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markdl000

Suggestion on Bug Out Subaru!?

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I'm in the market for a new car. I've got my heart set on Subaru. They seem to be the perfect mix of performance longevity and fun. :headbang:

 

Here is my question:

Aside from being an everyday (i have a total of 50 miles a day drive to/from work) vehicle, I'd like it to be capable offroad and for any emergencies that might happen.

 

Basically, I'd like it kitted out with brush guard, big roof rack, flood lights. I want this thing to be 'mad max' looking. I'm going to keep jerry cans and such on it for emergency 'bug outs' in case of riot, flood, zombie attack...:dead: etc.

 

Which subaru would you recommend for this purpose (I.E. year and model with what engine) where would I start looking for the accessories I'd like, and is there a company (I'm in Atlanta, GA) that you guys would recommend for the vehicle? I have no experience rebuilding or fabricating so can't buy an old one and frankenstein it like some of you have (beautiful jobs btw).

 

My price range will be 0-$17k

 

I hope this subject isnt beaten to death, I looked around but didn't see anything on this subject.

 

Best,

Mark

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Definitely a Outback or a Baja! They have increase ground clearance. They all have Full time all wheel drive. If your looking for good years. Check out 2003-2008. Previous models had EJ25 Motor which had headgasket issues.

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As a datapoint, my '03 outback with the LLBean package (has the 3.0 motor, but not the fancy VDC drivetrain) was $15.5K with 55,000 miles on it.

 

Damn car weighs as much as my '67 GTO did, though.

 

 

Dave

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If it doesn't have to be brand-new, a 1996 Outback with EJ22 would offer nice ground clearance, AWD, and a durable engine. Mine was pretty cheap too, something to consider if you'll be taking it off-road and scratching it up. :)

 

- Scott

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Hello and welcome!

 

An ~03+ Outback with the H6 would be in that price range and modifiable to what you're looking to do. Maybe you are looking for something like wbanas has? The most mad max looking ones though are the old school with lift kits and mudders/swampers.

 

P9303512.JPG

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Hello and welcome!

 

An ~03+ Outback with the H6 would be in that price range and modifiable to what you're looking to do. Maybe you are looking for something like wbanas has? The most mad max looking ones though are the old school with lift kits and mudders/swampers.

 

P9303512.JPG

 

This car makes my weep with joy. Yea that would be great, but look mighty expensive. I just want something i can load up and get the hell out of dodge with.

 

I'm going to test drive some tomorrow, just to get a feel for handling,braking etc. I've never driven one, but a car that is so overengineered as these seem to be.. How can I NOT get one...

 

So, are the Baja's discontinued? Why? Too unattractive? I kinda like em...

Thanks for the years of good quality. I'd hate getting one that was a lemon. This thing will also have to accomodate a family in the next few years, so the wagon is a plus.

 

Does anyone make brush guards for the outbacks? or is it usually custom work?

 

And THANKS for the responses. I can already tell i'll like it here...

 

Mark

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I'm selling a nice 97 Outback for $3000.

 

http://www.ultimatesubaru.org/forum/showthread.php?t=82467

 

I could get it shipped for $600-1000 depending

 

So tempting... Although i'll probably go for one a bit newer with a bit less miles, so ill have less to worry about. It needs to last at least 10 years from when I purchase it with minimal replacements, so lowish miles would be better for me. Thanks for the tip though, good luck selling.

 

How long are subarus known to last...? impress me! :)

 

Mark

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I'm selling a nice 97 Outback for $3000.

 

http://www.ultimatesubaru.org/forum/showthread.php?t=82467

 

I could get it shipped for $600-1000 depending

 

 

Yeah, outback sport is probably not what you are looking for.

 

And this looks like a pretty good deal. I like older cars because most of the problems have already been fixed (hopefully ;))

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we're just guessin' and suggestin'. we have no idea what your criteria is for making a decision. you have plenty of money to spen and that always makes the job easier. but in order for us to help you we need more info.

 

how long do you plan on keeping the car?

how many miles do you drive a year?

does it need to look perfect or operate perfectly, or both?

are you a bargain shopper?

 

it sounds like you are going to spend some money trickin' it out regardless of what you buy.

 

if i was going to do what you are thinking about i'd buy:

 

96 - 98 outback in good condition, with a BAD engine.

i'd put in a CRR rebulit EJ22 (95 - 96 non interferrence) engine.

and i'd put what ever money i had left into making the paint look as good as i needed it to be, if i had any left over, i'd put it in the bank on the off chance i needed to buy a trans some day. early to mid 90 was the peak of subaru quality. (maybe nissan, toyota and honda as well.)

 

the 95 EJ22 is non- interferrence engine and will run for 200k with 1 timing belt change and 40 to 70 oil changes. i don't think you are going to find that in many newer subarus. i don't think the data is in yet on the 03 - 07 2.5L engines. i don't know. i'd rather have a 95 2.2 with 170K than a '03 2.5 with 70K miles.

