2005 Subaru Legacy 2.5GT

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by Dr. Woo, May 18, 2004.

  1. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    Edmunds.com First Drive

    First Drive: 2005 Subaru Legacy and Outback
    Passing Up an SUV Has Never Felt So Good

    By Erin Riches
    Date posted: 05-07-2004

    One of the earliest and best alternatives to SUV ownership has lost its edge in recent years. In the late 1990s, the Subaru Outback wagon was the car to own if you lived in a snowy climate (or even if you didn't) and couldn't be sweet-talked by unrefined brutes like the Ford Explorer and Jeep Grand Cherokee. But times have changed. The Explorer and JGC are more refined than they used to be, and the 2004 Outback is surrounded by a population of vehicles that can do most of what it does, while offering more room for growing families — Endeavor, Highlander, Murano, Pacifica, Pilot and the list goes on.

    Meanwhile, the wagon that spawned the Outback, the Legacy, has been living in the shadow of its armored offspring. Starved for power and features, the '04 Legacy is what you buy if you can't afford one of Volkswagen's expensive Passat 4Motion wagons, and/or won't be caught dead in a Taurus.

    Combined Legacy and Outback sales fell by almost 10,000 in 2002, followed by another 5,500 drop-off last year. Although a portion of the decline can be written off to domestic manufacturers' heavy use of incentives since September 2001, it doesn't change the fact that Subaru hasn't given buyers enough reasons to consider its midsize cars amidst an increasingly competitive field. Happily, the company will do just that for the 2005 model year, as the redesigned Legacy and Outback have slimmed down, powered up and slipped into some more stylish threads. Also on the menu are sharper handling, smoother ride quality, higher-quality interior materials, more safety features and, in the case of the Outback, greater off-road capability.

    After spending two days with these vehicles, our enthusiasm is high. Everything about the way they look, feel and drive is so much more cohesive — and satisfying — than before. Yet, we're not without a few doubts. First, Subaru was evidently content with the size of the existing Legacy and Outback (which, like the Mazda 6, must meet the space constraints of Japanese and European markets), so the backseats remain snug in the new models. Further, certain desirable features like stability control and a fold-down rear armrest are still limited to high-line trim levels. Will these shortcomings prove critical in the U.S. market? Probably not, given the quality of the overall package. But there will be those who are willing to give up the style and entertainment potential of these Subarus to get more room and amenities in the backseat.

    For the rest of us, there's plenty to like about the '05 Legacy and Outback lineup. Initial judgments about a car usually have to do with exterior styling, and Subaru designers were a little more daring this time around. Most of our staff considered the previous models handsome cars, but their blocky headlights and rounded noses gave off the impression of a trusty hunting dog. For 2005, there's a more hedonistic, feline quality to the sheet metal; headlights are stretched and sculpted, and noses are more angular. All Legacys wear ground effects. And the Legacy sedan no longer appears to be an afterthought to the more popular wagon, as it has a crisply finished tail not unlike that of the first-generation Audi A4, replete with clear-lens taillights.

    Outbacks are distinguished not just by their taller stance, but by a more aggressive grille (that resembles a pair of razor blades), raised hood strakes and dark tinted rear glass on the wagon. Additionally, Subaru has decided that buyers are no longer so enthusiastic about the "just in from the woods" aesthetic of the original Outbacks, so look for black-letter tires instead of the rugged white-letter sidewalls and a longer list of monochromatic paint choices. Higher-line Legacys and Outbacks have LED turn signals built into their side mirrors.

    If you select a Legacy GT (sedan or wagon) or an Outback 2.5 XT (wagon only), your car will be equipped with a functional hood scoop. There's a very good reason for this: A modified version of the WRX STi's 2.5-liter turbocharged engine has joined the lineup, and engineers needed to assure a ready supply of fresh air for the intercooler. The cylinder block and turbocharger are unique to the Legacy and Outback, while the cylinder heads and crankshaft are shared with the revered STi. Output falls short of the STi's 300-horse rating, but with 250 horsepower and 250 pound-feet of torque, there's no way we're complaining. Besides getting help from the turbocharger, this four-cylinder engine makes use of variable intake valve timing to maximize the flow of power at all speeds.

    Subaru diehards know that the company has been building turbocharged Legacys for the Japanese market since the early 1990s, but 2005 marks the first time that the U.S. GT version will pack a serious punch. The company didn't release any 0-to-60-mph performance estimates, but consider this: Both the Legacy and Outback went on a diet during this redesign, losing an average of 100 pounds (while gaining structural rigidity), thanks to increased use of aluminum and high-strength steel. The lightest Legacy GT sedan now weighs just over 200 pounds more than a standard 227-hp Impreza WRX. Said WRX can reach 60 mph in just over 6 seconds, so don't be surprised to find the Legacy GT in this territory as well.

    [​IMG]
    Slick electroluminescent gauges, tasteful metallic trim and an available manual gearbox
    give turbocharged Legacys and Outbacks a sporty edge.

    Both a five-speed manual transmission and a new five-speed automatic transmission are available with the turbocharged engine. The manual gearbox carries over from previous Legacys and Outbacks, but it benefits from improved shift linkage, a double-cone synchronizer on first gear and a dual-mass flywheel. The five-speed automatic is a serious upgrade from the four-speed units Subaru usually offers. It features both regular and sport modes, along with a manual-shift mode that allows drivers to change gears via steering wheel buttons.

    A naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder returns as the base engine for both the Legacy and Outback lines. Output has not improved by much; horsepower maxes out at 168 (163 in PZEV-mandated states like California) while torque holds steady at 166 lb-ft. The aforementioned five-speed manual gearbox (less the dual-mass flywheel) is once again available. Last year's four-speed automatic transmission also returns. Slow downshifts have always been our chief complaint about this automatic, but Subaru reports that engineers fiddled with the gearing in order to raise the maximum speed for kickdowns to first and second gear. Additionally, this automatic includes the manual-shift mode offered on the previous-generation Legacy GT and the Baja. Unfortunately, there were no base Legacys or Outbacks for us to try, but given that these cars weigh less than last year's models, you can expect at least passable performance.

