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Old 07-14-2005, 12:53 AM   #1
chill105
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Angry Why is the Outback lineup so screwed up?

My mother is the current owner of a 1999 Lexus RX300, nearing 100,000 miles. The thing is a tank, and she hates driving it. She wants a smaller vehicle with better pickup and handling, but doesn't want to sacrifice the convenience of being able to haul stuff or drive around in the snow. She also requires some level of refinement.

Being the Subaru fanatic that I am, I start screaming about the new Outback wagons.

So, I went to the dealer today to test drive the cars. First of all, let me say that I was a little disappointed that after doing only 20 minutes of research I knew more about the lineup than the salesman did. Regardless, the new Outbacks (and Legacy's, for that matter) are really nice. They look good, they feel good, and they drive great. However, I'm extremely disappointed by one thing:

The flagship model (LL Bean Edition) comes with the new 3.0 liter 6 cylinder boxer. It makes 250 hp but only 218 lb ft of torque, yet it's MORE expensive than the 2.5 L turbo 4 GT model which makes 250 hp and 250 lb ft of torque!

After driving the two cars, I can tell you first hand that the 2.5 liter turbo is WAY faster and more fun to drive. I would hands down pick that engine. However, the trim in the GT model is simply not as nice as the LL Bean edition. It seems that there's no way to get the LL Bean trim with the turbo engine. How can this be the case? Is there any way around this? The dealer was absolutely useless. The only main differences seem to be the leather, the wood trim, and the steering wheel (I know it's petty, but for my mother this could mean all the difference). Can it really be that hard to swap out? Has anybody else run into a similar situation? I feel like Subaru is asking me to sacrifice luxury for performance or vice-versa.

Please advise...I'd love to have another Subaru in the family!
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Old 07-14-2005, 01:06 AM   #2
italy wrx
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If it's her car, why are you test driving it? Maybe all out power isn't what she cares about. Let her drive both versions and let her decide.
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Old 07-14-2005, 01:25 AM   #3
SubieRX
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I think he's just wondering why the more powerful engine'd car doesn't come with the LL bean trim. I'd be curious about that too. It just seems like subaru should have a car with luxury AND the 250 lb/ft of goodness.
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Old 07-14-2005, 01:41 AM   #4
chill105
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...exactly my point SubieRX. I understand that it's exciting for Subaru to have a new 6 cylinder boxer engine, however, it's simply not as powerful as the 4 cylinder 2.5 liter turbo (and it's also more expensive!). The salesmen could not explain this phenomenon to me.
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Old 07-14-2005, 01:42 AM   #5
italy wrx
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Maybe the 3.0 H6 is quieter,smoother and less "on the edge" more of a lexus v6 feel. The L.L. Bean seems to be aiming for someone who wants a calmer more refined subaru. I've never driven an H6 equipt car so I only assume it is smoother.
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Old 07-14-2005, 01:50 AM   #6
bemani
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chill105
However, the trim in the GT model is simply not as nice as the LL Bean edition.
'nice' is subjective. I think wood trims are gay as hell and card boards are nicer.
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Old 07-14-2005, 01:52 AM   #7
Pakin
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H6 is smoother, I've driven plenty and can compare with the GTs. Subaru's combination with trim levels, I cannot explain. The general market of buyers aren't exacly into raw power, many don't like the delivery of power from a turbo either. In addition, FI isn't exactly the most reliable engine either. I've seen more H6's on the road than GT. Maybe Subaru doesn't really care about us performance oriented people, as we represent the minority. H6's are selling pretty well as they are.

-paK +1
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Old 07-14-2005, 02:34 AM   #8
Diabolical1 CC
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Um why don't you just get the Perforated Taupe Leather-trimmed interior on the Limited XT Outback and just have the dealership replace the steering wheel with a wood audio control one.
http://www.subaru.com/shop/colors.js...im=25_XT_WAGON you would then have almost everything, if not everything that the LL bean one has but with the Turbo 250/250 engine. It is an option after all.
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Old 07-14-2005, 03:28 AM   #9
brianbot5000
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I'm sure the H6 must have better lower end torque, equating to quickness in day to day driving and putting around. Your mom would probably prefer that to the harsher turbochaged power. As would most who are going for the plush comfort of the LL Bean model. I think it's a better match than the LL Bean with the 2.5T.
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Old 07-14-2005, 03:39 AM   #10
Guru Imakuni
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Do they both us premium gas?
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Old 07-14-2005, 08:08 AM   #11
Vacca Rabite
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I think that it has already been well responded to, but the H6 is:
Smoother
No turbo lag
More the powerful enough for the soccer moms that want to drive it.
Will probably last longer.

