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Considering 2016 Legacy....but concerned


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Hi all :icon_mrgr,

 

I'm a new driver considering a used car with EYESIGHT on either the:

 

-2015 Legacy 2.5i Premium,

-2016 Legacy 2.5i Premium,

-2017 Impreza, or

-2017 Crosstrek.

 

Does anyone have any experience with any of the cars above?:

 

I have limited knowledge regarding cars, but decided with Subaru since it is known for safety. Based on my research, the above cars are the ones that I could find that are less than $15-16k, and contains the most important features to me which are:

 

safe airbags, adequate crumple zone, good headlights, and good blindspot detection/lane departure warning.

 

 

I'm open to any suggestions for other cars or models.

 

 

Also, does anyone know if any of the above cars includes the dangerous Takata airbag inflators?

 

I looked everywhere online and can not find an answer of when Subaru stopped producing cars with these airbags.

 

Thanks!

Edited by suebaru
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Hi all :icon_mrgr,

 

I'm a new driver considering a used car with EYESIGHT on either the:

 

-2015 Legacy 2.5i Premium,

-2016 Legacy 2.5i Premium,

-2017 Impreza, or

-2017 Crosstrek.

 

Does anyone have any experience with any of the cars above?:

 

I have limited knowledge regarding cars, but decided with Subaru since it is known for safety. Based on my research, the above cars are the ones that I could find that are less than $15-16k, and contains the most important features to me which are:

 

safe airbags, adequate crumple zone, good headlights, and good blindspot detection/lane departure warning.

 

 

I'm open to any suggestions for other cars or models.

 

 

Also, does anyone know if any of the above cars includes the dangerous Takata airbag inflators?

 

I looked everywhere online and can not find an answer of when Subaru stopped producing cars with these airbags.

 

Thanks!

 

I cannot comment on the headlights on the Impreza or Crosstrek, but I found the standard halogen headlights on the Sixth Gen Legacy to be subpar. I upgraded the bulbs on my 2018 as a result. The Forester headlight design has always seemed to result in excellent performance in my experience. If you're willing to consider the Crosstrek, you might like the Forester too.

 

Here is a list of Subarus potentially affected by the Takata airbag recall:

 

2003-2006 Subaru Baja

2009-2013 Subaru Forester

2004-2011 Subaru Impreza

2003-2014 Subaru Legacy

2003-2014 Subaru Outback

2006-2014 Subaru Tribeca

2012-2014 Subaru WRX/STI

 

My wife's 2011 Forester was not affected, so there is no guarantee all of those cars even have them.

 

Best of luck!

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Caution

 

Here's what I have learned from dealing with used cars, always inspect carefully the engine bay, look for signs of engine coolant splashed in area's not normally associated* =$$ <<Subaru's are notorious for head gasket issues.

 

 

Test the AC/Heater system cycle through all the modes and make sure the vents are working for both cold and hot air. You do not want to end up with a car with faulty solenoids and or bad heater core. = $$

 

Ask if you can run a code reader on the car might be surprise in some cases un-diagnosed problems come up.

 

And lastly test drive the vehicle, you should be able to find a solid Subaru to purchase.

 

Just had a visitor at work with a 1999 legacy 312k just routine general maintenance spark plugs, serpentine belt, oil changes etc.. But nothing mechanically wrong with the car started normal he did admit the car might be a little short on it's original hp but that's due to age. I was actually impressed exterior however the car was so so showed signs of wear paint had rust spots and lights where severely hazed.

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Regarding safety, you can poke around here: https://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings

 

and see that ratings vary as much by model as they do by brand. Subaru isn't the "only" safe car on the road. Mainly, you're giving up some reliability for AWD and a low COG (due to the boxer) when buying a Subaru.

 

I'm not sure if it matter whether you buy a car with Takata airbags, as they will be replaced with new ones anyway. That was the case with our Subaru's and BMWs.

 

Whether you feel 'blindspot detection' is necessary is up to you. In my opinion there is no substitute for a head-check, and the few systems I've used have been more of an annoyance (i.e. false alerts) than useful (Nissan in particular comes to mind). Yet I understand some have physical limitations that prevent doing a head-check. Unfortunately, having such systems seems to be giving manufacturers license to create vehicles with large blind spots ... like the BMW X2 I'm renting this week.

