Poll

If you own a Subaru Outback/Forrester, did you actually buy it used?

Nope, bought new.
36 (50.7%)
Bought used, 0-5 years old, <50K miles
9 (12.7%)
Bought used, 0-5 years old, >50K miles
5 (7%)
Bought used, 5+ years old, <100K miles
11 (15.5%)
Bought used, 5+ years old, >100K miles
10 (14.1%)

Total Members Voted: 70

Voting closed: July 05, 2017, 09:53:58 AM

Author Topic: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?  (Read 7633 times)

TML

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Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« on: June 05, 2017, 09:53:58 AM »
Hello MMM community,

Longtime lurker of the forums, but first post!  I was unable to find any threads that answered this question, but I also suck at using the search function on this page so maybe I missed it.

Anyways, I've decided (for many personal reasons), that I would like to buy a Subaru Outback, which seems to be a popular car here among MMM forum goers (along with the similar Forester).  As I shop for a used deal here in the mid-Atlantic, people seem to have very inflated ideas of how much their used Subaru's are worth.  Dealers/Carmax prices are even worse, which is insane because it seems that people are willing to pay within $1-2K of new for a used car.  While I would certainly save SOME money by buying used, it doesn't seem like THAT much money, particularly for these two car models. 

This is not a post to debate new vs. used, the benefits of AWD, or whether or not I should just get a Honda fit :).  I actually want to know what YOU guys have done, hence the poll.  And if you don't mind, if you bought used, can we get some details?  Subaru Outback/Forester owners let hear it!

Fishindude

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2017, 10:01:20 AM »
Just the way it is with the Subaru Outbacks.
We are on our second one, my son has one, my daughter has one and my brother has one.

There just isn't much savings in buying a low mile (20 - 60,000) used one, might save only $4 - 6 K vs a new one.
We've bought the last two new for this reason.

munchabunch

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2017, 10:04:53 AM »
Agreed with fishindude.  It's not really worth it to buy a used <20k mile Subaru.  There are some corporate discounts on new Subarus that bring the price down that make it really worth it.

I've bought three total used Outbacks.  Two from my dad (5y/o 90k mi/each) and one 5 y/o @120k.  The first one died due to rust and sitting outside for 5 years of PA winters.  The second was in a hit and run and wrecked.  Otherwise they seem to last forever.

honeybbq

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2017, 10:15:42 AM »
Subarus are a hot ticket here in the PacNW. They ship them in from other locations and charge a premium.

Morning Glory

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2017, 10:43:17 AM »
This is why I don't have a Subaru. I would love to have a Forester but I have other financial priorities right now.  Its difficult to even find one that doesn't have 200k miles or an oil leak. I'm trying to convince DH to learn to replace the head gaskets and then flip them on Craigslist.

gardeningandgreen

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2017, 10:48:51 AM »
I bought my outback new because the ones that were a couple years old were THE SAME PRICE! I live in Minnesota and these cars hold up to our brutal winters so they are super popular. I also got a discount on my insurance because of the eyesite.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2017, 10:56:54 AM »
First subaru was bought used. The second 2 were bought new. Previous one was sold soon after 100.000kms. We had fixed a lot of parts that got used up. And bought new summer and winter tires. Next owner must have had a good purchase. Current car has driven 136000 kms and we intend to drive it a lot longer. I have learned now from MMM.

Clean Shaven

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2017, 11:26:24 AM »
Bought a used 2009 Outback with around 20K miles, good price, with extended factory warranty included.  Was immaculate inside and out.  Belonged to grandpa.  About as ideal as a used car purchase could be.

Over the next two years, it fell apart. 

-Leaked oil (dealer blamed us for "not knowing how to change oil correctly" and "using aftermarket oil filter").  Fuck you, Lithia Subaru dealer. 
- Drank a large jug and a half of Subaru blue premix coolant -- a sign of failing head gaskets if there ever was one -- and dealer claimed "could not locate any problems".  Fuck you, Lithia Subaru dealer. 
- Interior wore horribly -- plastic painted stuff scratched easily. 
- Rattles everywhere. 

