RyanC1009
RyanC1009 None
Jan. 16, 2011 11:26 p.m.

I will get right down to it, the internet has scared me. Found 05 Outback XT, Auto, with 95k at local dealer, after much bickering, got it down to 10,300. They put new tires and brakes on it, has been on the lot for 3 months, and they want it gone. Have current carfax, good, not excellent service history, nothing too bad. Back in the day I worked at a Subaru dealer as a detailer, that was 00. I moved up from there, and I know of Subaru timing belt and head gasket issues, headlight bulbs, along with the normal oil leak, that usually got fixed under 60k warranty. Doing research on this car, all I hear is turbo blowouts, turbo problems, upper pipe with cat. problems, the sky is falling...etc. I know the downside, 3750 synthetic oil changes, premium gas, 20sh mpg, but man, what a sleeper!! I have researched aftermarket turbos and found bmr supercars with a decent fix for reliability, seems to be an extra oil line, but as right of now, nothing is wrong with turbo. I have a Triumph Daytona 675, so I can live without turbo, but man, it is sweet. The same dealer has 09 Outback 2.5, Auto, with 86k, for 12,800, so there is another option. What I need is some true to tale advice on this car. My current car is an 07 Aveo, 5 spd, which I hear is totally a piece of crap, but after 124K, no vehicle problems and 3 sets of tires, and 3 timing belts, at about $96 each, I say if that is unreliable, then I will take that at any day. Please advise on my current dilema, did I mention my insurance goes down to 37 a month with the Outback, compared to 88 on the aveo, state farm, by the way.

minimac SuperDork
Jan. 17, 2011 7:17 a.m.

$ 10K for a six(or 7) year old turbo with almost 100K miles, and a fair service history? Run away. After driving an Aveo, anything will seem sweet. Although my old Forester has been relatively trouble free, if my brother wasn't a Subaru mechanic, I would have gotten rid of it a long time ago. EGR problems, rear wheel bearings, front axles-easier and cheaper than replacing the cv alone-I'm not a big fan of Subarus "reliability". Granted, I have the 2.5 D.O.H.C, and all the associated problems with that motor, in addition to what's listed above. BUT it sure is nice in the winter! I'd be afraid of any used turbo but that's just me.

Vigo Dork
Jan. 17, 2011 8:25 a.m.

The price does seem high for a 5 year old car with 100k miles, but not high for a turbo subaru because they are ALL high and thats nowhere near the highest ive seen.

I dont see any huge problem here. It might not be the easiest thing in the world to work on, but there are countless other cars that are the same or harder to work on, but DONT have redeeming qualities like a turbo forester. Those things are versatile as hell. They drive small, go fast, can hold a lot of stuff, and have great upgradability.

DaveEstey Reader
Jan. 17, 2011 8:25 a.m.
RyanC1009 wrote: I know of Subaru timing belt and head gasket issues, headlight bulbs, along with the normal oil leak, that usually got fixed under 60k warranty. Doing research on this car, all I hear is turbo blowouts, turbo problems, upper pipe with cat. problems, the sky is falling...etc. I know the downside, 3750 synthetic oil changes, premium gas, 20sh mpg, but man, what a sleeper!! I have researched aftermarket turbos and found bmr supercars with a decent fix for reliability, seems to be an extra oil line, but as right of now, nothing is wrong with turbo.

Timing belt should be done but head gaskets aren't an issue on these cars. Headlight bulbs are due to the DRL's, which you can disable with a plug under the dash. I haven't had any oil leak on mine (78k miles) and haven't heard of that being a real issue.

Turbo problems seem to be related to people not getting their oil changed, as are the oil lines (inline filter gets gummed up). 3750 changes aren't synthetic, Subaru uses semi-synth. Get a stage 1 retune and your mileage will be around 26-27mpg, which I consider quite reasonable for a 5.5 0-60mph car.

The Outback isn't usually bought by hooligans so the chances of it being beat on are reduced.

Keep the oil fresh and topped off and you shouldn't have any issues. If the turbo blows you can get a VF53 from the new WRX for reasonable cash, which is a very nice turbo for daily driving.

Javelin SuperDork
Jan. 17, 2011 8:34 a.m.

$10K plus for a 6 year old Outback with a turbo and an AUTO?!? Run away! That's WAY too high!

DaveEstey Reader
Jan. 17, 2011 9:16 a.m.

What's wrong with the auto?

DoctorBlade HalfDork
Jan. 17, 2011 9:26 a.m.

Most car geeks regard the automatic transmission as evil. Personally? I don't care.

Teh E36 M3 HalfDork
Jan. 17, 2011 9:30 a.m.

I haven't had any problems with my '02 wrx. It's the 2.0 turbo, so I'm not sure how different the 2.5 is other than displacement- allegedly the blocks bolt right to the 2.0 heads. I haven't heard of anyone having much trouble with turbos etc. I replaced an axle because of a torn cv boot- I was going to fix the boot, but a rebuilt axle was $60 with no core. The only other troubles were a clutch shudder fixed under warranty when I had 5k miles and the cold weather fuel smell, which was fixed well out of warranty last year for nothing.

Incidentally, I've been looking for the same thing- either a Legacy GT wagon, Outback XT, or Forester XT. Hard to find with manual, and they command a premium, but if they are anything like my WRX, great all-rounders- fast with good (not great) fuel efficiency. legacygt.com

This is the one I've been eyeing, but 110k miles for $12k is tough to swallow. Even with a new turbo.

DaveEstey Reader
Jan. 17, 2011 9:31 a.m.

I have the auto. It's excellent. It's nothing like Subaru's 4-speed autos.

PeterAK Dork
Jan. 17, 2011 12:37 p.m.

Nice car for a decent price. My '05 lgt is quick, handles well, and is practical. Seeing the Outback Teh E36 linked to makes me think that I should sell my lgt and move on to something different since I have automotive ADD.

What do you think an '05 lgt limited, 5 speed manual, 88k miles, black on tan, tinted windows, OEM subwoofer, and 17" Drag wheels worth? More importantly, I wonder if SWMBO would let me change vehicles again. :-)

pilotbraden Reader
Jan. 17, 2011 12:48 p.m.

What is 3750 oil?

PeterAK Dork
Jan. 17, 2011 12:52 p.m.
pilotbraden wrote: What is 3750 oil?

3,750 mile change intervals. Gotta keep the oil clean to avoid issues with these engines.

pilotbraden Reader
Jan. 17, 2011 1:19 p.m.

That makes more sense than the food grade ptfe lubrication oil that I found via google

Teh E36 M3 HalfDork
Jan. 17, 2011 1:44 p.m.
PeterAK wrote: Nice car for a decent price. My '05 lgt is quick, handles well, and is practical. Seeing the Outback Teh E36 linked to makes me think that I should sell my lgt and move on to something different since I have automotive ADD. What do you think an '05 lgt limited, 5 speed manual, 88k miles, black on tan, tinted windows, OEM subwoofer, and 17" Drag wheels worth? More importantly, I wonder if SWMBO would let me change vehicles again. :-)

I think it's the manual wagons that are worth so much. I've seen an '05 LGT sedan for $6900 with 89k. I think Subies hold value, but it's those rare manual wagons, foresters, or outbacks that really do it.

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