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Old 01-08-2007, 08:41 PM   #1
zoltan
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Default How reliable is the 2004 Impreza TS?

I'm looking very seriously at a 2004 Impreza TS with 24,000 miles for $14,000. It's a manual (naturally). It has the 2.5 DOHC engine of which my friend has killed one (2000 Legacy Outback) and I've heard they have some headgasket issues. My number one concern is that whatever car I buy MUST BE RELIABLE!!! I'm often hundreds of miles from home in the middle of nowhere and my car must always be able to get me back home. I've owned a string of Hondas, but am looking around for something different. What's the word?

I never launch my car, though I do occasionally throw it around. It's currently competing with the 2002-2005 Civic SI hatchback. I like that the Honda is a Honda and that's it's a simpler design with FWD, but the Subaru is roomier, 4 doors, has more torque (think mountain passes with 3 people and gear), and has AWD.
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Old 01-08-2007, 08:54 PM   #2
fiveoh88
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whats a TS? is that the wagon?

i assume thats the WRX...you cant even compare that with a Si

i wouldnt even think twice, Subaru for sure
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Old 01-08-2007, 09:10 PM   #3
04ts
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i have one (04 TS wagon) and it's got 87,000 kms on it
already. no issues on it and most maintenace is done by myself.
happy with the car but would be happier if it came with boost.
BTW the TS came with 2.5 SOHC engine
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Old 01-08-2007, 09:39 PM   #4
surowrxa
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I had a TS before my WRX. Had less squeaks, not as much zing. They are good cars, Subaru has made some changes to save your head gasket too, if that's what you are worried about. As for all-around outdoors type goodness, it's the best with a set of X bars and two bikes looking like they are about to hurl through space on top.
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Old 01-08-2007, 09:55 PM   #5
Matt
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I've put 83,000 miles in three years with my TS and loved every minute of it--no check engine lights, no warranty claims, no problems. It was a left over model at a dealer in Florida since no one seemed to be interested in a manual transmission model.

There don't seem to be many around and most of the people that I see in the DC area that have them are old enough to be my parents. The car has been a blast to autocross and compete in some rallycrosses as well.

Also, insurance will be considerably less than the SI, though I must say that I am tempted by the new SI sedan, but the wagon is too practical.
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Old 01-08-2007, 10:03 PM   #6
Howl
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I have over 80,000miles on my 2003 TS. I've driven it hard in navigational rallys, rallyX and backroad exploring. I even won my class in RallyX once. The car is largely stock, except for the skidplate and certain WRX suspension components. It's also a AT. The car has never given me a lick of mechanical trouble.


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Old 01-08-2007, 10:10 PM   #7
bWRX
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoltan View Post
It's currently competing with the 2002-2005 Civic SI hatchback. I like that the Honda is a Honda and that's it's a simpler design with FWD, but the Subaru is roomier, 4 doors, has more torque (think mountain passes with 3 people and gear), and has AWD.
Not quite as reliable as a Honda or Toyota, but comes out on top compared to just about any other manufacturer.
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Old 01-09-2007, 01:12 AM   #8
zoltan
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What problems could I expect to see with it?
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Old 01-09-2007, 01:16 AM   #9
Wiscon_Mark
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If it's an 04, don't worry so much about headgaskets. 04 was the coming of the super heavy duty (3rd revision) headgasket and there really haven't been any problems reported since that are out of the ordinary (constant overheating causing the HG to go, etc).
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Old 01-09-2007, 09:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoltan View Post
What problems could I expect to see with it?
Keep it maintained, and it'll be essentially bulletproof.
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Old 01-09-2007, 10:09 AM   #11
kamil212
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I have the 02 OBS (outback sport, which is pretty much the same car as the TS except for some extra features that came stock) .
I switched from a Honda (95Accord) and will never buy anything but a Subaru from now on
I love the handling and the functionality of a wagon (I travel/rockclimb/camp a lot) and never had a single problem yet (except for a check engine light for the catalytic converter, but that's my own fault cuz these cars are just too fun to mod. I just had to wrap the new headers to increase exhaust flow and the check engine light never came back on)
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Old 01-09-2007, 10:14 AM   #12
Calamity Jesus
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They're very reliable cars. Subaru was rated most reliable brand in 2004 by Consumer Reports... The chassis and drivetrain have been in development since the very early 90's and are nearly perfected.

