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Old 03-09-2012, 09:16 AM   #61
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All that PLUS, my sister was going to buy a Subaru so I went with her. I asked a lot of questions and was shocked at the amount of maintenance a Subaru requires! I've owned Hondas for 25 years and I never did half the maintenance that they said was routine maintenance, this was for a Legacy. I told her not to buy the car but she did and now she regrets it. She says never again. Funny my brother has one too and says the same thing. My 91 Honda Civic with 4 snow tires would go 95% if not more of the places an AWD Subaru could. I wouldn't buy a Subaru.
A fair number of Subarus have the 2.5 "Boxter engine" designed by Porsche. It is a GREAT engine, but requires premium fuel. The chip in the motor can adjust to lower octane, but it dials back power and mileage accordingly. You need to replace the fluid in the AWD system regularly, although the owner's manuals usually say 50,000 or so, probably 25,000 to 30,000 would be better.........

The CVT in the Legacy helps fuel economy. I however don't see the need for AWD unless you live in Canada or Colorado mountains, etc.......
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:52 AM   #62
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I have used 4 wheel drives for as long as I can remember and I own a 4 wheel drive pickup now. If I were to choose to drive a vehicle in the snow, it would be a front wheel drive car with good tires. I live in the midwest and see some bad winter driving, I would not buy a car with awd for the simple reason you are using all those components 99 percent of the time without actually needing them. Anytime you are using all those components it causes wear and actually takes more fuel to use those parts.
We've got a Honda CR-V with "on demand" AWD. The front wheels are driven all the time, when slippage is detected the rear wheels engage. It still has slightly lower MPG (24 combined MPG vs 25 MPG) than a 2wd CRV (because I'm hauling around the weight of that extra driveshaft and transfer case all the time), but since it's not being turned there's no friction from it and not the 4-5 MPG penalty of full-time 4WD. Just a consideration. To us, the slight mileage "ding" is worth it for enhanced traction in the wet/slush/snow/ice, etc.
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:58 AM   #63
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A fair number of Subarus have the 2.5 "Boxter engine" designed by Porsche.
Not to be a nit-picker, but the Subaru's and some Porche's both have horizontally-opposed engines colloquially known as a "boxer" layout. The new Porsche engine in their Boxster has a turbo and the name is specific to them. Porsche had nothing to do with the design of the Subaru engines, though they are both configured similarly (horizontally opposed).
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Old 03-09-2012, 11:11 AM   #64
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I don't kinow where you guys are getting some of this stuff. I beat the crap out of my legacy wagon for 150k miles before trading it in November (it would have kept going for many more years and miles had I wanted to keep it). Yep, fuel economy is a little lower than a FWD sedan. Guess what? AWD adds complexity, weight and uses a bit more fuel. If that capability isn't important to you, look elsewhere. As far as maintenance and reliability, in 150k miles of very hard wear (mostly rush hour commute between central NJ and Greenwich, CT through lovely places like northern NJ and the Bronx) I got left on the side of the road once because I ignored my mechanic's advice to replace my worn tires (trying to eke out a bit more life, foolishly). Other than oil changes, I replaced the brake pads once, the timing chain once, a worn out O2 sensor once, and near the end of teh time I owned the car I replaced an axle because I had failed to nitoce a worn out/split boot. I think the axle is about teh only part of this due to anything other than normal wear stuff you would replace on any car. The car was cheap to run and reliable as I could ask for. When we eventually give up on the minivan, DW will go right back to a Subaru station wagon.
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Old 03-09-2012, 12:09 PM   #65
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I don't kinow where you guys are getting some of this stuff. I beat the crap out of my legacy wagon for 150k miles before trading it in November (it would have kept going for many more years and miles had I wanted to keep it). Yep, fuel economy is a little lower than a FWD sedan. Guess what? AWD adds complexity, weight and uses a bit more fuel. If that capability isn't important to you, look elsewhere. As far as maintenance and reliability, in 150k miles of very hard wear (mostly rush hour commute between central NJ and Greenwich, CT through lovely places like northern NJ and the Bronx) I got left on the side of the road once because I ignored my mechanic's advice to replace my worn tires (trying to eke out a bit more life, foolishly). Other than oil changes, I replaced the brake pads once, the timing chain once, a worn out O2 sensor once, and near the end of teh time I owned the car I replaced an axle because I had failed to nitoce a worn out/split boot. I think the axle is about teh only part of this due to anything other than normal wear stuff you would replace on any car. The car was cheap to run and reliable as I could ask for. When we eventually give up on the minivan, DW will go right back to a Subaru station wagon.
DW had an old 1984 GL-10. Other than eating a clutch about every 45,000 miles for reasons unknown, you could NOT kill that car. The digital dash layout would flicker from time to time and give me a heart attack but it was a good little car. We sold it with 175,000 miles on it.........
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:12 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by brewer12345
I don't kinow where you guys are getting some of this stuff. I beat the crap out of my legacy wagon for 150k miles before trading it in November (it would have kept going for many more years and miles had I wanted to keep it). Yep, fuel economy is a little lower than a FWD sedan. Guess what? AWD adds complexity, weight and uses a bit more fuel. If that capability isn't important to you, look elsewhere. As far as maintenance and reliability, in 150k miles of very hard wear (mostly rush hour commute between central NJ and Greenwich, CT through lovely places like northern NJ and the Bronx) I got left on the side of the road once because I ignored my mechanic's advice to replace my worn tires (trying to eke out a bit more life, foolishly). Other than oil changes, I replaced the brake pads once, the timing chain once, a worn out O2 sensor once, and near the end of teh time I owned the car I replaced an axle because I had failed to nitoce a worn out/split boot. I think the axle is about teh only part of this due to anything other than normal wear stuff you would replace on any car. The car was cheap to run and reliable as I could ask for. When we eventually give up on the minivan, DW will go right back to a Subaru station wagon.
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Old 03-09-2012, 11:13 PM   #67
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veremchuka, would you mind shedding more light on your sister and brother's regret of their Subaru decisions? I'm interested because Subaru OB is on my candidate list of next car I'm going to buy. Admittedly Subaru AWD is inherently more complicated. I can see that there is extra maintenance on differential/transfer case fluids, greasing drive shaft u-joints (if equipped), etc. Also because of its constant AWD engagement, the fuel efficiency suffers a little.

