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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Forester moonroof plus Seattle dealers

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22 replies to this topic

#1 Guest_kathykost_*

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Posted 20 July 2003 - 05:32 PM

Hello everyone -- never have posted on this forum before and didn't find any discussions in the archives about these questions...

First one is a simple one: curious about the reputations of the dealers in the Seattle area (both eastside and seattle side). Both with sales and their service departments. I'm looking at buying a Forester (first Subaru) and don't know much about the dealers except for Eastside Subaru being under new ownership.

The other question comes about over my irritation that you can't get an XT with a 5 speed and a moonroof. It was suggested to me that I have an after market one put in (which would not be as large as the factory one of course). I have always heard that is a rotten idea, due to possible leaks, rattles, and the possibility of compromising the roof structure somehow. But I know they must make them better than they used to. A dealer suggested it and another dealer told me it was a crazy idea. So curious if anyone has ever done such a thing to their Forester or other Subaru. I'm leaning against the idea, but wanted to see what people think.

Thanks --


#2 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 20 July 2003 - 06:46 PM

Carter subaru in aurora area is pretty good. Don't know many on the eastside though.

As for the moonroof thing. People have added aftermarket kits. Assuming they are done properly, you shouldn't have any problems.

If you do get one put in, ask around either online or loacally for people that have used the particular installer and see how they liked their work.

#3 Guest_lesbaru_*

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Posted 20 July 2003 - 06:48 PM

Subiegal works at Carter Subaru.

I've ordered parts from 1stsubaruparts.com, which is really Auburn Subaru, and been very happy.

Skagit Subaru is wonderful. They have a salesman named Bryce who loves Subies and isn't pushy at all. When my mom was buying her Impreza he and a couple of the other sales guys came out to oooh and aaaah over my 1986 GL. Slick way to get on my good side, but I liked them anyway.

Don't make the trip up north to the Subaru dealer in Bellingham. They suck and are very rude. (that's why my mom went to Skagit. Longer drive, but nicer people.)

#4 Guest_gbhrps_*

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Posted 20 July 2003 - 07:26 PM

If you're going to spend the money to buy a new XT, why wouldn't you just get one that has the factory roof installed....correctly, and with a warranty....and with the resale that factory accessories have over aftermarket? It would be different if you got a really terrific deal on a 3 year old car that didn't have a factory moonroof, and you were forced to go aftermarket. My 2 cents worth.....get the factory moonroof that is engineered for the car, rather than a generic/fits all, poorly installed aftermarket unit that may cause you grief.

#5 Guest_kathykost_*

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Posted 20 July 2003 - 07:51 PM

Believe me, I would, if I could get the XT with the moonroof and in a 5 speed. Someone at Subaru made the brilliant decision to only offer a moonroof if you get the automatic transmission.

So I'm trying to decide whether to get the XT with 5 speed and put the aftermarket sunroof in, go with an XS with premium package and get the moonroof with a 5 speed, or do something I said I'd never do in a million years -- get the automatic so I can get the XT with the sunroof. I have always hated automatics because I have always been some what of a sport driver/rider (either with cars or motorcycles) and an auto means boring to me. But I am going to give it a test drive in any case before I totally alienate that idea.

Thanks, btw, for everyone who has answered me so far. We headed to Carter Subaru today but they were so packed we couldn't see the guy we had come to see. So we'll go back on a less busy day.


#6 Guest_TinyClark_*

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Posted 21 July 2003 - 04:10 AM

A majority of aftermarket moonroofs will leak. Factory units have drain channels to remove the water from around the window.

What do you need it for in WA anyway, it's always raining? :lol:

#7 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 21 July 2003 - 06:14 AM

Do yourself a favor and don't comprimise on getting an auto. You'll wish you didn't get one later.

As for the XT and XS. You really need to determine whether you want the performance or the luxury. I agree subaru is extremely stupid not offering their luxury packages with a 5spd, but there's not much I can do about it. You can try contacting a subaru area rep and voice your concerns or contact subaru directly.

Me, I'd take the XT, power is much more important then luxury to me. If you must have a moonroof, like I said, if you have it done by a good reputable place, get some feedback from previous customers, you should be fine.

#8 Guest_fryingbologna_*

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Posted 21 July 2003 - 11:19 AM

Can you Americans drive up to Canada and easily bring a car back to the US? Us Canuckistaners have the option of getting the 5 sp with moonroof on the XT. I guess the air quality must be better, therefore justifying allowing more of into the interior of the car! :lol:

Just kidding! Great to have this board to lurk on and determine if the Forester is the next car (and first Subie) for me.

#9 Guest_lothar34_*

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Posted 21 July 2003 - 03:23 PM

I was thinking the same thing. I'm thinking about getting an XT next Summer, and I'd like a manual with a moonroof too.

