2004 Subaru Outback 2.5i 165hp LPG
As of now, I don't want any other one ; I expect to keep it for years
4 years and 130000km : runs like a charm, I've just changed the tires (every 60K), the front brake pads at 75K, one front suspension silent block at 120K, and the regular maintenance stuff.
You have to pay respect to the regular maintenance, otherwise it may cost a lot.
It's quiet, even on a cold winter mornings, it's quick, and it goes everywhere except some places where only hardcore 4x4 can go. It can carry a lot of stuff effortlessly.
Basically it's a great all rounder, and a serious competitor for diesel Volvo XC70 and Audi all road if you are not looking for a symbol on your driveway, but for an efficient AWD wagon.
It's only real competitor is the boxer diesel version, if you accept its noise at low revs and even more at low temperatures.
The handling vs comfort balance of many other SUVs is either too stiff on bad roads (BMW X3...) or too soft when cornering on good ones (Volvo XCs). The Outback offers a perfect balance in this regard.
It's a bit thirsty in town, but I don't care as I ride my bike to work :)
Running costs are decent otherwise : it's at least 500kg lighter than the competition, so tires and brake pads last twice as much.
Would I buy another one? Yes, but they don't sell it any more :-/
Here in France, since January 2009, we can only get boxer diesels in a luxury edition (leather, electric seats, HID's, GPS navigation...). No more LPG and no more basic edition.
Performance : 7 because it has what you need on open roads, even when packed with passengers and luggages.
I'd give a 10 to the 3.0R :-)
I rate dealers at 5/10 because there are too few of them, and I need to spend a lot of time for the regular maintenance.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 3rd March, 2009