I purchased this car to replace a 2000 Volvo x-Country wagon which fell apart at 59,000 miles. I bought the Subaru Outback because 1)it provided wagon- like features; 2) it was cheaper than a Volvo; 3) the 2.5 ltr. turbo flies. We are now at 45,000 miles and have been DELIGHTED with 1)it's reliability- never a problem; 2) the engine- wow, does this car move; 3) it's capabilities- all wheel drive makes this car indestructible on snow, ice and rain. Negatives- we wish the car was a wee bit larger. Also, lack of a telescoping steering wheel is annoying. We love this car but looked at the new and larger 2010 redesign. However, without a 2.5 liter turbo option, we prefer our car. Zoom Zoom!
Reliability is 100% The 2.5 liter turbo is like a sports car It navigates through all weather conditions It looks great in black Front seats are very comfortable for long trips
Telescoping steering wheel A bit larger on the inside More legroom in the rear.
This is our second Subaru. The first was a 1999 Forester. We bought this one because it had better ground clearance than the Forester, was more roomy and looked better. Ours is a stick shift which we like because of the better control and because we tow it behind our RV on trips. We average about 21 mpg in mixed driving and around 29 mpg on the highway. Love the car. No problems aside from an alignment problem when new which was taken car of by the dealer. Wife is an EMT and HAS to be able to get through...this does--and does it very smoothly! We'll get another in a couple of years as well.
Ability to tow it in neutral with no other requirements, excellent road feel and handling, heated seats, excellent visibility, headlights come on automatically, interior lighting, comfortable seats, fold flat rear seats, roof carrying capacity, great heater and air, security of safety features.
The stick shift is a little less smooth than some we've had. Seat belts don't always retract well, requiring manual help at times and Subaru windshield wipers don't clear windshield as well as replacements (Rain-ex).
Three big disappointments: 1. it is promoted as a 4 WD with high clearance. So you would think you could take it on a mountain road. Although it has high clearance there is no "low gear" so it doesn't have the umpf to make it up a steep hill (I do not mean extreme steep just a somewhat steep hill -- like to a trailhead). 2. I have owned this car for 3 years and I have had to replace two rear wheel bearings. A mechanic told me that when Subaru redesigned the Outback the rear wheel bearings weren't of the quality as the previous design. 3. We had absolutely no steering control on a powder snowy road last winter & crashed 5mph. I've never experienced anything like that in previous cars.
The Limited offers all the extras and the standard 4cyld is more than adequate for average usage. Good snow and ice traction keeps you going through all 4 season. A good highway car if you don't need lots of extra space. Drives more like a car costing much more and the build quality is outstanding. Drove this car cross country MA to CA and averaged over 28mpg. With a small trailer from CA to MI the average was almost 21mpg. Speeds were up to 75mph on both trips. Take it easy and get 30+mpg.
The amazing sunroof.
Make it bigger. (The 2010 makes this advice a reality.)
This is my first Subaru and it won't be my last! We shopped around for months for a solid used car and finally decided on the 06 Outback Limited after driving the new Jetta, Rabbit, Civic, Fit, CRV, v50, Forester, Sonata, and old 04 Outback. The 06 Outback Limited outshines them all! This car has everything you would ever want in a car - AWD, HUGE moonroof, heated seats, leather, turning radius, 28 mpg, smooth ride, and space to haul. And at $14k, it's a steal!
As mentioned, AWD, HUGE moonroof, heated seats, leather, turning radius, 28 mpg, smooth ride, and space to haul! I still can't believe this car averages 28 mpg (with mixed driving)!
Check engine light comes on if you fail to tighten the gas cap! Trim quality is a bit shoddy. We had to replace the interior cargo cover, center console, rear window trim, and a chrome piece on the air vent (ebay!). This could be from the previous owners negligence, but things to watch for.