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Subaru Legacy, Sedan, Wagon
#28 of 1010 To Bunk1968
Sep 07, 2003 (4:54 pm)
I just bought a 2004 Subaru Legacy L 35th Anniversary Ed. Sedan. I love it. I drove my 1991 Subaru Legacy L (only had FWD) for 13 years. It has 168,000 miles on it and still runs great. My dad uses it as a second car. In all that time the only real problem I had was an oxygen sensor that needed to be replaced (about half way through the life of the car). And even that wasn't a big deal.I was very happy with it. I think SUbaru makes a great car and even in rain, you will feel the difference with AWD. You won't get as good gas mileage as a Honda Civic but it is a more upscale car. I'm getting about 21-22MPG. I find it to be a really fun car to drive as well. Great manuverability and handling. Never had engine or transmission problems on my old one. Go for it.
Sep 08, 2003 (7:05 am)
They were about $18-20k new, so $15-17k used with 15k miles is not bad resale. We paid $17,827 for our 2002 Legacy L (no SE package), for instance.
Our gas mileage is pretty good, about 25mpg overall. Never less than 22mpg.
They run nicely, you hardly notice the AWD except when you see other people slipping all over the road. The only added maintenance the the rear differential fluid, about as hard as going an oil change, once every 60k miles.
If it's a good deal, buy it. The SE package gives you 16" alloy rims, a moonroof, plus AWD and ABS are standard. That's more equipment than an Accord EX, which costs more and lacks AWD.
Sep 10, 2003 (8:14 pm)
I have posted this same info on the Legacy board, so I hope you will all forgive me if you read it twice. I am just trying to get more opinions.
Thanks everyone for your responses to my questions. I really appreciate it.
I am still wondering, and worried, why edmunds rated the Legacies Engine and Trans so poorly.
I also don't understand why Consumer Reports gave the Legacies Emergency Handling a relatively low score??? This is an all wheel drive car, ISN'T HANDLING ITS' BENEFIT?? They also commented that it's emergency handling was tricky?
In addition to these questions if someone could tell me if having AWD also means having more maintenance or up keep, and ultimately having to spend more money on it, than a vehicle without?
And, last but not least, will someone tell me if there is a big difference in the GT and the L Special Edition? The L Special Edition I am looking at appears to have everything the GT does except Leather and a Spoiler, but I heard that the GT has a different suspension that makes it handle better, does this make a great difference?
Oh, and is this a good deal, I would prefer the GT, but this seems too good to pass up?:
"2003 Subaru Legacy AWD, Special Eddition Package, Silver, factory options include splash gurds, rear differential protector, air filtration system, auto-dimming mirror/compass, upgraded speakers with tweeter kit and Moon Roof, non-smoker owned and driven, Purchased Feb 2003, like new, list price $21,543 purchased for $20,888, asking $15900"
P.S. I really do appreciate all your comments!! I know it is hard to speculate resale or depreciation, but I wanted a general idea. I don't think anything compares with Honda for resale, and I am mainly worried about it because I have NEVER seen a Legacy on the road in Michigan. I plan on having the car for a while and I love that it is unique compared to everything else on the road, but I don't want a car no one wants when it is time to sell.
Sep 11, 2003 (6:40 am)
Handlind - CR found that the Outback would kick its rear end out a little in some maneuvers. They admitted it was predictable and controllable, just a little disconcerting to a novice driver.
So you can compensate easily - practice at the limit driving in a snowy, empty parking lot.
What they consider "tricky", I consider "fun". They'd be happy with severe understeer, while I'd be bored to death.
In the snow, my Forester can wag its tail, you can feel the AWD shifting power to the front when the tail kicks out. Stay on the gas, the front pulls you out of the skid. It's the most fun you can have behind the wheel.
To do that in FWD, you'd need to drive in reverse! LOL
To do that in RWD, well, it's much harder to control. My Miata will spin in a second if you lift off the throttle, or if you add throttle, during a slide. That's the tricky one, if you ask me. I did a 180 in the rain and was facing traffic once. Oops. Don't ever lift in a turn.
Sep 11, 2003 (3:20 pm)
I'm not sure why Edmunds rates the engine/trans. so poorly. Maybe they are one of the many that think it needs more power. Often what some rate as poor, I really like. Example, many reviews have said that the dash gauges are not well laid out but that is one of the best things I like in Subarus. The other thing is that you may want to find a Subaru dealer near you in case you need someone that knows what they're doing. It's true, I think, that Subaru isn't as popular as Honda and therefore, may be hard to find parts, dealers, etc. Also, I think the Subarus have a nice transmission that shift well and are nice & quiet. In terms of AWD, I know a few people w/Subarus and they've never had problems with this system. Subaru has had a lot of time to get the kinks out of it, I think. In terms of the GT model...I test drove one. It has a lot of extras - leather and such that you may not need or want. I didn't really want some of the things & I didn't want to pay the price. I didn't see a huge amount of difference between the L and the GT. This will be my first time with AWD in winter, too. My 91 Legacy only had FWD. In that car, on slippery snowy roads, I had to brake fast once and that car's butt didn't slip out on me at all. I must have gone at least 30 feet on snow without fishtailing. I am looking forward to the same or better w/ AWD. Of course, I'm going to practice in the parking lot first! You're probably right about nothing comparing to Honda for resale - they are low cost to run, low depreciation. I know what you're going through because I had to weigh all these factors myself. I was loking at Civics (the Accord for some reason felt too big for me and the Subaru felt sleeker). But, what did it for me was all the great things I heard about AWD and because I loved my old Subaru so much and it's still running.
Sep 12, 2003 (7:29 am)
The automatic will hunt a bit until it's adapted to your driving style. It's trying to eek out every mpg for economy, basically.
Also, they may be comparing the H4 to the V6s of many competitors.
#34 of 1010 THANKS AGAIN GUYS
Sep 12, 2003 (8:51 pm)
So, you say the Outback is the vehicle CR tested? Well does that mean that these so called handling problems do not apply to the Legacy?
Does the Sport Tuned Suspension of the GT really make a big differance? If either of you have seen my prior posts you know that the car I am looking at has everything a GT does except Leather, Spoiler, and Sport Suspension. I am wondering if it will make that big of a differance in driving and how fun the car is and how it handles?
If there is not too big of a differance I would think that I should jump on the deal I found, 2003 Legacy L Special Edition with splash gaurds, rear differential protector, air filtration system, auto-dimming mirror/compass, upgraded speakers with tweeter kit and Moon Roof???
Sep 14, 2003 (12:51 pm)
Just drive the car and come up with your own opinion.
Sep 15, 2003 (7:55 am)
The L is about an inch lower to the ground and has lower profile tires, IMO it'll handle a little sportier, not as soft, as an Outback.
Drive it, I doubt you'll be disappointed. For the price you can't beat it. Hurry before someone else snaps it up.
#37 of 1010 Used '03 Legacy GT wagon
Nov 05, 2003 (1:26 pm)
I would like to purchase either an '03 Legacy GT wagon or Outback wagon (auto). I can't get the TMV prices form Edmund's for the '03 models yet and so am not sure what I should pay. I saw a Legacy GT in tan with 12,000 miles for $20,600 (Bill Kolb, NY dealer). The Edmund's price new was about $25,000. Is this a good deal? If not, what should this car cost? Thanks!