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Thread: Subaru Question: 2.5xt or 3.0
08-07-2006, 10:36 PM #1Registered User
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- Oct 2005
Subaru Question: 2.5xt or 3.0
I am looking at a new outback and would like to know the advantages and disadvantages to each engine. Seems like the 2.5 xt is the engine to get, but thought I would try to get some more opinions since there are a lot of subie drivers here. I am going to test drive them next week.
08-08-2006, 02:13 AM #2
doesn't the 3.0 restrict you to an auto tranny?Originally Posted by BSS
08-08-2006, 11:03 PM #3
better mileage on the turbo... as long as you dont put your foot in it around town... during low boost, a 4cyl turbo engine will sip fuel like the regular 4cyl. Sub's don't get great mileage tho - so it might be all relative for you...
Also - you can get extra HP for cheap with the turbo - a chip and exhaust upgrade should get you moving up toward the WRX STI power #'s...
08-08-2006, 11:30 PM #4
turbo: if your doing 70mph+ it doesn't sip the gas. 22-23mpg at 80mph. Measured with the computer, which I read was a little high.
<70mph I can get 25mph no problem. Might be better with 07 6 speeds
Last edited by LaramieSkiBum; 08-08-2006 at 11:33 PM.
08-09-2006, 07:58 AM #5
XT is sooo much more fun.Click. Point. Chute.
08-09-2006, 09:01 AM #6
When I was shopping, I was told the only reason to go with the 3.0 is if you plan to tow something with it."Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming, "Wow, what a Ride!"
08-09-2006, 09:57 AM #7
The turbo 2.5 will require more maintenance than the 3.0. I prefer the 3.0 because the power is there through the whole RPM range so you don't need to wait for the Turbo to wind up. You also don't get the unexpected jerk that the turbo can provide when you are diving normally and forget to shift before the turbo hits.
08-09-2006, 10:41 AM #8
08-09-2006, 12:16 PM #9
I've got a 97 Outback w/ a normally aspirated 2.5. I don't have any problem getting up to speed. My thought is why get the potential of problems w/ a turbo.Quando paramucho mi amore de felice carathon.
Mundo paparazzi mi amore cicce verdi parasol.
Questo abrigado tantamucho que canite carousel.
08-09-2006, 03:54 PM #10
I just traded in my 2002 Outback LTD for a brand new Outback 2.5 XT LTD - and it rocks! Man this thing is fast, really nice design inside and out, handles beautifully, and soo much fun to drive
Haven't (obviously) had the chance yet to drive it in the snow, but if it handles anything like my old Outback, should be bomber. Especially as I will swap tires in the fall to the Nokian's for winter driving.
08-09-2006, 10:31 PM #11Originally Posted by Lurch
Towing with the XT is a bad idea, go for the 3.0 if your towing. If your not buying used, you might check out the 07's, the will be 6 speeds w/ traction control (subi calls it VDC)
10-12-2007, 12:33 PM #12Registered User
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- Feb 2005
So my wife and I are in the market for a new vehicle to supplement an aging 96 Montero and 03 4runner. This car will be driven mostly by her with my 3 y.o. on board.
I started looking at all of the euro style AWD performance rigs after driving my buddys Mercedes ML500 a few hundred miles recently but the maintenance and gas mileage has me a bit concerned, not to mention the high upfront cost. After talking to the local Audi/VW/Mercedes mechanic, I was convinced to go test drive the subarus.
Now its been 10 years since I spent anytime driving/riding in any of the outbacks, and I was skeptical. First impression on the 2.5xt and the 3.0LLB was these things are way nicer inside than the subys of old. I explained to the sales guy that I was looking for something with balls that can handle the tiny passing zones we contend with near my house and he handed me the keys to an 08 2.5xt and told me to take it as long as I wanted. All I can say is that thing blew me away. I took it out a curvy country road outside Steamboat and hit 115 in the first 1/2 mile straightaway. Double yellow line passes, no problem. Redneck in a Ford truck trying to ride my ass at 80mph, gone. Cornering 25 mph turns at 65, no problem. Audi A8 running 75+, see you dude. Holy shit these things have changed.
Got back after running it out of gas and he tells me to take the 3.0 LLB for a run. Same route, same straightaway and she went soft at about 70 and might have made 85. Turn around, take it back, not interested.
So here's my questions. Any problems that are turbo related with the xt? Do you really see the mid-20's gas mileage that they claim when you aren't on the hammer? Any other durabilty issues? Does anyone think the extra $15+ for the Euros is worth whatever miniscule performance gains you might get?
I'm tired of a 4runner that has no balls to make quick passes and being hung out in the left lane. My wife gets hung up driving behind jackasses everyday and can't do anything. A little better gas mileage would be nice too. I'll still have two 4wd suvs for towing my boat and sleds so thats not a consideration.
*Disclaimer: I don't normally drive like a lunatic, but I wanted to see what these vehicles will do. If you were driving around Routt county this morning and got pawned by a silver suby, I'm sorry dude.
Any input much appreciated.