    The other engine choice is a 3.0-liter horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine also known as the "H6." This H6 has the same architecture as the previous version, but the two share no major parts. Besides being lighter than its predecessor, the new engine is much more powerful, thanks to the use of variable intake valve timing and lift. Horsepower comes in at 250, while torque maxes out at 219 lb-ft. As the H6 is intended for a more relaxed buyer than the 2.5-liter turbo, you can only get it in the Outback sedan or wagon and only with the five-speed automatic transmission.

    [​IMG]
    No longer just a workaday family car, this Legacy GT wagon packs serious muscle — 250
    horsepower and 250 pound-feet of torque.

    Although the continued absence of six-cylinder power in the Legacy might seem like a blow, rest assured that you won't miss the H6. Oh, it's a fine engine and all, but the turbo four is our favorite of the two — and in the lightweight Legacy, it responds with the heart and refinement of a much larger steed. Turbo lag off the line is basically nonexistent, allowing the driver to tap into the engine's deep power band almost immediately. Acceleration is quick at any speed: Although it's fun to take it up to redline in manual-shift Legacys, you don't need to push that hard to enjoy yourself during your day-to-day travels. Power delivery rivals six-cylinder engines for smoothness, and the engine is quiet at high cruising speeds.

    Turbo lag was more noticeable in the heavier Outback 2.5 XT, but it doesn't take long to adjust to it. Once the turbocharger spools up, the potency returns and the armored wagon accelerates with much the same fervor as the lighter Legacy. If maximum smoothness is what you require, though, you can't go wrong with the 3.0-liter H6. Unlike the previous H6 power plant (which didn't come alive until about 4,000 rpm), this one has a well balanced power band with plenty of juice available right off the line. Regardless of whether you go with the turbo or the H6 in your Outback, you'll be pleased to know that both engines are unphased by higher-altitude driving, in this case the Lake Tahoe area (elevation: about 6,250 feet).

    When it was time to swap gears, we were partial to the manual transmission available on turbo models. The shifter moves smoothly between the gates, and the pedals are nicely spaced for heel-and-toe downshifting. The clutch, meanwhile, is light enough for easy weekday use yet fast-acting enough for more spirited driving on the weekend. Subaru incorporated several hours of track time into the Legacy portion of the event, and we couldn't get enough of this gearbox in that setting.

    For those who prefer an automatic transmission and/or plan to get the Outback with the H6, the new five-speed unit should mostly satisfy. Downshifts didn't always come as quickly as we wanted them in either the Legacy or the Outback, but switching from normal "D" to sport mode solved that problem. We also liked the steering wheel shift buttons in the turbo models, which allow you to manually drop a gear or two for a passing maneuver in both the normal and sport modes.

    All-wheel drive remains a staple of the 2005 Legacy and Outback lineup. Although Subaru's marketing campaign will highlight the cars' "Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive," the AWD systems themselves are much the same as before. Manual-shift cars use a simple but effective mechanical system with a viscous-coupling center differential that maintains a 50/50 power split in ideal conditions, transferring power when slippage occurs. Models with the base 2.5-liter engine and an automatic transmission get Active All-Wheel Drive, an electronic AWD system that monitors wheel speed differences and throttle position to anticipate slippage before it occurs. In ideal conditions, the system sends 90 percent of the engine's torque to the front wheels.

    Automatic-equipped turbo- and H6-equipped models upgrade to a more advanced electronically controlled system called Variable Torque Distribution (VTD) that gives greater priority to handling, operating off a 45/55 front/rear power split. The VTD system is the only one that's compatible with Subaru's VDC stability control system, an important safety feature that the company reserves for its top-line 3.0 R VDC Limited Outback wagon. This year the system has been revised so that it kicks in more subtly, so as not to diminish the enthusiasm of the spirited driver. We feel that stability control should be available on all turbo and H6 models (at least as an option) and suggested as much to Subaru's product planners.

    The Legacy and Outback have always been known for their fine handling, but for 2005, Subaru wanted them to behave less like workaday family cars and more like sporty entry-luxury cars, meaning excellent ride quality combined with sharp reflexes. The examples set by cars like the Acura TSX, Audi A4, Mazda 6 and Volkswagen Passat surely did not go unnoticed. Increasing the Outback's off-road capability was also a consideration, as the company wants to give traditional SUV intenders more reason to put their money on a Subaru. Ground clearance is up to 8.7 inches on the 2.5 XT model and 8.4 inches on all other Outbacks — previously, the tallest Outback stood just 7.9 inches off the ground.

    [​IMG]
    Turbocharged models are identified by a functional hood scoop. Thusly equipped, the
    Legacy GT sedan is a serious driver's car worthy of any TSX or A4.

    Up front, the engine is mounted lower in the chassis than before (giving the cars a lower center of gravity), while the track has been widened one inch front and rear. Both changes promote more stable handling and, according to Subaru, cancel out any negative effects of raising the Outback's suspension. Additionally, the caster angle has increased to 6mm (from 3mm) to give both cars quicker turn-in response. In back, the multilink suspension now attaches to a new hydroformed subframe that provides greater rigidity than the old design. A stiffer mounting system gives the steering more precision and road feedback than the old design. Outbacks pick up a quicker 16.5-to-1 steering ratio (compared to 19 to 1 in years past), while Legacy GT models get an even sharper 15-to-1 ratio.

    Given the increased emphasis on handling, it should come as no surprise that all turbo and H6 models wear 17-inch wheels and tires. The Legacy GT models get a lower-profile 215/45R17 set of all-season Bridgestone Potenzas, while Outbacks have a slightly wider set with taller sidewalls (225/55R17). Base Legacys and Outbacks wear 16-inch wheels and tires, with the same rules in play regarding tire size. Four-wheel antilock disc brakes are standard across the board (fully ventilated on Legacy GT models), and starting this year, Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD) is included. Engineers also installed a new brake booster to give the pedal a firmer, more progressive feel.

