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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone, I'm currently the owner of a 2014 Passat TDI 6MT with 106,xxx miles. I'm the original owner and my car has been serviced meticulously. I'm a traveler and love going on adventures which is why this car was purchased. My girlfriend and I find this car super spacious and gets outstanding MPG. We hate to see it go but we are moving to Estes Park, CO in 4 days and we will be working in the Fort Collins, Boulder area. With that said our drive is about 1 hour each way and I feel the outback would be better than an SUV as far as fuel cost goes. Being lots of climbing up to Estes Park on 34 & 36 I'm curious if the 2.5 will be enough? My TDI has tons of torque and bogs down in those altitudes. So I'm wondering what people's input is on this transaction. I also feel I could take atvantage of the 0% For a little while with Subaru. We both like the idea of AWD as I as well would still put snow tires on for the winter! We love to snowboard so we will be driving in mountain towns in the winter. I guess my biggest question is, will this car handle the mountains everyday to and from work and on the weekends or would the 3.6 be better? Being that the tow rating is 2700 lbs I just don't know how comfortable I'd be doing that in the mountains. I do have a 6x12 enclosed trailer I plan to have at the house for occasional things so I'm not sure how this car will handle this load or the road conditions. My other alternative I've been looking at is a 2017 Toyota 4Runner TRD Off-road but I've been concerned of its MPG compared to the outback being the amount of miles I'll be driving daily. I really appreciate your input everyone and can not wait to hear some of your inputs.
 

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2018 Dark Blue Outback 3.6R Touring arrived 8/31/2017
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343 Posts
Consider 200 pound trailer tongue weight is also a hard limit you should adhere to: I've not checked what a 4Runner will do, that's your job ;)

Consider the 2.5i in an Outback is about a 9.5 second 0-60 car, the 3.6 around 7.1 second.

Then consider horsepower loss with altitude, someone in another thread showed the math.

If the 2.5i doesn't zip well enough with a load on level ground at your base altitude for your tastes (torque being more important to get up to speed: a lot more with the 3.6 than the 2.5) and it can't maintain the speed readily enough that you want, go to the 3.6, with the knowledge you'll likely never get nearly the mpg of the 2.5 in normal driving. However, the 2.5 will need to work a lot harder under the load and pushed out of its most ideal power range, and the 3.6 will be able to put out enough power at a lower RPM in comparison: you likely will do better mpg under load with the more powerful engine because it's better matched to the load when it drags a trailer, but you lose mpg when not loaded.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you very much for the response. I guess I should of stated some finer details. The trailer will only be moved a few times a year if need be. I'm using it to move our stuff out there and plan on keeping it around for a while incase.
 

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2014 3.6R Limited
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I would say in your situation hands down you want the 3.6! >:)

I doubt there would be very little difference in fuel economy between the 2...especially when you are pulling a trailer!

I came from a TDI sportwagon and knew I would never be happy with a 2.5.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Being new to Subaru I'm curious is to the two motors which is more reliable and as for maintaining which is better or easier. I tend to keep my car for years. It just happens to be that this whole TDI thing happened and I feel moving this makes more sense.
 

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The 2.5 on flat ground is barely adequate outside the city for me , you will Really feel a big difference coming from your old vehicle . I would go with the 3.6 . I have buyers remorse with the 2.5 .
 

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2018 3.6R Limited - Magnetite - LP Adventure lift
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I've had 2 tdis. Currently in a 2015 ea288 wagon.

We test drove the 2.5 and 3.6.

The 2.5 is nothing like your tdi. I would not even consider the car in 2.5 format. If you use the torque of your tdi at all, you'll find the 2.5 lacking.

We are getting the 3.6. It gets half the economy, yes. But the 2.5 was completely unacceptable to us.
 

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I agree, you would find 2.5 lacking definitely after switching. I've had one TDI Passat before, well few years ago and it wasn't even technically mine, but I have driven it a lot. You should be happy with 3.6, my friend from DSRLeasing has 3.6 and it's got enough power :)
 

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To me, neither engine really has the hp and torque to brag about.

I find the 2.5 perfectly acceptable as a daily driver for my terrain here in MD. For the terrain you are planning on driving it on, I don't think you will find it acceptable. Go with the 3.6.
 

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2017 3.6R Touring Outback - White
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I just traded my 2015 2.5 Touring Forester in for a 2017 Outback 3.6 Touring. The only complaint I have is that the ride is so smooth and there is so much power, I have to set the cruise control to keep from gunning it past 80. I hope this will fade in time, but I doubt it. I would suggest you test drive both. The 2.5 (albeit in a Forester) was adequate for city driving, but the 3.6 is a (dare I say it) luxury experience in comparison. I took the 3.6 for a weekend test and in the end, I would not give it back.
 
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