Sold the POS -- still under extended factory warranty, so someone else can fight with Subaru corporate and the dealership.  Just a really poorly built, poorly designed, underpowered, sad car. 

No more Subarus, ever.   And I will never ever buy anything from any Lithia group dealer. 

Broadway2019

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2017, 12:48:53 PM »
Bought a used 2009 Outback with around 20K miles, good price, with extended factory warranty included.  Was immaculate inside and out.  Belonged to grandpa.  About as ideal as a used car purchase could be.

Over the next two years, it fell apart. 

-Leaked oil (dealer blamed us for "not knowing how to change oil correctly" and "using aftermarket oil filter").  Fuck you, Lithia Subaru dealer. 
- Drank a large jug and a half of Subaru blue premix coolant -- a sign of failing head gaskets if there ever was one -- and dealer claimed "could not locate any problems".  Fuck you, Lithia Subaru dealer. 
- Interior wore horribly -- plastic painted stuff scratched easily. 
- Rattles everywhere. 

Sold the POS -- still under extended factory warranty, so someone else can fight with Subaru corporate and the dealership.  Just a really poorly built, poorly designed, underpowered, sad car. 

No more Subarus, ever.   And I will never ever buy anything from any Lithia group dealer.

I am surprised at this comment. I have a 2015 Subaru Limited Outback w/ eyesight and love it! The interior is amazing and the finished wood is not that ugly glossy BMW type wood. Very sleek looking and the leather seats are so comfortable!

slappy

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2017, 12:55:45 PM »
I bought a 2011 Subaru Outback, and I only vaguely remember the price, but it seems like it was around $20k (three years ago). I will say, I've since replaced the brakes twice, including shortly after I bought it with 22k miles on it. Some quick research shows that its a common issue with Outbacks, possibly because of something having to do with the AWD being on all the time and causing the breaks to drag, or something like that. I don't really understand it, except that I now know to budget $300ish for brakes every 18 months, which of course I am not happy about.

Eric

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2017, 01:05:35 PM »
No more Subarus, ever. 

Same here.  (well, not the exact same problems, but problems that no one including the "best Subaru mechanic in the state" could fix.  It simply ran like shit for two years before I sold it for anything I could get.  I've had plenty of cars break before, but they could always be fixed.  Not sure what it is with Subaru that makes them hard to diagnose/fix, but I'm not going through that again. 

I'm much happier with the VW Passat wagon I bought after that.  It's more comfortable, better mileage, and most importantly, isn't constantly broken.

MayDay

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2017, 03:39:52 PM »
Why isn't there an "inherited from my dead great grandmother" option?!?!?

I rocked Granny's '88 GL wagon in high school. It lasted through three teenagers before eventually kicking the bucket.

Rosy

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2017, 07:22:21 PM »
We bought our 2015 Forester new, because it was a better deal than buying used. No issues - totally happy.

Civex

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2017, 07:27:44 PM »
Bought my Outback new because of the issues you mentioned, plus 1.9% rate on a new Outback is nice. Voted this option.

Bought my Forester with 104k miles when it was 10 years old-ran it hard for about another 100k and still use it for a back up vehicle.

The new Outbacks are very nice; between my Forester and the new Outback, I doubt we will buy another brand.

Pizzabrewer

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2017, 07:36:53 PM »
Bought first one new (legacy wagon), got 314k miles out of it. One head gasket change.
Next 2 were used Outbacks. Lost both to accidents.
Current 2003 Outback bought used about 5 years ago with 80k miles. Now over 160k miles and still going strong. Needs the dreaded head gasket job but as I don't drive it much I'm putting it off.

Despite the oil leaks I love these cars. Well-built and reliable.

snacky

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2017, 07:52:59 PM »
I bought my '02 Outback last year. It has been great. The previous owners took care of the head gaskets. Other than a little more oil than a newer car would take, it's been no work at all. I'm hoping to get another 5 years out of it.

talltexan

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #16 on: June 06, 2017, 07:48:06 AM »
Subarus belong in the 200,000 reliable miles brand cars (along with Hondas and Toyotas). Great cars! Wish I still had mine, but the wife felt the minivan itch.

