Last post on Sep 21, 2012 at 7:25 AM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
What is this discussion about?
Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Subaru Forester, Car Buying, Car Comparisons, Sedan, Wagon
#280 of 1296 Re: Encouraging July Sales [ateixeira]
Aug 04, 2009 (2:31 pm)
I'd say that some of the content is a bit suspect rather than not well written, which is why I highlighted certain phrases. The larger point though is that FHI lost money during a period when sales were strong relative to the other manufacturers. Yes, they lost less money, but they still are/were in the red.
Below is a write-up from Joe Spitz at cars101.com re. the July sales:
"8/3 July sales total 21,839 up 34%. Cash for Clunkers sells cars for everyone, and 'end of model year' rebates and low rates helps. Subaru is up 34% over July 08s total of 16,271 for a strong 4% YTD gain (July 09- July 08). July 09 totals - Outback 4972, Forester 7574, Impreza 6247, Legacy 2340, Tribeca 707.
The Legacy (+34%) and Impreza (+41%) were clearly helped by big rebates and 0% financing. The '10 Outback CUV has been successful though folks who preferred the '09 station wagon version quickly picked off remaining inventory (Outback +33%) with the help of some nice 'end of model year' rebates of course. The '10 Forester Premium's new power driver seat has folks liking the car even more but all models are strongly popular. Tribeca? -10% from 788 July 08 and -44% YTD, Yes there will be a 2010 Tribeca 7 passenger but why and I still suggest a TriBaja pick-up version to replace the late Baja."
July was an odd month so we need to see how the next quarter goes before drawing any conclusions about the re-designed Legacy and Outback. One thing that I am very worried about though is the overlap in Subaru's lineup when it comes to the Forester, Outback, and Tribeca. The Tribeca, for all intents and purposes, is dead; however, the Forester definitely ate into Outback sales in 2008 and 2009 (take a look at cars101 and the relative sales history for the two vehicles after the Forester was re-designed). Let's see how Outback sales are after the 2009s are long gone and the 2010s are on the lots in volume. I suspect that sales will be a bit disappointing because the re-designed Outback is more CUV/SUVish, a domain where the Forester resides. Also, the Forester is a cheaper option for a car that is pretty close to the size of the Outback.
#281 of 1296 Standard Engine on 2010 Legacy
Aug 05, 2009 (1:19 pm)
Took a test drive the other night and liked the car. Friend told me to think twice before buying claiming the standard boxer engine is old technology so why pay today's dollars for an old design. Is he right? Are the powerplants in an Accord or Mazda6 more modern and sophisticated? Thank you.
#282 of 1296 Re: Standard Engine on 2010 Legacy [oceana143]
Aug 05, 2009 (4:49 pm)
Your friend is stupid. By that reckoning, an I4, a V6, a V8, etc. is "old technology." Inline, boxer, V design, W design are all different configurations of the cylinders in relation to one another. It is not like all engines used to be boxers (like Porsche) and then the smart money moved to something better. Sheesh, perhaps your friend believes in saying any stupid thing that comes to mind.
#284 of 1296 Re: Standard Engine on 2010 Legacy [oceana143]
Aug 05, 2009 (6:07 pm)
Your friend is marginally right in that Honda and Mazda do have more sophisicated engines (i.e., dual camshafts and variable valve timing), features that Subaru's H4 currently does not offer. These improvements allow for greater power without increasing the engine displacement. On the other hand the boxer design is still of great value and its age should not be held against it. For example BMW, who pioneered the boxer design in 1921, continues to sells motorcycles based on engines built with opposing twin cylinders which offer a low center of gravity along with modest engine vibration.
#285 of 1296 Re: Standard Engine on 2010 Legacy [oceana143]
Aug 06, 2009 (9:10 am)
Boxer engines have a natural second order balance. In-line 4 bangers nowadays require the added reciprocating mass of balance shafts, while a boxer doesn't need 'em.
Plus, 170hp from a 2.5l is competitive, even without DOHC or variable valve timing.
Plus boxers have a characteristic sound. You may not tell a difference with an in-line four from Nissan, Honda, Toyota, or Mazda, but you'll hear the distinctive boxer from a block away.
Pop the hood, especially next to a Mazda6. I just checked one out while getting an oil change in my Miata.
Look closely at the location of the engine - the Subaru's entire engine lies below the top of the tire, allowing a low center of gravity. I believe both spark plugs lie aft of the front axle, too, so really it's a front-midship engine layout.
Now hop over to the Mazda6. Aye, what a train wreck. The entire block lies ahead of the front axle. And way up high, much of it above the top of the front tires. Having all the weight in front of the axle like that makes it harder for the car to turn in. There's more inertia preventing it from feeling nimble, and of course a very nose heavy, unbalanced car.
I don't have specifics but I bet the Mazda6' weight distribution is something like 62/38, while a typical Subaru is closer to 55/45. Much, much better balance.
To be fair the one in a showroom was a V6, but I doubt the 4 banger is much better, maybe 60/40.
Even if you ignore the position of the engine, neither the Accord nor the Mazda6 use the latest Direct Injection technology (Mazda does in the turbo MazdaSpeed3 though), so arguably those designs are dated as well.
#286 of 1296 Re: Standard Engine on 2010 Legacy [ateixeira]
Aug 06, 2009 (9:56 am)
I have nothing to add to this post except to say that it's one of the best written and informative I've ever seen on this or any other site. KUTGW!
But ... I still can't make up my mind between a '10 Outback or a leftover '09 Forester.
#287 of 1296 Re: Standard Engine on 2010 Legacy [ateixeira]
Aug 06, 2009 (9:56 am)
"Plus, 170hp from a 2.5l is competitive, even without DOHC or variable valve timing."
BMW's 2.5I engine, equiped with DOHC and variable valve timing, delivers 184 HP and 175 ft-lbs. So clearly there's potential room for improvement.
#288 of 1296 Re: Standard Engine on 2010 Legacy [seabrook7039]
Aug 06, 2009 (10:04 am)
The BMW is also a 6-cylinder engine, whereas the Subaru 2.5 is a 4-cylinder engine; same displacement, but the BMW cylinders are smaller. The rule of thumb is that smaller cylinders are more efficient than larger cylinders, so the BMW will always have a theoretical edge over the Subie.
Back in the 1960s Honda made a 6-cylinder 250cc racing engine, and a 5-cylinder 125cc racing engine for their GP mototorcycles. They put out an incredible amount of horsepower for their displacement. Most other bikes of that era used single or twin cylinder engines in those displacement classes.
#289 of 1296 Re: Standard Engine on 2010 Legacy [seabrook7039]
Aug 06, 2009 (10:24 am)
Different price class. Totally different set of rules, if you ask me.
At that price, get a loaded-to-the-gills H6 Limited model for less than a subcompact BMW 1 series with that 2.5l, and indeed you'll get the double-AVCS that is more appropriate for that price level.
Having said that, like Subaru, BMW lies their I-6 engines longitudinally, so they're not sitting on top, way up high, like the transverse designs used by Honda and Mazda.
The Miata is a notable exception - it has an in-line four that is laid out longitudinally, with 3 of the 4 spark plugs behind the front axle for 52/48 balance. Proof that Mazda knows that's the best layout for a sports car, while the Mazda6 has other goals and being sporty isn't really a priority.
Also, as mentioned above, BMW uses boxer engines in their motorcycles. It's rather humorous to read the press materials about those engines and how great that layout is. BMW's own words.