Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

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niners9088
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Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by niners9088 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:24 pm

I have the opportunity to choose a new car for work that can also be used for personal use. I don't have to pay for gas, maintenance, etc. but only a fixed amount per mile for the personal use, which is the same amount no matter which of the vehicles I choose. If I choose the Outback I would have to pay $1500 and would have the vehicle for a minimum of 65,000 miles or 36 months. As of now I"m not sure if I can add any other options and if I can how much i would have to pay for them

Toyota Camry Hybrid LE
Subaru Legacy 2.5i Premium
Subaru Outback 2.5i Premium (pay $1,500)

I've done some initial research and plan to go test driving this weekend but I'm looking for your feedback. Which would you choose and why? Any reason to completely avoid one or anything I should consider differently given this approach rather then the typical ownership methods.

rgs92
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by rgs92 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:28 pm

Personally as a tall guy I find the Subarus more comfy and supportive and less cramped and just more substantial than the Camry, so I would choose those.

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Alexa9
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by Alexa9 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:30 pm

Do you need the capability of the Subaru AWD? (Snow, mountains, etc.)
Do you need a Hybrid if you're not paying for gas?
What if something happens at work, will you be out the $1500 if you get the Outback?

bloom2708
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by bloom2708 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:32 pm

+1 for the Camry Hybrid.

Drive each. Fit and finish and Toyota quality should be the tipping point. Better MPG for the hybrid too.
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niners9088
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by niners9088 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:37 pm

Alexa9 wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:30 pm
Do you need the capability of the Subaru AWD? (Snow, mountains, etc.)
Do you need a Hybrid if you're not paying for gas?
What if something happens at work, will you be out the $1500 if you get the Outback?

No, I don't need the AWD, nope no benefit to me in dollar savings of the Hybrid, and yes I would be out of the $1500. There are a couple other options like paying for a minivan but these are the ones I'd consider.

ssquared87
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by ssquared87 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:00 pm

Of those choices, the Subarus are the better options. They're more comfortable and drive better than a Camry. Do they not offer the Accord or Mazda 6? Those are better choices than any of the options you mention.

Beehave
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by Beehave » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:09 pm

I own a 2015 Camry hybrid XLE and a 2015 Camry (gas engine) LE. I do not have much experience with Subarus. I have a friends with Outback and Forester and they like them, and I like my Camrys. A couple of years ago I researched the Legacy and as I recall it was one of the cars cited by IIHS as having zero highway fatalities for the year ended.

The Outback will be the heaviest (and safest?) and have the most capacity. Probably the slowest and maybe a bit more of a problem if you deal with crowded parking lots etc.

The Legacy is nice looking and very safe with its AWD. Same of course with the Outback.

I suspect you'll find the Camry hybrid to be the quickest and, obviously, it will get much better gas mileage. It looks as if you are not paying for gas, so this may or may not be a factor in your thinking.

If you need the AWD (probably for snow), get one of the Subarus. I think if I did not need the space I'd pick the Legacy over the Outback just because the Outback seems large to me. But that's strictly personal.

I rented a 2018 Camry and I liked it. Regarding the hybrid, they've done some reconfiguring and the trunk is now (allegedly) normal size (15.1 cubic feet, same I think as the Legacy. The older Camry hybrids had smaller trunks.

Take your test drives and see about comfort and also which features you can get. If any of the three comes with blind-spot awareness and rear cross traffic alert and the others do not, I would take that one period for safety over the other two. Those features are that good. Subaru's Eyesight system is very good, but I think Toyota includes an equivalent (or at least a close second) for adaptive cruise. I'm not sure if these cars come with lane keeping assist or just lane departure awareness.

If you are planning to purchase or in some way take over ownership of the vehicle you pick at the end of the 36 months (or whatever), I'd give the advantage to the Toyota on general grounds of cost of operation and ownership not just at the brand level, but also because in my opinion (not researched) the frailty of AWD is greater than the frailty of hybrids. But if I needed the space or all wheel drive I would not hesitate to snag the Outback or Legacy.

If I needed to purchase a vehicle the three choices you have would be high on my list to consider and I don't think any one of them is a mistake. Bottom line, go for comfort, and surely go for blind spot awareness and rear cross traffic alert if at all possible to get them.

