AWD that really works - and winter driving in Northern Michigan with Blizzack Snowtires = safe driving and security, what more is needed? Low maintenance costs over eleven years - bought the 60,000 mile warranty and never used it! Rebuilt engine at 100,000 miles - head gaskets, timing belt, new pumps and belts - plan to keep it for another 80,000 miles or more.
I've wanted a Subaru for a while. I finally had the chance to buy one and it sure was a mistake. The car had a rebuilt engine at 120,000 miles. I bout it with 124,000 miles. Since then I've had to replace Radiation, Radiator Hoses, Power Steering Pump, Oil Cooler Gasket, Valve Cover Gaskets, AC Gaskets, Knock Sensor, Brakes and Rotors all around, Rear Wheel Bearing. The harmonic balance failed and I had to replace timing cover, belt, tensioner, pulleys, and water pump. Lower Ball Joints. Front Sway Bar End Links. At around 142,000 miles the car started to get really loud when warming up in cold weather. Took it to Subaru and was told it is Piston Slap. Nothing I can do. I was quoted $3500 for lower end rebuild or $5200 for a used motor. It is now at the dealer again for another coolant leak. It is on top of the engine block. It's either $160 to put in a 4 inch elbow hose or if the line going to that hose is bad $500. I'm over this lemon. Also my valve covers are leaking again and my head gasket is seeping oil. I'll never buy a Subaru again. Every time I have to research a problem I find out all of the other horror stories that others have experienced. I can't believe I thought American cars were junk. I should have kept my 94 Silverado. It only got 13 mpg, but I could buy a lot of gas with the $6000 I've spent on repairs on this car. Please avoid Subaru Motors at all cost.
I got a great deal on my '05 Forester, only 3,000. I purchased it with 93k miles. I am the second owner of the vehicle. The previous owner was an older lady who probably was unaware of the issues with the car as it appeared very little work was done on it. I had to have quite a number of things done to get it to drive okay, the largest being the entire AWD system and breaking system redone. From there I had done some basic PM to make it a smoother ride (timing belt change, new winter tires, new muffler, ect.) After much work it now drives beautifully. This is the first car i've ever owned with no maintenance lights on! It's 100% worth the money though, no nasty car payments or fleases. HOW DOES IT HANDLE RURAL NEW ENGLAND WEATHER? Beautifully! So far with this vehicle I have driven through 10 inches of fresh snowfall on an unplowed horridly maintained back road, through pot-hole-filled unmaintained dirt roads in the White Mountains, down very steep inclines, and through post-flood debris. It only has about 8" of clearance which I was concerned with at first but it seems that amount is just enough to avoid scraping by. Other reviews say the highway noise is loud, and yes, yes it is. But if you live rural like me you don't care about that! Also, the heated seats are fantastic to have when it's 4 degrees out. Another important thing to mention is that i am 5 feet tall and 82lbs. If you are little like me you wont have any issue seeing over the dash. However if you are very tall i'd look for another car.
I purchased a 2005 Subaru Forester L.L. Bean with 69,000 miles on it. Thought I was getting my dream car and was my third Subaru. If you google Subaru problems my car has had every single one of them. A few of the major problems are as follows. Was on long weekend road trip with the family and one of the spark plugs blew out of the cylinder striping the threads. Spent our road trip at a cheap hotel in the winter while the car was being repaired. Since then the check engine light is on and the cruise control light blinks. Took it to a Subaru dealer who was rather uninterested in offering options other than rebuilding the motor. Last week the head gaskets blew, still don't have a repair estimate on them. I've always been a Subaru guy but that feeling is fading. I will say though that I live in a northern state and have never been stuck in the snow while driving my Subaru
We got talked into buying a used LL Bean edition Forester while looking at Jeeps at the Subaru dealer, and it's been one of the best 'mistakes' we've ever made. Never had experience with the brand before but are very pleased. It's not particularly attractive (it's silver and gold), but it's been easy and cheap to maintain. I'm no mechanic, and even I've had no issues with oil changes, trans fluid changes, brakes, headlights, etc. My wife no longer needs to worry about when to activate 4x4, and it drives confidently in the <6" snow storms we usually get around here. Has had a couple oddball issues like heat shields rattling and the brake backing pads rubbing, but all have been easy fixes. Only real complaints are that it should sit 2" higher and have another 30-50 horsepower. Acceleration is SLOW for someone who's used to V6s and V8s, but it's fine once you're up to speed. Actively looking for another though, as the downfalls are easily outweighed by the reliability and drive quality.