The Most Common Subaru Legacy Complaints You Should Know About

The Subaru Legacy has a long history and is considered the flagship vehicle for the company. The model represents Subaru well and has a good resale voo8alue, with studies indicating that it only depreciates 43% after five years.

The model has undergone several redesigns over the years, some of which haven’t been the company’s best ideas. Some of those changes brought about various problems for Subaru Legacy owners. If you’ve been thinking of getting a Subaru Legacy, here are the most common complaints you should know about.

The engine issues in the model

A blue Subaru Legacy in front of a Black and white background in an indoor environment.
Subaru Legacy | Getty Images

The most common issue with the Subaru Legacy is the engine issue. Owners have reported that the car consumes a lot of oil between oil changes despite the drivers maintaining the car at proper intervals. Most drivers were usually unaware of the issue until mechanics informed them of the oil loss when they went in for routine oil change and maintenance.

Others found out when they experienced issues with the engine, while some realized there could be a problem by having a code thrown with their check engine light. Most of these owners would trace the issue to a loss of a significant amount of oil ranging between 1 quart to 3 quarts of oil mid oil change.

If a vehicle loses a considerable amount of oil, the motor would eventually get damaged, meaning a driver would have to replace the engine entirely, costing nearly $7,000.

CVT transmission issues in the Legacy

Owners of Subaru Legacy models from the year 2010 to 2015 also reported problems with the vehicle’s CVT transmissions. They noticed that when driving or stopping abruptly, the car would shudder then stall. A closer look uncovered that the CVT was the cause of the problem and that the drivers would need to replace it.

Usually, owners reported the CVT issue would begin once the five-year warranty was up, meaning they would have to foot the entire bill, which poses a massive problem because the repair bill is high, coming in at around $2,000.

After many complaints, the company decided to extend its CVT transmission warranty from five years to 10 years, equivalent to 100,000 miles. However, the warranty would only cover new replacements, not the salvaged or rebuilt ones. The contract also stipulated that the repair had to be done within a specific time frame.

According to CoPilot Search, Subaru Legacy owners have also had an issue with the vehicle’s faulty headlights. Although it’s normal for headlights to die out, the problem was much worse with the 2010 Legacy, forcing owners to replace the bulbs constantly.

Another problem reported with the Subaru Legacy is the infotainment system errors. Most drivers said that the display screen and radio controls would freeze up and refuse to turn off even after the vehicle is shut down. Fortunately, the company covered the issue in its warranty.

The site also notes that the Subaru Legacy has been plagued with head gasket leak complaints, an issue that is too expensive for many drivers. It’s impossible to repair the head gasket without removing the entire engine meaning one would have to pay about $1,600 to get the issue fixed.

Is the 2020 Subaru Legacy reliable?

It seems Subaru has been listening to their consumers and has responded with the 2020 Subaru Legacy, which is a vast improvement from the ones before it. According to Consumer Reports, the 2020 model doesn’t have engine issues. 

The company has made changes to the motor, meaning the engine will last longer. The 2020 model has had close to no complaints about its transmission. Overall, Consumer Reports gave the 2020 Subaru Legacy a 3 out of 5 predicted reliability score.

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