Last post on Sep 30, 2013 at 4:14 PM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
What is this discussion about?
Subaru, Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Sedan, Wagon
Your Community Leaders are ateixeira and rsholland.
May 19, 2004 (9:24 am)
Tranny has 3 modes, indeed. Drive is normal, but it shifts more quickly and smoother than the current models, IMO. I think it's tuned for efficiency, most of the time.
Sport is cool, it holds a gear longer. Though even the regular Drive mode will take the engine to red line if you hold the throttle down. Sport mode was pretty smart in that it held a gear longer for passing.
Then there's Sportshift, which responds more quickly than the 2.5GT I test drove last year. It's still not Porsche Boxster quick, but it beats VW's and Volvo's system for quickness.
Nav is coming for sure, folks. I got scattered answers about which models. One guy said it would appear on the GT Limited, but then another said it would be offered on many models across the whole line up. So Nav fans should be pleased. I'd guess they'll show up about this time next year (May 2005).
Compare auto to manual? They definitely closed the gap, the auto is much, much better now. It's smarter and shifts quicker, plus tends to pick the right gear and hold it. The 5 speeds are brilliant, and in fact make the H6 quicker because they keep it in the power band.
However, the GT's dual mass flywheels is nice, you feel the clutch's smoothness. It's light, too, and engages smoothly, not one bit of a hint of chatter, in fact the feel was not even recognizable.
So both are improved, but IMO the auto improved more, so it's closed the gap between the two. With the 2004, the 5MT was, to me, a no-brainer. Now it's a tough decision.
Get the automatic guilt-free, if that's what you want. The GT auto is still blisteringly quick, and lag is non-extant. That plus the tranny picks the right gear.
If I had to guess, I'd put 0-60 times at about:
Legacy GT 5MT: 5.5 seconds
GT auto: 6.2 seconds
VDC auto: 7.0 seconds
2.5i auto: 8.5 seconds
So each is quicker than its predecessor, and the turbos blow them all away.
By the way, Subaru's official estimate for the Outback XT for 0-60 is 5.9 seconds, so even their conservative numbers hint at 60mph in less than 6 seconds.
Plus, the Legacy is 100 lbs or so lighter, AND the tires have less diameter, making gearing shorter. It's quick, folks.
#1512 of 10838 Driving Impressions
May 19, 2004 (9:33 am)
I agree with the comment above about the steering feel, it's tighter and not overboosted like Honda and Toyota tends to do.
The Legacy GT has even quicker steering that felt wonderful. In fact this is what stood out most, since I'd experienced this kind of power in the Forester XT already. #1 surprise impression for the GT: steering.
For the VDC? Smoothness. NVH is better, and it was already good. You have to look at the tach to see the shifts. It's quiet. In fact I opened a window and was shocked at the contrast. You barely hear a semi driving right by you in the next lane.
The H6 still doesn't match the down-low torque of the turbo, but the tranny is so much smarter it might not matter.
Base Legacy? It's quiet, too. Feels like a Passat on the inside, in terms of NVH and materials. It's not fast, but it probably shaves off about 0.8 second to 60mph because it's lighter. In fact it's such a reasonable performer that I cannot with a straight face say that I need more power.
But I'd lie, cheat, and steal to get a GT.
#1513 of 10838 Re: Driving Impressions [ateixeira #1512]
May 19, 2004 (9:40 am)
WOW, thanks so much for all the impressions!!! The GT is what I thought it would be and then some. That steering comment almost brought a tears. Regal Blue GT Auto Ltd here I come!
#1514 of 10838 Re: Driving Impressions [chrono #1513]
May 19, 2004 (9:55 am)
I'm going to ditch the GF so I can afford a Legacy GT wagon that much sooner.
May 19, 2004 (9:58 am)
It should definitely be offered as an option even on base models.An experienced driver may almost never need it but I wouldn't let my teenager in a car without one when the time comes!
Some can be very intrusive, eg the last model E series which I have driven a fair amount in was always having something kick in.(As an aside for those who think AWD does not need good winter tires, drive a car like a E 4matic and see how often the electronic gizmos kick in on snow and then do the same with snow tires, its incredible)
C & D found the original VDC OB was impossible to put into the ditch unlike the BMW, Audi and VW they were also testing with ESC.
#1516 of 10838 New H6
May 19, 2004 (10:08 am)
Totally enjoying todays posts.....
Juice/Bob: I hear the comments about limited low down power in the H6, but if you wind it up (kickdown or using Sportshift), does it become somewhat exciting and do you begin to hear the motor running. I know you have fallen in love with the GT/XT, but can you conjecture what your thoughts would be on the H6 as a sporting ride if the turbo models did not exist.
I want an Outback, and I live in Canada, hence my dilemma
JP (wishing that Canada had the base/affordable OB XT.....but unsure how long license would last with said vehicle, or GT, or FXT )
#1517 of 10838 Juice/Bob - Thank you for Legacy report!!
May 19, 2004 (10:14 am)
Very enjoyable and informative. Makes me really think about the Legacy!
May 19, 2004 (10:22 am)
Thanks again Juice and Bob!
Its good to know that the base 2.5i has decent power, and the auto trannys sure seem neat. I just wish I knew about the Subaru VIP partners program earlier, so my dad could get one at invoice prior to interest rates rising this summer!
Again, my only real issues with the car are lack of color choices inside and out, and lack of options for more basic models. Id really like to see a power drivers seat and moonroof optional on the non-Limited models, available either separately or together.
For those who dont have one, the 2005 Legacy sales brochure is very imformative, detailed, and interesting. Get a hold of it!!
#1519 of 10838 juice & Bob!
May 19, 2004 (10:43 am)
Nice reporting. I was hanging on my seat waiting to read your impressions. I take it you guys were not disappointed. Sounds like you had immense fun!
Perhaps I missed it, but did you get to drive any Legacy GT wagons?
So is 5EAT pretty darn good? It appears as though the shifts are smooth and responsive. I think your report has clinched my decision to switch to automatic this time around.
So other than NAV, any other items in the pipeline? How about HIDs or VDC in more models?
Bellagio, huh? Nice -- was that on SOA?
#1520 of 10838 Choices, choices
May 19, 2004 (10:51 am)
beanboy: I'm not sure the styling is *that* sexy.
does it become somewhat exciting
Tough question. That's not the word I would use, though it's definitely authoritative - when you punch it, it goes.
do you begin to hear the motor running
Thing is it's very quiet, you hear a distant growl, but it's polite. Your mother in law would approve, and have no idea how fast you're going.
Put it this way, if I were to choose a touring car for a long highway trip, and comfort was a priority, H6 all the way. It's still plenty quick enough.
For a track session, turbo for sure. In tight twisties and to show off to my friends, also. But the H6 is more livable day to day, I think.
Honestly? I'd still choose the XT, but here it's cheaper than the H6. If prices were the other way around it would be a tough choice.
H6s can tow more, FWIW. And with no scoop they are more discreet. Finally, I bet they'd be more tolerant of lower octane fuel.