 

A bigger question is what are you actually looking for in a vehicle? Legacy vs. Impreza/Crosstrek is a rather wide spread. When I was shopping, I liked the Crosstrek for it's manual transmission and heated seats (not available in the Impreza). Honestly, I didn't see a reason to buy an Impreza when I could have had a Crosstrek. But the Legacy won because of the larger rear seat and trunk and I felt I got a lot more car for the same money. Yet, if AWD weren't important for me, I'd have gotten a Kia Optima instead, and saved a pile of money.

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I cannot comment on the headlights on the Impreza or Crosstrek, but I found the standard halogen headlights on the Sixth Gen Legacy to be subpar. I upgraded the bulbs on my 2018 as a result. The Forester headlight design has always seemed to result in excellent performance in my experience. If you're willing to consider the Crosstrek, you might like the Forester too.

 

Here is a list of Subarus potentially affected by the Takata airbag recall:

 

2003-2006 Subaru Baja

2009-2013 Subaru Forester

2004-2011 Subaru Impreza

2003-2014 Subaru Legacy

2003-2014 Subaru Outback

2006-2014 Subaru Tribeca

2012-2014 Subaru WRX/STI

 

My wife's 2011 Forester was not affected, so there is no guarantee all of those cars even have them.

 

Best of luck!

 

ncted, I really appreciate it- thank you!

It was my understanding that their Takata recall project is expected to continue onto to 2020 due to lack of replacement supplies, and that they are recalling the cars from most humid states- most likely to explode (Florida, Hawaii, Arizona, etc...) to least humid states (NYC, NJ, Alaska, etc...).

 

This makes me assume that there are more cars that haven't been recalled yet so no one knows whether or not their car will be recalled in the future (like in 2020). I know humidity is known to increase risk of airbag explosion, but my concern is that the airbag may deploy due to other reasons (crash) possibly causing metal shrapnels to hurl at passengers at 200 mph. I wish Subaru (and other car companies) were more transparent about when exactly they stopped using those specific Takata airbag inflators.

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Caution

 

Here's what I have learned from dealing with used cars, always inspect carefully the engine bay, look for signs of engine coolant splashed in area's not normally associated* =$$ <<Subaru's are notorious for head gasket issues.

 

 

Test the AC/Heater system cycle through all the modes and make sure the vents are working for both cold and hot air. You do not want to end up with a car with faulty solenoids and or bad heater core. = $$

 

Ask if you can run a code reader on the car might be surprise in some cases un-diagnosed problems come up.

 

And lastly test drive the vehicle, you should be able to find a solid Subaru to purchase.

 

Just had a visitor at work with a 1999 legacy 312k just routine general maintenance spark plugs, serpentine belt, oil changes etc.. But nothing mechanically wrong with the car started normal he did admit the car might be a little short on it's original hp but that's due to age. I was actually impressed exterior however the car was so so showed signs of wear paint had rust spots and lights where severely hazed.

 

Skyboss-alpha1, thank you! I so appreciate this message since I am completely new to cars and thus I'm afraid that the dealership will take advantage of my lack of knowledge.

 

Do you know if dealerships allow their cars to be driven to a local mechanic for a state inspection of the car? Or better yet, are there such things as Subaru-certified mechanics who can inspect? I figure if there is, they may know best if there are any Subaru specific issues like the head gasket or Eyesight.

 

I am going to make a list of all the points you made and ask the dealer when I visit in person or ask a local mechanic:

 

1) engine bay issues

2) coolant splashed in engine

3) head gasket issues

4) test AC/heater system through all modes

5) check vents

6) check for faulty solenoids/bad heater core

7) run code reader

8) check for rust

 

THANKS!!

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Regarding safety, you can poke around here: https://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings

 

and see that ratings vary as much by model as they do by brand. Subaru isn't the "only" safe car on the road. Mainly, you're giving up some reliability for AWD and a low COG (due to the boxer) when buying a Subaru.

 

I'm not sure if it matter whether you buy a car with Takata airbags, as they will be replaced with new ones anyway. That was the case with our Subaru's and BMWs.

 

Whether you feel 'blindspot detection' is necessary is up to you. In my opinion there is no substitute for a head-check, and the few systems I've used have been more of an annoyance (i.e. false alerts) than useful (Nissan in particular comes to mind). Yet I understand some have physical limitations that prevent doing a head-check. Unfortunately, having such systems seems to be giving manufacturers license to create vehicles with large blind spots ... like the BMW X2 I'm renting this week.

