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First post...thinking of buying 2006 Outback


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9 replies to this topic

#1 saholz

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 11:30 AM

Well, my lease on my 2003 Audi A6 2.7T Quattro is coming to an end and I'm shopping for a new AWD vehicle. I don't care for the new Audis and have been seriously considering getting a 2006 Subaru in August or September. I test drove a couple yesterday and here's my impressions:

A 3.0 Legacy sedan (auto) was okay, but not great. The power was certainly more than adequate, but far from thrilling. The steering felt very light on center and the whole car felt just a bit "floaty" to me. It definitely did not feel as tight as my Audi A6. This particular car also had a pronounced shimmy at speeds over 70 mph. I then took out a 2.5 turbo Outback auto wagon. The contrast was astounding. The steering was tight and responsive with none of the on center lightness that I felt with the 3.0 I drove. The "floatiness" in the suspension was gone and the whole packge felt really well buttoned down compared to the 3.0 Legacy. The turbo boost was pronounced, not as refined as the twin turbo A6, but very impressive. This car could be lots of fun to own.

Here's what I don't understand. I know the XT package includes quicker steering and bigger brakes, but I see no mention of any suspension upgrades. Why did the 3.0 feel loose while the 2.5XT felt so tight? Given the shimmy I felt with the Legacy, I'm wondering if this car may have been out of alignment as well as being out of balance.

I'm trying to decide whether or not to go with the Legacy or Outback right now...leaning towards the Outback. I'm pretty well sold on the turbo over the 3.0, but don't want to finalize anything based on one bad example.

Any comments would be greatly appreciated. Also, any info on changes in packaging, colors, etc. for 2006? It sure would be nice if they offered satellite radio and memory seats for next year.

I enjoy driving and want a car that's quick and handles. My other, rather seasonal ride, is a 2005 Corvette with the Z51 suspension package. I obviously don't expect that level of performance in a family sedan/wagon, but I still want something that's fun to drive.
:)
Thanks for any help.

Stan

#2 bjwirth

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 01:12 PM

I test drove a legacy xt and I really liked it. that said, coming from a bmw 323, I prefer the bmw for "fun to drive" and feel. yes the legacy is faster and bigger than the 323, but beside the "oomf" from the turbo, I don't think it's as much fun (well in dry pavement at least). I also think you'll miss some of the "luxury touches" that the audi gives you. I really like the interiors of the audis (it's the outside I can live without)

but on the other hand, for normal day-to-day driving, I almost never push the bmw to its limit. and the legacy provides more than enough handling to suit my commuting needs. and since you have a corvette, you can scratch that performance itch quite easily. I'm not saying the legacy is "boring." I think it's quite lively and responsive- it's just not the same as a bmw or audi. I came REAL close to trading in my car last year, but didn't (contemplating the e90 right now), partially because I don't really have to haul the kids around do I didn't need a real family friendly car like I once thought I did.

if you don't like the new audi's, the legacy or outback may be worth considering.

#3 rizzo

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 05:07 PM

Here's what I don't understand. I know the XT package includes quicker steering and bigger brakes, but I see no mention of any suspension upgrades. Why did the 3.0 feel loose while the 2.5XT felt so tight? Given the shimmy I felt with the Legacy, I'm wondering if this car may have been out of alignment as well as being out of balance.

I'm trying to decide whether or not to go with the Legacy or Outback right now...leaning towards the Outback. I'm pretty well sold on the turbo over the 3.0, but don't want to finalize anything based on one bad example.

Any comments would be greatly appreciated. Also, any info on changes in packaging, colors, etc. for 2006? It sure would be nice if they offered satellite radio and memory seats for next year.

I enjoy driving and want a car that's quick and handles. My other, rather seasonal ride, is a 2005 Corvette with the Z51 suspension package. I obviously don't expect that level of performance in a family sedan/wagon, but I still want something that's fun to drive.
:)


i believe the outback models have tighter suspension than the regular legacy or impreza. i know that's true on my 03 outback sport (impreza model outback).

have you tried the legacy 2.5gt? it's turbo and may have a softer suspension than the outback xt. any reason you prefer the outback over the regular legacy? it seems as though you want a more sporty, stylish car. i'd say the regular legacy has that going for it over the outback...

as for fun to drive... i know people with the 05 2.5 gt and they love it (i think this is the first year with the turbo in it).

#4 saholz

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 06:59 PM

i believe the outback models have tighter suspension than the regular legacy or impreza. i know that's true on my 03 outback sport (impreza model outback).

have you tried the legacy 2.5gt? it's turbo and may have a softer suspension than the outback xt. any reason you prefer the outback over the regular legacy? it seems as though you want a more sporty, stylish car. i'd say the regular legacy has that going for it over the outback...

as for fun to drive... i know people with the 05 2.5 gt and they love it (i think this is the first year with the turbo in it).


