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Advice needed - shopping for a Subaru

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I am an owner of a 1995 Subaru Legacy. I am looking to buy a Subaru for my wife, possibly in the 2005-9 range.


I am looking for experiences, knowledge and thoughts on the pros and cons of the models in this time frame, realizing they are very different from my 1995.


For example, I totally wish to avoid head/head gasket problems. My '95 has never had any, but I am aware that the generation after that, 2.5 L late '90s had considerable problems.


The '95 was almost a lock to have rust problems behind the rear wheels. I live in New England and every one I see has this issue. Do 2005-9 have any vulnerable points?


Any other key issues I should look out for?


What are we looking for? The AWD is huge, reliability, great electronics, ease of repair are important. The '95 now has 257,000. The car we are parting with has less than half the mileage but the parts are replaced twice as often if not sooner.


thanks much!



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Look for a service history. Catalytic converters,wheel bearings,and cv axles would be good things to check on a pre purchase inspection. 09 Outbacks are nice vehicles, comfortable, spacious, and easy to drive.
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Having just gone through a similar move myself I'd say the 2005 - 2009 is a great choice (but then I may be a bit biased). I am impressed with the ride quality and ergonomics of this generation. I ended up buying the XT (turbo) model. If you're looking for downright reliability I would avoid the XT. Not that it's a bad car but it has higher operating costs (requires premium fuel and more frequent oil changes to name two).


As for the head gasket I believe it's still a problem with this generation though it doesn't appear to be as pronounced as the second and third generations. The car I bought had the head gaskets replaced due to this common issue (I can't believe it took Subaru so long to identify and correct it).


I'm very happy with mine...a fourth generation is a decent upgrade. Take a look at one.

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