You know what else would be cool? T-tops. They've already got the frameless windows, so they wouldn't be that hard to add. Hell, they could even do them for the front and rear if they wanted to...

#10 Guest_My Favorite Legacy_*

Guest_My Favorite Legacy_*
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Posted 21 July 2003 - 08:26 PM

Do you actually mean an XT or are you referring to the X or XS or XS Premiums? An XT is an older subaru that looks like a skateboard in my opinion.
I just bought a new 2003 FORESTER X 5spd. I wanted the sunroof SO BAD but alas, it was the only thing I really wanted that didn't come with the 2.5X. I also realized that with all the extra gidgets that the XS Premium had on it, it was just more to break. The upholstery is no better. I think the trim on the X is better looking too. (It doesn't look so much like an old person) I am looking into putting a sunroof into my 2003 Forester but alas it is not high on my list right now.
Definately get the 5spd. After having automatics my whole life, already the manual has saved me tons of money. I pull 32-33 highway and 25-28 city on my gas. I have also noticed a dramatic drop in brake use. When I test drove the new Forester, I took an automatic out. It was peppy but I didn't really care. When we took the standard out, I couldn't believe the difference in torque. The automatic sucked SOOO much power. I'm a new convert to standards. (Plus, if it eases your mind any, Subaru reinstalled their Hill Holder clutch)
As for dealerships. I DID NOT ENJOY MY EXPERIENCE AT MELODY'S/EASTSIDE SUBARU. THEY DIDN'T TREAT ME WITH MUCH RESPECT AT ALL and I received an apology letter from Subaru when Melody's went out of business. SO LONG! Yah, the people at Skagit are pretty nice. Bellingham service at Dewey Grif. is ok. Nice enough. I'm not impressed with their sales staff or the selection. You are welcome to contact me with any Forester questions. I love my little guy. He's such a happy car. exodus_33@hotmail.com

#11 Guest_kathykost_*

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Posted 21 July 2003 - 09:54 PM

That business about going up into B.C. to get a car is really intriguing...hmm... If it's really true you can get an XT with 5 sp. and moonroof. Probably costs a lot more to do that, I would think? And Washington state probably hits you up for some extra taxes as well. But I might have to at least investigate it if I decide I can't live without an XT in a 5 speed.
But if it costs a lot more, then I'd have to forgo the idea.

I gotta have a moonroof in Seattle. Gad, with the grey winters it's the ONLY way I'll have my car. Every little bit of extra light on my head counts. :-)

amc, thanks for the comments too. Yeah, Melody's is under new ownership and it's clear that the new owners are eager to win business. They were very attentive and very nice to me when I went and visited them. I plan on visiting a number of different dealerships and hope to combine the best service with the best price.


#12 Guest_lothar34_*

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Posted 21 July 2003 - 10:00 PM

<blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>Do you actually mean an XT or are you referring to the X or XS or XS Premiums? An XT is an older subaru that looks like a skateboard in my opinion.[/quote]

Forester 2.5XT. It's the 2004 model with the turbocharged 2.5L engine. In addition to the X, XS, and XS Premium there is now the XT and XT Premium.

#13 Guest_lesbaru_*

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Posted 23 July 2003 - 07:29 PM

Harmony Motors is a wonderful independent garage that has done great (and not too expensive) work on my Subi. The folks there love what they do, and will take the time to really work out just what is going on when you have a problem. Don't even bother with Dewey Griffith in B'ham, in my humble opinion. 'Course, I grew up around some of these people so I have "opinions"....:rollin:

Harmony Motors is Family friendly.

Bryce at Skagit will give you the Costco program price. Check the AAA program price, too. My gf got her 02 Forester at the AAA program price without actually doing it through AAA. (Doesn't hurt the dealer, the worst they can do is say no.)

#14 Guest_kathykost_*

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Posted 23 July 2003 - 09:45 PM

What town is Harmony Motors in? Always interested in great independent garages. Thanks!


#15 Guest_WagonsOnly_*

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Posted 24 July 2003 - 12:20 AM

I'd drive a car back from Brazil before I got an automatic, especially a Subaru. With the AWD taking up to 20% of the horsepower/torque from the engine, who needs an automatic sucking up 20% more on top of that? Either I'd get an XS Premium with cloth seats, sunroof and stick and have the dealer put in leather, or bide my time and buy a used XS Premium off-lease and have a turbo engine put in. (Of course with the Forester Consumer Reports' top-rated small SUV/wagon again, the already overinflated resale values might increase.)
One question for the others on this thread: Has anyone had experience with an aftermarket sunroof installation on a '98-'00 Forester? My '99 L is rather boring without one. I'm seriously considering going to an '87 GL-10 for a daily driver. (Better gas mileage, too.)

