2003 Subaru Legacy Overview

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2003 Subaru Legacy Overview

Just to keep you on your toes, the 2003 Subaru Legacy shuffles its trim offerings up a little bit this year, adding on some performance refinements and more standard features on its base model sedans and wagons. Last year's GT Limited becomes the 2.5GT. Last year's GT is now the L Special Edition. And last year's L is, well, the L. All three trims are available as a sedan or wagon and are powered by the 165-hp 2.5-liter H4 engine. A 5-speed manual is standard, and 4-speed auto tran optional. For the 2.5GT, the 4-speed comes with a Sportshift mode, in keeping with the bigger brakes, limited slip differential, and sport suspension offered in this trim. Short-range gearing also provides a more responsive performance in the GT versus the L trims.

The base L sedan and wagon adds a CD player and remote entry to its power features and cruise control. The new L Special Edition is a lot like the old GT. It comes with larger 16-inch tires, a sunroof, wood accents, foglights, and a leather-wrapped wheel and shifter. If you want leather seats and a new 8-way power driver's seat, you want the 2.5GT, which also gets a Momo steering wheel, a 6-CD player, and heated seats and mirrors. All of the 2003 Legacy lineup feature ABS brakes and dual front airbags, and the full-time AWD that has made Subaru such a reliable and trusted name in northern climates. Though the Legacy isn't quite as rugged or out-door oriented as its Outback sibling, it is a good family car that gets four stars and top ratings on crash tests. The wagon is a bigger seller probably because of its storage versatility (up to 68 cubic feet).

Aside from the AWD, drivers love the 2003 Legacy's handling. The horizontal boxer 4 engine sits lower, dropping the center of gravity and making the car a more stable performer. Though gas mileage is an average 21/27 mpg, it's still better than comparably-sized SUVs. Compared to the V6 Outback, the 2003 Legacy feels underpowered, and owners say the seats are uncomfortable for long rides. Overall legroom is limited, and some owners have had problems with the clutch.

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