The headgaskets on the EJ25s are still weak, but not as weak as they once were. You can still expect a headgasket to go somewhere around 130k-150k miles... but having them replaced isn't that big a deal. They're rarely major breaks (coolant into oil) and overheating rarely occurs before the owner gets a chance to fix it. Hell, I've been DDing my '99 RS on a busted head gasket since November. I'm going to get it fixed soon, but it's not critical... just a little coolant leak.

http://money.cnn.com/2004/11/08/pf/a...o_reliability/

Quote:
Originally Posted by fiveoh88 View Post
whats a TS? is that the wagon?
If you don't even know, and can't be bothered to look at cars101.com to find out.. then why the hell do you bother to post advice?
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Old 01-09-2007, 10:39 AM   #13
silver2004impreza
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I've got an '04 TS, just like the one you're looking at. It's got 82,000 miles on it, and I bought it new. It's never given me any problems, apart from some of the aftermarket exhaust pieces cracking, but that's not Subaru's fault. I've taught my wife how to drive a manual transmission on that car with the clutch that's still in it, and it works just as well as the day I bought it. These cars are tanks, as long as you keep up with the routine maintenance, like oil changes every 3000-5000 miles, fuel filters about every 30k, things like that. Just follow the service recommendations that Subaru gives, and it'll never leave you stranded.
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Old 01-09-2007, 10:52 AM   #14
Mike Wevrick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoltan View Post
What problems could I expect to see with it?
Nothing significant, really. Just have an independent mechanic go over the car before you buy it, especially the clutch. Oh, and the full warranty is good for 3 yrs or 36k, whichever comes first, so if you do find any problems, make sure you get them fixed before the warranty expires.

Quote:
Wear Item Limited Warranty
Wear item coverage for all models is 3 years or 36,000 miles, whichever comes first. Items covered include brake pad/shoe linings, clutch disk linings, and wiper blades.

New Car Limited Warranty
Basic coverage is three years or 36,000 miles, whichever comes first. It covers the entire car.
http://www.subaru.com/owners/warrant....jsp?year=2004
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Old 01-09-2007, 11:17 AM   #15
cMags
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Outback Sport

I've got the '05 OBS (same body style as the '04 TS, same engine, a slightly higher suspension, and two-tone ) and I've had no issues with it for the past year and a half. Got 46k on it, and haven't had to do anything but maintenance to it. The extra half liter under the hood really gives it an advantage in the low-end torque range over the smaller, boosted engine in the WRX. Really helps out in these types of trips:



This car handles this type of work like a champ. You'll really enjoy it's sportiness/utility combo. Wagons FTW!

</photo whoring>
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Old 01-09-2007, 11:22 AM   #16
cefoskey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fiveoh88 View Post
whats a TS? is that the wagon?

i assume thats the WRX...you cant even compare that with a Si

i wouldnt even think twice, Subaru for sure
No, its not.

If you dont even know what car the guy's talking about you shouldnt be trying to give him advice.
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Old 01-09-2007, 11:31 AM   #17
EBWRC#1
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Just do it man. They are for me, the best out there!!! My brother has the OBS 2002 with tons of mods and is so much fun to drive that one time when I had my WRX we went to a trip to vegas, and he was able to keep up with my car all the time. they are awesome. Actually I'm considering to get one for myself!
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Old 01-09-2007, 03:18 PM   #18
soobiesvx93
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Like everyone else has said, they are essentially bulletproof if you do the routine maintanence. Go with the Subaru. AWD vs FWD isn't even a comparison. You will have much more fun and saftey with AWD.
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