Subaru Legacy or BMW 330xi?

Asked by Jul 26, 2015 at 03:42 PM about the 2004 BMW 3 Series 330xi Sedan AWD

Question type: Shopping & Pricing

I'm 16yo looking for a good first car. I have narrowed down to two cars. A 2009 Subaru
Legacy 2.5 Manual with 143K Miles. And a 2004 BMW 330xi with 135K miles. 4WD is a
must and they're both in good condition for about the same price. Any suggestions or
advice for choosing?

183 Answers

22,915

Here's some really useful information for you, don't get the Subaru Legacy. And, I'm not too sure about the BMW either. See this, http://www.carcomplaints.com/Subaru/Legacy/

27,815

WELL THE BMW WILL GIVE YOU A LITTLE BETTER GAS MILAGE...BOTH COME WITH 2.5-3.0 ENGINES..BMW CAN TOW 600LB MORE..YOU AND YOUR 4 GIRL/BOY FRIENDS..IF YOU LIKE THE PINK ONE BUY IT...IF YOU LIKE THE YELLOW ONE BUY IT ! THEY ARE BOTH GOOD CARS SOME DONT LIKE THE BMW.THE SUBARU IS 5 YEARS NEWER !....IM A CHEVY GUY ..I/ME WOULD GO FOR THE BMW...BUT IF THE LEGACY HAS THE HOOD SCOOP THEN HUMMMM. WHAT TRANSMISSION DOES THE BMW HAVE? SO HERES MY ANSWER..IF YOU DID DRIVE BOTH?WITCH ON DID YOU REALLY LIKE...?

22,915

Don't get the BMW either, you're being played, keep shopping and read more reports. See this, http://www.carcomplaints.com/BMW/330/

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
22,915

Kelly, he's 16, he likely doesn't have the money for ad-hoc repairs. He's better off with a Subaru Imprezza, non turbocharged car. Just stay away from 2008 , it was problem year. http://www.carcomplaints.com/Subaru/Impreza/

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LIKE ANY THERE ARE GOOD ONES AND BAD ONES..WHATS THE SAME PRICE??/THE SUBARUS SHOWING ABOUT 3 GRAND MORE!??...BOTH HAVE A 2.5 AND OR THE 3.0.....

22,915

ad3599 - take it from me, I'm in my 60s and have owned lots of cars. You want to start off with a dependable car? Get an Asian car as new as you can that's in great condition. Condition is everything in a used car, not mileage. Good luck. And forget about a turbocharged vehicle. They're expensive to maintain.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.
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WELL LIKE I SAID BEFORE YOU SNEAKED IN AGAIN..I DIDNT KNOW YOU KNEW HIM.. LAST POST I SAID.>LIKE ANY, THERE ARE GOOD ONES AND BAD ONES..WHATS THE SAME PRICE??/THE SUBARUS SHOWING ABOUT 3 GRAND MORE!??...BOTH HAVE A 2.5 AND OR THE 3.0........SO YES IF THERE THE ABOUT THE SAME PRICE 5 GRAND, I WOULDNT WANT THE SUBARU BECAUSE IT SHOULD BE AROUND 9 GRAND.. BUT, MARKW... LOOK AT THE COMPLAINTS FOR THE SUBARU >Top 291 Complaints and Reviews about Subaru www.consumeraffairs.com › Automotive › Auto Manufacturers Rating: 1.7 - ‎120 votes SO AD3599, LOOK FOR A 2004 OR SO SS CAMARO....BUY AMERICAN!!! THERE I SAID IT.. PEACE AND LOVE

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I STAND FIRM..I HAVE ONLY OWNED...45-50.. I WENT DOWN AND BOUGHT A NEW PORSCHE SAME DAY A NEW VETTE... TUNE UP FOR PORSCHE $800 FOR VETTE 200.. NOT THAT THEY WOULD EVER GET THERE HANDS ON IT..WHY AN ASIAN CAR? THERE AGAIN PARTS COST...YOUR TURN..

22,915

Kelly, just an FYI, but, Subaru of America is built right here in Lafayette, Indiana. Yes, I said there are good and bad years for any car, Subaru isn't immune from this like any other car. As a general rule, Asian cars hold up better than German, or American cars and age more gracefully. Just look at Consumers Reports. Do you actually know where your cars were built? There's lot of American cars built in Mexico.

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I HAVE A BEAUTIFUL DODGE VAN WITH 39 THOU. MILES.....5 GRAND..ANY TAKERS

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BUT.......LOOK......>Company. Founded in 1968, Subaru of America, Inc. (SOA) is the U.S. Sales and Marketing subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI) IS OWNED BY Japan and is responsible for the distribution, marketing, sales and service of Subaru vehicles in the United States.

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COME ON MARK YOUR FIRST CAR WAS A FORD ,YES

22,915

Kelly, no, my first car at 16 was a 57 Chevy, a real classic even now.

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I NEW I BLEW YOUR DOORS OFF...HEY ..YEA JUST SOLD A BLOWN INJECTED 57...SEE AND YOU DIDNT EVEN PUNCH IT OUT TO A 292...OR DID YOU HAVE THE 265 OR SIXX AND SHIFT IT AT 9 GRAND...HERES MY BABY

22,915

You're right, Subaru of America was started in 1968 and its roots are Fuji Heavy Industries that was formed in 1916 in Japan. Unlike a lot of other car companies, Subaru has been on an upward trajectory since they started in the US, and have not seen any decline in sales, ever. That is pretty amazing for a niche car company that produces less cars than almost any other car manufacturer. Yes, some of their models are still made in Japan, the Forester, is one of them. My Subaru Outback is built here in Indiana. Now, in case you didn't know, the roots of Subaru. They were formed from five separate companies hence their logo and the Japanese word Subaru means "unite". They were an aircraft company originally that started making cars way before they came to the US. Not all were successful, their first car here , the Subaru 360, was a disaster, but, they quickly learned from their mistakes and made the car company into what it is today, very successful, no auto bailouts for them! Now, back to our 16 year old poster here, he's 16 remember. He wants an AWD car, and he wants to purchase his first car and get his money's worth and probably doesn't have a good job for repairs and maintenance. By the way, no car company has been doing AWD longer than Subaru, they've been perfecting their AWD since 1972. So, take another look at what he's asking for, and tell me that a nice used Subaru Imprezza, or even an Outback wouldn't be a safe bet. What other American AWD car would you propose?

22,915

Kelly, I can see that we're going to have to agree to disagree on all of this. Enjoy your high performance cars.

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YEP, I LIKE SUBARU.. BOUGHT A SUBARU FROM A FRIEND YEARS AGO. HE AND HIS WIFE LOVED IT. I DROVE IT TO A BUNCH.. TILL I CRASHED IT..THATS ANOTHER STORY.....I WONDER WHY HE WANTS A 4WD??? MY LUCK,IT WILL COME BACK THAT HE LIVES IN MAINE. HUMMM WONDER WHAT HES DOING..PROBABLY FORGOT HIS POST AND HE GOT A VW

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MARK ..IM EASY... I DONT DISAGREE WITH ANYTHING YOU HAVE SAID... ITS ALL JUST BRAIN CANDY.. YOU BEAT ME AGAIN TO THE POST ABOVE... I WAS SUBARARUING UP TO YOU...

