Last post on Oct 01, 2011 at 12:52 PM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
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Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Wagon
#1 of 21 97 Outback with 170K
Mar 03, 2008 (8:17 pm)
Hi all. New to the forum. Found a 97 Outback LTD with 170K. High mileage I know, but the dealer (small suby dealer) has replaced the timing belt, water pump, front axle etc. and is offering a 1 month/1000 mile warranty. The car is in great shape. No dents, the interior is in great condition. The CD changer has been removed and the cup holder tray doesn't slide out. Other than that, I can't see a thing wrong with it. Also, the carfax comes back clean. What do ya think? They were asking $5750, but I offered $5K and they'll sell it for $5150. Opinions?
#2 of 21 Re: 97 Outback with 170K [russinger]
Mar 03, 2008 (8:31 pm)
With 170k, I would probably not offer more than 2k and that would be if it were in mint condition in and out. There are lots of things that can start to break down with 170k on the ticker.
Just my opinion.
#3 of 21 Re: 97 Outback with 170K [paisan]
Mar 04, 2008 (10:10 am)
Yeah, I am wondering where you are located, because that can have quite a bit of influence on price. My most immediate reservations would be head gaskets and transmission. If both those check out, it may work out to be a great purchase. Also, check the differential fluid... is it translucent or grey? I put 220K on my '96 Outback and it would still be on the road were it not destroyed last winter. 170K does not scare me off, but I would not want to pay $5,000 for a car that has needs. As long as it does not have needs, it sounds like a good bet to me.
My perspective is coming from Fairbanks, Alaska.
#4 of 21 Re: 97 Outback with 170K [xwesx]
Mar 04, 2008 (10:24 am)
I'm in Boise, ID and the car is local. The high mileage is really the only deal-breaker. I have a 96 Jetta with only 115K for comparison. At 170K that equates to 15.5K driven per year which isn't that bad...see where my indecision comes in?
The head gaskets have been replaced in their "front end Subaru maintenance", so yes, it could be a good deal...but "could" worries me. Thanks fellas.
#5 of 21 Re: 97 Outback with 170K [russinger]
Mar 04, 2008 (3:38 pm)
Used cars are always gambles. Sounds like this one had quite a bit of work put into it to take it from a $2,000 car to a $5,000 car. I purchased a Dodge Caravan, yes, a Caravan, with 170,000 miles on it last May for $4,000. I decided that if it gave me one year trouble-free, it would pay for itself. Two months to go....
Had I the choice of the car you are considering, I would be happy to plunk down an extra $1000 for the chance to give another old Outback a go. They are great cars and I love them. But, they do have some weak points that must be considered. Fortunately, head gaskets are a cheap (though time-intensive) job for a do-it-yourself'er.
#6 of 21 a little help
Mar 25, 2008 (12:41 pm)
I have a 1997 Outback with a 2.5 liter. I,m having a drivability issue with it in the rain. It loses all power and barely runs. I had a mechanic tell me he thought i had a compression issue but could not get a compression gauge on the car. The engine light is on, a misfire code. Any ideas?
#7 of 21 Re: a little help [mwhelan]
Mar 25, 2008 (4:43 pm)
I'd start with plugs and wires.
#8 of 21 Re: a little help [paisan]
Mar 25, 2008 (4:45 pm)
Yes, and if there are still problems after that, look at the Mass Airflow Sensor. If it is dirty, it can become sensitive to moisture. Water/moisture will suck quite a bit of energy out of bad spark plug wires.
#9 of 21 Re: a little help [xwesx]
Jul 26, 2009 (9:39 pm)
Have a similar issue, same model car '97 legacy outback with 198,000km. Whenever it gets humid and hot or heavy rain, the vehicle is sluggish. I have done spark plugs, its had engine tests before I bought the vehicle and they were good.
I have a engine light on (yellow) on all the time, it used to go on and off intermittently, but its on all the time, mechanic tells me its just a sensor and not to worry about it.
Any other ideas for me? (where would the mass airflow be? also).
#10 of 21 noise form differential
Aug 19, 2009 (9:46 am)
97 outback/ auto.212k mls noise from rearend when giving gas, let up or put in nuet. noise goes away. a mech said it was bad front differential, noise telescoping to rear thru d/shaft. i might drive 20 miles a wk. met/fileings in oil on dip/stk. do i need a new differential or could it be a bearing?