I've had the Legacy for 3 months now and it's blend of performance and exclusivity has already got me hooked.
The Legacy's fwd is not only attractive for those living up a muddy lane but surburbia's wet and greasy urban junctions also really play up to the car's strength's. Just dial in some revs, drop the clutch and you are quickly away without any drama. I also like the fact that there are not many of these cars around, and with an options list that even allows different Radiator Grils to be fitted, I am not expecting to see an exact copy of my car for some time to come.
I did find that the gearbox was a bit notcy for the first 2,000 mles but it is fine now. My only real gripe is the quick re-activation of the immobiliser if the car is not started quickly enough after it is un-locked. There is not enough time to dump a jacket on the back seat, get settled in the front and allow the glow pulgs to warm up before the immobiliser has been activated. The car can only be started once the button on the key fob has been pressed again so every time I start the car I have to root around by the steering column to find the key's button - not very impressive.
But the car itself easily makes up for these shortfalls. It's the perfect antidote to the waves of German, so called, 'prestige' cars and I'm already looking forward to driving it during the next rainy day.
I own the Outback version with the new boxer 2.0L diesel engine. I had a Volvo V50 20.L diesel. The engine in the Subaru is excellent. Its smoother, more refined and more economical. My dad has an Audi A3 170bhp diesel with the DSG box and in the mid range 3rd/4th gear the Subaru is right up there with the A3 which is no slouch. Its my first time with 4wd but I notice the Subaru corners faster, slightly flatter, and its brakes are very effective- better than the V50. Its zenon headlights are terrific. The interior of the car is well specced but as I live in Ireland we do not get the sat nav thats standard in UK. Leather is standard however. The electric and heated driver seat with memory is handy but I think the V50's seat was more comfy. The Volvo also had some convienent touches such as auto lights and wipers, better stereo and clearer readouts on lcd displays which the Subaru doesn't. The stereo is a big let down also. Overall though the Subaru is the superior car mechanically. I may become a Subaru convert yet. Its not a common sight here but I get the feeling from driving it that while it may not have the Audi/Bmw/Merc snob value, it garners a certain respect and people let me out a junctions no problem. Overall its worth my four star rating and with just a few small refinements such as improved stereo and minor controls it would rate a 5 star rating
Sadly the Estate, like the Outback I tried, also initially suffered from a very poor shift quality and despite Subaru's acknowledgement there was a problem, nothing has been done. It is true with a few more miles (7,000) it seems to be improving slightly.
Took the car on holiday with my wife and 3 kids plus luggage and initially in England the car coped fairly well. The diesel's power was more than enough to cope with the load. Motorway refinement was excellent and wind noise non-existant.
Arriving in France, its ability to consume distance at speed was just amazing. However if the motorway surface was anything but smooth, the rear suspension just gave up the ghost and crashed onto the bump stops. Off the motorway and on to the Freanch A and B roads it was a truly unpleasant experience. This was a great disappointment which just emphasises how this car should have been set up for its intended use before being put on sale as the performance of the suspension is just not man enough for the job.
This has really spoilt my overall impression of the car despite the wonderful disel engine and straight line stability and fabulous interior.
Sadly this company has not had the professionalism to respond to my position in a constructive way and I am considering disposing of it after only 4 months.
My model is a 2005 Outback which was bought in September 07. Living in semi rural Scotland and covering approx 20.000 miles per year i required a car that could cope with twisty roads, snow and serious off roading due to my gun dog hobby. Also my job requires i drive a quality car without being too flash. Overall the Outback ticked all the boxes. So far it has proved ultra reliable, reasonable MPG circa 30, good handling, quality feel, understated and outstanding off road. On more than one occasion the scoobie has tackled terrian that posh 4x4s feard to tackle and never failed me. Why buy a posh off roader at double the price? i have in the past and now realise why the nobility all drive Outbacks. It is a great all rounder that copes with everthing that you throw at it. Pretty quick on the twisty stuff, especially using the sport box. A bargian at the price, just dont expect anyone to say whow an Outback. It's not a beemer but its better for that. Can all the Lords and blue blood be wrong? It's fantastic. Given a 5 overall for its off road ability.
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