Another car on my list is the new Mazda CX-5. I prefer the diesel model (because of its flat torque curve and better mpg) which could arrive in US market starting from 2013. Not sure if any member on this forum already tried it somewhere outside of US.
I can't recall exactly why my sister said that though the maintenance is frequent and expensive. She has had a Toyota and Honda prior to this so she is comparing them to this car. My brother's car sounds like it has a diesel engine - some diesels are very noisy and some are quieter and his is as loud as any diesel I ever heard! It is incredibly loud! It's been into the dealer and they say oh that's normal! I forget what they said it was but it is not going to hurt the engine and he has driven it for years like this so I guess they are right. But he is disgusted with the noise especially in summer with the windows down though you can hear it in the winter with the windows up. He says never again.

They may be good cars, I was very surprised at all the maintenance they needed. As I mentioned, I was with my sister and asked a lot of questions as to when to do this and that and many things were discussed that I would not ever have even considered, never in a Honda anyway.

AWD is nice but I maintain my Civic with 4 snow tires would go 95% of the places a Subaru would and more if it only had all season radials. I drove that car for 13 years so I went through 13 winters. My current Accord has all season radials but sue to spring starting in November and should end in June I never really drove in snow though I did go up my driveway a couple of times in 3-4" of wet slippery snow without trouble.
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Old 03-10-2012, 11:04 AM   #68
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veremchuka, thanks for your input. I heard about a set of good snow tires on a FWD as well in the past. The Subaru diesel is also a boxer engine design. From what I read so far, they won't consider bringing it into US market because they don't think there will be enough interests on diesel in US. For their OB gasoline engine, it seems to me that its timing belt change is a little simpler than that of Honda and Toyota.

The Mazda CX-5 is also on my list because its interesting approach on engine design. Their skyactiv engine compression ratio is raised to about 14:1 on gasoline for higher combustion efficiency; lowered to about 14:1 on diesel for better burn in terms of emission control. I would love to try both with Subaru OB when it's time to replace my current 15 years old car.
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