Jump to content

Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, my lurker friend!

Welcome to Ultimate Subaru Message Board, an unparalleled Subaru community full of the greatest Subaru gurus and modders on the planet! We offer technical information and discussion about all things Subaru, the best and most popular all wheel drive vehicles ever created.

We offer all this information for free to everyone, even lurkers like you! All we ask in return is that you sign up and give back some of what you get out - without our awesome registered users none of this would be possible! Plus, you get way more great stuff as a member! Lurk to lose, participate to WIN*!
  • Say hello and join the conversation
  • Subscribe to topics and forums to get automatic updates
  • Get your own profile and make new friends
  • Classifieds with all sorts of Subaru goodies
  • Photo hosting in our gallery
  • Meet other cool people with cool cars
Seriously, what are you waiting for? Make your life more fulfilling and join today! You and your Subaru won't regret it, we guarantee** it.

* The joy of participation and being generally awesome constitutes winning
** Not an actual guarantee, but seriously, you probably won't regret it!

Serving the Subaru Community since May 18th, 1998!

Guest Message by DevFuse

- - - - -

1988 GL Wagon 5sp DR 4WD

  • Please log in to reply
9 replies to this topic

#1 kona


    New User

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 27 posts
  • Tucson AZ

Posted 17 July 2011 - 02:25 PM

Hi Folks.

Check out this new-to-me 1988 Subaru GL Wagon with 5 speeds, dual range 4WD, and the SPFI EA82 engine. It is well maintained, totally stock with only 132k miles and minimal rust. I'm pretty excited today. Big kudos admins and users of the USMB, which was a critical info source supporting my decision to by this wagon.

Posted Image

Posted Image

::::CLICK HERE FOR FULL GALLERY:::: ---- http://s1080.photobu...u GL Wagon 4WD/

Researching the interwebs pre-purchase, I was disappointed not to find a photo gallery detailing this model. Perhaps the next person in my shoes will appreciate the photo gallery linked above.

It did well yesterday on I-17, 65-70 mph for the 2+ hour trip from Phoenix>Tucson. Only my second GL/Loyale to every test drive, but it seems VERY clean inside and out. Good pickup and the turning radius if phenomenal. 4WD Lo (just tried for a second) is a crawler. Rust seems minimal, only obvious place is front driver window post as pictured above; wheel well areas and undercarriage look great. Clear coat is going..gone and exterior rubber window seals dessicated/going. Slight dent in front driver fender from some punk kid driving by and kicking it, minor bumper damage.

The PO was the 2nd but owned since 1990/18k and did almost everything himself. Provided detailed listing of his work since 100k. In last month, he reportedly did timing belts, drive belts, front half shafts and lower ball joints, repacked wheel bearings.

Moving forward, I would appreciate any comments, input, or thoughts on the vehicle. I'm not a daily driver, but this will be my primary vehicle. Fuel economy and utility are my primary goals. After my mechanic gives a thumbs up to the PO's maintenance work, I'll start improvements:

1) Plugs, wires, distributor cap.

2) Alignment/new tires - keeping 13" wheels. want high-ply but torn between all terrain and low rolling resistance

3) Bike rack - really want to get the bikes behind the car. crappy clip-on style may work for a short time but hitch mount preferred

4) Roof rack - for trips with my cargo box

1) custom bumper for hitch mounted rack and full size spare.

2) paint?

This is my first post, although I've lurked around a bit. Several friends are long-time Subaru fans and given my outdoors-oriented lifestyle, I always wanted one. I'm a student with low income, and although primarily a bicycle commuter, I need wheels for the grocery and to get into the mountains and out of this hell-hot Sonoran desert where I've been living for ~3 years (read Tucson). My 1993 Honda has too many miles to continue maintaining and its no fun anyway. I saw this '88 GL Wagon and cursory research indicated reliability, ~30 mpg, and DUAL RANGE FOUR WHEEL DRIVE!!!. As of day 2 on Phoenix craigslist, the PO hadn't yet managed to uploaded photos. After 1.5 hours on the phone and a first peek at the photos, we agreed upon a fair price. He held it 1 day until I could drive 2 hours to Phoenix to check it out. During/after the sale we went to lunch together and talked about it for around 2 hours. Based on what I've seen here and elsewhere, I think I did fine on the price and got a great car. As you can tell by the novel-length first post, I'm stoked.


