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Subaru Legacy L Wagon
Driven by What's Inside

The Subaru Legacy wagon has been the top selling wagon in the United States since the early 1990s. While the boxy American station wagons that characterized family transportation in years past were replaced by the minivan and later the SUV, Subaru found plenty of people willing to buck the trend and drive a wagon since it came with an AWD drivetrain. Now it seems like we have come full circle with the latest trend in family transportation - crossover vehicles. Subaru has made this "crossover" vehicles for over two decades now.

I have been driving the Glacier White 1995 Legacy L wagon since 2009. The Ruby Mica Red 1998 wagon got worn out over several years of fun use and abuse, so I found a new platform to transfer all the fun parts over.

Pictures
Thumbnails below reference to the pictures in higher resolution:

1998 Ruby Mica Red

The red wagon was purchased in December 2002 from Jina Auto Sales in Elmhurst, IL. There was one previous owner, apparently a lady with kids, sold it (probably a trade-in) to a Toyota dealership in the Elmhurst area.

1995 Glacier White

The white wagon was purchased in March 2009 from Cyanne in Fairview Heights, IL. The first owner of the car used it around the Sacramento region, based on the CARFAX information I have, until 2004 when Cyanne bought it and used it in Arizona. She didn't bring it to Fairview Heights until 2008, so the car has spent most of its time in The Southwest.

Engine: 2.5L SOHC 16-valve H4. 8.2:1 compression ratio.

Something you don't find often in a car anymore - a boxer engine, providing lower center of gravity and higher reliability, since the crankshaft is only half the length of a traditional 4-cylinder. It save space too - the Subaru Loyale with an H4 has the spare tyre in the engine compartment! And of course, it's mounted longitudinally, sending power to the full-time AWD drivetrain.

Transmission: 5-speed manual

Drivetrain: full-time AWD with a viscous-coupling limited-slip center differential

Suspension: 4-wheel independent suspension with unequal-length rear lateral links for passive 4-wheel steering

Dimensions:

    Curb Weight: 2915 pounds (Only a few pounds more than a 2005 VW Golf, so the Legacy is pretty light for a car of this capacity, partly due to the light-weight boxer motor, partly due to thin body panels that also happen to attract parking lot dings.

    Cargo volume - 36.1 cubic feet

    Turning Diameter: 34.8 feet (In comparison, the tiny Audi TT has a 34.2-foot turning diameter. The Subaru WRX has a 35.4-foot turning radius, and a 4-inch shorter wheelbase. It definitely does U-turns pretty well.)

    Ground Clearance: 6.1 inches (but the front bumper really hinders approach angles)
    Wheelbase: 103.5 inches
    Track - Front: 57.5 inches
    Track - Rear: 57.3 inches
    Length: 184.5 inches
    Width: 67.5 inches
    Height: 57.1 inches
    Headroom - Front: 39.5 inches
    Headroom - Rear: 38.8 inches
    Legroom - Front: 43.3 inches
    Legroom - Rear: 34.8 inches
    Shoulder room - Front: 54.1 inches
    Shoulder room - Rear: 53.6 inches

Modifications - Parts that are now on the white 1995 wagon:

- EJ257 shortblock - 2.5L H4, 8.4:1 compression ratio
- EJ25 SOHC 16-valve heads
- EJ25 SOHC intake manifold and fuel injectors from a 99 Forester
- Exedy FF02 lightweight flywheel: 12.7 lbs, solid one piece billet chromoly steel - I think the stock one is almost 30 pounds, it was pretty gross.
- Exedy Stage 1 clutch
- ATE TYP 200 DOT 4 brake fluid, dry boiling point 536F, wet boiling point 396F.
- Apexi S-AFC - fuel computer
- TD04L-13T turbo
- WRX top-mount intercooler
- TurboXS Catless Uppipe - Stainless steel with flex joint
- HKS downpipe
- 3" custom midpipe
- Flo-pro muffler, stainless steel tip
- WRX front crossmember
- STi Group N motor mounts
- STi Group N transmission mount
- STi 2004 Struts and Springs rebuilt gravel spec by Feal
- JVC KD-G300 CD audio receiver
- Front seats from a GC8 RS Coupe
- Outback hood from a 1999 Outback SUS
- Boost Gauge from a Volvo
- Center armrest from the red 1998 wagon.

