Used 2002 Subaru Outback Base Consumer Reviews - 52 Car Reviews | Edmunds
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2002 Subaru Outback - Consumer Reviews

2002 Subaru Outback

Average Consumer Rating

52 Total Reviews

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Not very reliable
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Dakota Joe
on

Vehicle

2002 Subaru Outback AWD 4dr Wagon (2.5L 4cyl 5M)


Review

We purchased our vehicle new in the summer of 2002. Except for a lack of front-seat passenger leg room it is a fairly comfortable car. Performance is good and with good snow tires it is an amazingly good winter/snowy road vehicle. Furthermore, no trim pieces have fallen off or broken and the build quality seems pretty good. Our problem has been with vehicle reliability. We live in rural North Dakota and out here vehicle breakdowns can be downright life threatening. The Outback will leave you on the side of the road and it will leave you there often. During the 4.5 years we’ve had the Subaru it has broken and undriveable at least 10 times.


Best Features

Great snowy road performance. Great dealer service. They always fix it.


Worst Features

Improve the quality of the parts. There in no excuse for a ball joint that wears out at 60,000 miles.


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Look elsewhere
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By folledOnce
on

Vehicle

2002 Subaru Outback AWD 4dr Wagon (2.5L 4cyl 5M)


Review

At first I thought that dealer(s) were the problem, but car proved me wrong. Everything was a problem. There is no dealer service in NJ and corporate culture is basic arrogance. The car proved to be completely unreliable. I changed oil myself and performed all recommended maintenance, but car started overheating after 38K miles (guess what the warranty period is?). The fact that it was engine overheating and it is theoretically has a warranty for 5 years or 60,000 did not change the fact that I paid for the changing of relays and electrical components on the engine ($400). Brakes: first time changed at 8,000 miles at the dealer. The second time I shelled $400 out of pocket.


Best Features

All wheel drive: works OK in a winter.


Worst Features

The paint is vintage '50s: peeled off the bumpers after 18 months. Exhaust: dealer explained that it was stainless steal and should not corrode, which was proof that it was defective. I could not pass inspection with it. Local mechanic soldered it and slapped on an inspection sticker.


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So far, so good
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Sun195
on

Vehicle

2002 Subaru Outback AWD 4dr Wagon (2.5L 4cyl 5M)


Review

I've had this car for three years - no problems yet. Performs well in snow/wet weather. AWD is idiot-proof. Hauls a ton of stuff with seats folded down. Decent gas mileage -- 30+mpg on one recent long trip. Comfortable for longer trips. Adequate power for freeway; not too zippy around town. Short enough so that roof rack is easily accessible. I wish I would have got all-weather package w/ heated mirrors. Car has survived two minor accidents fairly well. This is the "Swiss army knife" of cars.


Best Features

AWD, cargo capacity, gas mileage, flexibility.


Worst Features

Needs more power, some problems with driver-side window sealing, fog lamps are expensive to replace, cruise control seems odd.


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Excellent car
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Jim
on

Vehicle

2002 Subaru Outback AWD 4dr Wagon (2.5L 4cyl 5M)


Review

I bought this car for dependable commuting in all (snowy) weather. It is the most sure-footed vehicle I have ever owned. It has averaged 28 mpg or better under all conditions. Visibility is excellent. It is comfortable on long trips as well. This is a convenient and useful vehicle.


Worst Features

Stock wiper blades have poor longevity. The rear bumper tends to collect road sand. 6 cylinder, and hybrid engine options should be offered in the base model Outback.


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3rd and Probably last Outback
1 of 3 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Gary B
on

Vehicle

2002 Subaru Outback AWD 4dr Wagon (2.5L 4cyl 5M)


Review

This is the 2nd of three Outbacks I have owned with a head gasket failure. Drivers window does not seal. Engine knocks when cold, acceleration & transmission are sluggish, gas mileage is mediocre. Handling on snowy road not the best. Interior material somewhat cheap.


Best Features

AWD, size, appearance, heated seats, wipers, etc.


Worst Features

Improve build quality and materials. Better tires to improve handling on snow covered roads. Improve transmission and gas mileage.


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