This is a good car- except that it sacrifices function for design. C'mon Subaru- We like you because of your functional cars! I bought it because unlike my Forester, it has enough leg room for my husband in the front when the child seats are in the back. I like it because it drives good, it looks good, it's all wheel drive, it has reasonable gas mileage, and has decent cargo space. If it weren't for the leg room issue, I would stay with the Forester, which I think has a much better design. I am writing this review because it has two features which annoy me to no end. 1. The shape of the rear door/window makes it near impossible to buckle a child in and out of a rear-facing child seat. My poor baby has sustained more bumps to the head getting in and out of the carseat than I can count. 2. The seatbelt chime is about to drive me over the edge- and I'm an avid seatbelt wearer. It also has several features which definitely get the thumbs down. 1. The slant of the front door/window makes it very awkward to get into the front seat. 2. There is very little storage space in the front. 3. The control panel for air & heat are not nice and straight-forward like those on the more basic subarus without dual climate control. 4. The rear cargo area is limited by the inward slope of the rear windshield. Of all of these complaints the only one that I feel is actually important is the rear-facing child seat issue. For me it is the deal breaker. I've still got a few years of rear-facing child seat use ahead of me, and as much as I hate to do it, I am now looking for a new car.
My '06 2.5i Ltd. (118,000 mi.) blew its head gaskets for the second time in less than 3 yrs. today. Replaced all 4 sets of wheel bearings at least once, broken front axle, wiring harness on back hatch, door handle, console cover broke off completely years ago, rear defrost never did work properly, etc.
Never had a car in the shop as much as this one. Loved the traction - absolutely hated the total lack of quality in this vehicle. Not feeling the love... If you insist on a Subaru, but a model from '08 or newer - they are supposedly much more reliable.
Traction, handling, appearance.
Much better materials and workmanship. More cups holders and storage. Bigger, peppier engine. MP3 input (already on newer models)
My 2006 Outback Wagon has over 132,000 miles on it, and has been completely trouble free for 7 years.
It drives no differently than it did when it was new.
I'd actually kind of like a new car, but it's hard to justify the expense when this one is paid for and is so reliable.
This car is the poster child for reliability.
Back in the day when it was still under warranty, the thermostat had to be replaced, and a rear power window needed repair. The belt for the power steering wore out around 100,000 miles.
Other than that, I've done nothing but routine maintenance, and have had no problems with this car.
It doesn't know the meaning of the word "drama".
I turn the key, it starts, and it just goes.
It's terrific in snow and rain, consistently gets 26 mpg or better, and is not fazed by tough mountain roads in the winter.
It's sporty and fun to drive.
And it's amazing how much stuff you can fit in an Outback, even with a large dog riding shotgun!
The main complaint that I have with my Subaru is that it is uncomfortable on long trips.
It's unpleasant to drive for more than a couple of hours. I bought the most basic, stripped down model available, and in retrospect wish that I had chosen a model with a few creature comforts.
I loved my Roo until the Check Engine Light came on.
First it was the O-2 sensors code that came up.
After a $400 cost to replace those, then came a code indicating Random Misfire and I replaced the plugs, then came a P20296 code showing eventually that it needed a new computer which will cost over $600 for a 2nd hand one - almost $900 for a new one.
You have to get it re-keyed with a new Electronic Control Module.
Nickel and dime to death isn't the word for it!
When those codes come up, you have no cruise either!
All of this has happened within a few weeks.
We both love the snappy performance and that you have lots of road control even in the worst winter conditions.
The turbo puts you past all the slower drivers in an instant.
Great for hauling my pop-up camper.
The short turning radius is impressive, too.
Get rid of the immobility feature on the keys or make it optional.
It's another $125 when you get the new computer.
I bought my 5spd OBXT Limited new back in '06.
Have not had a single problem after 6 years and 53K miles.
The car is bullet proof, both mechanically and cosmetically.
Paint has held up extemely well, very chip resistant.
As for traction, the car is unstoppable in snow.
Two foot drifts barely register with the Subie's tenacious AWD and ample road clearance.
If you live in or near a snow belt, these cars are at the very top of the food chain.
Best part is performance.
The XT has some STi DNA.
It eats Audi A4's for lunch in the stoplight wars.
Reliability, unflappable AWD, lightening quick w/turbo, sharp looking.
Love it, love it, love it! I plan to hopefully ride it another 6 years.
Turbo engine, snow handling AWD, sharp looks (IMHO '05 and '06 were the high water mark years in this regard), and last but not least Subaru's legendary reliability.
Bring back the XT (turbo) for the Outback and give it a 6MT and/or a dual clutch style tranny option.
It was and remains the adult version of a WRX.