Car Jack

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #17 on: June 06, 2017, 08:55:02 AM »
I've owned almost a dozen Subarus (2 presently) and bought both new and used.  Following the tsunami in Japan, lots of Japanese companies completely shut down for a long period of time.  This artificially inflated prices of these cars because they tend not to build more than demand.  Although the Lafayette, Indiana plant isn't in Japan (duh), lots of assemblies going into them come from Japan.  Cars like the STi and WRX as well as Impreza almost immediately went up in value as buyers looking for new cars couldn't find them....pushing them into the used market.  The price point hasn't gone down much since then.

So if you want a Subaru, buy a new one or (like with Civic or Wrangler), be prepared for prices that can well be HIGHER than new for a good condition late model used one.  This has nothing to do with how great the car is, it has to do with supply and demand.  With time, prices will start to diverge (we bought an Outback before the tsunami and at 1 year old, it was $10k less than new). 

Production is also moving more into the US.  Subaru will exclusively be using the Lafayette plan now (previously some production was Isuzu and Toyota, from memory.  The new "Global platform" 17 Impreza comes out of there for the first time. 

Subarus have always had the reputation that Ford F series pickups have had.  You can buy new or look for a 100k mile vehicle.  Not much in between.  If you want something that depreciates like a rock, buy an AMG Mercedes or a Buick. 

Linea_Norway

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #18 on: June 06, 2017, 09:48:24 AM »
Subarus belong in the 200,000 reliable miles brand cars (along with Hondas and Toyotas). Great cars! Wish I still had mine, but the wife felt the minivan itch.

Maybe. But there are also monday morning models. Our has had a bit too many issues lately, of course after the garantie went out. But as we have just done the repairs, we decide to keep it for another while.

Kapiira

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #19 on: June 06, 2017, 10:36:52 AM »
I bought mine with a Costco membership discount.  The discount for the Subaru Outback was substantial.  Ended up with a decent price and no haggling.

nawhite

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #20 on: June 06, 2017, 02:17:02 PM »
Bought a used 2009 Outback with around 20K miles, good price, with extended factory warranty included.  Was immaculate inside and out.  Belonged to grandpa.  About as ideal as a used car purchase could be.

Over the next two years, it fell apart. 

-Leaked oil (dealer blamed us for "not knowing how to change oil correctly" and "using aftermarket oil filter").  Fuck you, Lithia Subaru dealer. 
- Drank a large jug and a half of Subaru blue premix coolant -- a sign of failing head gaskets if there ever was one -- and dealer claimed "could not locate any problems".  Fuck you, Lithia Subaru dealer. 
- Interior wore horribly -- plastic painted stuff scratched easily. 
- Rattles everywhere. 

Sold the POS -- still under extended factory warranty, so someone else can fight with Subaru corporate and the dealership.  Just a really poorly built, poorly designed, underpowered, sad car. 

No more Subarus, ever.   And I will never ever buy anything from any Lithia group dealer.

Seconded. I had a 1999 that was given to me as a graduation gift in 2008. POS. Head Gasket blew, rust problems, speedometer and odometer broke eventually so I don't really know how many miles it had when the engine died for the second time but it was probably around 170k. I was paying an average of $200/month in repairs on it when it finally died and I happily sold it to a recycler for $400. Sure a lot has changed since 1999 but I'm definitely in the "No more Subarus, ever" camp too.

Replaced it with a Pontiac Vibe which has been amazing. More storage space, 1/2 the price, better gas mileage and way cheaper to maintain.

TML

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2017, 05:24:56 PM »
Sweet, thanks for all the replies people.  Seems like buying a Subaru new isn't too bad of an idea.  Now whether or not I should buy a Subaru at all becomes the question.  I had heard about those head gasket issues, and I've been spoiled the past 20 years of my life driving quite possibly the most reliable series of vehicles ever built (1998 Toyota Camry, bought new, literally not a single thing has gone wrong outside of routine maintenance). 