22,915

ad3599, if you want dependable wheels and not pay a lot of money, you're going to love a later model Toyota, Honda or Subaru. German, Italian and English cars cost more to maintain. I've had several American cars as well, and it's a larger gamble. Read articles by Car and Driver, Motor trend and Consumers Reports. You should know that Chrysler and Dodge are some of the lowest rated cars according to Consumers Reports. Hey, don't take my word for it, read these yourself. Just one thing though, can you name even one Chrysler or Dodge model that's been around and still selling for the last 20 years or more? The Honda Accord has been around still selling since 1976, Subaru Outback since 1995, the Toyota Corolla since the early 70s, see where I'm going here. Pick a model that's got some long storied history, not some nameplate that cuts, runs and hides to only introduce a newly improved model. It probably isn't.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
22,915

ad3599 - Finally, take a look at the Toyota Prius, except for 2008 and 2007, a few problem years, these are great cars. You're going to save a ton on fuel and fuel is the most expensive thing you put in a vehicle every year. Besides my 2010 Subaru Outback Limited, we have a fully equipped 2009 Toyota Prius. The car is very smooth and gets 43 to 46 miles per gallon. That's hard to beat at the gas station.

22,915

ad3599, if you really want an AWD car, I still think Subaru is your best bet. Go Google the Subaru high mileage club. There's stories there about people who have gone 200,000 to 300,000 miles and even a few to 500,000 miles. Yes, there's bad years and models like I pointed out earlier. Hey, Subaru cars have the "boxer engines ", they're different from other cars, look that up on Google. Flat engines are used in light aircraft , idle smoother and have great torque. Even Kelly would have his Subaru today maybe if he didn't crash it. See his post above.

22,915

ad3599, if any of my answers have been helpful, please mark one of my responses, thanks .

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27,815

ONE LAST REMARK...IS THE PERSON A MALE OR FEMALE? DOES ANYONE KNOW.. THAT WOULD HAVE MADE THIS A BUNCH EASIER........ GET A 4WD FORD TRUCK....

I live in Northern Wisconsin and a 2WD won't survive through a winter. I'm a male

27,815

THE BMW.. SAYS MORE ABOUT THE MAN WHO KNOWS...IN YOUR CASE THE TEEN THAT GOT AN EARLY START... BUT REALLY WHAT COLORS ARE THE BMW/SUBARU?

22,915

ad3599- read this thread about the Subaru Outback in snow, http://www.subaruoutback.org/forums/104-gen-4-2010-2014/22950-my- first-test-outback-snow.html

22,915

Also, see this YouTube video, https://youtu.be/sRjIkL8VdoM

22,915

Read this, https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/awd-wagon- bmw-vs-subaru/29089/page1/

22,915

Another comparison, http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthread.php? t=897208&page=3

1,705

I'd go with the E46. They are very good cars, and if you're handy with a wrench, you won't have to worry about high repair costs. Remember, it's about what YOU want, not what everyone else here is arguing about.

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22,915

You know, everything is easy what you know what to do. Remember, he's 16, and cars today are not like cars from the 60s when anyone just handy could tinker and figure out what's wrong easily. Plus, I'm going to guess that there's a lot more expensive parts on the BMW.

1,705

I'm 16, too, and have been working on BMWs since 14. I'll agree with you, though, cars are not as simple as they used to be. Engines are a lot more advanced, now. Parts aren't a whole lot more expensive for BMWs. Then again, I'm used to buying parts for BMWs and Volvos.

22,915

That's great, hope my answers were helpful. If so, please mark one of them best answer. So, have you decided on the BMW? Or still thinking?

I'm not handy with a wrench at all. I can change oil and tires and lights but that is about the extent of my ability. I'm leaning towards the subaru because it could last longer and I won't have to pay for premium gas which would be a big money saver.

The Subaru is blue and the BMW is gray. From the exterior. The Subaru looks better. Also the Subaru is a manual so I could have some fun with that.

22,915

ad3599 - I think you're making the right choice here. Just make sure that the timing belt, water pump and all the belts were changed at 105,000 miles. Also, inspect the car for any head gaskets leaking, hopefully, they were either replaced if there were any previous issues. And, if they were replaced, they could have the multi layered head gaskets, new version. And, has the clutch been replaced? All of these questions are fair game . How much are they asking for this 2009 Subaru Legacy ? It had some problems on car complaints, but, it's only one source of information, you have to weigh the condition of the particular car. If you could find a 2009 Subaru Outback, it would be even a better choice. Of all the cars for the snow, Subaru is one of the best. Its their AWD system, as I said before, they've been doing it for 43 years! Finally, if you can mark one of my previous answers "best answer ", I'd appreciate that.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.
Best Answer Mark helpful
27,815

well now i know the subaru is a stick.... and it will be more fun at your age...ahh 16 again and changing clutches ...

Thanks for the advice guys. It helped a lot.

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lets me know after all this.......

1,705

I hate to sound like the BMW fan boy here, but, that list for the Legacy is MUCH longer than it would be for the 330. M54B30 has a timing chain, therefore no need to replace regularly. No head gasket problems or clutches burning out (without fault of the driver). Again, Mark has brought up some very good points, but you should research both cars thoroughly, test drive them, and see what you like more. BMWs are not far out of reach as far as maintenance costs, most people REALLY exaggerate the cost of ownership. I've had my 528i for 4 years, and loved it. Maintenance hasn't been an issue at all. The worst was a cooling problem, which was no more than $1,000 in total. Hell, it probably wasn't even that much. Either way, be happy with your choice, and good luck with your purchase! And let us know what you end up with!

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yep...also as i said one is 6 years old and the other is 11...i spend all day trying to figure out how much to change my overlap... time to retire..

22,915

Kelly, actually I'm retired, early, and love it. As for the two cars, there's an advantage in the 2009 vs. 2003. A lot has changed in car technology over the last 13 years. Newer is definitely better. It's all about condition and if the Subaru looked and drove great, I'd choose that in a heartbeat.

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i meant retire from this question... oh brother.. and you come up with some good ones.. the 2009..technology is better?? guess that why nhra just made it legal for electronic fuel injection... in pro stock...

22,915

ad3599- I do have to say that there's a lot of miles on this Subaru Legacy, an average of almost 24,000 miles per year. Maybe it's all highway miles? Are you purchasing this car from a private party or new car dealer or used car dealer? And, how much is it? I would see if you could ask to take the car to your mechanic for an inspection. And, if they have the complete service records, that would be ideal. One more glaring red flag to watch out for ---if this person or anyone tells you that this car has been amazing and that they never had to put any money into this car for anything big other than oil changes, tires and brakes----walk away. It means that they haven't done any serious maintenance and it's all going to be on you. This can happen to any car where the owner just drives the car in the ground. Good luck. If you purchase it, post a picture of the car and the interior. Hopefully, this vehicle is very clean and only had one owner.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
22,915

My 2010 Subaru Outback has 72,000 miles, which I thought was a lot, but, 143,000 on a 2009 is a really significant amount. When you test drive this car pay close attention to how tight it is, shifts should be precise , clutch engages right away, no significant noises, engine should idle smoothly.

1,705

If you bring technology into it, I would avoid the 2009 like a plague. New technology is nothing but a problem, not a convenience at all. I'm annoyed by what I see in cars these days.