Wheels and Tires:
Subaru OEM GC8 takeoff alloy wheels, 16x7 +53 offset, 16.5 pounds

    - Summer: Kumho Ecsta MX 205/55/16
    - Street: Bridgestone Potenza G009 205/55/16
VW OEM steel wheels, 15x6.5, +43 offset, 16.6 pounds
    - Snow/Rally: Black Rocket Gravel Rally Tires BR22 Alpin 195/65/15

Stock Features:

    - power locks
    - power 4-channel ABS brakes with 10.1" front and 10.5" rear discs
    - a hill holder clutch! (no slipping backwards on hills)
    - dual airbags
    - split 60/40 folding rear seat with headrests and 3-point seat belts
    - air conditioning (that shuts off automatically at full throttle, providing max power)
    - rear heating ducts (under the front seats)
    - cruise control
    - dual powered side mirrors
    - power windows, driver one-touch down feature
    - rear defroster and wiper with wash
    - rear cargo cover and light
    - dual front map lights
    - remote fuel door release
    - auto on/off headlights

The 1995 is actually an upgrade from the 1998 car. It seems Subaru made the car worse over time. The 1995 has:

    - Dual-port heads, resulting in the most excellent stock exhaust note of any naturally aspirated Subaru I've ever driven.
    - 10.2" front disc brakes
    - one-piece headlights that offer better lighting than the two-piece in the other car
    - larger folding mirrors
    - higher quality trunk floor materials
    - chrome exterior trim
    - 140 mph speedometer, which may not be an improvement since it seems to encourage speeding...

Hood - The hood scoop provides air flow down through the intercooler.

GC8 RS Coupe Seats - An improvement comfort-wise over stock, and it does make the entire driving position exactly like a GC8 instead of a Legacy.

Instrument Cluster - It has the no-nonsense 90s Japanese instrument cluster with the cool indicator of which door is open.

Folding Mirror - The 95-97 mirrors are larger and fold compared to the 98 mirrors.

Door - It doesn't have an upper door frame so it looks pretty cool with the windows down.

Center Console - I have a nice home for my little black model WRX, as well as a compartment for my 110V AC inverter to plug in cell phones, laptops, battery chargers and stuff.

Center Console - Subaru even included a clip in the lid so commonly used items such as badges and cards don't get lost.

Seat Belt compartment - Here's some attention to detail: a place to store seat belts in the rear seat so you don't lose them when you fold the backs down to expand the cargo area.

Cargo Area - Here are the 36.1 cubic feet of cargo area promised

Spare Tire Panel - The panel that covers the spare tire area doesn't even cover the whole cargo floor, so you can open it up without having to take everything out of the trunk.

Organizer - There's a reason why one would access that spare tire compartment more often - it has a huge organizer in it for tools, spare wiper blades, service manuals, jumper cables...

Spare Tire - Removing the organizer reveals a deep spare tire well that has a full diameter spare tyre.

Full-Sized Spare - It's deep enough for a full-sized spare too, by the way.

Radiator - The radiator has two huge fans to make sure the engine stays cool while idling in traffic.

Performance Driving

Video of a few runs at the Champaign County Sports Car Club Autocross on the 27th of August, 2005 - Watch it on Youtube or Download the Windows Media file (2.9 MB).