    We could keep throwing numbers and technical information your way, but we suspect you'd rather know how these cars perform in the real world. We spent half a day each with the Legacy and Outback and came away delighted. The Legacy GT offers a superb blend of ride comfort and handling acuity. We felt that we could have cruised the open highway all day without feeling fatigue. At the same time, the car was so entertaining in the corners and on the racetrack that the Subaru staff practically had to drag us away from it at the end of the day. It's easily as much fun as a TSX or Mazda 6, and with the confidence of all four wheels putting power to the pavement, we began to wonder why someone would spend more on an A4.

    The Outback rode just as smoothly, and although its added girth was apparent when transitioning between corners, it handled well for a wagon with a raised suspension and felt more nimble than its predecessor. Actually, it's not entirely accurate to call it a "wagon," as Subaru is seeking an SUV classification for it this year. Take an Outback off-road and such a reclassification doesn't seem so far-fetched, as the vehicle can scamper up a rutted hillside with more gusto than just about any crossover SUV we've driven.

    [​IMG]
    Stronger engines, tighter handling and updated styling inside and out should increase the
    Outback's standing among wagon and SUV buyers.

    Although we've mainly talked about the driving experience thus far, some of the biggest improvements are in the cabin. Style and luxury were never within the previous Legacy's grasp. The Outback was more convincing, but compared to some Japanese and European competitors, its furnishings had the look of a hasty assemblage rather than a coordinated ensemble. But no apologies need be made for the new cockpits, which are some of the best-looking designs in this price range. They don't break any new ground in styling, but one can't help but like the symmetrical dash design, convincing faux aluminum trim and the three-spoke Momo steering wheel found in the turbo and H6 models. Opting for an H6 model also gets you matte-finish wood grain trim on the console — besides looking surprisingly good for the fake stuff, it matches the real mahogany trim on the steering wheel. The gauges are attractive and easy to read; turbo models get red-and-white electroluminescent illumination.

    Materials quality is excellent. The dash and door tops have an upscale grain and feel soft to the touch. The leather upholstery strikes just the right balance between softness and durability. The pillars, headliner and visors are covered in woven fabric that would do any Passat proud. Hard plastics are fewer in number than before, and the surfaces you do encounter are smooth and low in gloss. After going over several preproduction Legacys and Outbacks, we were impressed by both the quality of the materials and fit and finish. We wouldn't mind a few more liners in various storage areas, but as it is, you could still buy a Subaru and feel like you got a VW.

    While strapping into the driver seat, we were disappointed to find that the steering wheel did not offer telescoping adjustment — an oversight in a 2005 vehicle. Fortunately, that omission did not prevent us from getting comfortable and staying comfortable for hours. The seats are well shaped and offer an optimum blend of soft cushioning and firm support. Turbo models offer additional shoulder bolstering, which we appreciated in fast turns. Even the head restraints were comfy, and this year they offer dynamic whiplash protection. Notably, the front-passenger seat does not offer height adjustment (even in high-line models), but both front occupants will enjoy the five-setting seat heaters.

    Dual-zone automatic climate control is available this year, but Subaru has no plans to offer a high-power audio system on par with the competition in this price range. The top-line Outback gets a seven-speaker system with a subwoofer and MP3 compatibility, but other Outbacks and Legacys make do with a mundane six-speaker setup. We were told, however, that a navigation system will be available starting in the 2006 model year.

    We weren't surprised to find the accommodations tight in the backseat. There is only a 0.8-inch increase in wheelbase length for 2005 — not enough to open up any extra legroom. The seat itself is well designed and capable of providing excellent back and thigh support for two passengers. Asking three passengers to sit back here would only be humane on short trips.

    Sedans offer 11.4 cubic feet of cargo space and a ski pass-through. Although the trunk opening is wide (and the hinges sheathed in plastic), we'd encourage anyone with serious hauling needs to go with the wagon, which provides 33.5 cubic feet of capacity behind its rear seats. Most models come with Subaru's signature double sunroof, which drops capacity to 32.1 cubes. Expanding the load area is a lot easier than before, as the 60/40-split rear seats fold down in one step (no need to flip up the seat bottom) and form a perfectly flat load floor. Maximum capacity measures 66.2 cubic feet, or 61.7 with the double sunroof.

    The trim level structure has gotten a little more complicated this year, but as in the past, all models come with plenty of equipment. Subaru will sell Legacy sedans and wagons in 2.5i and 2.5 GT models with a Limited Package available on both. Outback wagons come in 2.5i, 2.5 XT, 3.0 R L.L. Bean and 3.0 R VDC Limited. Limited Packages are available on 2.5i and 2.5 XT models. The oddball Outback sedan is available in a single 3.0 R trim.

    True to their name, 2.5i models come with the base 2.5-liter engine and offer such standard equipment as 16-inch alloy wheels; body-color door handles and moldings; side-impact airbags for front occupants; full-length side curtain airbags; air conditioning; a CD player; cruise control; power windows, locks and mirrors; a trip computer; tweed upholstery; keyless entry (with an alarm system); and, on wagons only, a cargo cover. In addition, the Outback 2.5i also gets a rear limited-slip differential and a power driver seat. Opt for the Limited package and you'll get leather upholstery, heated seats and mirrors, a wiper de-icer, an in-dash CD changer, dual-zone automatic climate control and dual moonroofs (the sedan gets a single large moonroof); the Legacy also picks up larger front brakes and a power driver seat with this package.

    Upgrade to the 2.5 GT or 2.5 XT and you get the turbocharged 2.5-liter engine, along with 17-inch wheels, more powerful brakes, sport seats, a Momo steering wheel and electroluminescent gauges. You'll need to order the Limited Package to get leather upholstery and a moonroof. The 3.0 models come with the H6 engine and a full load of luxury amenities. All come with a tire pressure monitoring system, steering wheel audio controls and mahogany trim; the wagon models have a fold-down rear armrest. The L.L. Bean model offers perforated leather upholstery, while the VDC wagon is your ticket to stability control and the top-line sound system.

