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2005 3.0 R - things to look out for?


mikeymo
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I'm looking to buy an Outback. I test drove a 2.5 at a local dealer. OK, but didn't know me out. So I'm fancying 3.0/3.6 ones.

 

I know the 6 cyl engines are rated highly for reliability. Although the 3.0 is 245 bhp people say its not actually that quick - yes/no?

 

There's one near me. It's a general dealer, and claims there's tons of service paperwork and authenticated mileage - 110,000 miles. Is there anything I should look out for?

 

There's another one a bit further away, also 2005 but only 24,000 miles (which kind of worries me a bit).

 

Opinions, especially on reliability and repairs cost past 100,000 miles, would be welcome.

 

Thanks.

 

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Make sure its service history is up to date

Depending on age, front hubs, drop links and bushes can be starting to wear

Pattern parts are your best friend ..

Front hub £100

Drop links £20

The biggy tho is the zorst that fabled Y piece can sting you for anywhere between £0 and £700 !!!

If you can find a pattern part that fits is an openended chequebook.... OEM its £700 for the Y pipe - A full Stainless cat back can be had for the same price lol

Fuel is the biggest expense ... expect to get abit 250 - 300 miles on average every fill up at £60 a go

Yes they are quick, but need a good prod to get them going. from standing they can be rapid, but kicking down at low speeds

feels like an age before the box drops cogs ... the manual mode is better but you need to get your head round the way the shift

works - Forwards is faster backwards is slower lol

Mart

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Quick enough for me and more responsive in sport mode, it's true.

Stealthy power....you just can't beat it when you put your foot down and see the surprise on those faces behind you disappearing haha [emoji41]

Sent from my iphone using Tapatalk

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Thanks. History looks pretty good, though not perfect.

 

1st owner had it (IIRC) up to about 80,000. Subaru main dealer serviced, at correct intervals.

2nd one up to about 100,000. Stamps in book.

3rd one just for a year. That's the worrying one, whether they've found a problem and want to get rid. Or maybe they didn't like it or the fuel cost.

 

Plus side the last owner put 4 new tyres on (though not a named brand), 4 new discs and pads.

 

There were plenty of receipts to look at. I can't remember exactly what, but I think there were quite a few suspensions, brakes (including at least one cylinder), maybe bearings. One receipt was over £1500 so whoever had it didn't shrink too much from spending money, which is a good sign.

 

Also there's a Subaru boot liner and Subaru floor mats. So all signs of somebody who cared.

 

There were also some exhaust parts on the receipts. When I looked underneath (nice and easy on this car!) it looked like the back box was newish. And yes, the Y section looks pretty rusty. So I'm ready for that. I've had 2 SS exhausts put on my Volvos by a local chap. When it needs doing I'll get a quote from him.

 

I know about the petrol cost. My Volvo does <25mpg, so almost anything is better than that. I do about 11,000 miles a year. If I do more miles it's because I'm doing more work, so there's a pay-off. Sort of.

 

My main worry is getting somebody to work on it. With my Volvos I've been taking them to a really experienced independent shop in Leeds (P&R Motors). There's nothing they don't know about old Volvos. And they made life very easy. Always had a car to lend me, if I had a problem I could get it in the next day.

 

With Subaru there's a main dealer a few miles away (K T Green, Otley). They have a bit of a reputation for being expensive. Though if I keep their name on the service record it'll keep resale value up.

 

I think I'll be on this forum quite a bit, thanks for the replies.

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Take it for a test drive and drive it fairly hard ...

Suspension should be clonk free if its minor clonking over general stuff its either the drop links or arbs

gearbox should be smooth on up and down shifts, and should be quick going into gear from standing ..

give the engine some good boots to see if blue smoke out the back ... they do burn oil. mine gone from top of the dipstick to near the

low mark in 11K..

If you drive it hard ... expect 240 from a tank.. you can get 330 if your a miser lol

the engine should be silent, just some ticking from the injectors and mebby some pully noises

if the info dispolay in the centre cubby goes , expect to pay around £80-150 for a fix or replacement, or you can do an eBay search. see my post on alterntive displays

Mart

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Thanks. I gave it a fairly decent drive and it all sounded and felt fine. I accelerated a bit hard on the motorway, mainly to see how noisy it is, and it felt fine.

 

I listened to the engine with the bonnet up, it sounded very quiet and smooth. I realised afterwards that I forgot to look at the CV boots, which seems to be a common failure.

 

That oil is nothing to me - my turbo Volvo 940 uses a litre every thousand miles!

 

I've given the guy a deposit. I'll give it another thrashing when I pick it up. If I spot anything really worrying I'm actually prepared to walk away, and lose the deposit if necessary. I bought a lemon of a Ford Scorpio years ago that taught me it's better to lose a bit of money early on, than waste thousands trying to rescue a duffer. But all my research says that the Outback 3.0 is a pretty robust thing, and the history looks good, so fingers crossed. And it's got an RAC warranty (for what it's worth!).

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The place selling it is just a general cheapish car dealers. But fairly big.

Nice thing was the guy didn't try to hide anything or distract me. He pulled it into the centre of the warehouse, started it and just left me to it. Never hassled me at all, so if there is a problem, he wasn't trying to hide it. It started from cold, in fact he had to get his Battery charger thingy (so I'm expecting to put a new Battery in). So he hadn't started it up. In fact it hadn't been prepped or valeted. Which is how I like to see them. I had time to test every electric window etc. inspect the leather and so on.

