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Old 07-11-2002, 11:13 AM   #1
Jon [in CT]
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Join Date: Nov 2000
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Connecticut, USA
02 WRX Sedan

Default SoA provides 2003 Outback information

From Subaru's July 10, 2002 press release:

New Refinements Throughout Outback Line

CHERRY HILL, NJ – Subaru of America, Inc. will offer the OnStar® in-vehicle wireless communication service as standard equipment in all Outback® H6-3.0 models for 2003. In addition, all Outback models for 2003 feature freshened front-end styling, front suspension changes that improve ride and handling and refinements that enhance comfort and convenience.

Subaru remains the United States market leader in all-wheel drive passenger cars. The Outback, The World’s First Sport Utility Wagon®, ignited the trend in "crossover" type vehicles that blend attributes of passenger cars and sport-utility vehicles. Since the introduction of the first-generation Outback in 1995, this model has become a template for similar vehicles from other manufacturers.

The addition of OnStar to the Outback H6-3.0 models adds another layer to the versatility of these vehicles. A wholly owned subsidiary of General Motors Corp., OnStar is the nation’s leading provider of in-vehicle safety, security and information services using the Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite network and wireless technology. OnStar core services include automatic notification of air-bag deployment, stolen vehicle tracking, emergency services, roadside assistance with location, remote door unlock, remote diagnostics, route support, concierge and convenience services. The OnStar-equipped Outback H6-3.0 models will include a one-year subscription to the security and safety services.

Seven Outback Models

Subaru offers seven Outback models for 2003. The four H6-3.0 models include the H6-3.0 Sedan, the H6-3.0 L.L.Bean Edition Wagon with exclusive content and exterior trim and the H6-3.0 VDC Sedan and Wagon. The H6-3.0 VDC models, the brand’s flagship vehicles, are distinguished by the Vehicle Dynamics Control stability system and the Variable Torque Distribution All-Wheel Drive system. All four H6-3.0 models are powered by a horizontally opposed ("boxer") 6-cylinder engine that produces 212 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 210 lb.-ft. of peak torque at 4,400 rpm.

The three H4-powered Outback models include the well-equipped Outback Wagon, the Outback Limited Wagon with greater content and the Outback Limited Sedan. A 165-horsepower 2.5-liter 4-cylinder boxer engine powers each.

Refinements Throughout The Outback Line

Refinements throughout the Outback line enhance comfort and convenience. The front suspension struts on all 2003 Outback models use new internal rebound springs that reduce body roll when cornering, reduce dive while braking and reduce lift when accelerating.

The Outback Wagon for 2003 adds as standard the formerly optional All-Weather Package that includes dual-mode heated front seats and a windshield wiper de-icer. The standard AM/FM/weatherband stereo now includes a single-disc CD player. The Outback Limited models also get audio system upgrades for 2003, including a 6-disc in-dash CD changer and a rear subwoofer speaker system. The H6-3.0 Sedan and the H6-3.0 L.L. Bean Edition Wagon also feature this 9-speaker system with new rear subwoofer (7 speakers including subwoofer in Sedans).

The Subaru flagship Outback H6-3.0 VDC models exclusively feature a high-end McIntosh Audio system that for 2003 includes a standard 6-disc in-dash CD changer. All Outback H6-3.0 models for 2003 also include a standard security system. A keyless entry system was already standard on all Outback models. New silver gauge trim rings for all Outback models give the instrument panel a more elegant appearance. New for 2003, the Outback H6-3.0 L.L.Bean Edition features beige perforated leather trimmed seats embossed with the L.L.Bean insignia.

In addition to the long list of amenities shared with the Outback Limited, the Outback H6-3.0 models come equipped with features more commonly found on luxury models, including automatic climate control with an ambient temperature gauge, an 8-way power driver’s seat, rear-seat center armrest, air filtration system and a distinctive mahogany wood and leather-wrapped steering wheel designed by Momo.