    [​IMG]
    Available in both the Legacy and Outback, this 2.5-liter turbo four has the heart and
    refinement of a much larger steed.

    Obviously, we're annoyed to see that Subaru is again stockpiling desirable features at the top of the Outback line, evidently not even considering that hotshot Legacy GT drivers might want stability control or a decent sound system. However, the fact that we even care about the Legacy says a lot about the success of the 2005 redesign. The Legacy and the Outback may still look alike, but they now have distinct personalities. With a tightened-up chassis, turbocharged engine and a slick cockpit, the Legacy GT is a serious driver's car and, likely, one of the fastest vehicles in Subaru's lineup. Don't buy a TSX or Mazda 6 without trying one. Meanwhile, the Outback is a wagon with no equal when it comes to off-road capability and, with an upgraded engine lineup and sharpened reflexes, it's fun to drive even when the weather isn't terrible. A small backseat will keep it from competing with larger-capacity SUVs, but for the family of four looking for stylish transportation for all seasons, it could be a perfect fit.

    Both cars will arrive at Subaru dealers in late May 2004. Pricing for the base Legacy ranges from the low to mid 20s, depending on the equipment you select. You can get into a turbocharged GT for as little as $26,000, though leather-lined GT wagons will break the $30,000 mark. The Outback line starts out in the mid 20s. Expect to pay around $30,000 for a turbocharged XT model and $32,000 to $33,000 for a six-cylinder wagon.

    The Bottom Line: A tight chassis, a turbocharged engine and a slick cockpit make the all-wheel-drive Legacy a serious driver's car. Solid all-terrain capability, a varied engine lineup and a luxurious interior make the Outback an excellent all-weather family wagon.

    Yeah, I know it's a :repost:, but I decided to start a nice all-in-one thread on the car I'll probably be buying upon my return to the states in 2006. For a huge photo gallery of the JDM car, visit www.subaru-b4.jp.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2004
  2. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    General Information

    Price: $26,995
    Curb Weight: 3150 lbs
    Layout: Front-Engine/AWD
    Transmission: 5-Speed Manual or Automatic

    Engine

    Type: Turbocharged Flat-4
    Displacement: 2457 cc
    Horsepower: 250 bhp @ 5600 rpm
    Torque: 250 lb-ft @ 3600 rpm
    Redline: 6500 rpm
     
  3. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    From a Subaru Press Release:

    Subaru of America Inc., the only company that offers Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive as standard on every vehicle in its product line, introduced the 2005 Legacy 2.5 GT Sedan and Wagon at the 2004 North American International Auto Show. The most powerful Legacy ever offered in the U.S. market, the 2005 Legacy 2.5 GT is powered by a new 250-horsepower intercooled / turbocharged Subaru Boxer engine. Arriving at Subaru dealerships in spring 2004, the 2005 Legacy 2.5 GT will lead a thoroughly revised model line that includes a Legacy 2.5 GT Limited Sedan and Wagon, which feature additional luxury content.

    With a distinctive fusion of style, performance and function, the Legacy 2.5 GT will deliver on the promise of a premium driving performance experience. Combining strong emotional appeal with intelligent engineering, the new-generation Legacy 2.5 GT will offer stunning performance while remaining true to the core values that make Subaru a unique brand: A boxer engine, standard Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, a functional and comfortable driver’s environment, a high degree of safety and comfort for passengers and renowned durability and reliability.

    “The 2005 Legacy 2.5 GT is designed to provide the kind of ‘sensuous performance’ that truly sets it apart from mainstream models,” said Fred Adcock, Executive Vice President, Subaru of America, Inc. “Legacy 2.5 GT has been designed to give the driver the kind of power, performance and control that instills premium-brand cars with distinct and memorable brand identity,” he added.

    All Legacy models for 2005 will feature even greater safety and high-value content than the previous-generation models. Built on a new version of the company’s proven Ring-Shaped Reinforcement Frame safety structure, the 2005 Legacy models will feature as standard equipment side impact air bags, new side curtain air bags and new intelligent dual-stage deployment front air bags.

    The 2005 Legacy 2.5 GT is the latest in the brand’s line of exciting turbocharged performance models that Subaru has introduced in the U.S. market since the Impreza®WRX® debuted for the 2002 model year. The rally-bred Impreza WRX STi® followed for 2004, along with the Forester® 2.5 XT and Baja™Turbo crossover models. These turbocharged All-Wheel Drive performance models reflect the brand’s long-running experience and success in World Rally Championship (WRC) competition.

    Bold New Design Strengthens Brand Identity

    Subaru designed the fourth-generation Legacy to express its more dynamic performance and nimbleness, and in particular its low center of gravity – a hallmark of all Subaru models. The pronounced wedge body shape conveys a low and stable presence, accentuated by aerodynamic side ground effects and standard 17-inch alloy wheels on Legacy 2.5 GT and 16-inch alloy wheels on other Legacy models.

    Wheelbase of the 2005 Legacy has been increased from 104.3 inches to 105.1 inches and overall length has been increased by just under two inches for the sedan and wagon models. The sedan’s rear glass is slightly recessed in “sail panels” for a distinct rear appearance, as well as aerodynamic efficiency. The new Legacy design is not only sleeker to the eye, but in the wind tunnel, as well, where the sedan registers a coefficient of drag (Cd) of 0.28 and the wagon 0.30.

    A functional hood scoop supplies outside air to the engine-mounted intercooler, and tailpipe tips extend from the dual-muffler exhaust system through bumper cutouts for a sporty flair.