Here's the link for it http://germanah.com/inventory-details.php?id=141 1 owner, Highway miles, Used car dealer. However, My dad has bought a couple of cars from this dealer and both cars ran great. Both lasted over 200k miles. They were BMW 3 series

Also, which of the two cars would you think would be faster without any upgrades. They're both stock and I want to know which would race better for fun

22,915

AD3599, OK, that depends, which engine and how many speeds are on the BMW? And, even if you're talking about the 2.5 , six cylinder, I'm going to have to say the BMW is faster. Just being honest with you. Here's the 411 on this, the BMW has been been driven an average of 12,000 miles per year for 11 years and has 135,000 miles. Kelly correctly pointed out that this car has a timing chain instead of a timing belt. This is true, but, timing chains can fail and when that happens, watch out. Changing them is a really big deal, they're supposed to last the life of the car, however, they can stretch or break. It's a show stopper in terms of cost. Way more expensive than changing a timing belt which is a lot easier. Now, it really depends on what you want. I can see the value of the BMW, but, I still think that it's going to cost more to own, Parts are just more expensive on that car. Can you afford it? Have you priced these two cars on Kelly Blue Book, and how much are they asking. It all boils down to this, get in each and drive them. Look for excessive wear in the seats, interior, pedals and other trim items. Excessive wear is not good. And, if speed is your primary concern, go ahead and get the BMW. I still think that a newer car generally is better, but, you're looking at these cars. We can't see what you're looking at.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
22,915

By the way, it costs money to go fast! And, citations add up quickly and could cost you your drivers license. Excessive speed causes accidents. Just look what happened to Paul Walker, remember, the actor from Fast and Furious movies. Also, you should know that it makes your car breakdown faster with more repairs. Why? It's easy, it pushes your systems to their limits and you become disabled where you don't want to be. I hope you have or plan to have the AAA card in your wallet, it's very desirable.

22,915

I still think that the Subaru will fare better in snow, but, not entirely sure. Google YouTube and see if you can find some BMW 330XI cars in the snow. The AWD of the Subaru has been around 43 years, don't know how long BMW has been doing this?

22,915

I recently met someone who has had a string of Subaru Legacy and Forester models and put almost 200,000 miles on each. He said that his cars were bullet proof. Now, there's no car that's really bullet proof, but, he said many Subaru cars outlast other cars . Again, Google the Subaru high mileage club, and read those stories. For me, of course, I sometimes drive fast, but, it's on the open highway where there's less cars. Racing in Metro areas is crazy and you're asking for trouble. Have you ever heard about "exhibition of speed ". Think of it as a speeding ticket on steroids. They'll haul your ass into court, take away your driving license and you'll be lucky to get back behind the wheel in a year, less if you're lucky. Don't do it.

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car and driver mag> subaru better than bmw... (66.5 for the Subaru and 63.1 for the BMW), around the road course,

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one more thing the audi s4 quattro out runs them both...same price range... and theres a yellow one on ebay up in ny...

1,705

I have a bit of experience with BMWs, and I can say that they are much better than people say they are. Especially older models, like the E46 you're looking at. They're more reliable and have MUCH less computers than the new ones. You'll also be much safer in the BMW than the Subaru. After seeing that Car Complaints page, I really think the Bimmer is the way to go. Safer, better build quality, timing chain (which does last around 300,000 miles. I know from experience. The V8s are the ones with the timing chain issues, NOT the 6 cylinder. Don't let anyone worry you about that). Again, this comes down to you, but IMHO, you will have MUCH more fun driving the BMW than the Subaru. Not that I have a problem with Subaru, but BMW is known for quality and "Sheer Driving Pleasure" among enthusiasts, like me. Also to respond to Mark, the 330Xi has BMW's M54 3.0L I-6, the improved version of the M52TU, and has around 225 horsepower, which is a LOT more than the Legacy 2.5 N/A, paired to a 5 speed automatic. BMW's AWD systems have been around for a while now, and are not known to be problematic. BMW has been doing AWD since the mid- to late-80s, and is a much better system than other European makes like Volvo.

1,705

Also, 135,000 is a good place to be. You'll be dealing with more problems with lower miles, so at 135K, you'll know the hard part has already been done.

Don't worry Mark I'm not going to go all fast and furious with my car I just like going fast on empty roads

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hummm,````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````` 16, empty roads, snow...stock tires, radio,.dont forget the roll bar..

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
22,915

apbimmer98 - You're making some good points here, yes , lower mileage is better, but, they're kind of in a dead heat, we're only talking 8,000 miles. It's good hear that BMW has been doing AWD better than Volvo, but, even you would be to admit Subaru rules here. And, Isuzu had the worst 4WD vehicles, not sure they ever did AWD. Actually, I'm pretty sure that both these cars could go 300,000 miles if they're maintained properly, it's just a matter of what comes along for the ride to 300,000 miles. This is just my opinion and others including you will differ on this, but, German cars as well built new and I'm including Mercedes Benz as well, become very expensive to maintain in later years. And, even Mercedes has not fared well with Consumers Reports for reliability. Remember, this kid is 16! I understand that there's a certain cachet to these cars, but, a 16 year old? He doesn't have the resources us older folks have. In your heart, you know I'm right. Sorry, I couldn't resist saying that. And no, I'm not a Republican and not old enough to vote for Goldwater, but, that was a great memorable line. Listen, you know it all depends on the condition of these two cars. It would be more if we could see pictures of these two cars. Hey, ad3599, can you post some?? It's been my experience that Asian cars age more gracefully and are easier to keep up. Plus, when mechanic sees you coming in with a Mercedes or BMW, you get profiled and they think you're loaded. Not so much with Asian cars, except maybe Lexus. Sure, the BMW will be a faster car! And, it will be less economy on fuel. You've probably heard gas is going up, well, here in Los Angeles, gas is approaching $5 per gallon.

That's going to be hard to forget

Don't have many pictures to show you but... http://germanah.com/inventory-details.php?id=152

22,915

If it weren't for the snow factor, I'd tell him to get a Toyota Prius. Great car, know people already with almost 170,000 miles on a 2010 with few problems. But, they are reportedly horrible in snow from reports I've read online. Funny thing about this is it snows a lot in Japan. Who's snowing who on these stories. There's no way for me to validate this one way or another, it doesn't snow in LA.

Snow here is awful. I was looking at Jeep GC just because it would be a nicer car to be in when you drift off road and end up in a ditch. But the big V8 is a gas guzzler and takes a lot of maintenance

And just fwi I can afford both of these cars without help from my parents

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say ad3599...just to change the subject.go and check out this link you can find used ones..>autotrader.com/car-deals/top-sports-cars-for-winter- weather-138960

All those cars are well beyond my price range

22,915

Ad3599, congratulations to you for being so independent, I admire that qualify and you're only 16, very mature for your age, kudos. Now, how much are these cars respectively?

22,915

In good condition, the basic Subaru Legacy 2.5 sedan is valued at $5334, while the BMW is valued at $4445. What model Legacy is it? Options matter and whether it's a Limited edition.

subaru is $8000 bmw is $6600

22,915

ad3599, can you send pictures of these two cars?

22,915

ad3599, did you inquire about the cost of insurance on these two cars?

