Last post on Sep 30, 2013 at 4:14 PM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
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Subaru, Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Sedan, Wagon
Your Community Leaders are ateixeira and rsholland.
#6149 of 10838 2005 Legacy 2.5i Sedan 4EAT Quality/Reliability Issues
Jan 20, 2005 (7:00 pm)
Folks, I am really hoping that any of you might be able to offer some friendly advice to a very disappointed Subaru fan.
To make a long story as short as possible, in July of 2004, my parents (49 yrs old) were in the market for a new car, and wanted AWD, but preferably not an SUV. Liking cars, and becoming increasingly interested in Subaru's focused line, I directed them to the redesigned 2005 Legacy. Prior to this, my parents had mostly excellent experiences with Toyotas since 1986.
At the 3000 mile service at Flemington Subaru, the vehicle was retained for a week due to a non-crippling but incredibly annoying problem- whenever the rear defogger was activated, the stereo would completely lose reception. After reviewing wiring, connections, the head unit, etc, it was deemed an issue with the rear window, and that was replaced. Problem solved. Flemington Subaru NJ was phenomenal during this time, and provided a Legacy rental car for the entire week ours was out of commission. This was in early November.
Just yesterday, on January 19th , my father (the vehicle's primary driver) noted a strange burning odor as he pulled into work in Princeton, NJ. Upon looking under the hood, he noticed coolant spewed all over the engine, but also that the level of coolant in the resivoir had not dropped- it was still full. He called me, and I directed him to 1-800-SUBARU3, at which time they connected him to the nearest dealership (Nitti's Subaru in Hamilton Square, NJ). They told him to bring the car in immediately as long as it was driveable and the temperature gauge did not indicate a problem. He did so.(They provided him a loaner, from the rental agency across the street- a Mitsu Lancer. Fine, but no AWD, ABS, or side airbags- all features the Sube was purchased FOR).
Today, he (my father) called me to report that he spoke with the mechanic who inspected our Legacy (VIN 4S3BL616X57200310 and 7,000 miles on the odo). The mechanic originally thought that the head gasket was the culprit. However, after further inspection of the block, it was revealed that one of the six 'studs' that go in the engine block was stripped, likely the result of overtorquing at the factory. This resulted in the lack of a true seal forming. So, the Head Gasket was not the issue, but rather the block itself.
Bottom Line: Our Legacy will be out of service until next Thursday, as an ENTIRELY NEW BLOCK is going to be installed.
I am not a mechanic, and neither is my dad, so I've tried to explain this to the best of my ability. But, to say the least, I am floored that this level of quality non-control could be allowed to occur. Additionally, I have serious reservations to the fact that this engine needs to be rebuilt after 7,000 miles. My parents are NOT satisfied customers, and are questioning whether its really a good idea to hang on to a vehicle with such a significant failure so early in its useful life.
The advice I need is on how to proceed, as I dont feel that the repair itself is enough. This is a MAJOR repair, and I know from experience that once something like this has occured, it seems rare that the vehicle truly runs as well as it should. I want to believe in Subaru. Do folks here feel a letter to SoA is best, or a call to 1-800-SUBARU3 to voice my opinion? Honestly, what I believe is deserved is that Subaru offer an extended powertrain warranty free of charge.
Needless to say, this experience has left my parents cold, and not very willing to consider Subaru anything in the future.
For me personally, I am more saddened by this experience than anything else- as up to this point, I did love the car and had a great deal of respect for the company.
Jan 20, 2005 (7:21 pm)
Well my personal feeling is that ALL mechanical devices have failure modes, including Rolls Royce and Mercedes. Some are more expensive than others. The real tests are:
1) is it an isolated problem (does it reecur often) or is it a "programatic error"?
2) how does your dealer resolve this issue. Is it completely resolved to your satisfaction, and at no expense to you, and with minimum inconvenience.
#6151 of 10838 Re: 2005 Legacy 2.5i Sedan 4EAT Quality/Reliability Issues [alpha01]
Jan 20, 2005 (7:28 pm)
can't you get a new car using lemon law ?
#6152 of 10838 Re: [locke2c]
Jan 20, 2005 (7:47 pm)
Totally agree with you about the Dunlop Wintersport M3. Nice tire. Handles real well in dry and and real grippy in snow and slop.
#6153 of 10838 Re: 2005 Legacy 2.5i Sedan 4EAT Quality/Reliability Issues [alpha01]
Jan 20, 2005 (7:52 pm)
Like said above, everything has a defect rate. Even Toyotas have had engine failures before their time. Nothing is perfect. Now try to make the best out of the situation. I would start with the dealer. If they aren't willing to do anything such as an extended warranty then I would call Subaru and negotiate with them. Being nice and professional usually gets you further than expressing anger. Another option is to sell the car but then again you will lose thousands of dollars in depreciation.
Jan 20, 2005 (8:50 pm)
Sounds like the dealer is doing everything they can. However, I agree with your comments 100% -- I know I would not feel too good about having an expensive new car with a rebuilt engine. I do think Subaru of America should try to compensate you for the trouble (such as the extended warranty you suggest).
This would be a perfect case for Patti to get involved, but she is not on Edmunds anymore. Maybe Juice or Bob can offer advice.
The folks at SOA are pretty reasonable in cases like this, and they do try to keep customers happy whenever possible. So it seems like they should be able to do something for you.
Jan 20, 2005 (10:29 pm)
Indeed! But just try to get a set! Nobody has them any more this year!
Jan 20, 2005 (11:44 pm)
quote: Do you know that Goodyear owns Dunlop ?
it's about as relevant as Michelin owning BFGoodrich, separate plants, separate products.
I wouldn't buy a BFG except for the KD or KO, and I still believe that you can do better than a Goodyear when you look at price- or feature-based competitors.
what's all the hype about this triple tred? did Consumer Reports rate it highly or something?
#6157 of 10838 Re: yes [locke2c]
Jan 21, 2005 (12:51 am)
Re: triple tred
Well, according to the TireRack survey they are best in category (passenger all season). But this is obviously a highly subjective question. In those consumer reviews a given tire can be called "the best I've ever owned" by one person and "the worst ..." by another.
#6158 of 10838 4EAT Quality/Reliability -Lemon Law?
Jan 21, 2005 (5:44 am)
Probably not at this point in time. I had numerous and persistent problems with a new GMC pick up back in '99. I was so frustrated an po'd I researched the lemon law in Indiana. As I recall, to be eligible, the dealer would have had to fail 3 times making the repair on a major component. I raised so much cane with the regional rep and threatened a lemon law suit he gave me a free extended warranty which gave me great peace of mind that if something major did occur I would be covered.