 

A bigger question is what are you actually looking for in a vehicle? Legacy vs. Impreza/Crosstrek is a rather wide spread. When I was shopping, I liked the Crosstrek for it's manual transmission and heated seats (not available in the Impreza). Honestly, I didn't see a reason to buy an Impreza when I could have had a Crosstrek. But the Legacy won because of the larger rear seat and trunk and I felt I got a lot more car for the same money. Yet, if AWD weren't important for me, I'd have gotten a Kia Optima instead, and saved a pile of money.

 

Norskie, thank you! I appreciate your reply.

 

The main thing I’m looking for is safety and visibility (and automatic transmission).

 

I don’t mind paying more for gas mileage in a heavier car if it means that it will be safer/do better in a potential crash. I initially wanted the 2017 Impreza due to its crash test rating. However, as I began to look around , I started wondering if a higher car would have better front and rear window visibility and if a heavier car would fare better in a crash. Thus began my interest in the Crosstrek and Legacy.

 

I’m not 100% set on Subaru, if there are other cars safer than the Subarus I listed and still affordable, I would consider it in a heartbeat. But its the only affordable car that I know with good crumple zones, lower center of gravity, and good blind spot/lane departure technology. I would love a Volvo, but that is beyond my budget (unless I am considering a 2012 Volvo S6 with 100k miles).

 

You are definitely right that there are no substitutions for head checks- but I just like having it there as a “just in case”. Lane departure warning/keep asisst is also important to me because I’m not the best at staying within lane when driving fast. I don’t intend to rely on these features... but, as a new driver, these features help give me some peace of mind.

Edited by suebaru
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Norskie, thank you! I appreciate your reply.

 

The main thing I’m looking for is safety and visibility (and automatic transmission).

 

I don’t mind paying more for gas mileage in a heavier car if it means that it will be safer/do better in a potential crash. I initially wanted the 2017 Impreza due to its crash test rating. However, as I began to look around , I started wondering if a higher car would have better front and rear window visibility and if a heavier car would fare better in a crash. Thus began my interest in the Crosstrek and Legacy.

 

I’m not 100% set on Subaru, if there are other cars safer than the Subarus I listed and still affordable, I would consider it in a heartbeat. But its the only affordable car that I know with good crumple zones, lower center of gravity, and good blind spot/lane departure technology. I would love a Volvo, but that is beyond my budget (unless I am considering a 2012 Volvo S6 with 100k miles).

 

Don't get anything european that doesn't have a warranty. I've been down that road too many times to do it again. Also, I have a bone to pick with Volvo ... once upon a time they had a reputation for being safer, but the competition quickly caught up. They have not had a safety advantage over most other brands for many years. They are nice to drive though.

 

As for weight ... I'm not sure that's a big deal. I suppose a heavier vehicle will have 'different' crumple zones to absorb the increased inertia. In an accident it may fare better if it hits a small car. But I think there is an advantage to have a larger car, as there is more crumple zone to work with. Unless my physics intuition is wrong, I would think more space to reduce the G-forces transferred to the occupants is a good thing.

 

For the record, our legacy 2.5i manages 32 mpg combined. While it is pretty lackluster when it comes to performance, it is otherwise a fine vehicle, and much more substantial that our Impreza-based WRX.

 

Skyboss-alpha1, thank you! I so appreciate this message since I am completely new to cars and thus I'm afraid that the dealership will take advantage of my lack of knowledge.

 

Do you know if dealerships allow their cars to be driven to a local mechanic for a state inspection of the car? Or better yet, are there such things as Subaru-certified mechanics who can inspect? I figure if there is, they may know best if there are any Subaru specific issues like the head gasket or Eyesight.

 

I am going to make a list of all the points you made and ask the dealer when I visit in person or ask a local mechanic:

 

1) engine bay issues

2) coolant splashed in engine

3) head gasket issues

4) test AC/heater system through all modes

5) check vents

6) check for faulty solenoids/bad heater core

7) run code reader

8) check for rust

 

THANKS!!

 

Bring a friend when you go to the dealership.

 

I've never had a dealership refuse my request to take a car to another shop for a pre-purchase-inspection (PPI). For example, I took a BMW to the BMW dealership before buying it used from a Mercedes dealership. Bonus: The car was serviced there on a regular basis so the service advisor was able to pull up some the prior records. But you defiinitely want to do the PPI at a different dealership to remove any conflict of interest.

