We bought this rental car with 12K on it. wife drove it until it had about 90K on it then I started driving it. Only cons are its size--I'm 6' and this is a car that sits low to the ground. I'd rather have a SUV. Pros: reliability. NEVER a breakdown in 100K miles. Pre 100K repairs limited to brake pads, one O2 sensor, one tie rod end. Original tires lasted over 80K miles. At 100K I've had to do several repairs that would be expensive if you had to pay labor--AC hose, steering rack and CV boots. 105K timing belt change coming and will cost a bunch. Has typical subaru motor sound, but this car is going to run forever.
Solid, reliable car.
5 speed auto would be good to decrease engine noise, increase gas mileage, and get the most out of the small motor.
Purchased used 1 yr old. 120K miles on the car so far. Never had mechanical problems. Wife loves it. Replaced McIntosh head unit after warranty ran out with aftermarket radio (First time replaced under warranty). Auto transmission jerks when downshifts from 2 to 1 gear at stoplight. Dealer inspected, no issues found. Average 25 MPG mixed driving. Replacing front brake pads every 20K miles. Wind noise is annoying after 65MPH even with replaced window seals. Needs more luxury features for $30K vehicle. It was my second Subaru after I loved WRX but probably will not be buying again. Better choices available for the money.
2003 Subaru Outback Limited AWD 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 4A)
Overall I truly loved this car. Unfortunately the window noise everyone talks about came up for me around 30,000 miles but bigger than that, the transmission! Clunky from about 56,000 miles and finally bit the dust at 140,000. Come now, that's too early. I'm a very gentle driver, never accelerate too fast, and would certainly expect a better lifetime out of such a major (and EXPENSIVE) element of the car. Sounds like this is a trend with the 03 Outback :(
AWD, feels like a sports car, clearance.
headroom! I'm 6' 2" and my head grazes the roof. Transmission for obvious reasons. windows were fixed in later models. fuel economy.
Second Subaru - both lemons. After 83,000 miles on the car (legacy Outback) and regular maintenance (no problems to date) the car needs over $4k worth of repairs. van Bortel, Victor NY - worst dealer ever - offered me $800 trade in. That's right, $800, even though Edmunds lists rough condition as worth about $4k in trade in. Yes, I bought the car there. van Bortel really knows how to treat their customers. I will never buy a Subaru again. Shame as I really wanted to like them.