2002 Subaru Outback Consumer Review: Best all-around wagon, but not

2002 Subaru Outback - Consumer Review

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Best all-around wagon, but not inspiring
By Nostoc2 on


2002 Subaru Outback L.L. Bean Edition AWD 4dr Wagon (3.0L 6cyl 4A)


On a price per feature and per reliability ratings basis, I concluded the LL Bean beat the AWD V-6 Passat and Volvo. The styling, in and out, and the materials quality of the Subaru does not match those competitors, however, so I do not get excited to drive the Outback as I might the Passat, nor do I have the cache that comes with driving a Volvo. But I get more storage space, better foul weather operation (Subaru's more sophisticated AWD and higher elevation off the ground), more hi end horsepower and extra luxury features for my money.

Best Features

Quiet V-6 engine w/ great passing speed acceleration (but not off the line). Heated sideview mirrors and wiper de- icers. Look/feel of MOMA steering wheel. Supple leather. Weather band radio. Decent fake wood trim. Dual moon roof greatly brightens up cabin.

Worst Features

Improve speed off the line, e.g., to get to highway speed much faster. Better front seat cushioning. Wind noise from roof rack's cross-beams very noticeable on highway. Deepen cup holders. Add stereo controls to steering wheel. Add steel frame around door windows for more solidity.
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