Maybe I'll just be boring and buy another Camry, I wouldn't mind buying a new car once every 20 years...

stoaX

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #22 on: June 06, 2017, 05:29:46 PM »


Maybe I'll just be boring and buy another Camry Corrolla, I wouldn't mind buying a new car once every 20 years...

This has been my car buying strategy.  I only seem to make it about 16 years though before moving on to the next car.

Broadway2019

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #23 on: June 07, 2017, 06:28:30 AM »
Sweet, thanks for all the replies people.  Seems like buying a Subaru new isn't too bad of an idea.  Now whether or not I should buy a Subaru at all becomes the question.  I had heard about those head gasket issues, and I've been spoiled the past 20 years of my life driving quite possibly the most reliable series of vehicles ever built (1998 Toyota Camry, bought new, literally not a single thing has gone wrong outside of routine maintenance). 

Maybe I'll just be boring and buy another Camry, I wouldn't mind buying a new car once every 20 years...
[/quote

I love my 2015 Subaru Outback and was actually going to trade it in since I just found this blog. However, I decided safety (crash detection, etc.) is worth just paying it off and keeping it for 10+ years. I test drove other cars and it is just not the same. I would have saved maybe $5k over a 5-7 year period by trading it in, however, what I would have been able to get would have had more miles, not the latest technology or safety standards, and be less comfortable. To me, the $5k is worth it and I get to drive a newer car for some years before the technology changes. 

doublethinkmoney

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #24 on: June 07, 2017, 07:55:46 AM »
We recently bought a Used Forester. We first decided exactly what model /features we wanted. We lurked on local dealer pages for something to pop up and inquired a one or two. We had bought another car from a great sales guy and let him know what we were looking for and he kept an eye out. When we found on we liked, we negotiated everything via email and phone. We finalized the price and went in for a "test drive" before purchasing. My husband the made the purchase and they had the paper work ready for us (we present some info). It still took a little while at the dealership but this ensured we made a calculated decision on pricing and features without a shiny car dangling  in front of us. We didn't compromise but it did take several months of waiting. As long as you are patient you can find what you want at a reasonable price.


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canyonrider

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #25 on: June 07, 2017, 10:42:05 AM »
Add one more to the "no more Subarus, ever" camp. Average-to-poor build quality + middling reliability + high price is not a winning equation in my book. If you are going to go there, I would go new over used. Otherwise, stick with Toyota. Any Toyota.

IllusionNW

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #26 on: June 07, 2017, 10:50:45 AM »
We bought a new Subaru Outback two weeks ago.  We researched used options but found the savings for buying used to not be significant enough for us.  In our neck of the woods, Subarus seem to really hold their value.

That said, we used Costco to get what I believe is a good deal, with absolutely no haggling/aggravation.  We also have an 800+ credit score, so we got 0% financing (to be clear, we have the cash and could have cut a check, but I'd rather take free money).

TrMama

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #27 on: June 07, 2017, 11:22:50 AM »
We bought a new Outback in December. New vs used was determined based on the fact that the only used ones within a reasonable distance were 10+ years old with 200,000+ km.

So far, I still love it. Super comfortable and we'd have had to go to a Rav4 hybrid to get better gas mileage.

I thought the head gasket issue was solved several model years ago?

Kashmani

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #28 on: June 08, 2017, 11:23:48 AM »
We bought a new 2017 Outback last fall. It was the base model with a manual transmission (not available in the U.S. - we are in Canada). Unfortunately, this was at a time when there were no rebates, but we needed a new car after our old one completely died suddenly. We ended up paying the sticker price, but they provided us with a rental for three weeks until our car got in.

The choice was between an Outback at more or less sticker price or a $5,000 discount on a Pathfinder. Ultimately, the Outback won out, largely due to my wife's lobbying. It was the closest thing we could get to our manual-transmission AWD Passat wagon that had died.

I have noticed for years that when buying a base model car, it is better to just buy new. $5,000-$7,000 off a car with 70,000 km just isn't a good value proposition to me. That represents about seven years of driving in our household.

