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  • Subaru vs Honda?

    Getting ready to purchase a vehicle for our 16 year old and narrowed it down to a Honda CR-V or Subaru Outback/forester. I’ve never owned a Subaru before but my in laws swear by them and I did really like the ones I test drove. The Subaru safety tech(eyesight?) seemed really nice. Budget is 15-18k which means 2015-2017 model years for both. Any Subaru fans out there? Are they pretty reliable? I’ve read there has been issues with head gaskets that can lead to expensive repairs?

  • #2
    You'll probably have better luck finding a Subaru forum and perusing there. Many times those places will have a good thread on buying and common issues.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by CordMcNally View Post
      You'll probably have better luck finding a Subaru forum and perusing there. Many times those places will have a good thread on buying and common issues.
      Wait...you mean there are other forums beside wci?😂 That’s a good idea. Thanks!

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      • #4
        i personally have never been on the side of subaru....so thats my vote.

        alternative thought: why not a used leaf? limited range, EV goodness, lower maintenance/gas/insurance.

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        • #5
          I've had a subaru outback before. The problem that I had was that the discount oil change people seemed to not be able to change their oil filter easily, I don't know if they have a different filter or what the problem was, but I ended up just going to the dealer most of the time after one place attached a filter which caused my oil to leak out. I think that I am going to get a Honda CRV as my next car, I had a honda civic previously and I didn't seem to have any problems with it. It was weak in the snow though. I figure that the cr v will probably be better. The eye sight is an alright safety feature. The assisted driving thing doesn't feel that useful though.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by nephron View Post
            I've had a subaru outback before. The problem that I had was that the discount oil change people seemed to not be able to change their oil filter easily, I don't know if they have a different filter or what the problem was, but I ended up just going to the dealer most of the time after one place attached a filter which caused my oil to leak out. I think that I am going to get a Honda CRV as my next car, I had a honda civic previously and I didn't seem to have any problems with it. It was weak in the snow though. I figure that the cr v will probably be better. The eye sight is an alright safety feature. The assisted driving thing doesn't feel that useful though.
            Yeah you’re the second person to tell me a story about a Subaru and an oil change gone wrong. We get a fair amount of snow and ice so heavier and awd would be nice.

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            • #7
              My 1999 Subaru was taken off the road this year....not a typo....1999.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by bean1970 View Post
                My 1999 Subaru was taken off the road this year....not a typo....1999.
                😳

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                • #9
                  Happy Subie owner here. Our family has had an Outback and Forester, I currently have the Outback and am very happy with it. The standard issue tires + AWD have been fine through big snowfalls, ice rain and blizzards. I haven’t had any significant issues with the car. No problems with oil changes.

                  A few words of advice:
                  1) Theres a class action lawsuit underway regarding Subaru windshields during certain years which may fall within your range. My only complaint about our Forester is that we had to replace the windshield twice, which wasn’t cheap even with insurance due to the eyesight technology. You may want to avoid the affected vehicles (or it could give you an even better deal! Our Outback has never had an issue.)
                  2) I found SubaruOutback.org helpful when I was deciding used vs new, picking a trim, and then finding the best place to buy it. (For example, there are a number of dealerships around the country which focus on internet-based, high volume, low margin, no haggling sales. I saved $2-3k just by using them. Another $1k through Costco and Subaru Ambassador coupons.) Might be worth a look and I’m sure there’s corresponding Forester and Honda sites.

                  With all of that said, you’re choosing between two highly reliable automakers. I was looking at the CRV too. You can’t go wrong.

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                  • #10
                    Happy Honda owner. Although when it came to buying my compact SUV in 2017, I bought a RAV4, and liked the CX5 better than the CRV. And when it came to my midsize, I’ve been all Honda Pilot (2014 and 2021), ahead of the Highlander and Subaru

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by SpacemanSpiff12 View Post
                      Happy Subie owner here. Our family has had an Outback and Forester, I currently have the Outback and am very happy with it. The standard issue tires + AWD have been fine through big snowfalls, ice rain and blizzards. I haven’t had any significant issues with the car. No problems with oil changes.

                      A few words of advice:
                      1) Theres a class action lawsuit underway regarding Subaru windshields during certain years which may fall within your range. My only complaint about our Forester is that we had to replace the windshield twice, which wasn’t cheap even with insurance due to the eyesight technology. You may want to avoid the affected vehicles (or it could give you an even better deal! Our Outback has never had an issue.)
                      2) I found SubaruOutback.org helpful when I was deciding used vs new, picking a trim, and then finding the best place to buy it. (For example, there are a number of dealerships around the country which focus on internet-based, high volume, low margin, no haggling sales. I saved $2-3k just by using them. Another $1k through Costco and Subaru Ambassador coupons.) Might be worth a look and I’m sure there’s corresponding Forester and Honda sites.

                      With all of that said, you’re choosing between two highly reliable automakers. I was looking at the CRV too. You can’t go wrong.
                      Wow thank you. This is very helpful. I’ll check out that site. I did hear about the cost of the windshield and then sometimes you had to pay to have the eyesight recalibrated. As a driver of a 2007 Toyota this is not something I’ve had to deal with.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Dewangski1 View Post
                        Happy Honda owner. Although when it came to buying my compact SUV in 2017, I bought a RAV4, and liked the CX5 better than the CRV
                        In my research I just saw that the rav4 is the number 1 selling compact suv. They tend to be bit more expensive for the same model year as the Honda. I’ll check out the cx 5.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Decapolis View Post

                          In my research I just saw that the rav4 is the number 1 selling compact suv. They tend to be bit more expensive for the same model year as the Honda. I’ll check out the cx 5.
                          Agree with the RAV4 rec. They’re not the best from a mileage standpoint and feel a little “tinny”. Subaru feels solid. RAV is cheaper than an equivalent Subaru or CRV that I found at least. There are class action lawsuits against a lot of these auto makers. I believe Honda CRV has one as well concerning oil burn through. RAV served us well despite the above issues and safety ratings can easily be compared.

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                          • #14
                            Neither manufacturer is quite as reliable as Toyota, but they both are decent choices. (Honda may be closer to Toyota quality.)

                            Subaru still tends to be more popular in certain regions. As always, fleet and internet sales rather than haggling in the dealership.

                            If you live somewhere that Subaru is popular, consider locking in a price, then flying to somewhere like Mississippi and driving your new Subaru back to Colorado or Vermont. Might shave off $2,500 or $3K.

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                            • #15
                              I changed to Subaru after Volvo was bought by Ford and have had 4 Foresters. My 2014 was a little buggy but nothing major and none of the others have had a problem. They are an inexpensive, solid car with decent gas mileage, good visibility and excellent to drive in the snow. Although we only get a couple of decent snow storms a year I'm always concerned with getting to work safely and have driven through a few legit blizzards with relative ease .

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