Back again! I’ve been looking for a smallish awd vehicle. At first, thought I wanted a 2003 - 2008 range Subaru Forester S, manual Trans - but discovered the seats are really uncomfortable for me and the clutch is a long reach for me. Then looked at 2006 - 2008 Subaru Outback Limiteds. Wanted a 2007 but they are hard to find for some reason. Subies for sale in those years (what I can barely afford) have anywhere from 75k to over 130k - possibly meaning expensive repairs (timing belts, water pump, head gaskets, wheel bearings, etc). I’ve read lots of bad stories about the repair record in older Subies, so am getting a bit wary. I could deal with the sportshift in the auto Limiteds, but have noticed they seem to upshift at the wrong time. I just found a 2006 Ltd with manual trans, @71K, but then heard that isn’t the greatest year - seems to be a lot of issues, which is why I originally looked for a 2007.
So now I am back looking at Honda CRVs, but want a manual in a CRV. Found a 2002 but with 138k for @$6,000. Also have found a 2002 for @$9,000 and a 2004 for a @$10,500. I’m not in love with the Honda seats - a bit uncomfortable. I really did want heated seats since I drive a lot in the winter. I could have the seats padded, but I’ve read that heated seats can’t be out in these models because it would interfere with the side (?) airbags.
So … I’m looking for advice - once again. Something tells me that I will feel more comfortable in the Subie, but may also be looking at less reliability because of age and mileage. And then - Honda CRVs have their issues, too.
I like Mazdas, but can’t afford a new awd Mazda 5 or even an adequate Mazda 3. Help!!!