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2008 Outback 2.5i, silver, 2.5 w/manual tranny
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418 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I never really announced on here I had bought a new car, but I did and it's a 2012 Outback premium. I opted for the CVT after having been a manual trans guy in just about everything else I've owned.
I find the level of engine noise coming into the cabin on this car borderline unacceptable. When you are on the gas and the tach is sitting at 3 or 4000 as the car is accelerating the amount engine sound is higher than any car I have ever owned. Just last night I had my wife put her Legacy GT into 2nd gear and run it up to 3500....engine noise in her car is FAR more subdued than mine.
Does anyone else feel this way about their car? The thing is perfect in every other way....I totally adore this car. But I really wish and think Subaru should have paid more attention to what I'm describing.
I would like thoughts and opinions please....
 

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Meh.
I has wagons.
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12,323 Posts
Hmmm, the 2012 CVT Premium I had as a loaner was much, much quieter than my 03.

Odd.
 

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2015 2.5i Limited Carbide Gray
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832 Posts
We have a '12 limited with the CVT and haven't noticed it being an issue. I would stop by the dealer and see if you can drive another back to back to see if its an issue isolated to your car. You could also track down an SPL meter to get an exact measurement to compare different cars with.
 

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2,818 Posts
Mine is a bit loud when cold, but quiets down as it warms up.
 

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22,802 Posts
I never really announced on here I had bought a new car, but I did and it's a 2012 Outback premium. I opted for the CVT after having been a manual trans guy in just about everything else I've owned.
I find the level of engine noise coming into the cabin on this car borderline unacceptable. When you are on the gas and the tach is sitting at 3 or 4000 as the car is accelerating the amount engine sound is higher than any car I have ever owned. Just last night I had my wife put her Legacy GT into 2nd gear and run it up to 3500....engine noise in her car is FAR more subdued than mine.
Does anyone else feel this way about their car? The thing is perfect in every other way....I totally adore this car. But I really wish and think Subaru should have paid more attention to what I'm describing.
I would like thoughts and opinions please....
Check and make sure the air box on the air filter is closed correctly. If these or the old cars do not get the lid to the air box clipped down correctly they are loud under hard acceleration.

The 2010 through 2012 has the final version possibly the best version of the old 2.5 - lots of past issues with this engine was related to heat build up with the exhaust - lack of cooling capacity and open deck head designs which were sensitive to Head Gasket issues.
This version of the engine has all these things finally addressed the exhaust porting is larger to reduce heat issues on the back side which was always an issue - superior cooling capacity and the head vs block design is similar to the turbo engines which have a more closed deck design to them ie less prone to head gasket leaks.

Due to the larger exhaust porting yes under hard acceleration especially when cold the 2010 through 2012 engine can be loud. The fix is more sound insulation installed around the firewall and under the carpet insert in the front. However its a bit over kill given this engine and cabin were listed as the most quiet cabin of all the family sedan's sold in 2010. Thats your classic line up - Camry - Altima etc. Having said that most people are not accustomed to the flat 4 engine sound which is very very different than the strait 4 most people are use to. Check the air box make sure the lid is lined up and clipped down correctly - and embrace the flat 4 sound its a thing of beauty. ;-)
 

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2011 Outback Limited 2.5i/2018 Crosstrek limited
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4,861 Posts
...dyanamat anyone...?
 

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2019 3.6 Touring & 2018 H6 Limited. Previously also owned a number of Outbacks.
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188 Posts
13 H6 quietest (~72db at 70mph w/ little/no head-on wind), test drove 13 2.5 (~74db at 70mph on hwy); 13 2.5 is just a bit quieter than the 07 H4. 08 H4 is like factory on wheels (80+db on hwy).

During acceleration, it's a no brainer H6 is much quieter than the H4. H4's CVT trans whine was evident but unless you acc/dec all the time, it shouldn't be a problem.:)
 

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2019 3.6 Touring & 2018 H6 Limited. Previously also owned a number of Outbacks.
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188 Posts
13 H6 quietest (~72db at 70mph w/ little/no head-on wind), test drove 13 2.5 a bit quieter than the 07 H4 (~74db at 70mph on hwy), 08 H4 is like factory on wheels (80+db on hwy).

During accelaration, it's a no brainer H6 is much quieter than the H4. H4's CVT trans whine was evident but unless you acc/dec all the time, it shouldn't be a problem.:)
 

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2013 2.5i Premium 6mt, Twilight Blue
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Mine is a bit loud when cold, but quiets down as it warms up.
Agreed, once everything is warmed up I find it pleasantly quiet, even at highway speeds. I'm coming from a little bit louder I6 though, so the Outback seems quieter and more subdued all around.
 

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I have a 2013 2.5, and my wife recently complained that the car is noisier than our 2005 2.5. I guess I have low expectations, but I'm pretty impressed by my 2013 so far, and hearing the engine rev is not a bad thing to me. I told my wife the reason why she is hearing the engine is because the rest of the car is so much quieter. As a side note I freaked out when Highlander Hybrid snuck up on me today... now there is a quiet crossover.
 

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I never really announced on here I had bought a new car, but I did and it's a 2012 Outback premium. I opted for the CVT after having been a manual trans guy in just about everything else I've owned.
I find the level of engine noise coming into the cabin on this car borderline unacceptable. When you are on the gas and the tach is sitting at 3 or 4000 as the car is accelerating the amount engine sound is higher than any car I have ever owned. Just last night I had my wife put her Legacy GT into 2nd gear and run it up to 3500....engine noise in her car is FAR more subdued than mine.
Does anyone else feel this way about their car? The thing is perfect in every other way....I totally adore this car. But I really wish and think Subaru should have paid more attention to what I'm describing.
I would like thoughts and opinions please....
2010 and newer 2.5's have larger exhaust porting to address the heat issues the 2.5's suffered from in hot temps and hard running. When cold the Gen4's sound like mac trucks. When warmed up and under heavy throttle they can be a little louder. The up side is far far better cooling and heat management and a flatter power band across the revs.

Drive it a year then report back- your just not use to it yet. As for level of sound in the cabin - the Gen4 when it came out was ranked as having the quietest cabin in the segment.
 
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