#16 Guest_lesbaru_*

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Posted 25 July 2003 - 09:02 PM

Harmony Motors is in Bellingham. Between Bellingham High School and I-5.

#17 Guest_Crash613_*

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 07:05 AM

Hi, Kathy, i really feel your pain. Let me explain. I, too, wanted a turbo forester with 5 sp, AND a moonroof. What a stupid desision subaru made not marketing that. they HAVE to know most people that drive their cars know the advantages of 5 sp. oh well, blunder on their part. but what am i to do?

my choices were the same as your, so i won't bore you with them again.

what did i do?

Well i compromised. i bought the XS Prem with the moonroof and let the turbo go.

i REALLY wanted the turbo, but i just love that moonroof. and i figured the extra power would only get me in trouble anyway ;)

Actually i am happy with my new car, but i would have loved to have the turbo. maybe next time they will have changed their policies and have that as an option. or maybe i will be taking a trip to Canada. I am in NW ohio so i could be in The Great White North in under an hour. Didn't know about that 3 weeks ago, before my purchase, or i may have investagated that.

Anyway, one of the factors influncing my decision was the fact that i was able to get a great deal on a 03 Forester becasue the 04's are out. so with incentives, etc i was able to get the car at $350 under invoice!! I am sure i couldn't have scored that deal on an 04 Turbo Forester.

Maybe in a few years i'll trade it in, if it still bothers me that i didn't get the turbo. but i am 32 years old. Do i really need a turbo? lol, of course i do!!!!!


#18 Guest_meep424_*

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 10:53 AM

dude, I find it hard to believe that the AWD eats 20%. In a truck w/o locking hubs, worst case, I could see it, maybe. But in a little 'roo? Back when the 4x4 was an optional, part time system (back in '90), it had a 1mpg penalty. where did you hear 20%??


#19 Guest_lothar34_*

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 12:20 PM

<blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>dude, I find it hard to believe that the AWD eats 20%. In a truck w/o locking hubs, worst case, I could see it, maybe. But in a little 'roo? Back when the 4x4 was an optional, part time system (back in '90), it had a 1mpg penalty. where did you hear 20%??[/quote]

It doesn't. I don't know where he came up with that. Subaru claims 210hp for the XT but it runs the 1/4 mile like it has closer to 245. If the AWD system was robbing 20% then that would mean the engine was closer to 290hp.

It's underrated, I don't doubt that, but I don't think it's a 290hp engine.

And those aren't the most conservative estimates, but I think you get the point...

#20 Guest_Legacy777_*

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 03:52 PM

You're forgetting one important thing.

Torque. The fact that subaru's act like they have more HP is due to the fact they make max torque at a very low Rpm and hold it relatively flat across the rev range. Hondas or other similar cars will not do that. So despite the fact they have more hp, they will be slower.

IMO, peak numbers mean absolutely nothing, but 90% of the public doesn't have any clue, so they'd rather have the higher hp engine even though it has less torque across the whole rev range, and will essentually be slower for day-to-day driving.

#21 Guest_lothar34_*

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Posted 29 July 2003 - 05:37 PM

I thought about that, but I usually don't think of the Subies as a good low-range grunt car. The XT's peak is at 3600? 3400? Something like that. I'll admit though that I don't know where in the RPM range it starts making a good percentage of the 235 lb/ft.

The Volvo S60R is supposed to make 90% of it's 300 lb/ft from 1800 to 5500rpm. It's still slower than the XT though.

#22 Guest_sanssel75_*

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Posted 09 August 2003 - 05:59 AM

One Subie dealer with mixed emotions is Walker Subaru in Renton....

My last little problem was back a few months ago on my 92 Legacy, the service department overestimated the cure (to the tune of several thousands) -- so I got a second opinion at an independent repair shop and got it repaired for under a grand.

Up until that time Walker had been upfront with me with maintenance and repairs.

Was wondering if anyone had dealt with Chaplins in Bellevue or the one in Puyallup. I am going test driving this weekend.

And thanks for the clues on auto vs. 5 sp. I have only had 5 sp on both of my Subies and was contemplating buying an auto...Not any more!!!!

#23 photo2001


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Posted 16 August 2003 - 02:02 AM

I have an aftermarket moonroof in my 2000 Forester S. The dealer had it put in before I took delivery. I have not had any problems with it. I only wish it were as big as the new factory moonroofs.
I'm not sure, but I think it was made by a company called 'Hollandia'. It works perfectly. The only thing is that there is a lot of wind noise over 40mph when the roof is fully open. The built in wind deflector doesn't do much. I will be having an aftermarket air deflector installed sometime soon.
I don't think Subaru offered a factory sunroof in 2000.
Hope this helps.

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