I was aware of (and am scared of) the head-gasket issue down the road, but otherwise the Subie is a "goldilocks" car. The ground-clearance is just right for snow-covered back lanes (which don't always get plowed in our city), the wheels are the right size to traverse most pot-holes and railroad crossings without damaging the rims (we have bad roads in our city), the roof rack is a neat design good for hauling bikes and Christmas trees, the kids have enough space, and with a trailer hitch I can pull a utility trailer when I need more space. And it still fits into our "compact car" spot in the underground parking garage at our condo without annoying the neighbours. The only downside it that it doesn't drive nearly as nicely as our 13-year old Passat did. It took me some time to get used to the very soft suspension.

All in all, I found the car to be a good value proposition. With taxes, fees etc. we paid a bit over $34,000 Canadian. To me, that is not unreasonable for a fairly large family car with all-wheel drive.

Leaving aside reliability issues (to which I cannot speak because the car is too new), I find that Outbacks are the Volvo 740s of the 21st century - spacious reasonably rugged wagons without oversized engines or too much technology.

Chaplin

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #29 on: June 08, 2017, 05:44:00 PM »
I bought a new Impreza in 1999 and two used Legacy wagons. All with manual transmissions.

My wife and I have been very happy with them. A big selling point has been that they are long and narrow, at least the older non-outback models. Same width as a smaller car but long enough length that I can sleep in the back or pack for a family camping trip.

My current one was five years old when I bought it and had only 36,000 km. I've been cutting my driving way back (job closer to home, now biking and bussing), so it's now 12 years old and only has 105,000 km. I'm working on dropping us to a one-car family, keeping the Subaru but selling the 13 year old Mazda.

I don't plan to buy another non-electric car, so this might be the end of the line for Subarus for us for a while if not forever.

Bateaux

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #30 on: June 09, 2017, 12:09:12 AM »
We bought our Outback a 2016 new in 2015.   We kept the 2008 Accord, my daily driver with 185K, we bought it new.  Both are solid cars.   The Subaru is the best vehicle we've ever owned.   Hope to see it through 200k miles.  What we do is, every 8 years or so we get a new car.  I run the wheels off the old car and my wife gets a new car.   We've done this with a Sentra, Maxima and Jeep Cherokee.  All were great cars, bought new and rolled to high mileage with little or no problems.

SnackDog

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #31 on: June 09, 2017, 02:26:32 AM »
Bought a certified 2006 Outback with 36km on the clock in early 2008, which actually extended the warranty extra three years past the normal one. By late 2009 the new ones had fallen to the same price I paid, partly due to currency effects. Drove it daily for almost five years with nothing but oil changes.

Weird story - the battery died the evening of the day I bought it. I phoned the dealership and the sales lady drove out to jump me, so to speak. Turns out someone has replaced the OEM battery with a smaller one. Dealer sorted it but I felt dumb for not noticing sooner.

thisadviceisworthles

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #32 on: June 09, 2017, 09:32:49 AM »
I did, and I love mine, but I'm in the market for a replacement and I am not looking at Subarus.

I bought my 1999 Forester 3 1/2 years ago for $900, after it jumped timing.  Drove it 50,000 miles and it cracked a piston ring (at 250K miles), now it burns oil like it's invading a middle eastern country.  It's been a great car.

Heres why I am not planning to buy a used Subaru.

1) They are really expensive compared to everything else, even more so if you are willing to give up awd.

2) They are not nearly as reliable as they are seen to be.  Having said that, they are extremely repairable.  I have pulled my engine and replaced a head gasket in less than 10 working hours, in a borrowed driveway, with borrowed tools and the help of a friend.

3) The interiors are not as nice as alternatives.

For the money, there are better deals out there, in my opinion.

Mtngrl

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Re: Poll: Did you actually buy your Subaru used?
« Reply #33 on: June 09, 2017, 03:21:41 PM »
I bought a 2015 Outback Limited with 36,000 miles for $22,000 in December. It's my third Outback -- the other two were also purchased used. I love Outbacks -- tend to drive them until they get about 170,000 miles, then upgrade to a newer model.

 

Wow, a phone plan for fifteen bucks!