 

then i'd add the lights, cargo basket jerry cans, etc.

what ever you want.

 

 

just my opinion.

 

ps: by the time you have a family with 2 kids, one of you will be driving a mini van. they are crap, but so much easier to get in and out of with kids and all of their stuff. lots more room, and lots less bending and stooping.

 

again, just my opinion.

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I agree with the suggestion of an Outback or a Baja. I have an '05 Baja (bought used) and it's just about perfect. Be aware, though, that Bajas are 4-seat vehicles ONLY. There's a console-thingy in the middle of the back seat. '04-'06 has more ground clearance, though '03 is not bad.

 

To deal with any possible HG issues on any Subie, I'd just get a turbo ;)

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how long do you plan on keeping the car? At least 5 years

how many miles do you drive a year? 15,000

does it need to look perfect or operate perfectly, or both? operation is my main concern

are you a bargain shopper? you becha!

 

 

again, just my opinion.

 

Your opinion is greatly appreciated. As I think about it more, and mull this decision over, I find that I cant decide what I want.

 

Point blank: I can't find a subaru in my city/state with less than 100k miles and under $14k. I'm going to test drive the outback linked above, its literally the ONLY one i've seen thats reasonable. Is there any reason to be suspect of the 2.2 2003 engine? I read that they added a turbo to help with the sluggish acceleration in later years, and was wondering if you guys think I should just wait for a deal on one with turbo.

 

Heres what I'm trying to do...

1-I want a car that is fun to drive (I've only driven/owned a 91 Ford Explorer and 04 toyota taco both with the smallest of engine choices, so a dog sled would probably wow me)

2-has enough 'oomph' to get around in the city and manuever (atlanta drivers...) as well as pass if need be on the freeway

3-doesnt suck gas, the crap's expensive! (20 mpg and up)

4-annual maintenance is not outrageously expensive

5-longevity of motor/tranny

6-has cargo capacity for my hobbies (wagons in general look good for this)

 

Order of importance- 5,3,4,6,2,1

 

I realize this is nothing like my original post, as when I posted it I just wanted to hear about all the aftermarket accessories along the lines of what I mentioned, but if im going to lay down the cash for this thing, it has to perform where I'll be driving most... 25 mile commute to/from work...

 

I suck at knowledge about cars. If any other make/model cars fits my description that you can think of, please let me know (even if its in PM so noone sees a non soobie name) :)

 

ETA: I'm willing to fly and pick my car up... ROAD TRIP!!!

 

 

whew, my fingers are tired.

Thanks

Mark

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Your opinion is greatly appreciated. As I think about it more, and mull this decision over, I find that I cant decide what I want.

 

Point blank: I can't find a subaru in my city/state with less than 100k miles and under $14k. I'm going to test drive the outback linked above, its literally the ONLY one i've seen thats reasonable. Is there any reason to be suspect of the 2.2 2003 engine? I read that they added a turbo to help with the sluggish acceleration in later years, and was wondering if you guys think I should just wait for a deal on one with turbo.

 

Heres what I'm trying to do...

1-I want a car that is fun to drive (I've only driven/owned a 91 Ford Explorer and 04 toyota taco both with the smallest of engine choices, so a dog sled would probably wow me)

2-has enough 'oomph' to get around in the city and manuever (atlanta drivers...) as well as pass if need be on the freeway

3-doesnt suck gas, the crap's expensive!

4-annual maintenance is not outrageously expensive

5-longevity of motor/drivetrain/tranny

6-has cargo capacity for my hobbies (wagons in general look good for this)

 

Order of importance- 5,3,4,6,2,1

 

I realize this is nothing like my original post, as when I posted it I just wanted to hear about all the aftermarket accessories along the lines of what I mentioned, but if im going to lay down the cash for this thing, it has to perform where I'll be driving most... 25 mile commute to/from work...

 

I suck at knowledge about cars. If any other make/model cars fits my description that you can think of, please let me know (even if its in PM so noone sees a non soobie name) :)

 

 

whew, my fingers are tired.

Thanks

Mark

ok, so 5 years at 15k per year is 75k miles. most any 2.2L engines out there with less than 150k - 175kmiles that will do that.

 

there are no 2.2L engines after 00 or 01. they are all 2.5L now. 2.5s are fun to drive, but my son's 95 2.2L legacy sedan feels quicker than my 97 2.5L outback. some of this has to do with weight i think. the later 2.5 may have better mileage, but the 2.2 was good too, depending on how you drive. 50 miles a day, 5 days a week, 50 weeks a year is 12k miles. my son gets 26 - 28 on the road in his 2.2 and low 20s around town. i get high teens around town and 26 on the road in my 2.5 outback. so pick your poison.