    High-Performance Intercooled / Turbocharged Engine

    The 2005 Legacy 2.5 GT is powered by an intercooled and turbocharged 2.5-liter 4-cylinder boxer engine that produces 250 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm and 250 lb-ft. of peak torque @ 3,600 rpm. The engine shares architecture and technology with the engines used in other Subaru turbocharged performance models such as the WRX STi, but most key components – including the cylinder block, turbocharger and intercooler – are unique to Legacy 2.5 GT.

    Active Valve Control System (AVCS) variable valve timing technology helps optimize low and mid-range torque and high-end output, and the Legacy 2.5 GT engine is characterized by a wide torque curve for outstanding power at all speeds. All Legacy engines for 2005 use an Electronic Throttle Control (ETC) system, sometimes referred to as “drive by wire” or “throttle by wire.”

    Choice of 5-Speed Manual or 5-Speed Automatic Transmissions

    The 2005 Legacy 2.5 GT will offer a choice between a smooth-shifting 5-speed manual transmission or an all-new 5-speed electronic direct control automatic transmission with a SPORTSHIFT feature for manual control when desired. The advanced new 5-speed automatic transmission offers a higher degree of control in either automatic or manual mode. Using a lateral-G sensor and cornering logic, the transmission can select and hold the appropriate gear to enhance cornering performance. The transmission will actively downshift to maintain optimal traction and control on inclines, as well.

    With the SPORTSHIFT feature, the driver can choose to shift manually using the console shift handle or shift buttons on the steering wheel. When placed in “D,” the lever can be toggled to the left for manual shift control, and then pushed forward for upshifts and pulled rearward for downshifts. The transmission can provide temporary access to manual mode when in “D” by using the steering wheel shift buttons.

    Performance-Bred Chassis

    A new, stiffer unitized body structure makes greater use of aluminum and high-strength steel, as well as advanced construction techniques including hydroforming and tailored-blank welding. Aluminum parts include the hood and bumper beams and the rear gate on wagons. Using aluminum at the vehicle’s extremes helps to concentrate more mass near its center of gravity, which helps to enhance handling.

    The engine in the new Legacy models is mounted lower than in the previous generation, which helps to lower the center of gravity. The proven MacPherson type strut front suspension uses all new components, including aluminum lower L-arms that reduce unsprung weight. A wider track and revised geometry significantly enhance handling and stability. The multilink rear suspension attaches to a new, hydroformed steel sub-frame for added rigidity, and the roll center has been lowered to enhance handling and stability.

    Suspension, braking and steering have been optimized to complement the powertrain performance in Legacy 2.5 GT. Legacy 2.5 GT models roll on standard 17 x 7-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with 215/45 R17 all-season tires.

    A 4-wheel disc Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) is standard equipment on all 2005 Legacy models. Legacy 2.5 GT features larger front brake rotors than other Legacy models, as well as ventilated rear discs (solid discs on other models).

    The rack-and-pinion steering system in Legacy 2.5 GT has been redesigned for quicker response, greater precision and improved feel. A new, high-strength “cannon mount” secures the steering rack to the front subframe. A damper valve helps prevent the kickback and vibration that would otherwise result from the added stiffness provided by the cannon mount.

    Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive A Key To Brand Identity

    All-Wheel Drive is a cornerstone of Subaru brand identity, not just an add-on feature. Consistent with this philosophy, all Subaru All-Wheel Drive systems are organized under the “Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive” branding umbrella. Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive is a total system that integrates a lightweight horizontally opposed (boxer) engine and full-time All-Wheel Drive. Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive provides excellent balance thanks to the longitudinally mounted boxer engine and the way power flows from it through the transmission and to the rear differential along a straight, near-horizontal path.

    Subaru offers three different Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive systems in the 2005 Legacy models, each tailored to the type of transmission. With the 5-speed manual transmission, the system uses a viscous-coupling locking center differential to distribute the power 50/50 front to rear. Slippage at either set of wheels will send more power to the other set of wheels.

    Legacy 2.5 GT models equipped with the 5-speed automatic transmission use a system called Variable Torque Distribution (VTD). A planetary center differential works with an electronically controlled continuously variable hydraulic transfer clutch to manage power distribution. The system normally sends more power to the rear wheels to enhance handling agility, and it continuously adjusts the power distribution in response to driving and road conditions. Legacy 2.5i and Legacy 2.5i Limited models will offer an optional 4-speed automatic transmission, with an AWD system that uses an electronically managed continuously variable transfer clutch to actively control power distribution in response to driving conditions.

    All-New Interior Designed for True Grand Touring

    Subaru redesigned the roomy Legacy interior and used high-quality materials to enhance the driver’s environment and passenger comfort. The new unified design integrates the entire area from the instrument panel and large center panel to the console box. Flush surface treatments, a soft foam upper dashboard, soft foam door trim and aluminum side sill covers with the Subaru logo provide a premium appearance and ambience.

    The sporty new four-dial instrument panel features an electroluminescent LED (light-emitting diode) gauge display in Legacy 2.5 GT. On startup, the needle pointers swing to their maximum positions and then back, as in the Impreza WRX STi. The gauge panel is augmented in all models by a combination digital clock and trip computer, located in the center of the dashboard. Some of its functions and displays include outside air temperature, fuel consumption, remaining driving distance, estimated driving time, and a passenger airbag on/off indicator light.

    The 2005 Legacy 2.5 GT comes equipped with premium performance features that include as standard equipment a dual-zone automatic climate control system, performance-design front seats with 4-stage heating and heated exterior mirrors. The MOMO®-designed 3-spoke leather-wrapped steering wheel features integrated SPORTSHIFT controls when the car is equipped with the optional 5-speed automatic transmission.

    The standard audio system includes a 120-watt AM/FM stereo, a 6-disc in-dash CD changer and six speakers. Larger controls and displays make the audio system easy to use, and all power window and seat switches are illuminated for ease of use.

