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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Anybody else notice that the sheet metal on the roofs of our outbacks is extremely thin, and not really supported well? I don't know if a cat or something walked on my roof, but there's a bunch of waves / dents in it now. I don't even think a body shop could fix it; the pressure they have to apply would just cause more warping. None of my other cars have been like this...
 

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Heat and how level the car is sitting can cause the roof to ripple as the car flexes or the heat expands the metal. Yes its thin thats how auto makers save on weight to get mileage numbers up - its only a skin to hide the structure under it.
 

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2012 SUBARU OUTBACK 3.6 LIMITED, ICE SILVER
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42 Posts
You should have Japanese cat and dog, that is what Jap car fty test their car roof.
Besides, the paint is extremely thin as well, so you need train your dog and cat. The seat is very short, it is your fault to have long legs.
 

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Anybody else notice that the sheet metal on the roofs of our outbacks is extremely thin, and not really supported well? I don't know if a cat or something walked on my roof, but there's a bunch of waves / dents in it now. I don't even think a body shop could fix it; the pressure they have to apply would just cause more warping. None of my other cars have been like this...

-Brett
Does you OB have a moonroof or not? I've heard that moonroof opening hole requires shorter supporting members under the roof surface which may weaken the roof structure. I don't know for sure whether it's true of false. My 2013 OB does not have a moonroof, and I didn't notice that the roof itself is that thin or flimsy. However, I purchased four surface mountable rub strips and install them in between roof rack rails. They help to spread the load and serve as lateral rigidity ribs to prevent roof from warping or waving. I had similar rub strips on my previous station wagon and used them to carry loads in between the rack rails without any damage to the roof.
 

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2013 2.5 Premium
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130 Posts
I noticed the same thing on my '13. You can easily touch it and it moves like aluminum foil.
 

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2011 Outback 2.5i CVT Premium
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32 Posts
I find that all the sheet metal on most cars now days is pretty thin, again just a covering. Leaning against the car to fill up with gas I can feel the rear quarter panel flex. I miss the days when you used to be able to sit on the hood or roof of a car.
 

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2012 Silver Outback Premium 2.5 CVT
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175 Posts
My OB is my 5th car in circulation in the last 4 years and is the only one with panels that feel that way. My Nissan and VWs don't/didn't feel that way at all. Weird.
 

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2013 Outback 2.5i Limited w/moonroof package and Illumination Package #2 Dark Grey Metallic
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67 Posts
while washing the hood of my 2013 outback i have noticed that it is also very very thin.... like an empty aluminum can (well, maybe not THAT thin...)
 

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2019 2.5i Touring (Wilderness Green)
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376 Posts
My OB is my 5th car in circulation in the last 4 years and is the only one with panels that feel that way. My Nissan and VWs don't/didn't feel that way at all. Weird.
Subaru is really pushing to try to keep fuel economy up on these things (and even improve it) without giving up space or AWD. With the 4th gens being even bigger, but roughly the same weight as the 2nd/3rd gens, I'm not surprised they went thinner in the panels to pull that off.

That said, I haven't seen any warping on the roof (I don't regularly park in the sun). Although I do notice how thin the hood is when I reach high speeds.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Subaru is really pushing to try to keep fuel economy up on these things (and even improve it) without giving up space or AWD. With the 4th gens being even bigger, but roughly the same weight as the 2nd/3rd gens, I'm not surprised they went thinner in the panels to pull that off.

That said, I haven't seen any warping on the roof (I don't regularly park in the sun). Although I do notice how thin the hood is when I reach high speeds.

Well, just fair warning - the roof will warp/dent quite easily.
 

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2011 Outback Limited 2.5i/2018 Crosstrek limited
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...thin sheet metal on the roof? It's pretty thin everywhere...quite a few people have noted this through out this forum... I guess it's part of reducing wieght/costs.
 

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2011 OB 2.5i Prem CVT HK/AWP, Ruby Red Pearl
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The roof is thin… as well as doors, F/R panels (paint has been mentioned). They are strengthened by shaping and creases, but the roof has no escape since it is relatively flat. Add to that impurities in today’s recycling, cost reduction umm I mean product engineering, and we have something to look forward to.<O:p</O:p
 

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If composite were cheaper than high tensile thin steel it would be a harder more dent resistant skin than the thin skin steel sheet they are using. You just need to be smarter about your car. Heck I've spent years messing with planes the skins they put on those you could do some serious damage just pushing on it with your hand in the wrong spot- but even the million dollar planes are built in the same manner.
 

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2010 outback. base 2.5
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HSS is strong and lite. The area just below and slightly towards the rear of the fuel filler door is very thin. You can take your finger and press it in. That said, a 60k BMW does not do that.
 

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2019 Jeep Rubicon Unlimited
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HSS is strong and lite. The area just below and slightly towards the rear of the fuel filler door is very thin. You can take your finger and press it in. That said, a 60k BMW does not do that.
LOL, I'll take 30k and a dent.
 

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2013 Legacy Lim CVT Car: 2011 OB Prem 6MT Car: 2006 Miata GT 6MT mc: 2003 Honda GL1800A * Reunite Gondwanaland *
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