SUV Versatility

The Outback wagon models offer much of the utility of heavier truck-based vehicles. With the standard 60/40 split rear seatback, the wagon models provide 68.6 cu. ft. of cargo space. The cargo area is equipped for real-world use, with a standard retractable cover, cargo area light, tie down hooks, removable cargo tray and a 12-volt power outlet. In addition, all Outback wagon models come with roof rails and crossbars, a rear fixed-intermittent window wiper/washer and an integrated rear bumper step pad.

The Outback models provide recreational off-highway capability thanks to heavy-duty raised suspension, a viscous limited-slip rear differential (except the VDC models) that directs power to the rear wheel with the most traction, 7.9 inches of ground clearance (7.3 inches for H4 Outback models) and 225/60 R16 Bridgestone Potenza RE92 M+S all-season tires.


The Outback’s Ring-Shaped Reinforcement Frame body structure with front and rear crumple zones is designed to provide protection in a variety of collisions, including frontal, offset, side, and rear. Standard safety equipment includes 3-point seatbelts for all five seating positions, 4-channel, 4-sensor anti-lock brakes (ABS) and dual front airbags. The front 3-point seatbelts feature electrically triggered pre-tensioners with force limiters that work together to gradually restrain the occupants and absorb the impact energy of a frontal collision.

A dual-stage front airbag on the passenger side determines the correct deployment strength depending on the severity of an impact.The Outback Limited and Outback H6-3.0 models include front seat side impact airbags, as well.

Three Different All-Wheel Drive Systems

All 2003 Subaru models come standard with full-time All-Wheel Drive, an integral part of Subaru Core Technology that also includes a lightweight horizontally opposed engine, a simple, symmetric drivetrain layout and long-travel 4-wheel independent suspension. This combination of elements endows the Outback models with a level of handling response and ride control not found in truck-based vehicles.

The Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC) system is exclusive to the Outback H6-3.0 VDC models. The system incorporates Variable Torque Distribution (VTD) All-Wheel Drive and all-wheel, all-speed traction control to provide outstanding handling and stability in all driving conditions. The integration of these technologies enables the vehicle to take corrective action under hazardous conditions before the driver even notices.

The VTD automatic transmission uses an electronically controlled, continuously variable hydraulic transfer clutch that works with a planetary gear-type center differential to control power distribution between the front and rear wheels. In steady state driving, the VTD All-Wheel Drive system splits the power 45 percent front and 55 percent rear. The slight rear-wheel bias enhances the performance-driving feel. VTD All-Wheel Drive monitors throttle input to account for weight transfer and responds to driving conditions to continually optimize power distribution on all road surfaces.

The H4-powered Outback models equipped with the standard 5-speed manual transmission feature Continuous All-Wheel Drive. A viscous-coupling center differential built into the transmission case splits engine power 50/50 front-to-rear. Wheel slippage at the front transfers more power to the rear, and slippage at the rear transfers more power to the front.

The H4 and H6-3.0 Outback models equipped with the 4-speed electronic automatic transmission (except the H6-3.0 VDC models) come equipped with Active All-Wheel Drive, which uses an electronically managed continuously variable transfer clutch housed in the transaxle tailshaft. Power transfer is governed by slippage in the clutch plates, which use a special friction material that can easily handle the loads generated during power transfer.

All Outback models (except the H6-3.0 VDC models) include a standard viscous limited-slip rear differential that directs power to the rear wheel with the most traction. The H6-3.0 VDC models instead use all-wheel, all-speed traction control to provide a limited-slip effect at both the front and rear wheels.

Subaru of America, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan. Headquartered near Philadelphia, the company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of nearly 600 franchised dealers across the United States. All Legacy and Outback models sold in the U.S. are produced at the company’s American manufacturing plant, Subaru-Isuzu Automotive, Inc., near Lafayette, Indiana.
There's no mention of a "SPORTSHIFT gear position indicator," which is available with the 2003 Legacy GT, so I guess that means it isn't available on any Outbacks. How strange that the Legacy got the SPORTSHIFT ahead of any "flagship" Outbacks.
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Old 07-11-2002, 08:21 PM   #2
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 4628
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: San Francisco

I thought the AMC Eagle was the world's first sport-utility wagon...
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