2004 Subaru Outback Overview

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4.3 5 stars
Based on 9 reviews

2004 Subaru Outback Overview

On the cusp of middle age, Subaru celebrates its 35th year by issuing a 35th Anniversary Special Edition wagon in its 2004 Subaru Outback lineup. With the 3.0-liter, 212-hp, 6-cylinder engine and 4-speed automatic, it varies from the other 3.0 wagons only in its unique badging and alloy wheels. The only other significant changes to the all-wheel drive SUV alternative are new 16-inch tires for the VDC models and upgraded leather trim for the shifter and steering wheel in the Outback Limited and L.L. Bean Edition.

The 2004 Outback's full-time all-wheel drive is accompanied by a standard limited slip rear differential, and makes the transition smoothly from city to country roads. A 7.3-inch ground clearance, lower body cladding, large tires, and heavy duty suspension can tackle tough driving conditions, though it's not an off-road vehicle, due to lack of low range gearing. A 2.5-liter, 165-hp H4 engine powers the base wagon and Limited sedan and wagon. A 3.0-liter, 212-hp H6 powers the 3.0 sedan, VDC sedan and wagon, and L.L. Bean Edition wagon. All models have ABS brakes and dual front airbags, with all but the base model having side impact as well. The 2004 Outback earns five stars in front crash test ratings. For maximum stability, the VDC models come with variable torque distribution, traction control, and a stability system, which can also be turned off if desired. All models have heated seats and mirrors, power driver's seat, cruise control, and keyless entry. Leather seats, a sunroof, 6-CD player, and wood accents are added with the Limited, Bean, and VDC models.

Holding nearly as much cargo as SUVs, but improving on the safety, handling, and fuel economy (22/29 mpg), the 2004 Outback is popular with families. Rear seats are comfortable for children, but have limited adult legroom. The wagons are great for camping or other outdoor activities, and feature a cargo cover and roof rack. AWD is the Outback's biggest selling point, but drivers also like that it's quiet and smooth, and praise its overall reliability. Cargo room is spacious, and the 6-cylinder has good pickup and power. The 4-cylinder suffers a bit in the power department, and owners say the seats lack comfort and support for long trips. Cupholders are poorly placed, and the interior plastic looks cheap. There is reported wind noise at high speeds.

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Users ranked 2004 Subaru Outback against other cars which they drove/owned. Each ranking was based on 9 categories. Here is the summary of top rankings.

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    Subaru Outback Questions

    Back Seat Comes Down?

    I have tried to make the back seats come down so I can utilize the trunk and bac k seat area to carry two long lounge chairs that fold together but not enough to get in the trunk and the seat while ...

    10 views with 1 answer (last answer 5 days ago)

    Is A Subaru Outback A 4wd?

    9 views with 1 answer (last answer 3 weeks ago)

    I Have A 2004 Subaru Outback With The 3 L Engine. Is It Possible To Get A 2...

    I'm looking for an engine that is rebuilt or used in good condition to fit my 2004 Subaru Outback. Ours has blowback issues and we can't seem to find a 3 l engine that's rebuilt or used to replace i...

    8 views with 2 answers (last answer about a month ago)

    Compatible Parts

    I have a 2004 Subaru Outback that is in need of a fuel pump is a 2008 or 2009 Subaru Outback compatible with an 04?

    10 views with 3 answers (last answer about a month ago)

    What's The Life On A Rebuilt Subaru Engine

    19 views with 4 answers (last answer about a month ago)