1997 Subaru Legacy - Consumer Reviews

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Average Consumer Rating 91 Total Reviews
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Good looking, but trucklike
By Dan M on 10/12/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy Outback Limited 4dr Wagon AWD

Review

My 1997 Outback Limited is trucklike. The automatic transmission shifts are very pronounced. The 2.5 four cyl. is noisey and low geared. I have had trouble with oil leaks in the front crank seal.
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engine failure
By Wilsons on 09/23/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy Outback 4dr Wagon AWD

Review

Bought a used 97 outback only 5 months ago. The car was great at 1st & I was such an advocat of Subaru that I bought another one for my wife. I opted for this car & thought (wrongly) that it was reputed for reliability. I drive many Hwy miles & expect more from Subaru. I had problems around 100k: crankshaft seals, burning oil smell, alternator recall & faulty dash lights! Also had the mass air flow & TPS sensors replaced at $600. At last oil change was informed cam & rear engine seals need replaced for $700. Motor failed 108K. Subaru advised on a new engine at $5700. This car should last longer than this & problems are more than coincidence!
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Hard to say
By lmac on 09/15/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy Outback 4dr Wagon AWD

Review

Initially we were in the honeymoon stage...Then constantly needing brakes or making brake sounds..replace the AT clutch cylinder ($1200) various smoking dripping oils even after replacing different seals, gaskets, etc. Now strange suspension sounds and like many where is the heater light?? I Never even knew there was one!! It has been handy in the snow & I love not having to stop & chain up though it is not infallible. Never buy dark blue if you live on a dirt road. Noisey inside, sounds cheap & always head an engine ticking sound.
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Best Car Ever!
By RevDusty on 07/26/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy Outback 4dr Wagon AWD

Review

145000 miles with only the oft- experienced alterntor problem for which I was promptly reimbursed. Only other complaints are the need for new brakes and/or resurfaced rotors every 30000 miles or so (but maybe that's my fault?), and the dashboard lights going out one by one. The AWD inspires deserved confidence. Handles great! Plenty of room. Comfortable enough!
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I love this car!
By Subie on 07/22/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy GT 4dr Sedan AWD

Review

This car is so fun to drive. When I am with my friends I will always offer to drive just because I love driving it so much. I went to Costa Rica last month and when I was flying home I couldn't wait to get back and drive my Legacy. It's so easy to maintain. Very well designed and reliable. I will buy another one when it's time...
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Reliable +++
By Salmo on 07/03/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy Outback 4dr Sedan AWD

Review

I have 138,000 miles on my 1997 Outback. I just replaced the battery and have the original suspension system. Just periodic recommended maintenance has kept this an extremely reliable car. In the wintery Northeast it is a must. I was so impressed that my wife and I bought her the sedan.
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Reliable all-season transportation
By Gotenks243 on 07/01/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy Outback Limited 4dr Wagon AWD

Review

Automatic bought new. Going on 7 years and 70,000 miles later, it's successfully braved a number of snowy winters with excellent AWD grip. The AWD makes for nice handling in the dry (and wet) too, though body roll is pronounced. Considering the car makes no sporting pretentions, it handles quite well, and it has enough pep to keep up with traffic, helped by good mid-range torque. The sole reliability issue was a seal right after it went out of powertrain warranty. I had no problems before the recalls were carried out. Fuel economy is an acceptable 23-26mpg depending on the city/highway mix and 29 is not out of reach on long trips.
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good car, but...
By tconte on 06/16/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy L 4dr Wagon AWD

Review

Generally, I have been happy with the outback, though the last 20,000 miles I have had an ongoing problem with the electrical system. It's a great car to have if you live above the snow line, but not much use for awd otherwise.
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Almost bulletproof, but sube dealers suk
By bcnyc on 05/06/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy Brighton 4dr Wagon AWD

Review

My 3rd Sube wagon. Subes are great in NYC, where weaker cars have very short lifespans (accidents, dings, theft, bad roads, etc). Alt dead @ 50K. OEM shocks died @ 35k. Clutch wore out @ 100k. Heater lights never worked. Timing belt & water pump replaced @ 70K. Nothing else replaced. Oil every 4k, plugs every 15k. Now @ 140k miles, expecting head gasket blowout any day. Will probably get a Forester. Dealers very bad for service, especially w/women - when wife brings car to shop, they always find long list of problems, all bogus. She just repeats "oil change only." Check Engine light a joke. All my Subes had it, yet they all passed emissions.
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Breaking my heart
By dosperros on 05/06/03 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Subaru Legacy Outback 4dr Wagon AWD

Review

My '97 Subaru Legacy Outback wagon was my first brand-new car (after two used Honda Accords), and I loved it. Loved all the room, loved the AWD, thought (still think) it was cute. I ignored the minor inconveniences, like the gas light that stopped working after it was 2 years old. But then, at about 5-1/2 years old the burning oil smell started. Got the front engine seal replaced($500). Now, at 6 years and 105,000 miles, dealer says the gaskets need replacing along with the cam seal (about $700), and maybe some other seal at the back of the engine needs replacing, too ($800 or so). So, fix or trade it in? My Subaru has broken my heart!
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