I didn't but I assume the subaru will be slightly lesss.

check out the links for the 2 cars for photos. I didn't take any when i went to the dealership

22,915

Hmm, Subaru $8,000 and BMW $6,600? They must be pretty loaded with features or in excellent condition. Have you compared the features of each and can you live with that? Do they both have leather interiors?

22,915

Ad3599, is the Subaru this car ? http://www.kbb.com/subaru/legacy/2009-subaru-legacy/25-gt-limited- sedan-4d/?condition=very-good&vehicleid=227081&intent=trade-in- sell&mileage=143000&pricetype=private-party

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with $1400.00 saved buying the bmw... you could make a good one.. Engine management software.....heres the wish book for the 2004 bmw >http://www.dinancars.com/products/?series=3- Series&model=330i%20&%20ci,%20xi,%20conv.,%20zhp- e46&mid=1021

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22,915

If we're talking about a 2009 Subaru Legacy 2.5 GT1 Limited, that would be a whole other matter. Here's the specs on that, http://www.kbb.com/subaru/legacy/2009-subaru-legacy/25-gt-limited- sedan-4d-specifications/?spec_group=tech&condition=very- good&vehicleid=227081&intent=trade-in- sell&mileage=143000&pricetype=private-party#spec-table

bmw is leather subaru is fabric interior

22,915

Ad3599, where are the links?

however the subaru has MUCH better features and gadgets. Also it's a stick. The $1400 won't make a huge difference in the long run because of the increaced cost of owning a bmw.

I posted them earlier but here you go Subaru>http://germanah.com/inventory-details.php?id=141 BMW>http://germanah.com/inventory-details.php?id=152

22,915

OK, does the Subaru Legacy have all electric windows, heated seats, blue tooth, etc.. Navigation? There were a lot of electronic goodies in 2009 that no one even dreamed of in 2003.

BMW is black leather. Ugly on it's own plus it's a little worn out in the car.

it has power everything, heated seats and blutooth. not sure about the navigation though

22,915

Integrated phone service with your internal sound system was a really great feature on 2009 cars! The GTX, if that's what we're looking at is a real performance car for a Four. Thanks to the boxer engine.

22,915

Ad3599, OK, I looked at these cars. I noticed that there's a slight dent on the front right side of the Subaru even though it says that it's never been in an accident. Could have been done by the owner in a parking lot. Well, it's a one owner car, there's no mention of this with the BMW. The BMW says it was driven by an older person, that's all. Considering that the Subaru has more updated standard equipment and probably more airbags, and its a one owner car, I'd choose the Subaru. The BMW is already 11 years old, in 5 years, it will be 16 years old and really harder to get parts. The Subaru in 5 years will be the age the BMW is right now. And, the money you're going to save on maintenance, insurance and gas is definitely worth it. This is obviously a used car dealer. Do they provide any kind of warranty for one year or 12,000 miles. I wouldn't be surprised if you said no, because, there's a lot of miles on both of them. I suppose the reason you're not looking at cars at new car dealers is that they're out of your price range? How many years has this car dealer been there? If they've been there a while, it improves your chance of getting a fair deal. You can always offer them less, you know, that's common in deals like this.

22,915

By the way, the fact that you've said that the BMW seats are worn and ugly is definitely bad. Besides, the black interior can get really hot. I have black leather seats in my car, but, they're in beautiful condition. Once leather seats go, they're insanely expensive to receive or recondition. Normally, not worth it, unless you have a museum car. Psst, the BMW is not a museum car!

22,915

So, when are you going to purchase the Subaru?

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Is this the place? ? http://www.angieslist.com/companylist/us/wi/madison/german-auto- house-llc-reviews-8099772.htm

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Ad3599, so, I see that the Subaru has blue tooth and integrated phone. That's one of the best features ever, it's much safer to answer calls in the car. Here in California, you can't even talk on your cellphone in your car if you don't have a hands free system. These are the exact features I was talking about. It will assist you in selling the Subaru in a few years or so, great selling point. And, you're going to love it! Hey, join the Subaru high mileage club. Anyone who has over 100,000 miles can join, Subaru will even send you a emblem for your car, if you ask. And, they have a monthly magazine called Drive. I get the print and email edition every month for free. Aside from the minor dent, it's a nice looking car.

22,915

Ad3599, Kelly, Apbimmer98, please read this article below, http://www.newsday.com/classifieds/cars/consumer-reports-best-and- worst-car-brands-in-2015-include-lexus-mazda-and-toyota-1.10387053

1,705

Interesting list. I could have bet Fiat would be at the bottom, haha. Anyway, to go back to an older post, the fuel mileage on the BMW is not bad at all. I know people getting 30+ MPG out of that 3.0L. I have no doubts that the Subaru will last longer with a little less maintenance than the BMW, Subarus are very good cars, and they last forever. And what I mean by the mileage is the the BMW is a good buy at that mileage. Honestly, I don't really care about mileage. It's only a number. I know when to knock the price down because it's too high, but I look at the mileage as more of a reference. 13X,XXX miles on a BMW means most of the factory "errors" have been repaired, and there is no need to worry. ESPECIALLY if the car includes maintenance records, which is a must. If you want a dependable car you can throw around and not care about maintenance, get the Subaru. If you want an "Ultimate Driving Machine," get the BMW. Sure, they will require a little more attention, but to me, that's what makes it fun. Call me crazy, but I enjoy it. It makes me feel good to be able to know these engines so well, and to be able to share my knowledge with fellow BMW owners and enthusiasts.

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apbimmer98- thanks for sharing your thoughts on this. My brother had a 1971 BMW, not sure if was a 1600 or 2001 model. It was a fun car to drive, , but , he was young and couldn't afford the upkeep. SO, YOU'RE NOT CONCERNED ABOUT MILEAGE. Tell me, do you think my 2010 is higher than normal at 72,000 miles. I don't think it is, but, a lot of people normally like to see no more than 10,000 per year. I'm glad you think Subaru's are good cars. I actually purchased mine primarily because I needed a car with a great ground clearance, towing capacity ( tow capacity is 2,700 pounds ) for my 900 pound teardrop trailer and really respectable fuel economy. I got all this with my Outback. I'm getting 21 miles per gallon towing on the highway with the cruise control. It enables us to go on long distance trips and not cost a fortune in fuel. I see lots of people who have trailers/RVs and never go anywhere. The Subaru Outback Limited is a real cruiser on the road, even with the trailer, and it's very stable even in high winds, never had any problems. Here's a picture of my rig.

This is a reputable dealership around here. My dad bought cars from them in the past too and they were excellent. If all goes as planned, I will be buying it this weekend

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get the bmw...

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ad3599, so, you're getting the Subaru Legacy, correct? Good to hear that the dealership has been around for a while. Normally, I wouldn't advise people to shop at these mom and pop places, but, I couldn't find anything bad about them online. Also, you live in a more rural area and probably don't have a lot choices. I guess it's better than a private party. And, they have a garage and service cars there. Ask them if they've checked out the major systems in the car you're buying. I'm sure that they would want your repeat service business and for you to recommend them to your friends. Here in SoCal we have lots and choices.