10-12-2007, 12:47 PM #13
I was close to buying an Outback XT last year, with the 2.5 turbo motor. Then I realized it would get 23 mpg on the highway and require premium fuel, which means it actually costs more to operate than my Grand Cherokee (20-21 hwy mpg, regular gas).
It was fun to drive, but something that size with a 4-cyl engine should get better mileage than it does. The non-turbo Subarus reportedly get in the upper 20s for hwy mpg though.
10-12-2007, 02:50 PM #14
my 4 cyl 2006 5 spd outback regularly gets in the 28-30 mpg range out of a tank, and i don't drive slowly. on hiways where i'm forced to keep it under 75 mph, i get 30-31 mpg usually. i just use 87 cheap gas.
however i rarely have 4 people in there, and very rarely have anything on the roof (keep skis inside in ski bags).
the 4 cyl outback has a better power:weight ratio than most any AWD with decent clearance. does pretty well for a 4 cyl., if you go w/ the 5spd manual anyway.
the turbo version is definitely more fun to drive but i have heard of some reliability issues (perhaps due to infrequent maintenance?). and there's El C's comments to consider.197 Katanas for sale, very low miles.
10-12-2007, 02:54 PM #15
one other point -- for driving at HIGH altitudes, having a turbo rocks i.e. it is much less sensitive to thinner air than a regularly aspirated engine (4 or 6 or 8 cyl).
personally i'm curious about the 2 liter turbo diesel VW Tiguan . 40 mpg hiway, 260 ft lb torque, and pretty advanced AWD. will be a while before it comes out though.197 Katanas for sale, very low miles.
10-12-2007, 03:25 PM #16Registered User
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- Feb 2005
Curious what reliabilty issues you've heard about. I've talked to three independent Suby mechanics, the dealer, and searched a bit on the net. Compared to the Audis and such, I'm getting nothing but praise for reliabilty. One very knowledgable mechanic friend said the only thing you have to watch with the turbo is shutting it off hot. He said some of the wrx folks were using a delayed shutoff system that shuts the vehicle down 2-3 minutes after parking to allow for cooling. Anyone ever heard of this?
As for the gas mileage, suby is claiming 29mpg for pure highway driving so that pretty damn good when you compare it to other performance style awd vehicles. The premium gas thing kinda sucks, but it's worth the power tradeup IMO. Having owned a full time 4wd v-8 grand cherokee, I never came close to the mpg el c is getting and spent so much $ repairing brake problems that I'll never have another. Loved it when it was working but it was only a minor step up from a power standpoint than the neutered 4 runner I've got. I definately wouldn't attempt the same type of driving in the Jeep that I would in the 2.5xt by a long shot.
I also want to reiterate I want something with big power and you have to remember a non-turboed vehicle is going to have only about 75% of its potential at CO altitude. I got the turbo running 25-30 mph faster than the 6 cylinder in the same spot which is a huge difference in the type of passing situations I'm looking to address(200 yard passing zones).
Thanks for the input guys. Keep it coming please. Anybody have experience with the 2.5xt vs same class quattro?
edit:doh, you posted the high alt. thingy while I was typing.
10-12-2007, 03:58 PM #17Registered User
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- Jun 2007
As previously stated Turbo cars are The way to go in Colorado due to the altitude. And yes shuting down a hot turbo motor is bad. Due to something called heat soak, the engine temp will actually rise quite a bit after its shut off. This causes the oil in the center section of the turbo to essentially burn and coke the bearings. Most Older Turbo Audis have an after-run system which consists of a small electric coolant pump. The pump circulates coolant through the block and turbo while running the engine fan on low speed for several minutes after shut down. All this happens automatically, I just shut her off... and within a couple of minutes the after-run system kicks in for 5-10 minutes untill coolant temp reach an acceptable level. This is why my the Turbo charger in my Audi is still going strong with 200K+ miles on it. I also believe that the abscence of an after-run system on the Audi 1.8Ts and 2.Ts is a big factor in the sludging problems that seem to plauge those motors.
One thing you can do with the Subys and newer Audi Turbos is just make sure that during the last 2-3 miles of your drive you are not boostin the thing real hard. And if you are then let it idle for a few minutes before you shut her down.
10-12-2007, 04:25 PM #18
All the worry about turbo maintenance is misplaced. I've beaten the piss out of numerous turbo cars and I've only rebuilt turbos that were crappy/had oil-cooled centersections to begin with. BTW, turbos aren't that hard or expensive to rebuild if you remove them before they eat themselves.
That said, the basic Subaru turbo engines and engine controls are rather agrarian and the requirement for premium gas sucks. I would buy an out of warranty 3.0 and shove a homebrew turbo system under the hood if I could get one without the slushbox. Or I might buy a 2.5, get some ignition control, add some methanol injection, and buy some dyno time. Bye-bye high octane.
As much as full time AWD kicks ass, I can't justify the fuel mileage for a daily driver living here. I'd have to move back into the mountains.
10-12-2007, 04:40 PM #19
40 000 miles on my XT Outback.