 

The dealership may provide you with a carfax. They should also be able to run the VIN to check whether any recalls are due (it won't necessarily show those which were done). In particular, it will tell if it has a recalled Takata airbag and hasn't yet been replaced. But I think you're in the clear based on the model years you're looking at.

 

Ok ... also .. .since you're looking at CVT's, be aware that Subaru has had problems with them and extended the warranty. When you look at a vehicle see if it is still covered by that warranty, and for how long. These transmissions cannot be repaired, only replaced, and the costs I've seen are $3k - $8k.

 

Good luck in your search!

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ncted, I really appreciate it- thank you!

It was my understanding that their Takata recall project is expected to continue onto to 2020 due to lack of replacement supplies, and that they are recalling the cars from most humid states- most likely to explode (Florida, Hawaii, Arizona, etc...) to least humid states (NYC, NJ, Alaska, etc...).

 

This makes me assume that there are more cars that haven't been recalled yet so no one knows whether or not their car will be recalled in the future (like in 2020). I know humidity is known to increase risk of airbag explosion, but my concern is that the airbag may deploy due to other reasons (crash) possibly causing metal shrapnels to hurl at passengers at 200 mph. I wish Subaru (and other car companies) were more transparent about when exactly they stopped using those specific Takata airbag inflators.

 

I believe the model years I provided are the specific years that were affected and none after that were. Subaru seemed to use inflators from other manufacturers as well to begin with, so they may have already had a good enough relationship with the other supplier to get to the head of the line for new cars, but that is just speculation. As I stated before, neither of the airbags in my wife's Forester had Takata inflators, and we live in one of the hot, humid states.

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Where did you get this info?

From NHTSA's Takata Recall web site: https://www.nhtsa.gov/equipment/takata-recall-spotlight#consumers-vehicles-affected.

 

Subaru

2003-2006 Subaru Baja

2009-2013 Subaru Forester

2004-2011 Subaru Impreza (Including WRX/STI)

2003-2014 Subaru Legacy

2003-2014 Subaru Outback

2006-2014 Subaru Tribeca

2012-2014 Subaru WRX/STI

You can also search via NHTSA or Subaru for any specific vehicle by VIN:

 

https://www.nhtsa.gov/equipment/takata-recall-spotlight

https://www.subaru.com/vehicle-recalls/airbags.html

Edited by ammcinnis

"If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there." ~ The Cheshire Cat (Alice in Wonderland)

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I am going to make a list of all the points you made and ask the dealer when I visit in person or ask a local mechanic:

 

1) engine bay issues

2) coolant splashed in engine

3) head gasket issues

4) test AC/heater system through all modes

5) check vents

6) check for faulty solenoids/bad heater core

7) run code reader

8) check for rust

 

THANKS!!

 

You are most welcome you can ask the dealership, but keep in mind the dealership is there to push car sales. As someone suggested bring a friend with you, code readers can be purchased cheap on amazon or take the the car Advanced Auto Parts or Autozone they will scan the car for you for free.

In Brunswick Georgia there was a car dealership that actually allowed you to independently test drive the car no sales person with you in the car hounding you, that's something you rarely see nowadays.

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I believe the model years I provided are the specific years that were affected and none after that were. Subaru seemed to use inflators from other manufacturers as well to begin with, so they may have already had a good enough relationship with the other supplier to get to the head of the line for new cars, but that is just speculation. As I stated before, neither of the airbags in my wife's Forester had Takata inflators, and we live in one of the hot, humid states.

 

Irony: After checking with Subaru and being told our '11 Forester was not affected by the Takata recall, and then telling everyone that was the case, we get the recall notice for the passenger airbag in said Forester today.

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Irony: After checking with Subaru and being told our '11 Forester was not affected by the Takata recall, and then telling everyone that was the case, we get the recall notice for the passenger airbag in said Forester today.

 

That's weird. Maybe they meant that your wife's Forester isn't a part of the recall at that time due to lack of replacement supplies, but now that they have enough replacement supplies, they're ready to replace your airbag inflator.

 

It's good that it is finally getting replaced/fixed. I feel bad for those who can't place anyone in the passenger seat as they are still waiting to have their car recalled.

Edited by suebaru
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Same here for the Mrs. 2010 Forester. Got the notice about two weeks ago.

 

Sent from my moto z3 using Tapatalk

 

Was your wife's car registered in a non humid region? That might be why. I believe they were working from most humid (quicker to explode due to humidity's effect on the aluminum dessicant I believe) to least humid (Still can explode but will be stable for longer).

