sadly is not available in the US - it was a Mazda 6 wagon. Had it in Iceland - even with studded snow tires on it in fall weather it drove nicely. The 4banger wasn't too strong but not too weak. Interior was nice and comfy. It would be a serious contender against the Outback if they sold it here! It looked like this:


Worst ever - the Chevy Classic, which was a fleet spec'd Malibu and the Chevy Cavalier, which deserves a nomination for one of the worst cars ever built.
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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Discussion Starter #13

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Sold: 2000 OBW with AWP
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614 Posts
Toyota Prius C - no way will I ever get back into this vehicle. Tepid acceleration at best. Interior is cringeworthy - cheap plastic and just plain uncomfortable. Pedal to the metal was 10mph over highway speed limits on the slightest of inclines. CVT droned and whined most of the way. Battery mode is useless unless you are creeping forward. Felt like a tin can and shook everytime I went past a truck. But I got 47mpg!

2015 Malibu 2LTZ (with the 2.0 turbo engine) - that one was quick. Yes, it still has traditional GM "quality" plastics on the lower half of the dash and door panels - but the rest of the car felt well put together. Rest of the interior surface were actually pretty good. I was surprised with the Malibu. It handled pretty well too. Seats were quite comfortable for me. It was nicely decked out with lane departure warning, collision detection and blindspot monitoring. Also had keyless entry, push start. WAY better than their 2.5L (?) eco engine with start-stop technology.
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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Discussion Starter #15

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05 OBXT & 16 Crosstrek
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674 Posts
I had a 2015 Chrysler 200s for a few days about a week and a half ago. It was the worst car I've driven in some time. The transmission couldn't seem to sort out what gear to be in when starting from a stop until it warmed up. No joke, it felt like it had no torque until you got going about 10mph. It also had to downshift 3 gears to go up a slight hill. The front A pillers created a huge blind spot that was downright dangerous when trying to merge or navigate traffic. I lost a minivan in the A piller.

I traded the 200 for a 2016 Ford Fiesta SE. It was a fun little car and if it had a manual transmission I could see myself getting one to be a DD. It could have used a bit more power, but it felt sporty enough and got great mileage.

Sent from my A0001 using Tapatalk
 

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Least favorite rental ever was a PT Cruiser. Felt completely worn out at ~30k miles and was a horrible puke yellow color to boot!

Most favorite rental was a Chrysler 300. They give me this thing in Denver in January during a snow fall with expected icing overnight. Whatever. I had fun doing donuts in the parking lot with it.
I also enjoyed the Grand Cherokee in SLC. We drove up to Yellowstone and although all public roads in the national park are paved, it was nice having the capability to pull off the road nearly anywhere when warranted. Didn't like the max 19mpg.

Back in the early 90s, I did get a Legacy sedan when I visited Cleveland, Ohio. It wasn't snowing that week but it was my first exposure to Subies.
 

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156 Posts
I drove a 2013 Ford Focus a couple years ago. The transmission sounded like it was full of rocks. I was convinced it was about to blow up. As it turns out it was a pretty widespread problem with that generation. But aside from that it was a decent car. The interior was too weird and busy for my taste and the visibility was pretty poor. I felt a foot shorter than usual because I was sitting so low relative to the side windows. But it looked sporty and could get out of its own way. I will not drive another one, though.
 

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Sold: 2000 OBW with AWP
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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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25,813 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Actually, FCA is re-badging the T&C as Pacifica. I had a chance to drive a pilot fleet vehicle over short distance. I would say it was better than the T&C. Looks better too I think...

Is it a different platform, like off a existing Fiat van?

the old Pacifica was a cheaped up Mercedes Benz R class, and similar to a Tribeca
(All low sellers in the USA)
 
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