Last post on Dec 19, 2011 at 5:27 PM
You are in the Subaru Forester Maintenance & Repair
What is this discussion about?
#11 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [ateixeira]
Dec 15, 2011 (9:13 am)
We have gone off point a bit here and I will admit I was the one who started this but, I feel the information is worth noting.
As for the general subject of durability, you have a point about comparisons to past models. I will say this, new engines area amazing and the Subaru horizontal piston engines could be about the toughest on the market. When my 1994 1.8 Impreza rusted out at 300,000 miles the engine was still running like the day I got it. I would say that with the exception of the head gasket problems a few years back Subaru engines get better with each generation. The crank shafts on Subaru engines are like nothing else on the market. My main complaint is that everything else is getting lighter. The suspension parts are less the robust. It's ok for a dirt road but that it. It's not jeep and I'm not saying is should be. I also can't tune the traction control for the way I want it to run. I have to push a stupid button every startup to get up my 23 percent grade snow covered drive way. I want it in that mode all the time. It's a software system so I should have the option. Again to be fair this could be another Federal Government thing.
I am one who could care less what a car looks like. I expect it to do it's job and not cost a lot to keep it going. We all need to demand more. A new Subaru if we figure 27000, plus the loan interest, insurance, sales tax could be around 34,000 now add in the tax load,,,,,,,, 49 percent (FED 25%, FICA 13%, Medicare 4%, State income tax 7%) to clear the 30,000 and we need to earn about 60,000 to pay for a plain old Subaru (60000 * .51 = 30600). So, stick with me here. If a working class person needs to work 1.5 years just to pay for a Subaru plus gas and maintenance, should the person not be entitled to expect at least 250,000 miles or 20 years of use from the car?
This is what makes the CVT transmission such a gamble. To pay this much money for something with no track record is not a risk I can afford to take. I am retired and now live on 60,000 per years. The next car or truck I buy must last.
I am still waiting for a technical person/engineer to inform us about the build quality and materials quality of the CVT transmission. I would love to hear great things but, at this point all I have heard is from Subaru dealership people. Would a person at the dealer ever say anything negative, of course not. When we got the 2011 Forester, we looked at the outback models as well. The sales person was pushing the CVT models. When I asked her what CVT was she couldn't explain it. She was unaware I already new about this type of transmission. I told her I would not buy a CVT and it is not available on the Forester. It is our job to know it is top notch before we buy it. We need to walk into the dealer knowing more then they do. It is our job to learn about things like CVT before we buy.
#13 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [mountaindog]
Dec 15, 2011 (2:35 pm)
I don't have anything positive or negative to add regarding the CVT. A first-year introduction is always a risk for the consumer. That said, there are already high-mileage (for the year) examples of the 2010 Legacy/Outback out there, so we'll likely see 200K+ examples out there in the next 2-3 years and more information regarding failures if they crop up.
I drove a Legacy with CVT a few months ago, and it felt great (for an automatic), but that said nothing about its longevity.
As with most transmissions (not all, mind you), I strongly suspect that results will depend heavily on the care exhibited by owners. A point of praise for the 4EAT is that it has demonstrated its abilities over the years to absorb some abuse/neglect by owners. I'm not so confident that the CVT will carry on this trait even though I'm not going to throw it under the bus, either.
Subaru has experimented with CVT technology in the past, and it didn't go so well for them, so I'm certain they took a more cautious and measured approach this time... which is an encouraging thought.
For me, though, I won't consider an automatic unless there is an extremelycompelling case to do so. Manual or nothing.
#14 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [xwesx]
Dec 15, 2011 (2:57 pm)
I am with you on the automatic stuff. I need to replace an 18 year old T100 truck. The only full size truck with a manual is a 45000 dollar ram diesel 6 speed manual. Not 1 manual trans gas engine truck with a manual on the market. ZERO.
Going back to 1977 I have owned 6 Subarus with manual transmissions all we rock solid. Never a transmission or clutch failure.
My 1994 was great. Push rod motor, manual trans with high and low range gearing. That was a good one. Why did they ever stop making that setup??? I sold the car at 250,000 miles and still regret it.
#15 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [mountaindog]
Dec 15, 2011 (7:38 pm)
A coworker had a... '93? wagon (Loyale, I think) that had a manual with the dual range push-button 4WD. Now, I don't mind the AWD versus push-button 4WD, but I would just love a dual range transmission. He had that car until about 2005 or 6, I think, and it was in pristine condition (literally looked new -especially the interior- aside from a few scratches, etc). Simple, practical.
These new ones are still fairly simple compared to many of the competitors' models, but they still have a lot of stuff in them to go wrong with age.
#16 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [xwesx]
Dec 16, 2011 (7:43 am)
I wonder who actually supplies the CVT?
Nissan has been using them for quite a while now. FWIW, Consumer Reports ratings on their models with CVT rate them above average under the Transmission categories. Across the board, dating back to 2005 models.
#17 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [ateixeira]
Dec 16, 2011 (8:47 am)
I don't put much value in consumer reports. The real and only proof are miles and years.
I have seen bad reports in CR on cars which often run for years and years. On example I read some negative stuff they said about the Corolla. Those things are hard to kill.
I wonder if they might be unbiased?
#18 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [ateixeira]
Dec 16, 2011 (9:51 am)
I believe the Subaru CVT is an in-house unit.
#19 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [mountaindog]
Dec 16, 2011 (12:20 pm)
In my experience, they tend to pin-point just the right issues. Subaru had head gasket and wheel bearing issues for certain years, those showed up in Consumer Reports, accurately too.
Even the short-term problem with crank bearings in the WRX and Forester XT showed up. They even rated the XT model separately because it did quite well. When Subaru replaced the bearings, both of those improved, just as we observed among member here on Edmunds.
#20 of 24 Re: Good information...thanks everyone. [ateixeira]
Dec 17, 2011 (9:02 am)
Thanks for pointing out that information about CR, it's good to know.