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Don't get anything european that doesn't have a warranty. I've been down that road too many times to do it again. Also, I have a bone to pick with Volvo ... once upon a time they had a reputation for being safer, but the competition quickly caught up. They have not had a safety advantage over most other brands for many years. They are nice to drive though.

 

As for weight ... I'm not sure that's a big deal. I suppose a heavier vehicle will have 'different' crumple zones to absorb the increased inertia. In an accident it may fare better if it hits a small car. But I think there is an advantage to have a larger car, as there is more crumple zone to work with. Unless my physics intuition is wrong, I would think more space to reduce the G-forces transferred to the occupants is a good thing.

 

For the record, our legacy 2.5i manages 32 mpg combined. While it is pretty lackluster when it comes to performance, it is otherwise a fine vehicle, and much more substantial that our Impreza-based WRX.

 

 

 

Bring a friend when you go to the dealership.

 

I've never had a dealership refuse my request to take a car to another shop for a pre-purchase-inspection (PPI). For example, I took a BMW to the BMW dealership before buying it used from a Mercedes dealership. Bonus: The car was serviced there on a regular basis so the service advisor was able to pull up some the prior records. But you defiinitely want to do the PPI at a different dealership to remove any conflict of interest.

 

The dealership may provide you with a carfax. They should also be able to run the VIN to check whether any recalls are due (it won't necessarily show those which were done). In particular, it will tell if it has a recalled Takata airbag and hasn't yet been replaced. But I think you're in the clear based on the model years you're looking at.

 

Ok ... also .. .since you're looking at CVT's, be aware that Subaru has had problems with them and extended the warranty. When you look at a vehicle see if it is still covered by that warranty, and for how long. These transmissions cannot be repaired, only replaced, and the costs I've seen are $3k - $8k.

 

Good luck in your search!

 

Thanks for the tip about the extended warranty due to the CVT! I was considering a couple of cars that were >100k miles (due to price), but now I can see why those owners would want to sell it- no more warranty should CVT fail. Wow. I'm learning a lot here... seriously.

 

How does bringing the car to another mechanic/shop for PPI work? Does the seller come with you and stay until the car is done being inspected? How far are you allowed to drive it?

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How does bringing the car to another mechanic/shop for PPI work? Does the seller come with you and stay until the car is done being inspected? How far are you allowed to drive it?

 

I just told them "I want it to shop XYZ for a PPI". I leave my car at the selling dealership, drive the car I want to the other shop/dealership, wait an hour or two, and drive back. By the time you've gotten this far in the process they'll probably have run a credit check on you to see if you're actually able to buy the car.

 

If they say 'no' then find another dealership.

 

EDIT: No, the seller never came with me, and in my case I only drove it 10 miles or so.

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2013 is when the Takata airbag recalls were expanded beyond Honda vehicles. I am sure auto manufacturers had a good idea by that time of the seriousness of the issue;Subaru likely would have time to design the 6th Generation Legacy without them.
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That's weird. Maybe they meant that your wife's Forester isn't a part of the recall at that time due to lack of replacement supplies, but now that they have enough replacement supplies, they're ready to replace your airbag inflator.

 

It's good that it is finally getting replaced/fixed. I feel bad for those who can't place anyone in the passenger seat as they are still waiting to have their car recalled.

 

I actually called SOA and asked if the car had any Takata inflators in it as it was within the model year range, but they said it did not. This was a few years ago, when all this first started. Anyway, they told me our VIN would not be affected by the recall as it did not have Takata parts. So, either they lied to me or they had bad data.

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Was your wife's car registered in a non humid region? That might be why. I believe they were working from most humid (quicker to explode due to humidity's effect on the aluminum dessicant I believe) to least humid (Still can explode but will be stable for longer).

 

Well, it was purchased in NC, where we still live. I assume we are considered a hot, humid state based on living here, but I suppose other places are more so.

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The best advice given in here is for you to bring someone with you who knows what they are talking about. This would prevent you from getting hosed or buying bunch of warranties that you don't need.

 

I buy 3 to 5 cars a year for friends and fam which saves everyone a giant headache.

Edited by TTG
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IMHO

 

 

newer Impreza is not that good in day to day driving in city traffic. it lacks low end grunt..i just drove a 2019 for a few weeks and all i got is weak sauce and fuel economy around town was no better than a legacy.

 

 

the biggest issue I have had with my Subaru is the lackluster service department at the Subaru dealers.

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