I will and when I went in before, the owner said that my family's mechanic can take a look at it before we purchase it to make sure everything is running smoothly

my one concern however is that the white/gray seats will get dirty

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We have a light color interior in our 2009 Toyota Prius and I have not found this to be a problem. Just be careful not to get in the car wearing dirt on your clothes, you wouldn't do that? And, there's seat cleaning products out there. I've found it easy to keep my cloth seats clean in my Prius and old 1995 Honda Accord.

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Wise move to get your mechanic to look at the car. Subaru Legacy is a really well built vehicle and I'm sure it will be fine. You can't have a car like this without most of these being "highway miles". In six years of driving, the only other way that this car could possibly have 143,000 miles if it were a taxi! I definitely didn't get the impression that this was anything else than someone's personal car and they used it for long distance trips on the highway. From the looks of the car, it appears clean on the inside and outside. You're lucky to find a vehicle like that. Enjoy your new car!

Where was the dent you were talking about Mark?

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ad3599- hey, maybe it was just a reflection in the picture I saw online. Looked like there was a minor ding or dent in the right front area just over the wheel well on the Subaru Legacy. Am I wrong? That's great if the car has no damage whatsoever.

I think it was just a reflection but I'll check on it when I go to test drive.

And I'm looking at aftermarket shift knobs. Would that be a smart investment for like $15? Just to get a cooler looking one

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I would probably just leave it stock. These trim items are unnecessary.

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apbimmer98- Can you answer my question on whether you think the 72,000 miles on my 2010 Subaru is excessive?

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On a 2010, no, that's not high. That's actually below average for the year. My 2013 Sonata has 47,000 miles on it, and most other 2013 cars I've seen have between 30,000-60,000 miles. ad3599- Any cloth seats will get dirty. That's probably my favorite thing about leather... it's very easy to clean. I plan on buying a leather seat cover set for my Sonata soon. I can't stand cloth.

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apbimmer98- thank you! I purchased the car as a certified used car in May 2014 with 66,000 miles. I'm actually retired, so, I mainly use the car for long road trips and have a 2009 Toyota Prius for in town city driving and saving gas. The Prius is real gas saver at 43 to 45 miles per gallon. By the way, I have leather seats in my Subaru and love them. Yes, you can wipe them down easily, but, the thing is this, the BMW our 16 year old friend is comparing the Subaru to, says the seats are becoming worn and look bad. Once that happens, it's hard short of a leather re-do to fix this. Plus, if they start to crack, that's nasty. Actually, the Subaru seats are kind of a leatherette, not leather like we know from years ago. And, they apparently hold up better. All seats can get a little dirty. It's a maintenance thing.

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apbimmer98- OK, I have a brand new question for you. I'm thinking of getting some protective undercarriage plates for my Outback. I don't take the car "off road" , but, I've taken it down some gravel roads. This company out of Oregon, has developed an aftermarket product, they are protective plates, please see the following and comment, http://get-primitive.com/3-protection-skidplates

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ad3599- by the way, instead of the useless gear shift knob, I would probably invest money in something that actually has a function, see this, http://get-primitive.com/3-protection-skidplates

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apbimmer98- when you can, please take a look at those Primitive Plates web site, they offer undercarriage protection for your car. Would like very much to get your input?

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They look good to me! it's definitely a worthwhile investment, especially if you are going off road or have poorly-maintained roads. Or in the snow, too, for that matter. Even in gravel, you can cause damage to the bottom end of your engine.

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apbimmer98- Thanks for the input. I'm going to do this as soon as possible. Good to hear that they are helpful in snow. We don't get snow in LA, but, we've taken the car on the road and you never know. I figure that I only have to do this once. And, I normally keep my cars for 10 years or so. We've been out on many trips in the National Parks and frequently run across interesting places only accessible on dirt/ poorly maintained roads. One option is to have oil holes and a fumoto valve to drain oil and I'm thinking that's a good idea as well.

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Definitely not a bad idea. That way you don't have to take it off every time you do an oil change. That's one thing I don't like about both of my cars, you have to take off the inspection cover to change the oil. And enjoy your travels!

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Thanks. Hmm, I wonder why they wouldn't make the oil holes and the valve a standard feature on these plates. Considering how many times you need an oil change, taking this on and off each time just adds extra work. So, you have something like this on your car? Someone asked me about restricted air flow to the radiator, but, it's unlikely that anything like this would interfere or no one would think of using them. Plus, this should really enhance air flow under the car and make things more aerodynamic, wouldn't you agree?

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It shouldn't restrict flow to the radiator, that's why there are grilles. It probably will help with aerodynamics. I don't have skid plates, but there are plastic covers on my BMW and my Hyundai that need to be removed in order to have any kind of space to work.

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I understand, apparently, many cars have a rubber shroud under the front bumper. I have to be extra careful when parking our Prius in parking spaces with burm stops. I went over one a while back and the rubber shield got stuck over the thing so when I backed up it pulled the thing off. It went back on easily enough, but , when you're out on the road, it bites to have things like this happen. These plates are 3/16 inch polished aluminum and the company that sells them seem to know what they're talking about. For the extra money, I might as well get their rally tough version. They make a 1/8 " as well for a little less money. They have a whole set for the front, middle and rear end differential. I don't think it's wise to go halfway on this.

Update: I test drove both vehicles today and both ran very well. No problems with driving either one. However, I did make a mistake. The worn out leather was in a different BMW 323i which is not something I'm interested in. Also, upon further inspection, the Subaru had a large rip on the drivers seat and the lining for the sunroof was falling off. I'm still deciding which one to get.

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Hmm, I would probably choose the car that was in the cleanest condition. I seem to recall that the BMW was an automatic, correct? The one thing that you need to consider in that car's favor besides the condition which you now say is markedly better the Subaru is there's more of a resale value and easier to sell cars with automatic transmissions. Let us know what your decision is after you make the deal.

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ad3599, you know, the fuel mileage on the BMW will be 18 mpg in the city?

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ad3599, you wrote, "Also, upon further inspection, the Subaru had a large rip on the drivers seat and the lining for the sunroof was falling off. I'm still deciding which one to get." I'M STARTING TO WONDER IF THIS CAR WAS DRIVEN REALLY HARD OR JUST NOT WELL CARED FOR. I had older cars, many of them. I always keep them in immaculate condition, aside from normal wear and tear, they looked almost as good as when I purchased them. A ripped seat and headliner that's falling off is not good. You're going to be driving and owning this car for a few years, I would imagine. You don't to be looking like your driving around in a dilapidated piece of junk. I'm beginning to think that the previous owner of the Subaru Legacy ran this car into the ground. If they can't satisfy you with records, I would change my mind based upon what you see. Are you saying that the BMW you're now looking at is in near perfect condition? The appearance of a car says a lot about how well the mechanism was maintained.

What is the difference between the different grades of gas? And why do some cars need 91 but others can run on 87?

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ad3599, depends upon the higher compression of the engine required for spark detonation. Only use 91 octane if the vehicle manual calls for it. Does that BMW require premium? Just costs more money. As I said earlier, CONDITION IS EVERYTHING IN A USED CAR. Also, don't know about insurance? Did you check that out? I suppose you could get the interior of the Subaru repaired? What does the rest of the interior trim, dashboard, side panels, pedals, etc. look like. If it generally looks like it's pretty worn and beat up, it's got almost 150,000 miles, OK, then I would probably skip it. Your call.

