Subaru Outback Forums banner

1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello all, I am looking at a 2017 or maybe a 2018 Outback and have a couple question or more like concerns I guess. I have seen where some of the previous model years had a issue with oil consumption. Is this still a concern with the 17 or 18 models? Also have read about head gasket issues in some past models. Is this something to be concerned about as well or is this in the past? Right now we own a 2011 and a 2013 Toyota rav4. One reason I am looking at the Outback is for towing capacity as we like to kayak and want to invest in a kayak trailer to pull behind. Thanks for any help.
 

·
Registered
2017 Outback Limited
Joined
·
136 Posts
I purchased my first Subaru a year ago, a 2017 Outback Limited. I opted for the 2.5i due to better gas mileage. I'm 66 and have had my share of fast, gas guzzling cars, so my last two cars were more sensible gas concertivative cars. I was very concerned too about oil use. You'll read in subaru literature that oil use is "normal" for cars, but I think that BS as I've NEVER had a car that used oil. I'm happy to report that my Outback uses NO oil in the 10,000 miles I have driven it. Being a 2.5, I don't drive it hard at all and was careful in the first 1000 miles or so hoping to break it in well. Seems like it may have worked. I read the 3.6 is tough on gas but you'll get many owners that will tell you different. I carry 2 kayaks on top,of my Outback at least twice per week, and more often 3 times per week. You can see how I do this here:


While I like the outback, I HATE THE SEATS. Again opinions will vary widely here, but if you can, drive it for an hour and judge for yourself. I like the Eyesight, it's saved me twice from backing into something. It's a bit tough to get use to as it may apply the breaks when you are not expecting but you'll get to know this after a few times.

Good luck with your decision, there are may good car choices out there.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
2018 3.6R Limited - Magnetite - LP Adventure lift
Joined
·
451 Posts
People say the 3.6 is hard on gas. All Subarus are hard on gas. Subarus are not fuel efficient. I don't care what anyone says, they are not. You might get 32 mpg highway under the perfect conditions in a 2.5. Your real numbers will be 27-28, and 22-24 in the six.
Go look at the empirical data on Fuelly. The difference is only 3-4 mpg real world, depending on your situation. That data is undeniable.

We bounced all over this because the 2.5 just did not sit well with me from the first time I pulled out of the dealership on the first test drive. I am coming from a 40mpg combined car that gets 46 on the highway. THAT is efficient. Anything under 30mpg, is just average. Anything under 20 is poor. Outback in any engine config, is average. 3.6 can slip into poor territory if you spend most of your time in the city. My drive daily is 85-90% mixed highways. I expect to see 24 ish in our 3.6 on order.

Towing and hauling large items on top will be more of a strain on the 2.5 than the 3.6 - lots of talk on that here, and the 2.5 FE is pulled down into 3.6 territory when towing or roof racked with big things like canoes or whatever else. I think the CVT in the 3.6 is beefed up in some way too.

Head gaskets are no longer a concern. Nor are timing belts. Oil burning? Who knows. Roll of the dice I guess.

Dont even bother with a 17. The 18 is greatly improved in terms of road and wind noise, and infotainment, connectivity, and the blind spot monitors that have moved to a large indicator on the inside vs the mirror surface. You can see them when looking straight ahead now. Get the 18. Drive both. The 2.5 is fine for most people. I personally hated it.
 

·
Registered
2015 3.6R
Joined
·
1,855 Posts
I'd get the '18 based on some of the changes. Oil consumption has not been an issue with the gen 5s. I have '15 with 34k mikes now and have not had any oil issues. Actually have not had any issues period. Great car so far.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,901 Posts
Head gaskets and excessive oil consumption are no longer concerns.

I'm confused why you are looking at OB's for towing since the RAV4 Adventure has a greater towing capacity.
 

·
Registered
'18 2.5i Premium
Joined
·
96 Posts
Head gaskets and excessive oil consumption are no longer concerns.

I'm confused why you are looking at OB's for towing since the RAV4 Adventure has a greater towing capacity.
Is a kayak trailer really going to be close to a a vehicles towing capacity? How many kayaks are going on this trailer?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,901 Posts
Is a kayak trailer really going to be close to a a vehicles towing capacity? How many kayaks are going on this trailer?
One of the biggest issues with towing most any weight behind your vehicle is excessive heat buildup in the transmission. Toyota thoughtfully adds a transmission cooler to the Rav4 Adventure. I don't believe Subaru offers that as an option.
 

·
Registered
2016 Outback Premium 2.5 CVT w/EyeSight+SRVD
Joined
·
7,114 Posts
I don't believe Subaru offers that as an option.
All Gen 5 Outbacks have the following provisions for cooling the CVT fluid:

Primary: An engine coolant/CVT fluid heat exchanger, intended to both cool and warm the CVT fluid.