    Legacy 2.5 GT Limited models add a more luxurious interior featuring leather-trimmed upholstery, an 8-way power driver’s seat and a 4-way power passenger seat. A glass power moonroof is standard on all Legacy GT Limited and Legacy 2.5i Limited models. The moonroof on the wagon models is a new-design dual-panel type that provides a single large opening when the tilt-up front section and retracting rear section are opened.

    A remote keyless entry system is standard for all 2005 Legacy models, with the system in Legacy 2.5 GT and 2.5 GT Limited models adding an engine immobilizer function. The remote control includes a trunk release for sedans and a rear gate release for wagons.

    A versatile center console integrates two cupholders, a console box with a shutter-type lid and a height-adjustable armrest. The storage box will hold nine CDs and also has a 12-volt power outlet. The 2005 Legacy wagon models feature a new, one stage 60/40 split rear seatback that provides a flat load floor without the need to lift the rear seat cushion forward. The sedan’s trunk hinges are fully encased and do not intrude into the cargo area.

    Safety Taken To A New Level

    Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, 4-channel / 4-sensor ABS, excellent handling response and expansive visibility give the 2005 Legacy models a high degree of active safety (the tools that help a driver avoid hazardous situations). The foundation of passive safety in the 2005 Legacy models is a redesigned Ring-Shaped Reinforcement Frame structure that incorporates larger cross-section frame members and straighter rear frame sections than before.

    The front-end structure disperses collision energy in three directions, and new hydroformed center pillars enhance side impact protection, which is further bolstered by repositioned side impact door beams. The increased focus on side impact safety continues inside, where all Legacy models for 2005 feature standard front seat-side impact air bags for thorax-area protection and side curtain air bags (full side coverage) for head protection.

    A new intelligent air bag system employs dual stage deployment driver and front passenger air bags. A seat position sensor on the driver’s seat track detects if driver is sitting too close to the air bag, in which case the system would delay deployment of the air bag’s second stage. The passenger side front seat incorporates an occupant detection module that detects weight on the passenger seat and determines if it’s a child or adult to control air bag deployment. All Legacy models for 2005 feature active front head restraints, which can help reduce potential whiplash injury in a rear collision. A new safety brake pedal system can help reduce lower leg injury in a frontal collision.
     
  4. KeeperOfAcheron

    KeeperOfAcheron I dub thee Sir Phobos, Knight of Mars, beater of a

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    Yep.....that will be what I trade in my WRX for...
     
  5. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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  6. Ghost Load

    Ghost Load i'll see your kidcarson and geekboy and raise you OT Supporter

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    yeah right then you stalk me
    yummmmay!
     
  7. Ghost Load

    Ghost Load i'll see your kidcarson and geekboy and raise you OT Supporter

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    yeah right then you stalk me
    i just hope to god they don't start sprouting big wrx sti and prodrive type wings.
     
  8. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    If anyone has anything to add, feel free.

    Price grid:

    [​IMG]
     
  9. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    Very nice.

    This is really my kind of car, and I'd certainly buy it over a WRX/STi for the clean exterior, comfortable drive, and nicely finished interior.
     
  10. AsianRage

    AsianRage Know about Media Ventures?

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    This is one of the true competitor for the TSX. It'll certainly beat out the TSX in term of power. But then since you'll have to wait for the navi option in 2006, that's not so great since it imply that the pricing might change.
     
  11. Ruination

    Ruination New Member

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    Sex on wheels
     
  12. KeeperOfAcheron

    KeeperOfAcheron I dub thee Sir Phobos, Knight of Mars, beater of a

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    I went to the local subie dealer yesterday...I guess they will be available for my test drive in a month. I am stoked!
     
  13. pharcyde183

    pharcyde183 Nissan by nature

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    woot wish i had $$ they'd get it
     
  14. KeeperOfAcheron

    KeeperOfAcheron I dub thee Sir Phobos, Knight of Mars, beater of a

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    Well...I was planning on grabbing one. I went and looked at the standard '05 legacy's and outback's. They will be a amazing car but I have decided to save some money and go for 2 older cars instead.
     
  15. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    www.subaru.com now has the new Legacy. I haven't checked it for about a week, so it might be old news, but still...
     
  16. Ruination

    Ruination New Member

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    I just noticed the other day as well. I want one more than ever now :hs:
     
  17. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    Another article. This one is quite old, but I do want this thread to be THE resource for the new Legacy, sooo...without further ado...

    [​IMG]

    (14:49 Aug. 21, 2003)
    2004 Subaru Legacy
    Your next turbo Subie awaits



    By BOB GRITZINGER


    SO YOU SAY you’d love to own a Subaru WRX, with its torquey 227-hp turbocharged engine and rally suspension, but you can’t quite comfortably fit the family and all their gear into the compact car’s tight confines? And while the Legacy fits the bill for space and comfort, you’re not inspired by its 212-hp 3.0-liter flat-six, let alone its 165-hp 2.5-liter boxer-four?

    May we suggest you start saving your car-buying pennies now, because next summer your wants and needs will be met when Subaru brings a turbocharged Legacy back to the U.S. market for the first time in nearly a decade. (The last time Subaru sold a turbo Legacy in the United States was 1991-94, in the form of a Legacy Sport Sedan offered with a 161-hp 2.2-liter four.)

    Packing a version of the 2.5-liter dohc turbo flat-four that makes 210 hp in the 2004 Forester Turbo and 300 hp in the WRX STi, the 2005 Legacy will fall somewhere in between. In the Legacy, the engine will produce about 250 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque—exact figures are still being worked out [ Note: Not anymore! ] —representing a giant leap forward for what had been some of Subaru’s most sedate sedans and wagons. In Japan, buyers get a 2004-model-year Legacy with a 2.0-liter turbo four that makes 276 hp and 253 lb-ft of torque. [ :mad: :jealousy: ]

    Non-turbo U.S. models, which arrive next April a few months ahead of the turbo editions, also get more horsepower. Look for 247 hp from a revised dohc 3.0-liter six, while the carryover sohc 2.5-liter gets a modest 5-hp bump to 170. Subaru engineers say the 3.0-liter is especially tuned for low-end power, while the carryover engine will likely remain at the same 166 lb-ft at 4000 rpm.