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ad3599, yes, looks like 91 octane on the 2004 BMW, see this http://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/showthread.php?566352-Is- Premium-Gas-Really-Necessary

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ad3599 - sounds like you are in a hurry to find a vehicle? What's your rush? Maybe, neither one of these cars are correct? Have you considered to continue your search and find a car with lower miles on the clock?

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The BMW does require premium, just like mine, however you should be just fine with mid-grade/ 89 octane. At this point, I'd definitely go for the BMW.

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ad3599, the problem with these two cars, is that they both have close to 150,000 miles. That's the time that you see the most expensive repairs and you've probably got limited resources. You've got to examine why these folks are selling these cars, they probably don't want to enter the "rough waters" of car repairs. Do you? And, while the BMW was a nicer, more expensive car in its day, it's 11 years old now. Repairs on these cars are more expensive, I don't care what anyone tells you. My brother had a older BMW and he couldn't afford the car. And, I've known people with these cars. Kind of like a little more affordable Mercedes Benz. Psst, there's no such thing as an affordable Mercedes Benz. You'll wind up spending more gas and repairs on the BMW. Gas is the most expensive thing you put in your car over time and it gets 18 mpg in stop and go driving, and the snow, definitely! Tough decision, I would probably keep looking now that you said the Subaru Legacy is trashed on the inside or is it?

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Subaru gas mileage is only 20 city, 27 highway, so, it's close, only difference is premium fuel.

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ad3599 - hey, you never mentioned which car you liked driving better? Which one was that?

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Please note, there's two BMWs and one Mercedes Benz on this list. You've got to ask why that is?? http://www.autoguide.com/auto- news/2013/02/top-20-used-cars-to-avoid-consumer-reports.html

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Did you notice that there wasn't one Subaru on the used cars to avoid list I just posted?

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AND, HERE'S THE LIST TO AVOID FOR 2015, INCLUDING THE BMW 330 SERVICE AND MERCEDES BENZ. THEY'RE LUMPED INTO THE SAME CATEGORY AS THE DODGE CARAVAN.

They were both really good but I liked the subaru a little bit better.

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Those articles are talking about different BMWs. Newer ones have a lot more problem-filled tech crap, and the E46 is not like that. They are referring to higher end models, that have a lot more useless technology that goes bad. The E65 7 series, for example, had a lot of useless junk that went bad quickly. You can't always trust those magazine articles. They do not personally own the car, nor know from an enthusiast's point of view what happens when. 150,000 miles is a good place to be on these cars, believe it or not. There is nothing to be afraid of. Trust me, I've owned several BMWs, and I know. 80k- 100k is the worst mileage for repairs. After 105-110, they settle down. Don't let clueless peoples' biased opinions veer you away from the BMW. That's one of the biggest problems for us enthusiasts. People don't know, then they shoot down BMWs and other European cars because they think they're all bad and unreliable, when that's not the case at all. And please don't think that statement was toward anyone here, I know you guys know what you're talking about!

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Older BMWs don't have all the useless stuff like the electronic this and that sensor, various computers, etc. The E46 you're looking at is a favorite among enthusiasts for being a good quality, reliable, fun to drive car. You have to consider quality, as well. I assume the Subaru will not hold up like the BMW. I don't know, I'm not a Subaru guy, so I can't tell you for sure, but the heavy repairs will likely come later in the car's life. At 13X,XXX, the hard part's done on the BMW. Remember that the Subaru has rather high mileage for the year. Average is around 90k-100k for an '09.

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Resources are not at all limited, parts are everywhere. Enthusiasts like me are always around to help, too. Sure, your're not going to find every parts at Autozone, but it's cheaper online, anyway! People sell those kinds of car at that mileage because they're likely exhausted from repairs. They don't realize that they have done pretty much everything. If you have maintenance records with the car (as you should), you will see that the car is practically new. You are practically set for the next 100,000 miles. I can't say that for sure, obviously, because I don't know what's been done. Going back to resources, take a look at the below link. Like I said, TONS of enthusiasts are here to help, and there are threads over here to answer just about every question about the E46 3 series you have. http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=98

Have any of you seen the new Mission Impossible?

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apbimmer98, you're making some good points, the mileage on the BMW is more "normal ", for its age. I'm not sure that I agree with your argument about less repairs, as in they've already done everything to repair the car. Maintenance records, if available, for either car would be very helpful right now. And, our buyer, tells us that the BMW is in nicer cosmetic condition than the Subaru? But, he liked driving the Subaru more. Interesting. It all depends on whether he wants a newer car with some more electronic devices, like integrated phone, really nice feature and is willing to live with flaws such as headliner and rip in seats. Could get these fixed. Or, drive an older car with an automatic, six cylinder, admittedly smooth, but, uses more expensive fuel and gets less economy. Actually, both of these cars have drawbacks and you may recall from my previous post that I'm beginning to think that neither of them are right. Why not consider getting a different car. Hey, if he's that concerned about snow, maybe he should try and find a used Subaru Outback. The Outback has 8.7 inches of ground clearance and even 7 inches on older models. It's one of the best cars in snow. They're all over the northeast and northwest. Now, it's not as sporty, but, you won't get stuck in an Outback! The Outback is basically a Subaru Legacy that's raised up and the suspension is designed for light off road. I noticed one for sale at the German Auto House, where he's looking, but, it's more expensive. As for the integrity of BMW, the two reports speak for themselves. I didn't write those articles. I understand that you have had a good experience with your BMW, but, they're not doing well in the public arena, and getting down rated by lots of sources. These are just two examples. If you notice, Subaru is not on the list of cars to avoid. And, in the annual auto issue of Consumers, the Subaru Legacy beat out the Honda Accord and a whole host of other cars for the top mid sized sedan. And, they said if you needed something larger, the corresponding Subaru Outback was the vehicle of choice. I understand there are BMW enthusiasts just like Subaru and respect that, but, I just happen to think Subaru is a better quality product for the money spent. When you purchase a BMW, you're paying a lot for a name.

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apbimmer98- No, I haven't seen Mission Impossible, the new one yet. I can imagine that BMW cars are highly prominent in the film. Remember, the Mini Cooper in The Italian Job years ago? And, there's lots of James Bond movies with all sorts of cars. Sure, I'm not saying BMWs are not popular or good cars. I'm just wondering if they're good for a 16 year old. Even if you repaired everything on your car yourself, you still have to buy certain parts and don't forget the insurance on the BMW with the Six is probably going to be more expensive. As I pointed out earlier, Subaru's roots go back to their history as an aircraft company. And, boxer engines are still used in light aircraft today. They are a very sophisticated, well designed car company that's been making all wheel drive standard on 99 percent of their cars for more than 43 years. You cannot just dismiss that as good luck. And, for a company that started selling cars in the USA in 1968, they've been on a steady upward trajectory ever since. It's a niche car company, but, they've found a loyal following.

I wasn't asking about the movie because of the cars in it. I was just wondering if it was good and if I should go to see it.

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ad3599- So, with all the debate about these two cars, can you live with the Subaru Legacy and a few imperfections or are you going to choose the BMW, even though you liked driving the Subaru Legacy more. Did the Subaru feel more sporty because of the manual or just handle better? It is a newer car. And, the position of the boxer engine has a lower center of gravity making lateral acceleration nice in Subarus. I'm sure that the BMW is a little faster with the Six? You've got to like the car you drive. So, will you continue shopping or purchase one of these?

