1991 Subaru Leone GL 1.8L


Cheap, fun, reliable, versatile and capable 4WD


Bought it with oil leaks everywhere, timing belt ready to snap, and a wrecked exhaust. It has taken about a grand to fix, but it's now a fun versatile car. Shift on the fly is great, it doesn't need low range. 2 inch exhaust, 98 octane fuel and an advanced tune, and it goes well.

Fuel consumption is a little thirsty though, but amazing fun offroad.

General Comments:

Tough, and always gets me home, broken or not.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 23rd July, 2015

1986 Subaru Leone ST 1.8L


Don't judge a car by its looks


Pneumatic suspension makes noise but to no effect.

Central locking.

General Comments:

I bought this car as a cheapie just to keep me going until I upgraded.

I bought the car for $800 NZD.

This car has very good performance considering it only has a 1.8L.

The car is also a very comfortable ride due to soft suspension. But this contributes to the 4x4-like handling and body roll.

The car is also an exceptional off-roader with limited slip differential.

The car is let down by tiny 13 inch tires, though.

It also has the trademark noisy valve problem when cold.

It has pretty good economy; about 11km per litre of fuel, but when pushed this drops quickly.

It's also extremely front heavy!

The most annoying thing about this car is the extremely noisy hub caps that rattle constantly, and make you feel like you're driving a thunderstorm!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd November, 2008

1983 Subaru Leone GL-5 1.8L


A very reliable trustworthy car


Accelerator sometimes sticks when going into fifth gear.

Back suspension completely gone.

Only runs well on premium unleaded.

General Comments:

An extremely reliable car with good fuel economy. I made it from Adelaide to Melbourne on one tank of petrol!

Very little space when sitting in the back seat, but more than enough when sitting in the front.

With a big enough load in the back it will chirp into Third!

Very comfortable seats, you sit very low to the ground!

Security very good... impossible to break into if you lock your keys inside!!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd June, 2008

1985 Subaru Leone GF 1.8




Alternator fault that overcharged battery until it exploded.

Drivers window bracket regularly breaks.

Pulley for Oil pump jammed making cam belt skip - very messy.

Strange vibration in exhaust around 2000 rpm.

CVs starting to get noisy.

Engine blows smoke around 5000 rpm under extreme acceleration.

General Comments:

Car is quite quick for what it is.

Station Wagon is extremely useful and remarkably spacious.

4WD is fantastic!

Car is in remarkable shape considering it is heading towards 300000 kms!

Tall passengers have no leg-room.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th September, 2006

1981 Subaru Leone DL 1.8 horizontally opposed


Cheap and reliable


I put a set of re-treads on when I bought it which was a bad mistake, they lasted all of 4 months on the front, before I had to replace them.

The radiator had a leak in it which was easily repaired with some stop-leak.

The accelerator has started to stick down badly at times, I haven't gotten around to fixing it yet.

A hole developed in the resonator, I welded that up, and it's fine now.

There was a lot of build up and varnishing in and around the carburettor which was easily cleaned up with some spray-on carburettor cleaner.

Replaced the CV boots.

General Comments:

My Leone is a great simple car, easy to fix when something goes wrong, and very reliable for its age.

It has impressive performance for a 25 year old 4 cylinder car, and I have little trouble overtaking on the highway.

It is a dull colour though, being brown both on the inside and out.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th July, 2006

1984 Subaru Leone 1800 GLF 1.8L


A very good car for the price if you're prepared to pay the running costs


Rust by bottom of doors which I had bogged and sprayed, not structural.

Muffler rusted and got replaced.

Uses oil, I top it up every couple of weeks, but not excessively bad.

Back suspension has gotten very low with age, still road legal, but easy to bottom out over speed bumps with people in the back or on steep drives.

Minor surface rust all over body, very easily primed and sprayed.

General Comments:

Decent performance at higher revs for what it is, even with an auto.

A nice car to drive as you sit quite low to the ground.

Thirsty! Uses quite a bit of petrol, but using a higher octane such as 95 or 98 makes for noticeable reductions in fuel consumption.

Has a nice grunt to it being a boxer.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th February, 2006