    Thanks to a nearly 200-pound weight reduction in the fourth-generation Legacy, all 2005 models will have a little more jump in their step. Unlike some manufacturers who meticulously pare weight ounce by precious ounce—and then dump it all back into the car by adding options like heavy sunroofs, monster sound systems and power controllers for everything—Subaru cut poundage for all the right reasons.

    [​IMG]
    We sampled a range of right-hand-drive next-generation 2.0-liter turbo
    and non-turbo Legacy sedans and wagons at Fuji Speedway in Japan.
    A U.S. version fitted with a 250-hp 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder
    arrives in dealerships next summer as a 2005 model.

    “We did it for fuel efficiency, handling and performance,” said Kei Ono, Subaru’s general manager of overseas business planning. Ono now works at Subaru’s headquarters in Tokyo, but his 15-year stint at the company’s U.S. offices in New Jersey has given him a keen insight into the North American marketplace.

    Subaru engineers took some of the usual steps to cut weight, putting particular emphasis on cutting pounds at the Legacy’s outboard extremities, without sacrificing chassis rigidity. They replaced heavy steel frame components with lightweight aluminum and high-strength steel parts, tossed aside the stamped- steel sheetmetal hood for an aluminum one, substituted aluminum rear suspension lower control arms for heavy steel ones, and used an aluminum front bumper beam in place of steel. Yes, you can still get a sunroof on your Legacy, but the weight-cutting jihad [ :mamoru: ] led to a 15.5-pound weight reduction for the popular top-heavy feature.

    Engineers also focused on lowering the vehicle’s center of gravity. A key change came under the lightweight hood, where engineers took further advantage of the already low- profile horizontally opposed engine (Subaru claims a four- to six-inch lower center of gravity compared to competitors’ V6 and I4 setups) by lowering the entire engine placement nearly half an inch at the center of the engine and nearly an inch at the front.

    Transmissions include Subaru’s five-speed automatic with automanual Sportshift as the only offering on 3.0-liter models; 2.5-liter turbo Legacys come with a standard five-speed manual or the optional Sportshift with steering wheel-mounted shift controls; normally aspirated 2.5-liter models are equipped with a standard five-speed manual or an optional four-speed automatic. Depending on customer interest, Subaru officials say a six-speed manual transmission could be offered in the future, possibly as part of a high-performance STi-tuned Legacy. [ :drool: :nikko: ]

    While it could almost go without saying, all Legacy models feature Subaru’s decades-refined all-wheel-drive system, now marketed as “symmetrical all-wheel drive” as though it’s something new and different. Not to worry: While the advertising geniuses may have a new name for it, it remains true, at least in principle if not in hardware, to the Subie awd standard we’ve come to know and love.

    Base 2.5-liter U.S. models will come with 16-inch wheels and tires, while turbo and 3.0-liter models get 17-inchers (18-inch wheels are available on Japan-market turbo models) [ Damn Japos get all the cool shit. ]

    All turbo models get a more aggressive suspension setup.

    [​IMG]

    All the parts add up to major improvements in handling and performance. While our testing was limited to right-hand-drive Japan-market 2.0-liter turbos and 2.0-liter normally aspirated cars, big power isn’t the only story with this latest Legacy. The 276-hp turbo engine moves the 3108-pound car smartly off the line and holds its own through the rpm range. But the Legacy truly shines in harsh handling maneuvers where its balance belies its vanilla midsize intentions. Driven aggressively into a corner, the Legacy fitted with 17-inch tires challenges to the limit of adhesion, then begins to predictably understeer and is readily throttle-controlled back onto its proper line. Steering is nimble and direct, without a trace of twitching that might make it a bear for everyday driving, while braking is ample and well-balanced, with ABS taking control only in extreme stops.

    On the downside, not all of the manual shifter’s rubbery shortcomings can be attributed to left-hand shifting. With most U.S. buyers opting for autoboxes, we should note that several five-speed automatics overheated when driven hard through the gears via the Sportshift linkage. However, the tranny does provide excellent automatic gear management when set in sport mode and allowed to make its own decisions. Just imagine driving a real-world version of a World Rally video game car set in automatic transmission mode, and you get the idea.

    Driving dynamics aside, possibly the most improved attribute of the coming Legacy lies in its crisp, pre-Chris Bangle-era BMW-like styling (okay, with a hood scoop in some cases) and uncluttered, functional and handsome interior. With the new wrapper, the Legacy is likely to maintain its role in Japan as an aspirational car—one Subaru says drivers move up to after owning Hondas and Toyotas. But the sportier styling ought to play well in Peoria too, even though buyers pick the Outback with its higher ground clearance and rugged, outdoorsy trim by a wide margin over the regular Legacy.

    Legacy and Outback sedans and wagons should start at about $20,000 and push the mid-$30,000 range fully loaded.


    2004 SUBARU LEGACY
    (Japanese model)
    ON SALE: Now (in Japan)
    BASE PRICE: $23,212 (est.)
    POWERTRAIN: 2.0-liter, 276-hp, 253-lb-ft turbocharged H4; awd, five-speed manual
    CURB WEIGHT: 3108 pounds
    0-60 MPH: 5.8 seconds (mfr.)
     
  18. G-S-R

    G-S-R Guest

    I saw the legacy when i went to tokyo auto salon this past winter. I saw a tommy kaira edition for sale at super autobacs too!!! very nice! Looks better than wrx IMO
     
  19. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    So it looks like we get the 2.5 from the STi detuned, while Japan gets the 2.0 from the WRX with more power.

    Thoughts?
     
  20. ShapeShifterz

    ShapeShifterz Longtime Lurker

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    I wanna know what turbo is in the JDM 2.0 legacy that gives it 276hp!!!
     
  21. 5.10-Crux

    5.10-Crux New Member

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    The rear side windows still don't roll down all the way.

