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When looking for a new or used car, you should consider the initial cost and the ongoing costs of maintenance and repairs. These costs can add up quickly over time and impact the overall reliability of the vehicle. Subaru is a popular brand that is known for its durability and reliability, but like any car, it requires regular maintenance and occasional repairs.

By understanding the costs associated with maintaining a Subaru, you can make an informed decision about whether it’s the right choice for you. So here’s a look at two models from Subaru that have some of the lowest annual/yearly maintenance costs of the brand under $400.

The Subaru Justy’s annual maintenance costs

The Subaru Justy is a subcompact car that was first produced in 1984. Despite being discontinued, it remains a popular choice among drivers looking for a reliable and affordable vehicle. The average annual cost of ownership in terms of repairs and maintenance is $395, which is relatively low, making it an excellent choice for budget-conscious car owners.

However, it does have some common problems that owners should be aware of. One being electrical issues brought on by connector corrosion. According to RepairPal, this can cause various electrical components to malfunction, including the lights and radio. Another common issue is engine oil leaks, which can result in reduced engine performance and damage if left unaddressed.

Despite these common difficulties, the Justy is a well-built car that offers good value. Its compact size makes it easy to maneuver in tight spaces, while its fuel-efficient engine can provide exceptional gas mileage.

The Subaru Loyale has some concerning reported problems

The Subaru Loyale is a far cry from some of the company’s more performance-oriented models. However, this gives the Loyale a sort of utlitarian charm. It was a car focused on efficiency and practicality, there were some problems though.

Engine oil leaks are one of the issues with the Loyale. These may happen in the oil pan, the valve cover gasket, or the oil pump, among other places in the engine. While oil leaks may seem minor at first, they can cause serious damage to the engine if left unaddressed. Any oil leaks should be inspected and repaired as soon as possible to prevent costly repairs down the road.

Another drawback that some Loyale owners have mentioned is valve lifter noise. Several things, like low oil pressure, worn-out lifters, or an imperfect valve train, can contribute to this situation. While valve lifter noise may not affect the vehicle’s performance, it can be a nuisance to drivers and passengers alike.

The third fault with the Loyale is an early timing belt failure. The timing belt is a crucial part of the engine that controls how precisely the valves and pistons are timed. If the timing belt fails, it can cause extensive damage to the engine and require costly repairs.

It’s essential to have the timing belt replaced at the manufacturer’s recommended interval to prevent premature failure. All these come to an annual repair cost of $389.

The Subaru WRX STI’s high-performance thrills come with a hefty bill for maintenance

On the other end of the spectrum, the Subaru WRX STI boasts impressive performance and a sporty design but comes with a much higher annual cost of ownership. At $758, this model has one of the highest maintenance costs in the Subaru lineup.

The reliability rating for the WRX STI is 2.5 out of 5.0, indicating that it may be more prone to problems than other Subaru models.

Common issues include the check engine light being on due to failed knock sensors, misfires caused by faulty spark plug wires, and ABS control module concerns, which are addressed in a technical service bulletin by RepairPal. For a high-performance sports car like the WRX STI, be prepared for the higher costs that come with it.


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