Best wishes.

bloom2708
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by bloom2708 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:30 pm

ssquared87 wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:00 pm
Of those choices, the Subarus are the better options. They're more comfortable and drive better than a Camry. Do they not offer the Accord or Mazda 6? Those are better choices than any of the options you mention.
I doubt you will think the Legacy drives better than the Camry. Recently test drove both. The Legacy was not as refined, more road noise and a bit more jiggly on bumpy roads. But, everything is relative and subjective. The Legacy was superior to the Forester ride. We did not drive a 2018 Outback. Wife didn't like the wagon look. Sigh.
"We are not here to please, but to provoke thoughtfulness." --Unknown Boglehead

ssquared87
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by ssquared87 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:30 pm

bloom2708 wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:30 pm
ssquared87 wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:00 pm
Of those choices, the Subarus are the better options. They're more comfortable and drive better than a Camry. Do they not offer the Accord or Mazda 6? Those are better choices than any of the options you mention.
I doubt you will think the Legacy drives better than the Camry. Recently test drove both. The Legacy was not as refined, more road noise and a bit more jiggly on bumpy roads. But, everything is relative and subjective. The Legacy was superior to the Forester ride. We did not drive a 2018 Outback. Wife didn't like the wagon look. Sigh.
I dont consider complete isolation from road feel and noise to be a good thing, and I prefer the Legacy's better road feel and balance to the camry which basically feels like a video game. Provides absolutely no information about what's happening with the tires. Sure the legacy has an engine that sounds like marbles, but the handling is better and its more fun.

I daily drove a BRZ for a while...it was noisy, the engine sounded like marbles, the interior was cheap and the ergonomics were terrible, but I still preferred driving that to my BMW 3 which felt overweight, numb and bland in comparison. That said, the BMW was a far better balance, the driving dynamics were better than most cars and it had the smoothest engine around, ergonomics were great. It was a perfect balance, but it didn't excite me the way the BRZ did.

But to your point, I think both options are terrible. The Mazda 6 and Accord are more refined than the Camry and Legacy and are also more fun to drive at the same time. They have nicer interiors and better ergonomics on top of everything else

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beyou
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by beyou » Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:45 pm

Test drive them to see what you like.
Outback drives more like a small SUV than a car. It's heavy and you don't feel the potholes in the road so much,
but not fun to drive at all, not as responsive as a sedan. Hybrid would be the opposite driving experience, quick and responsive,
not just something to consider for gas savings (and gas is not relevant to you).

What happens at the end of 36 months, must you return, do you have option to buy used ?

jebmke
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by jebmke » Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:56 pm

We have a 2018 Camry Hybrid. It is my wife's car. I find it quite low and cumbersome to get in and out of. It is comfortable enough once I'm in there. Since I drive a RAV4 (older model), I also find the entire car low to the ground so visibility is not as good as I get with the RAV.

I don't drive it much but I do recall a couple of times on the highway noticing quite a bit of noise that seemed like it might be related to an issue with the airflow around the side mirrors.
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Jack FFR1846
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:02 pm

Do you have any option to "up" the Legacy to a limited? We bought a 17 limited this year and I helped my mom purchase a new 18 Legacy premium. To me, the upgrade to the limited is quite a dramatic difference.

To me, the Outback is too huge. If you're an SUV person, you would be right at home in one.

If those 3 are the concrete choices, I'd get the Legacy.
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badger42
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by badger42 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:16 pm

The Camry is boring. I'd get the Legacy or the outback.

If you drive primarily on nice paved roads, don't carry tons of stuff, and value having a locked trunk to carry / hide valuables (e.g. laptop back) in, get the Legacy.

If you want more flexibility to go offroad or mostly drive on poor quality roads, carry lots of stuff (e.g. frequent furniture moving, large toolboxes, outdoor gear, musical instruments), the extra off-road capability and/or trunk space of the Outback are worth it (get a cargo cover for at least some ability to hide what's in the trunk).

If you only need the extra cargo space one or twice a year, that $1500 easily covers renting a larger vehicle when you need it over the next several years.

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Sasquatch
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by Sasquatch » Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:20 pm

I’m a huge Outback fan. If you need to haul stuff the Forester / Outback is a slam dunk. If not, I think the Camry might be the better tool for the job. I am very tall and the Outback fits me the best. The Outback sits up a bit higher off the ground which makes it easier for me to get out of.

You mention you don’t need a vehicle for snow. I will say the Subaru is very secure in heavy rain downpours. Lastly, you mention the 2.5i engine. It’s not nearly enough engine for our Outback. Passing, merging, on ramps, etc. not enough grunt.

niners9088
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Re: Outback, Legacy, Camry Hybrid

Post by niners9088 » Mon Sep 17, 2018 12:58 pm

Thanks for the feedback so far. To answer a few of the questions.

At the end of the 36 months I would have to return. No option to buy, etc.

While I mentioned no need for AWD we do sometimes travel back to the north during the holiday's and do have a dog who would come along. However as some mentioned the $1500 could easily cover a rental for a few weeks if needed.

The biggest downside that I see to the Subaru's is that they are due for an update in 2020 and have some older base options due to that. Conversely some of the standard options on the Camry Hybrid LE aren't great either (Steel rims).

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