Love it. Utterly, completely. Well apart from the difficulty of putting a roof box on the thing and the lack of ipod input (which they've now fixed)
If you're regularly getting better than 20 mpg out of one you probably should have bought the normaly aspirated 2.5.
Tell the dealer that you absolutely don't want the tires it comes with and that you're not paying for them. Order Nokian WRs to be shipped direct to them for fitting before you drive it off the lot.
Please don't pass on the double yellows.
10-12-2007, 07:08 PM #20
10-12-2007, 07:32 PM #21Registered User
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- Feb 2005
The dealer and one of the mechanics I spoke with said the putting premium in the xt at this altitude is not neccessary. Gas burns cleaner at altitude. That's why you can't even buy 93 octane in the mountains. No need. He recommended filling with premium 91 every tenth tank and using the midgrade 89 otherwise. Said they'd never had a problem.
10-12-2007, 08:27 PM #22
Octane ratings are a way of characterizing the detonation resistance of gasoline. The method commonly used in the US is called R+M/2 or AKI, and as this implies is a mean of the RON and MON results. Other countries report RON numbers, which are significantly higher. A wide variety of design and environmental parameters change the octane requirement of a motor. The goal is to design a motor such that Minimum Best Timing can be achieved in most cases. This is the ignition timing that produces a theta peak pressure at the mechanical optimum for that motor...usually around 15-17 degrees ATDC. The ignition advance needed to achieve MBT depends on a score of criteria, with load and engine speed near the top of the list. Detonation margin is the difference between MBT (or some lesser timing when MBT isn't achievable, think old two valve American shit) and the point at which knock becomes limiting. Excessive knock will break ring lands and even lead to preignition, which will rip a motor apart in an eye-blink.
Modern vehicles have knock sensors which can lead to retarded timing and protect motors. Unfortunately, traditional knock sensors are more or less useless in a bunch of scenarios that can break things. Closed loop ion-sensing ignition control removes these limitations, but Subaru is a bit more agrarian than that AFAIK. The more open-loop (read: old skool, cheap) your ignition control scheme, the bigger you need those detonation margins...ergo the more octane you need to feel comfortable.
Altitude reduces octane requirements, indeed. For the same reasons a car at sea level run at 80% load doesn't have the same octane requirement. This is why your pump doesn't make 93 available to you. However, as people have alluded to in this thread, turbo cars can provide some degree of "normalization" or "absolute referenced boost control". This, combined with the sad fact that higher pressure ratios mean higher intake temperatures, will actually increase or at least decrease at a much smaller rate the octane requirements of a turbo car as altitude increases. Bummer.
I don't doubt you can get away with basic gas in one of those motors. The boost isn't that high and the compression is low. Chances are the Subaru people were conservative in their fuel suggestions because they don't want warranty complaints and service problems with cars that get wrung out in hot weather on sketchy fuel or have otherwise minor build quality issues. All of this applies at any altitude, though for aforementioned reasons its doubtful you are "safer" at high altitude.
The reality is that unless you take your car as built, put crappy fuel in it and run it on a dyno on the hottest day you can find, you are basically whistling past the graveyard listening to that kind of BS advice from some dropout at a dealership. Oh, and the thing about better fuel every Nth tank is pure unadulterated horseshit.
/yeah, I've got a 300whp Mazda I turbo'd myself, and yep, I run it on lower octane fuel than the OEM suggested when it made 140whp...
edit: Also the "cleaner" thing is junk. If anything, the lower octane stuff will be "cleaner" for a variety of reasons...despite what your friendly neighborhood oil merchant might advertise. Zero relationship to altitude.
Last edited by Garrett; 10-12-2007 at 08:40 PM.
10-12-2007, 08:34 PM #23Registered User
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- Apr 2004
- Southeast New York
How are you getting that kind of mileage with your 06 5 speed? I have the same car and can't get over 27 even when I'm being nice to it. We've had it on a couple of long road trips and I am usually pretty easy on the pedal when I have the kids in the car and we tend to average about 25-26.
10-12-2007, 09:19 PM #24
I love my 2.5 XT Forester. I get 24 to 26 MPG consistently, and I drive a mix of city and highway. The turbo is great, but only when you want it to be. You can always shift before it kicks in at ~3K. I test drove the 3.0L and didn't like the way it got moving from a dead stop. I just felt like the torque curve didn't favor the lower end as much as I expected it to.Brandine: Now Cletus, if I catch you with pig lipstick on your collar one more time you ain't gonna be allowed to sleep in the barn no more!
Cletus: Duly noted.
10-13-2007, 07:08 AM #25
I have an HKS turbo timer on my turbocharged landcruiser, I have two other turbo charged cars and if you run synthetic oils I've never seen a coking issue due to the turbos. I've torn the one down on my Mitsu several times and oil is the least of the issues on the Mitsu thrust bearing turbos. Personally, I think the timers were a good idea 20 years ago, but the usefullness is minimal with better bearing sections and synthetic fluids today. The one nice thing is when you park and leave the timer running and they guy that parks next to you says, "Your car is still running" and before he can finish his statement the vehicle shuts off, and you respond, "Must have been your imagination."Driving to Targhee