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Oliverthepirate 22nd March 2018 08:17 PM

Advice wanted - '07 3rd Gen vs '09 4th Gen Outback
Hi there,

Was after some advice. I'm trying to decide between two future loves:

I finally found a 2007 (3rd gen) Outback with 54, 000 miles on the clock, knocked 1k off the price (to UK 6,600) and thought that was that - I put a holding deposit on it, going to see it Friday and drive home.

BUT - just this morning a 2009 (4th gen) came up with 72, 000 miles on her. It's priced at 8,995 (2,300 higher) . I would aim to get that price down, but still potentially looking at spending close to 2k more to get the 2009 with 20,000 more miles on the clock than that 2007 - but the 2009 has traction control and lineartronic as well as being the updated 4th gen body, none of which I'm totally sure is worth the extra 2k or 20,000 miles. I also know the 2007 has had a timing belt replacement last year, the 09 has not. If it matters, the 07 is the SEn and the 09 is the SE.

The car will be for weekend adventures but also have to cope with some commuting during the week on occasion. Any advice welcome, thanks in advance.

Kevin 22nd March 2018 08:37 PM

G'day & Welcome.

Which engines do they have? Petrol, Diesel? If petrol I guess they are both the EJ engines?

Oliverthepirate 22nd March 2018 09:02 PM

Thanks Kevin,sorry, some important info missing there:) Both are 2.5l (listed as 2457cc) petrol. No further info than that I'm afraid, though I can ask the appropriate questions tomorrow when I go to see them!

Kevin 23rd March 2018 12:02 AM

I believe I've found the 09 and it looks very clean indeed! Full service history etc. Can't find the 07; does it have full service history as well?

They both have the same EJ engines. Look for signs of weeping head gaskets even though these later EJ engines weren't as prone to the problem as the early to mid 2000 EJs.

As well as the extra features of the 09 I'd be considering the resale value. I imagine the 07 will drop significantly in value over, say, the next 2 years especially as it does not have the newer features of the 09.

Gauge the overall condition of the vehicles as well and don't forget to look underneath for bent floor pans (or does that only happen down here!) :iconwink:

I see there's a 2010 available for a little less than the 09:

MiddleAgeSubie 23rd March 2018 12:27 AM

If it were my money, it would be Gen IV or a different make or model. VDC is what makes these things go. It eliminates diagonal spin in rough terrain and it is thus easential in my book.

In addition, here in the US Gen IV has half an inch more clearance which IS a big deal.

I always liked Gen III as street cars but unless you find a VDC model and are willing to cut those bumpers, they are hopeless on anything beyond a muddy dirt road or a fairly shallow sand.

That said, the Gen IV, too, has rather hopeless bumpers so if sharp angles are really common in your area, a Foz or another brand would be a better choice.

OTOH, wherever it can go, the OB is just great.

Oliverthepirate 23rd March 2018 05:08 AM

Thanks guys,
Yes, both have full service history. The 07 I put holding deposit on so I think they never bothered putting up the photos, though it is listed on the same site. I saw that 2010 too, but it's about 100 miles from the house (probably a short stroll in Australia!) - the 07 is a garage right by our house and won an award for Britain's best garage which was reassuring (from a national newspaper, not itself:) resale I guess is a concern, but the 07 is already 2k cheaper than the 09 - also having only 50,000 miles, whereas the 09 (with 72000)will likely have close to 100000 when /if we trade up. Interesting about the bumpers - we live in the south, lots of very tight twisty lanes and reversing to let tractors through. It did occur to me the 07 is a slightly shorter wheelbase. Almost none of our driving will be 'true' off-road, but we do need it to be capable of handling remote and slippy farm tracks and Welsh mountain roads.

Kevin 23rd March 2018 08:12 AM


Originally Posted by Oliverthepirate (Post 100344)
but it's about 100 miles from the house (probably a short stroll in Australia!)

Yep, that's a morning jog!

Good luck with your decision!

scalman 23rd March 2018 08:33 AM

so that 3rd gen without VDC ? ouch ? i had car without ABS and then without traction control and now with traction control and i would never go back .

MiddleAgeSubie 24th March 2018 12:09 AM

Otoh, Gen III features the bulletproof 4EAT vs the first gen CVT on the Gen IV.

You might actually be getting the better car with the Gen III, but it is not an offroad capable vehicle by any standard. Some here love arguing otherwise, but older Subarus, including the beloved old Foresters, are "capable" in a highly qualified manner. At least the Foz can boast half decent angles and a small footprint coupled with a short wheelbase. The OB has nothing to boast about without VDC. By the same token, "true" 4wd vehicles, while actually capable in something more than dirt and sand, are much inferior to Subarus on-road, especially in bad weather, so pick your poison.

The new Land Rover Discovery is the only one that checks all boxes on paper but at that price point one would not want to worry about being stranded at any moment for no good reason. It is ironic that two of the three brands with the most capable 4x4s are also cellar dwellers when it comes to reliability and dependability.

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