Friday, March 06, 2009

What I drove: Subaru Legacy

I never thought much about Subarus. Mostly, when I thought of a Subaru I would remember that my 4th-grade teacher drove a Subaru Brat and there was a car-care commercial way back when that had a lady saying, "Whoopdidoo for my Subaru!" (I think it was for Simonize or some such product. See how well advertising works?)

After driving the Forrester a few months back and the Legacy just last week, I'm thinking about Subarus a lot more -- and in a highly positive light. They're nice looking cars (the exception, in my opinion, is the Tribeca that went from weird looking when it was introduced to bland now) and they're not as pricey as I once thought.

The Legacy I drove came in at $22,960, with some nice options, like a moonroof and an upgraded sound system. There are plenty of cars cheaper than that, but only a few that also offer all-wheel drive and the Subaru reliability. The salesman I talked to told me that 95 percent of the Subarus registered in the past 10 years are still on the road. "You can't kill them," he said.

After being bored with the last few vehicles I've test driven, it was nice to get into a car that offered some excitement. The Legacy I drove was equipped with a 2.5-liter, SOHC, aluminum-alloy, 16-valve, horizontally opposed, four-cylinder Subaru Boxer engine that pumps out 170 horsepower. You can opt instead for a turbocharged 2.5-liter, four-cylinder or a beefy 3.0-liter, six-cylinder engine. The six-cylinder will give you an additional 75 horsepower over the test vehicle.

To quote myself:
"The Legacy zips along with a quiet, comfortable ride. It handles twists and turns like a sure-footed Bighorn sheep. The Legacy — like a Bighorn — seems to have been built specifically for Colorado terrain and weather."

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