 

(there is a current thread about putting outback struts and larger tires on a 2.2L legacy. once this is done, the only differenct betwen the legacy and the outback is the paint and the 'raised roof'.)

 

the outback is a very popular car. has a good look, but the late 90s 2.5L had gasket issues. so if you buy a 96 - 98 outback, make sure it has "new" head gaskets" or a bad engine. 96 - 98 outbakcs with bad engines can be found for less than 1000$. you might reconsider the one 360 is selling. it does have ~175k miles, but it will certainly go 30k-50k more if not 75k.

 

as far as oomph and fun goes, the 2.2 will deliver this as long as you don't over load it. the 2.2 has about 10% less displacement than the 2.5. go to www.cars101.com to see other specs, such as horsepower. as i said before, my son's 2.2 sedan feels just as quick as my 2.5. and he drive like a bat-out-a-hell in richmond.

 

my bottom line is that the ej22 will in fact go 250k miles, i don't know how many '03 ej25s there are with 250k miles on them. that's a lot of driving in 4 -5 years. i have a 97 2.5L with 120k miles and the head gaskets are holding, but i still expect to be replacing them before 250K.

 

if you use the fire fox browser, you can use www.crazedlist.org to search a wider area.

 

oh yeah, welcome to the party.

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oh yeah, welcome to the party.

 

Thanks for your help and information. Due to your and others help, im not being scared off by a few of the 'higher mileage' outbacks.

 

I've found this one with 91k I might go check it out tomorrow while im out. This look like what you were talking about? remember, for me, minimal work, maximal life. This year is in the range of good gaskets if I understood you correctly.

 

Heres another...

 

or this...

 

Which looks most promising to you? I guess the only way to be sure is drive it and check the VIN.

 

Another quick question: Does the Baja drive more like a truck, or more like a car. I can't figure it out. It must be meant for harder offroad use... When I expand my search radius I get some reasonable Bajas. Are the motors in the Bajas doing well? any known problems to steer me away from?

 

ETA: I'm sure this can all be found with some searching in the forums, but I'm not a 'car guy' and would just get confused/frustrated with a lot of technical talk. simple newbie responses will suffice for me.

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Another quick question: Does the Baja drive more like a truck, or more like a car. I can't figure it out. It must be meant for harder offroad use... When I expand my search radius I get some reasonable Bajas. Are the motors in the Bajas doing well? any known problems to steer me away from?

 

The Baja drives like a car... well, a Subaru Legacy/Outback (which it basically is). To me, it's a little stiffer than the base models. We had an '02 Legacy GT Limited which had a stiffer ride than the base Legacy wagon that year according to our perception driving them both. The Baja rides a lot like our Legacy; a little firm/stiff compared to lots of cars, but definitely not a pickup-type ride.

 

 

The Baja Sport has the same motor as the Outback: non-turbo 2.5-liter. I believe it's fair to say there are not big head gasket issues with this engine in the Baja model years (though newer is always a safer bet). The Baja (which is the turbo model in '04-'06, as opposed to the Baja Sport non-turbo) is essentially the WRX STi engine with less power: bulletproof.

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Thanks for your help and information. Due to your and others help, im not being scared off by a few of the 'higher mileage' outbacks.

 

I've found this one with 91k I might go check it out tomorrow while im out. This look like what you were talking about? remember, for me, minimal work, maximal life. This year is in the range of good gaskets if I understood you correctly.

 

Heres another...

 

or this...

 

Which looks most promising to you? I guess the only way to be sure is drive it and check the VIN.

 

Another quick question: Does the Baja drive more like a truck, or more like a car. I can't figure it out. It must be meant for harder offroad use... When I expand my search radius I get some reasonable Bajas. Are the motors in the Bajas doing well? any known problems to steer me away from?

 

ETA: I'm sure this can all be found with some searching in the forums, but I'm not a 'car guy' and would just get confused/frustrated with a lot of technical talk. simple newbie responses will suffice for me.

 

of the 3 listed i like the 3rd one, the 2004. it has a better price based on existing miles than the first one and the second one has been hit. based on the description of the damage and repair cost, that is probably not an issue but you never know. don't forget to haggle over price.

 

of course none of this is based on the the actual car, just the price and miles (and accident.) the 3rd one comes wiht a carfax, that's good. if the seller does not provide one you can go online and get unlimited use for 30 days for 25 or 30$. well worht the investment when you are talking about spending $10k on a car you'll have for 5 years. chances are you'll never look at a car that has something hidden, but again, you never know.

 

as buwinkl said, the baja is just an outback that's been chopped into a little 4 door truck. same drive train and suspension. same features and options i think, but they didn't sell too well so subaru discontinued them. i'm not sure it's a very practical vehicle.

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