    WTF - can't subaru figure out how to design a door where the window can roll down?

    ghey
     
  22. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    Well, I personally won't care in the slightest.
     
  23. Dr. Woo

    Dr. Woo Guns don't kill people

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    June 9, 2004
    2005 Subaru Legacy and Outback Feature Major Improvements over Previous Models
    by Trevor Hofmann / American Auto Press

    New Subaru Legacy 2.5i Sedan Starts at Aggressively Competitive Price

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    The newly redesigned Legacy and Outback models will go a long way in boosting Subaru's stodgy image. Subaru has already established itself in terms of quality and reliability, and therefore are now focusing more on styling and performance to grow the brand. The Legacy 2.5i sedan will be powered by a naturally aspirated 168 horsepower 2.5-liter boxer engine. While the Outback wasn't the first crossover ever, it definitely was the initiator in today's industry.
    (Photos: Subaru of America)

    Subaru is readying a new range of flagship Legacy and Outback models that will go a long way toward raising perceptions about the brand's near-premium cars and crossover SUVs. Subaru has built up an enviable reputation for quality and reliability, but similar to Sweden's Volvo brand it has only recently started showing a keener sense of style. The Japanese brand's new Legacy and Outback models are at the forefront of this new design philosophy, and should reward Subaru with dramatically increased sales as a result.

    An additional part of the equation that has resulted in Volvo's recent upsurge on the sales charts included enhanced performance, both under the hood with new more powerful engines, sport-oriented transmission choices and optional all-wheel drive, as well as more dynamically tuned suspension setups.

    Subaru has long offered all-wheel drive on all of its models, putting it at the forefront of drivetrain technologies. The brand also offers 5-speed manual and manually-actuated automatic transmissions in current products, while in specific models such as the Impreza WRX STi, engine performance is class leading.

    Subaru plans to capitalize on the performance image of such models and attract more performance-oriented buyers to its new 2005 Legacy and Outback. The new midsize Subarus also make improvements over their predecessors when it comes to standard equipment and safety features.

    The Legacy line starts with the 2.5i sedan, powered by a naturally aspirated 168 horsepower 2.5-liter boxer engine, up 3 horsepower over last year's base engine. Standard equipment includes side-impact airbags, new side-curtain airbags and new intelligent dual-stage deployment frontal airbags, plus active head restraints, remote keyless entry, a trip computer, AM/FM/CD audio system, and power windows. The base price is $20,995.

    The Legacy 2.5i Limited features the same engine but adds a new Sport Shift sequential-shifting automatic transmission, plus an assortment of luxury equipment including automatic climate control and leather seating surfaces. Prices for this sedan start at $24,445.

    Sport-oriented buyers can opt for the Legacy 2.5 GT, in either sedan or wagon guise. The new model gets an all-new 250 horsepower turbocharged boxer engine. Either a 5-speed manual or optional Sport Shift automatic transmission can be chosen, with the former resulting in a base price of $25,995. Last but hardly least is the Legacy 2.5 GT Limited at $28,495.

    Subaru makes a point of calling the Outback's many crossover rivals imitators in its press release, which is somewhat valid. While the Outback wasn't the first of its type ever to be made, American Motor Corporation's (AMC) once popular 4WD Eagle wagon arrived on the scene in 1979 as a 1980 model, it can be attributed to starting the current trend.

    The Outback arrived in 1994 as a 1995 model, a Legacy L wagon with special trim. The first true stand alone Outback model came a year later as a 1996 model. Since that time the car has been through two generations, the first running from 1996 through 1997, with the second starting in 1998 and running through to the present day 2004 model. The 2005 model will be the third-generation Outback, and like the Legacy makes a bold statement for design and performance.

    The entry-level model (not the Impreza-based Outback Sport) is the Outback 2.5i, also powered by the same naturally aspirated 2.5-liter boxer engine as featured in the upgraded Legacy 2.5i. Equipped with a 5-speed manual transmission the Outback 2.5i starts at $23,995. A Sport Shift automatic is also available. A Limited version of the 2.5i starts at $26,995.

    Outback buyers with the need for speed can also opt for the all-new 250 horsepower turbocharged and intercooled drivetrain in the Outback 2.5 XT. The new model starts at $27,995.

    Those that would prefer the performance and refinement of a 6-cylinder engine over the racy attitude the turbocharged XT offers, can move up to either the Outback 3.0 R, the only sedan in the bunch, the Outback 3.0 R L.L. Bean Edition or Outback 3.0 R VDC. All three cars feature a horizontally opposed H-6 engine developing 250 horsepower. Power delivery is smoother than the 4-cylinder, while the engine is said to be quieter. The 3.0-liter engine also offers greater towing capacity. The entry 6-cylinder model starts at $30,995, while the L.L. Bean Edition goes for $32,195. The top-line 3.0 R VDC retails for $33,395. For the extra money the VDC features leather seating, a glass sunroof and premium audio, as well as Subaru's Vehicle Dynamics Control yaw and traction control system. A 5-speed SportShift automatic transmission is standard.

    While sales of the Outback sport utility sedan (SUS) have been quite low since it was introduced, Subaru is continuing forth with what is now America's only crossover sedan still available. When initially offered, Subaru dubbed its 4-door 3-box variant as "the world's first sport-utility sedan," another claim that raised contention with AMC Eagle devotees, stating that the domestic manufacturer had offered a 4WD sedan with raised ground clearance and enhanced rugged styling far in advance of the Japanese automaker.

    Such contention is a moot point now, however, as AMC and the Eagle nameplate no longer exists. Subaru is alive and well mind you, and appears likely to do better than ever with the advent of its 2005 Legacy and Outback models.
     
  24. Prod

    Prod Guest

    I'm going to have to agree with you on that one. Especially the (shaggin) wagon versions.
     
  25. Instantly

    Instantly New Member

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    the legacy is gorgeous. I want one. Couldnt bear to get rid of my car though. :o
     

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