Secondary: An air/CVT fluid cooler mounted in front of the A/C condenser and radiator.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Head gaskets and excessive oil consumption are no longer concerns.

I'm confused why you are looking at OB's for towing since the RAV4 Adventure has a greater towing capacity.
My 2013 Rav4 has a towing capacity of 1200 pounds and the same 176 horsepower rating as the new Rav4 Adventure yet the Adventure is rated at 3500 pounds? I do not get it?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,901 Posts
All Gen 5 Outbacks have the following provisions for cooling the CVT fluid:

Primary: An engine coolant/CVT fluid heat exchanger, intended to both cool and warm the CVT fluid.

Secondary: An air/CVT fluid cooler mounted in front of the A/C condenser and radiator.
Did not know that, thanks. Still doesn't change the towing capacities of the two vehicles.


My 2013 Rav4 has a towing capacity of 1200 pounds and the same 176 horsepower rating as the new Rav4 Adventure yet the Adventure is rated at 3500 pounds? I do not get it?
Toyota added what they call a tow prep package. Higher ground clearance, larger radiator, oil and transmission oil coolers.

I'm not a fan of the blacked out wheels but it is a pretty good looking vehicle.
 

·
Registered
2020 Outback Limited, Ice Silver/Titanium Gray Leather Interior
Joined
·
269 Posts
I just traded my 2016 OB (2.5) Premium with 34K miles. Zero issues regarding oil. Never burned oil. Never had to add any.

Traded up to the 2018 Outback Limited. I agree with those who say "Go for the '18!"

It is much quieter regarding documented wind noise issues with the 2015-2017. My 2015 was terribly loud with wind noise. I loved the car otherwise.

The 2018 Steering and suspension and CVT have been enhanced over the 2017 from what I've read. It drives remarkably better than my 2015 (IMO)

The Infotainment system is a significant upgrade to the 2017. It includes Apple car Play which I love & has a larger display.

Some improvements versus 2017:
Wind Noise issue handled
Suspension/Steering more refined
CVT quieter
Actual Tire pressure values displayed on center dash display
Larger clock I can actually read easily
Blindspot indicator on side of mirrors are easy to see
Headlight tracking that turn when going around corners.
 

·
Registered
2015 Outback 3.6R Package 23
Joined
·
1,669 Posts
With the 6-cylinder, I've towed a loaded U Haul 5x8 enclosed cargo trailer three times. The CVT jumps to higher RPM on hills with a full load but it handles it fine. I wouldn't tow 3,000 pounds up the continental divide but 150 miles of mostly flat at 70F is no big deal. Most of my towing is less than 1/2 mile with an unregistered trailer to move my 10'6" fiberglass bottom inflatable dinghy with an outrageously heavy 4 stroke 15 hp Tohatsu outboard. Easily less than 1000 pounds. That's comparable to kayak towing. I don't even know the trailer is there.

When I was telecommuting out of my two vacation homes, I used to get pretty good gas mileage with summer temperatures and summer gas. 26 highway. I'm now driving weekly on 120 mile trips in southern New England and I find myself driving aggressively like everybody else. I'm now getting more like 24 mpg.

I had the new model year recalls all the 2015 owners went through but the car has been reliable. A bit more wind noise than I'd like and it's not a European sport sedan seat but I can live with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
While I like the outback, I HATE THE SEATS. Again opinions will vary widely here, but if you can, drive it for an hour and judge for yourself. I like the Eyesight, it's saved me twice from backing into something. It's a bit tough to get use to as it may apply the breaks when you are not expecting but you'll get to know this after a few times.

Good luck with your decision, there are may good car choices out there.

I agree. The driver's seat is not very comfortable. I keep adjusting it looking for that magical sweet spot, but so far it has eluded me. (2018 Premium)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Have a 2016 Outback 3.6r FANTASTIC car! Like others have said I'm sure the '18 is much better. But I really enjoy the 6-cyllinder! I'd definitely opt for it. I'm sitting at 37,000 Miles, commute about 80 miles a day highway/city average a constant 27 mpg every time! Don't sell yourself short skip the 4. bcblues are you revering to the drivers seat in the 2018 model? The '16 seat is MUCH better then the 2012 Camry I was driving...
 

·
Registered
2018 2.5i Limited w/EyeSight
Joined
·
207 Posts
I would stick to something like a CR-V for your use. A kayak trailer is not going to strain the towing capacity of anything (most run around 200 lbs), so I wouldn't fret about it. You'll get a better price, better reliability, and better gas mileage out of the CR-V. The new little turbo in the 2017 CR-Vs is pretty fun as well... it's a lot livelier than the 2.5i and gets ~10 mpg better than the 3.6R... more or less the best of both worlds.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top