2002 Subaru Outback Consumer Review: Outback in the Outhouse

2002 Subaru Outback - Consumer Review

Average Consumer Rating

142 Total Reviews

Base Wagon (2.5L 4-cyl. AWD 5-speed Manual)

Build Quality
Reliability Value
Outback in the Outhouse
By rrrust on


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


Check at 10K miles engine light prompts
trip to dealer. Aux. air injection
valve (emissions) failure is indicated.
This becomes a recurring failure.
Valve is replaced once or twice per
month for several months. Finally tech
rep calls factory and they suggest re-
programming car's brain. This fix
works, but then car develops severe
knocking in valve train (stuck or
gummed lifters?). Get rid of this one
before warranty expires.

Best Features

High road clearance (good on rutted unsurfaced drive to my house). I NEVER got stuck in snow (or mud). This car towed 1,500 lb trailer with ease and confidence.

Worst Features

Throttle has hair trigger (awful lurching in stop & go traffic). The clutch chatters (you must be VERY delicate with throttle when starting from a stop). Car was in shop for some days out of most months (unacceptable for a new car).
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