I'll get one of these. Most likely the BMW

Unless the insurance quote is significantly less for the Subaru, I'll be getting the BMW

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Let us know which one you choose. Interesting, that you liked driving the Subaru more, but, I figured it's in better overall condition? Correct?

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BMW used to be in aircraft, as well. That's one of the sources of the roundel design.

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Older BMWs have an in-car phone, too! Haha. http://priteshpatel.co.uk/BMW530d/phonekit3.jpg

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apbimmer98 - Nice picture, back in 91, I had this phone in my car and was able to transfer between cars. Back then, calls were 45 cents per minute and there no free phones. Actually, you really don't want a free phone today. I guess the point I was making is that people want an "integrated" phone in their cars today. I can answer my phone by pushing a button on the steering wheel and talk hands free. They didn't have that on cars generally until 2009. See photo. It was an extremely well built and great phone for its day.

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apbimmer98 - what do you really estimate your annual costs to maintain your BMW. According to true cost to own at least for a brand new BMW today it runs about $7,000 more over five years than a brand new Subaru Legacy. They estimated $44,000 vs. just over $51,000 for the BMW. Those aren't my numbers, look it up on true cost to own. Actually, I think our 16 year old friend is going to find the insurance premium to be very substantially high! It may cost him more than $1,500 per year just to drive that car, and that might be a good price considering his age. I'll bet you're a little younger than me, but, well established to afford all of these bells and whistles on a pretty nice car. As you probably know cars are the worst investments, not really investments at all, but tools. So, if you don't like the newer BMW cars as well as your old one, what are you going to do when it's time for an upgrade?

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Found this link for you on aircraft and car manufacturers, http://oppositelock.kinja.com/cars-made-by-aircraft-companies- 510182215

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ad3599- So, are you out buying your car today?

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$7,000 over 5 years? And this is a BMW, not a Mercedes? Over the 4 years I've owned mine, I've probably spent $2,500-$3,000 on repairs. I'd be shocked to find out that I spent more than that. Nice phone! My BMW doesn't have the actual phone like that one, but it was pre-wired from the factory. My Sonata has bluetooth phone, but I don't use it. It gets annoying to be between that and the radio, and I find it easier to use my phone normally. I believe insurance is more on my Sonata than my BMW. I know for sure property tax on the Hyundai is a LOT more.

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I don't plan on upgrading to anything much newer than what I have now. My 528i is a 1999, and after watching the Africa special of Top Gear, I am convinced it's the toughest car in the world! Haha, anyway, I love the older European cars. Anything 80s through early 2000s BMW, Volvo, Saab, late 90s and newer Audis... I love them. I love to work on them, and there aren't any kinds of irritating electronics like in newer European cars. I have my Sonata because my dad gave it to me. It's a good car, and I do like it, but it's just not me. I can appreciate all cars for what they are, and I'm sure I'll have other American and Asian cars over the years, but I much prefer older European cars. I like the fact that I can do a lot to the Hyundai in terms of customization, though. It is a good looking car, and that's another thing I like about the older cars. To me, the Volvo 850 is one of the best looking cars of all time. It may have a lot of right angles and very straight lines, but it's nice. It's an attractive car, and that design allows for a LOT of interior space. I'm not a fan of the curvy, dramatic lines of new cars.

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The sonata's a 2013, I got a bit off topic when I said older car designs.

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apbimmer98- yeah, my old Diamond Tel was a really nice phone. That was a $1,000 telephone back then. I used it for work and that thing was very handy in the car, perfect sound quality for its day. I used that until 97 and got a much smaller hand held, still large by today's standards. In 97, services switched to digital and the rates dropped from 45 to 20 cents per minute. Still expensive by today's standards.

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apbimmer98- So, here's my strategy for cars. My 95 Honda, I purchased new and kept 19 years and almost 150,000 miles, but, when you add in the purchase price, taxes, license and financing, I pad almost $28,000 for that car in 1995. It was a Honda Accord EX - Wagon. The big item here are the monthly payments for 60 months, almost $400 per month, so, that's $4.800 per year. But, in year 5 though 19, I have no car payments and it only costs me about $1,000 per year or so just to maintain the car. And, I sold the car for $3,000, so, I think I got my money's worth from that car. The biggest thing with a new car is depreciation, so, this time, I decided to purchase a CPO car that was four years old and has some mileage. But, I did take out the extended warranty up to 100,000 miles or three years. Right now, the way I drive, I'll hit the three years before the mileage. Once this is paid for, I'm hoping that it won't be a big expense just to keep the car going, but, over the long haul, it's less than purchasing a new car again.. A lot of people get on these lease "merry go rounds". They get into a lease because they want a fancy new car and wind up renting the damn thing forever, and if they put too many miles on the car, the lease company has them over a barrel and says pay us this extra fee for excess mileage or sign a new lease and we'll forgive you. Of course, they sign. It's like holding someone up! My theory is this, no matter how much money you pay for repairs, even professionally, it's not as much as paying $400 per month for another 60 months and repairs don't happen every year. At $5,000 per year, that will pay for a lot of repair!. Don't you agree?

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That's a great reason to buy a used car. If I spend $30k on a new car, I don't want to dump a bunch of money into maintenance. And I don't understand why people would go with a lease. You're essentially renting the car. You pay for maintenance, pay a ridiculous amount of money for the car, pay for mileage overages. You can't do anything to the car, because it's not even really yours! And that's another thing that sucks about buying a new car... depreciation. My Sonata (purchased at 1 year old) has already depreciated $2,000 from what I paid... in a year! That's just one reason I prefer driving older cars.

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apbimmer98, I agree with you 100 percent. I wrote another post, but, it says it will post shortly, I may try again in a moment. Don't know what happened, wrote that over an hour ago. In my particular case as yours, I needed a car that would give me a higher ground clearance, ample towing for my teardrop trailer and good fuel mileage. The Subaru Outback seemed to fit this perfectly, for me.

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I know what you mean about the cars from the 90s. My old Honda Accord from 1995 was a better car than many of the Hondas in the 2000s. In the case of my Subaru however, the 2010 to 2012 years were really good. I originally wanted the H6, but, after I took the H4 with the CVT for a ride, I liked the feel of the car and how it handled. The 2010 was the first year of their new Lineartronic CVT and that's all they offer in the Outback now. The 2010 Outback with the 3.6 had more power, but, it's a 5EAT- transmission, conventional gearbox, and fuel economy really sucked in that model. The CVT really maximizes fuel economy. For my trailer towing, it works fine and I'm getting a really good return on that. I understand why you're driving an older vehicle as well. I've ridden in Hyundai Sonata's and they seem pretty bland to me, seats are not particularly comfortable. I know people who have them. I think its more expensive on taxes and registration only because its a newer car, that's all. As for the phone integration, I like that I can answer it even if the radio is on, radio or iPod music just pauses while I'm on the phone and then resumes

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How is the CVT in your Outback? I've never driven one, and I hear there are some good ones out there, but I just don't like the concept.