Zach
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Old 07-14-2005, 08:14 AM   #12
iwanbo
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Why not let her test drive them and let her decide
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Old 07-14-2005, 09:39 AM   #13
Mike Wevrick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by italy wrx
Maybe the 3.0 H6 is quieter,smoother and less "on the edge" more of a lexus v6 feel. The L.L. Bean seems to be aiming for someone who wants a calmer more refined subaru. I've never driven an H6 equipt car so I only assume it is smoother.
Correct; its more of a luxury touring car than a sports model. And yes the low-end response is better unless his mom is planning to drive like demented teenager.
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Old 07-14-2005, 10:02 AM   #14
cboggess
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My wife as an 01 LL Bean Outback, and we love it. While the H6 in that car isn't as nice as the newest one I gotta say I've never been disappointed. Plus, if you powershift it it'll give a WRX a run for it's money in the 55-90 range on the highway.
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Old 07-14-2005, 11:38 AM   #15
Diabolical1 CC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chill105

The flagship model (LL Bean Edition) comes with the new 3.0 liter 6 cylinder boxer. It makes 250 hp but only 218 lb ft of torque, yet it's MORE expensive than the 2.5 L turbo 4 GT model which makes 250 hp and 250 lb ft of torque!

...the trim in the GT model is simply not as nice as the LL Bean edition. It seems that there's no way to get the LL Bean trim with the turbo engine. How can this be the case? Is there any way around this? The dealer was absolutely useless. The only main differences seem to be the leather, the wood trim, and the steering wheel (I know it's petty, but for my mother this could mean all the difference). Can it really be that hard to swap out? Has anybody else run into a similar situation?

Please advise...I'd love to have another Subaru in the family!
to answer your questions:

1. The LL Bean is not the flagship model it is the entry level H6 model, the VDC is the flagship H6 model.

2. The black/grey Trim you looked at is only one option for trim in the XT model. The other options have a Taupe Leather monotone with wood trim but black steering wheel. All you have to do is replace the steering wheel and hook it up.

3. Everyone else looks at the options before they jump off the cliff in hysterix. Thus they don't have this same problem.

4. Go down and have a look at the Taupe interior and ask the mechanic about switching steering wheels, if it is so important.

5. Taupe Interior and wood trim available on these colours:
Champagne Gold Opal

Garnet Red Pearl

Obsidian Black Pearl

Satin White Pearl/Granite Gray Opal

6. Only colour combos that are not available for the XT with Taupe interior are:

Atlantic Blue Pearl/Granite Gray Opal

Brilliant Silver Metallic/Granite Gray Opal

Champagne Gold Opal/Granite Gray Opal

Willow Green Opal/Moss Green Metallic

Or you could always get a Tribeca 5 seater. Just make sure it is blue or the lights look way ugly.

Last edited by Diabolical1 CC; 07-14-2005 at 11:52 AM.
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Old 07-14-2005, 12:53 PM   #16
wagman01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chill105
My mother is the current owner of a 1999 Lexus RX300, nearing 100,000 miles. The thing is a tank, and she hates driving it. She wants a smaller vehicle with better pickup and handling, but doesn't want to sacrifice the convenience of being able to haul stuff or drive around in the snow. She also requires some level of refinement.

Being the Subaru fanatic that I am, I start screaming about the new Outback wagons.

So, I went to the dealer today to test drive the cars. First of all, let me say that I was a little disappointed that after doing only 20 minutes of research I knew more about the lineup than the salesman did. Regardless, the new Outbacks (and Legacy's, for that matter) are really nice. They look good, they feel good, and they drive great. However, I'm extremely disappointed by one thing:

The flagship model (LL Bean Edition) comes with the new 3.0 liter 6 cylinder boxer. It makes 250 hp but only 218 lb ft of torque, yet it's MORE expensive than the 2.5 L turbo 4 GT model which makes 250 hp and 250 lb ft of torque!

After driving the two cars, I can tell you first hand that the 2.5 liter turbo is WAY faster and more fun to drive. I would hands down pick that engine. However, the trim in the GT model is simply not as nice as the LL Bean edition. It seems that there's no way to get the LL Bean trim with the turbo engine. How can this be the case? Is there any way around this? The dealer was absolutely useless. The only main differences seem to be the leather, the wood trim, and the steering wheel (I know it's petty, but for my mother this could mean all the difference). Can it really be that hard to swap out? Has anybody else run into a similar situation? I feel like Subaru is asking me to sacrifice luxury for performance or vice-versa.

Please advise...I'd love to have another Subaru in the family!
I'm very confused about your post. You say you are checking out the Outback lineup, but then you start comparing the LL Bean to the Legacy GT? The GT is not an Outback! You should be comparing the LL Bean to the Outback XT. Try looking at an Outback XT Limited. The Limited package adds leather, moonroof, power seat. I'm not sure if the steering wheel would be any different, but that could be changed out if it really matters to your mother that much. I personally think the wood trim looks like crap, but i'm sure the dealer could work with you on that as well.
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