#2 gadberry


    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 108 posts
  • Fayetteville, AR

Posted 17 July 2011 - 03:38 PM

Nice Find! thanks for posting the pics too! I like it; want one too.. :lol:


#3 El Presidente

El Presidente

    Subaru Fanatic!

  • Members
  • 621 posts
  • Northgate/Seattle, WA

Posted 17 July 2011 - 03:42 PM

Thats a really nice looking car, good find!

Welcome to the USMB:grin:

#4 kanurys


    High Altitude GL

  • Members
  • 707 posts
  • Durango, CO

Posted 17 July 2011 - 11:46 PM

I like the rare headlight protectors.

#5 tractor pole

tractor pole

    [catch phrase here]

  • Members
  • 552 posts
  • Monroe, WA

Posted 18 July 2011 - 12:23 AM

that is a really clean car!

I like it.

#6 kayakertom


    Eat, Live, Breath Subaru

  • Members
  • 329 posts
  • Lake Oswego

Posted 19 July 2011 - 01:03 AM

Good find; looks like it didn't come with factory ac, which helps keep the engine from running hot and eases access for maintenance.

Too bad no factory roof rack.

I'd second the hitch mounted bike rack - too easy to scratch up the tailgate with the clip on bike racks.

#7 Indrid cold

Indrid cold

    Subaru Nut

  • Members
  • 788 posts
  • Kennewick, WA

Posted 20 July 2011 - 01:54 AM

very nice....
Timing belts? any history on when they were replaced?

Made my first visit to that area last year... beautiful country.
Noticed the 116 deg. temp their today.... toasty...

#8 ellets


    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 102 posts
  • Lake of the Ozarks, mo

Posted 21 July 2011 - 10:37 AM

Boy I wish my 88 gl looked half that good. Congrats.
By the way full size spare fits fine under hood.

#9 firstsubi


    USMB Regular

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 111 posts
  • chester county

Posted 21 July 2011 - 03:08 PM

anyone know where to get the headlight covers?

#10 kona


    New User

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 27 posts
  • Tucson AZ

Posted 21 July 2011 - 11:22 PM

Thanks for the welcome and nice messages. I have virtually no auto wrenching experience and am clearly out of my league on this board. That said, I have a Chilton's manual, know how to use the search function and am looking forward to some maintenance work on my own and with a helping hand. This seems like a reasonable car to get experience with basic stuff.

The PO really talked up the headlight covers and the number of lamps they saved him from buying. He also mentioned that dropping the hood was what caused them to crack, so caution for future owners. A quick google search indicates this is the part number for the headlight covers: WAD7282273 and that they're not terribly expensive: http://www.drivewire...ND(universal:0).

The A/C option wasn't selected on this vehicle, which I believe originated in western WA. A/C is always nice in the desert...but as mentioned I'm better off without it in this oldie. I'll do my best to limit the driving to the cooler hours or up in elevation.

Yes, the heat here is intense and parching, as most evidenced in the paint and window seals. Fortunately he had a dash cover all these years so that isn't cracked. Citing the heat, the PO reportedly did the timing belts every 30k...but he also drove 5-6k/yr. The current timing belt has less than 1k.

Glad to know a full size spare will fit under the bonnet...had planned to check when I get new tires. I haven't measured yet but wondered if the stock spare wheel is appropriately deep. Thinking of going with a 175 70 R13 because more options seem available and 10mm width seems minimal since mpg is a primary concern. Any thoughts or preferences?

Keeping the spare under the hood is great by me, that leaves more room for the bike rack in the rear. Plus that will mean one less pin to pull/arm to swing to access the hatch. That said, this SJR bumper looks like just what I had in mind: Posted Image I wonder what that costs to purchase/ship?!


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users