When we came to the test drive he pulled it onto the road, but then got in the passenger seat and let me take it where I wanted.

So as far as I can tell it's kosher, albeit with the usual high mileage used car caveats.

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Picked it up today. So far very impressed with the condition. In fact looking through the history it looks like it's been main dealer serviced up until a year ago. Lots of receipts 2011-14, mainly for brakes, including a piston and caliper. And a bit of money spent, so previous owner not a skinflint.

 

The last MOT had advisories for slight suspension play. But apart from that this feels like a fairly well looked after vehicle. It's 'sand' leather, or whatever they call it, and when I first looked at the drivers seat, though not torn, was a bit brown. The lad at the garage has done a top job prepping it, the interior looks like new. There's barely a mark on it.

 

It handles differently to my Volvo, obviously. But it feels nice. And there's power when you want it, I discovered! And what a quiet engine. There's a little bit of chatter from the front end. I'm suspecting the tensioners for that belt? I'll get it to Subaru or a specialist ASAP to inspect and advise.

 

Cheers, Mike

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I meant the auxiliary (serpentine?) belt. But that's a complete guess. It's not a noise that worries me, but I'm not a mechanic and haven't listened to a subaru engine before. Yes, I knew the timing is a chain, not a belt. That was a big part of my decision to go for the 3.0.

 

I'll get it either to that chap in Sheffield that people recommend, or else my local dealer, and they can give it the once over.

 

Will post pics when the currant bun's shining!

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Congratulations glad you like it,

If the cars been sat for a while could just be the lifters have lost all the oil coating ? Or the colder weather I'm not that clued up about the h6 engine to be honest.

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  • 2 months later...

Still buying a 3.0? Bought mine on eBay unseen but knowing work was needed. So......brake discs and pads, drop link, suspension arms, bushes, oil leak, window motors etc etc......in saying that, worth every penny. Comfortable, reliable and goes like stink. Also with 3.0 theres no timing belt to go wrong. Managed to find most parts outwith subaru network too so my advise is to get parts yourself and find a decent local garage to fit them for you. No more expensive than running a focus

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  • 2 months later...

Hi all,

thought I should do the courtesy of replying.

For a while I hung on to my old Volvo, undecided if I was going to keep the Outback. In the end I did, and sold the Volvo.

I took the Outback to K T Green (local main dealer) and paid them for a full inspection. They declared it pretty good. It needed a new gearbox sump cover, and while they were at it they replaced the ATF filter. So it's had a full gearbox service. A couple of suspension bushes that will need replacing, but not for a while. They took off the exhaust heat shields which were rattling. And the exhaust itself will need replacing sometime, but so far is fine.

While they were doing the gearbox I took the opportunity to test drive a 2013 Outback 3.6. Which I liked a lot. As my Outback was there I asked the salesman how much he'd give me in part ex, against the 2013 Outback. He went through to the garage, had a look at mine (and presumably asked the mechanic) and offered me £3000, as an opening gambit. Which seems OK to me. I don't think I'll get the 2013 one, but it lets me know that Subaru experts think the one I've bought is OK.

I've had a problem with the alarm going off at random. Changed the Battery and thought that had cured it, but it's done it once since then. The old Battery was probably on it's way, so it's not a bad idea to change it, especially in the winter. I did the last sensor thing with the alarm keypad, and it said the tailgate. Which when I bought it was dodgy, the garage had to fix it. So I'm guessing it could be that. Apparently the sensor is actually in the tailgate lock. It's not a fortune so I might get it replaced anyway. I often carry big stuff. If it locked I'd struggle to get things out via the doors.

There was a crack in the back bumper. Oh all right, I reversed into a bollard. So I got that done, and while they were at it a few other bits and pieces on the body. Cost me nearly £500, but it means the bodywork is now excellent. Will post pictures when it stops raining.

Now I've got used to the drive I like it. Nice to have the power, but it is thirsty. So as a long time proposition I'm not sure. I might LPG it.

Cheers

 

 

 

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LPG is quite expensive so I would only do if you were planning on keeping it for at least 3 years and you need to have a flashlube system fitted too as I have been told LPG doesn't lubricate the top end as well as petrol .

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Hey, at 97.9p a litre it's just like the good old days and I chose the 3.0 engine A) for fun and B) for fun....oh and the lack of a timing belt. Change in circumstances means I'll have to sell the beast but in the meantime I do enjoy the loud pedal from time to time. Save the LPG convertion for a range rover or similar.

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I've had my 3.0 for 6 months now and it's fuel consumption has reduced quite a bit. It's a Jap import so it may have sat around for a while and the roads in Japan are not speedtracks by any stretch of the imagination. My initial consumption was around 9.5km/l - say 27mpg which was not marvellous - my previous 3.8 litre Holden Commodore beat that hands down. Yesterday I drove from Auckland to home in 7 hours and got 12.6km/l - 35mpg - which I thought was pretty good - certainly not cruising and with a load in the back. It feels like it's loosened up quite a bit. I don't drive it in "Eco" unless the road is dead flat - let the revs die to below 2000 and it bogs.

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