I like the front end design of the Outback over the Legacy, plus the increased ground clearance is an advantage in snow country...where I live. I think I'll have to go back and try the 2.5Gt Legacy so I can get a more objective impression. One thing I learned though, that little turbo is VERY impressive, regardless of which model it's in.

#5 SuBrat84

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 07:13 PM

i know people with the 05 2.5 gt and they love it (i think this is the first year with the turbo in it).


It's the first US 2.5 Legacy Turbo... they had turbo legacies.. what 91-94?

As far as what model to get of the 2.5T or the 3.0.. I'd definately go with the 2.5T ... it sounds like the handling issues you're talking about have to do with engine weight for the extra cylinders and a stiffer suspension on the turbo model. Maybe the turbo has bigger sways? I don't know your intents and purposes with the car.. but It sounds like you would like the 2.5 Legacy Outback Turbo.. or the 2.5 Legacy GT Sedan Turbo.. Compare the price difference of these with how much a new Audi of similar stature would cost... then spend the difference on mods for your Subaru.. You'll be impressed. :brow:

#6 rizzo

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 07:38 PM

I like the front end design of the Outback over the Legacy, plus the increased ground clearance is an advantage in snow country...where I live. I think I'll have to go back and try the 2.5Gt Legacy so I can get a more objective impression. One thing I learned though, that little turbo is VERY impressive, regardless of which model it's in.


i doubt the legacy has less ground clearance than your audi did... and it's still got AWD. unless you're planning on taking it off the beaten path, i don't see a need the extra clearance (although i do like that part of them... and it's funny that they got more clearance than some SUV's). from the sounds of what you wanted, the legacy seems like it might suit you better...

are you looking at the wagon or the sedan (i personally think the higher clearance looks silly on the outback sedan)?

#7 saholz

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 07:51 PM

i doubt the legacy has less ground clearance than your audi did... and it's still got AWD. unless you're planning on taking it off the beaten path, i don't see a need the extra clearance (although i do like that part of them... and it's funny that they got more clearance than some SUV's). from the sounds of what you wanted, the legacy seems like it might suit you better...

are you looking at the wagon or the sedan (i personally think the higher clearance looks silly on the outback sedan)?

Definitely going with the wagon. The extra storage capacity is a big advantage for me. As far as clearance, my daughter's driveway is rough and I have scraped the bottom of the Audi going in and out, but it's not a critical feature. The 2006 's should be available in a few weeks, at which point I'll take another test drive and make a decision. A similarly equipped A6 is around $46K...it's getting pretty hard to justify a $15K difference in price.

#8 doeleen

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 07:54 PM

I will try to remember to post a pic tomorrow of my '05.

I have the XT Limited (Sholz - see my PM). I went from a Passat (V6) to the Outback.

The XT does include bigger wheels (17's). I do like the bigger tires - plus they are Potenza's - so not cheap tires. You may want to check the specs on the tires on the other cars.

The car does have some side body roll - but not much even compared to my Passat.

Other options that I selected - 5 speed, the OEM roof bike rack, OEM sub-woofer upgrade, upgraded security, heavy rubber mats, cargo net and rear cargo screen. I chose silver for color.

I just recently replaced the cheap 30W factory speakers with MB Quart all the way around. I also Installed professional tint and silver pinstripes.

My only complaint is the the factory 6-Disc HU is heavy on the bass and gain side. I had to adjust those all the way down in order to enjoy quality audio. But this is very minor. I love the drivability of the car and it sounds good too - dual exhaust was a surprise and it handles the mountain fire roads just fine! :-)

#9 SuBrat84

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Posted 21 June 2005 - 07:59 PM

Definitely going with the wagon. The extra storage capacity is a big advantage for me. As far as clearance, my daughter's driveway is rough and I have scraped the bottom of the Audi going in and out, but it's not a critical feature. The 2006 's should be available in a few weeks, at which point I'll take another test drive and make a decision. A similarly equipped A6 is around $46K...it's getting pretty hard to justify a $15K difference in price.


I forsee you getting a 2006 Legacy Outback Turbo Wagon. If you're worried about body roll.. get bigger sways and maybe even strut braces. I don't think you'll be scraping her on the driveway at your daughters. I forsee you being madly in love with your turbo outback!

#10 Crashton

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Posted 22 June 2005 - 04:03 PM

Here's what I don't understand. I know the XT package includes quicker steering and bigger brakes, but I see no mention of any suspension upgrades. Why did the 3.0 feel loose while the 2.5XT felt so tight? Given the shimmy I felt with the Legacy, I'm wondering if this car may have been out of alignment as well as being out of balance.

:)
Thanks for any help.

Stan


Stan, the the differeces you felt could come down to an alignment issue or something as simple as wrong air preassure. Usually cars on the dealers lots have the tires seriously over inflated & that could cause a loosey goosey steering sensation.

I think which ever you buy you'll be a happy Subie owner. Those Audi's are nice, but more $$$$ than they're worth IMHO.

My advice would be to get the turbo over the H6.

Chuck :D




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