The insurance quote has the subaru more expensive to insure but not by a whole lot. I will stick to the BMW

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CVT- I like it very much! You should definitely test drive a new Subaru with this transmission to see what I mean. I was already a little familiar with CVT because before I purchased the Outback in 2014, we already had our 2009 Toyota Prius with a CVT. The Toyota is a CVT (like) unit, it's actually a "power sharing transmission", they call it their "hybrid synergy drive". Its proprietary system to Toyota and performs similarly, but, delivers power to the wheels a little differently. The Subaru CVT, which they label as their Lineartronic CVT, feels the same, but uses a different technology at it's core, more traditional CVT as conceived. It has a - is an infinite range of gears on this huge continuum, but, it's actually one continuous gear. The sensation of driving a CVT is different from other cars in that it is a step- less transfer of power. The best way to explain this is the feeling you get when a jet takes off on the runway, you just hear the whine of the engine and the car takes off the faster you press on the gas. As the speed increases and you get up to speed, the engine speed adjusts itself to the ever changing ratios and returns to a quieter hum. A lot of people are not familiar with this or have never driven one of these cars, so, it's misunderstood. And, on hills, the car just finds the precise gear to match the engine speed and just goes straight up no matter how steep the grade as opposed to a traditional geared car where it has to downshift once or twice to find the right gear to prevent lugging the car. The CVT is so smooth, you never even know how it's doing it. Want to go faster, just press on the accelerator and the car always finds the precise ratio of engine speed to gear ratios on the CVT. OK, you ask, how does it do this. Well, in my Subaru's case, it has pulleys with two cones and they expand and contract depending upon what the engine speed is. There's plenty of youtube videos explaining this and the Toyota Power Sharing transmission, just Google one of them. The history of CVT is amazing! Google that as well, the concept for this has been around for 500 years! Yes, I did say 500 years, that's not a typo. It was designed, on paper, originally by Leonardo da Vinci, who was one of the greatest inventors of all time. He invented lots of stuff, like CVT and the helicopter to name a few. Problem is, there wasn't enough technology in his day to make any of this happen, so, it laid dormant for a while. Over time, people tinkered with CVT and it's been used in aircraft applications, snow mobiles, equipment, turbines, etc. It's been more recently used and is growing now in cars. The biggest benefit to this is that it's simpler than planetary transmission in traditional automatics, uses less parts, less to break, less wear and tear, and according to an engineer I spoke with more durable . Subaru makes their own CVT, while others farm it out to a separate company. Yes, a few of them are not as good, I hear, but, that's not surprising since there are few companies that don't build good traditional automatics either, think Honda in the early 2000s- they were horrible built by "The Three Stooges". It happens. Next time it's convenient, take a test drive and drop me a note and tell me what you think. By the way, a lot of higher end cars have CVT now. The fuel savings on these is much better than any transmission, earlier automatics or manual. PLUS, on the Subaru Outback and many other cars with CVT, they added 'paddle shifters" on the steering wheel and created steps along the CVT belts continuous gear, so, you can downshift the car at the touch of a button. Or, in the Outback there's even a manual mode to shift up using the steps they created. There's no downside here. You should stop and talk with them. In the last 5 years, a whole lot has changed. Check it out.

22,915

ad3599- OK, your answer surprised me a little, but, I suspect it's because the Subaru is a 2009 that the insurance is higher. Good luck with your purchase.

22,915

apbimmer98- I hope my answer on CVT was comprehensive enough for you.

Thank you Mark

1,705

Very interesting about the CVT. My uncle had a Nissan Maxima with one, but I didn't get a good feel for it, because I didn't drive it. If I get the chance to drive one, I'll let you know what I think!

1,705

I thought the newer car would probably be a bit more. Good luck with your purchase, and let us know how it's doing after a few days!

22,915

apbimmer98- I test drove a Nissan CVT a while back and was not as impressed as I am with my Subaru. During the cash for clunkers, I toyed with the idea of buying an inexpensive Nissan Versa for commuting, I was so unimpressed and with the car and the busy nature of the CVT, I decided to skip it and do nothing. The Subaru CVT is quite different. Give it a shot. Do you live in an area that gets snow?

22,915

ad3599- Do you have the BMW now? Hope you got some kind of warranty or some paperwork that they fixed things up before they handed it to you?

1,705

I'm in southern North Carolina, and we get a little snow, but not enough to need a 4 wheel drive vehicle. My 528 handles the snow, even the ice great.

Our mechanic will be looking at the car before we pay

22,915

ad3599, yes, that's a great idea. You don't want to get burned on your first car.

22,915

apbimmer98 - Read more about CVT transmissions here, http://www.autoguide.com/auto-news/2014/06/cars-best-cvt.html

22,915

FYI - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Subaru_transmissions

Bought the car earlier today. Works very well so far. Our mechanic is looking at it sometime this week and the dealer agreed to take the car back or fix it if we find a major problem.

22,915

Hey congratulations . One thing that is better about the BMW is that it's an automatic. That is actually the one big negative of the Subaru you were looking at. Good luck.

1,705

How is a manual transmission a negative? I was just saying yesterday about this awesome BMW 2002 project I was checking out "Now, I have to find out if it's a manual or a deal-breaker." Then again, there are some cars that just should be manual and the other way around. I'd love it if my 528i was a manual, but both my cars are automatic, and it fits.

1,705

And congratulations!

22,915

apbimmer98 - there are still some really great manual transmissions out there and certainly BMW would be one of them, but for the large majority, I would imagine that the automatic transmissions technology has just superceded most including Subaru. And, it's better resale on an automatic. The number of people desiring an automatic over a manual transmission is enormous. Larger pool of potential buyers. Just my opinion.

1,705

I totally see where you're coming from. It just annoys me that not many manufacturers offer a manual transmission anymore. They're more fun and more reliable. Plus, contrary to popular belief, most older, more desirable cars will fetch more money with a manual. An E39 BMW like I drive will be worth more with a manual transmission. The U.S. didn't get that many of them in manual, especially in a wagon, and when you find a manual wagon, chances are it'll cost at least 50% more than the automatic equivalent.

22,915

apbimmer98 - yes, there's certainly a quality difference between gearboxes in cars. There are cars with shorter or longer throws and the crispness of the shifts can really make the experience or be a drudgery. You might be surprised to know that Formula 1 cars are semi automatic and have no clutch using paddle shifters. Incidentally, my Outback Limited has paddle shifters. Look, there's a myth that manual transmissions get better mileage, last longer and have fewer repairs, but, the truth is, automatic transmissions technology has really changed over the years and they get better mileage, shift faster, easier to maintain, usually last 150,000 to 200,000 miles ( normal life of your car), and cost less a car needing a clutch replacement. Of course you can't put a price on fun, I understand your point of view. However, it's hard to measure that fun when you're stuck in bumper to bumper traffic! https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index? qid=20100327070826AAekAUl

1,705

I can definitely agree with that one!

22,915

apbimmer98 - In case I didn't mention it, I live in Los Angeles. LA sets the standard for traffic in the nation and we have congestion at any time. It wasn't always that way. Years ago, you could travel full speed anywhere in the city between 10 AM and 2 PM. No longer the case. So, automatic transmission cars rule here. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2015/04/01/worst- cities-traffic-usa-los-angeles/70762026/

1,705

Like I said, I can understand that one! I wouldn't want to be driving in bumper to bumper traffic in a manual car.

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