1998 Ruby Mica Red
Date miles Service and Modifications
2003.01.02 53000 acquired car, replaced front wipers
2003.01.06 53818 replaced rear wiper
2003.01.20 54576 complete body wax
2003.02.22 56862 replaced air filter with STP OEM replacement
2003.02.27 57010 oil/filter change with synthetic oil (Midas)
2003.04.26 60360 tire rotation/balance, replaced timing belt, spark plugs, fuel filter, transmission flushed, brake fluid bled
2003.04.30 60445 replaced front wipers
2003.05.06 61100 changed to 205/55 16 Bridgestone Potenza RE92s on OEM WRX 16x6.5" wheels with 500 miles on them
2003.05.12 61558 oil/filter change with Mobil 1 synthetic
2003.05.19 61746 removed intake silencer and changed intake path to draw high-pressure air from the fender and wheel well
2003.05.27 62506 complete cooling system flush, refilled with regular ethylene glycol antifreeze (low silicate and phosphate)
2003.06.09 63156 replaced air filter with K&N replacement
2003.07.24 65555 oil/filter change with Mobil 1 synthetic
2003.07.28 65767 rotated Bridgestone Potenza RE92 tires
2003.08.05 replaced 2 high brake lights
2003.08.28 complete body wax
2003.09.18 replaced reverse light bulbs with Narva-Speziallampen halogen reverse lights from Daniel Stern Lighting
2003.10.04 69335 oil/filter change with Mobil 1 synthetic, complete body wax
2003.10.16 70044 complete clutch system replaced with OEM clutch, flywheel replaced with Fidanza Aluminum Flywheel (9.5 lbs), front right axle boot replaced
2003.10.24 70448 front brake pads replaced with kelvar Axxis Ultimate pads, front rotors turned, exhaust hanger welded
2003.11.27 73207 oil/filter change with Mobil 1 synthetic
2003.12.06 74049 rotated Bridgestone Potenza RE92 tires
2003.12.27 75101 mounted new Bridgestone Potenza RE900 195/70 14 tires on OEM 14x5.5" wheels
2003.12.31 74392 complete body wax
2004.01.19 77872 complete body wax
2004.01.22 78010 oil/filter change with Mobil 1 synthetic
2004.02.04 78679 replaced left headlight with Sylvannia XV
2004.02.21 79254 complete body wax
2004.03.10 80000 changed to Bridgestone Potenza RE92 tires, front left axle replaced
2004.04.01 80997 complete body wax
2004.04.08 81238 oil/filter change with Mobil 1 synthetic
2004.05.28 84964 oil/filter change with Mobil 1 synthetic
2004.07.16 86429 complete body wax
2004.08.10 88006 oil/filter change with Mobil 1 synthetic
2004.10.02 89989 mounted new Kumho Ecsta MX 225/50 16 tires on OEM WRX 16x6.5" wheels
2004.10.04 90145 replaced rear brake pads, brake rotors
2004.10.14 90641 replaced all wipers
2004.10.19 90801 replaced right headlight with Sylvannia XV
2004.10.27 91261 brake fluid flush with ATE TYP 200 DOT 4 brake fluid
2004.11.28 92650 spark plugs replaced with Denso
2004.11.29 92650 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2004.12.16 93211 complete body wax
2004.12.23 93647 plug wires replaced with OEM
2004.12.29 93841 radiator flush, replaced broken spring in shifter joint
2005.02.17 94077 induction system, long block, valve covers, exhaust system, water pump, oil pump, fuel injectors, timing belt, engine crossmember, battery replaced, Apexi S-AFC installed
2005.03.14 94077 mounted new Kumho Ecsta MX 205/55 16 tires on OEM WRX 16x6.5" wheels
2005.03.17 94642 front brake pads replaced - kelvar Axxis Ultimate, front rotors replaced
2005.04.13 95547 complete body wax
2005.05.18 97421 oil changed with Napa oil
2005.06.05 98147 replaced motor and transmission mounts with STi Group N mounts
2005.06.18 98756 changed to Continental ContiExtremeContact tires, changed front left turn signal lamp
2005.07.06 99924 replaced hood with carbon fibre hood from Ion Performance
2005.07.16 100524 oil/filter changed with Napa oil
2005.07.31 101282 complete body wax
2005.08.19 102555 changed front right turn signal lamp
2005.08.27 103212 changed to Kumho MX tires
2005.10.15 105471 replaced outgoing fuel line from fuel filter
2005.10.22 105889 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic, replaced fuel hose between fuel rails
2005.12.06 109230 changed to Bridgestone RE900 tires
2005.12.24 110463 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2005.12.26 110644 complete body wax
2006.01.27 113083 replaced right headlight
2006.02.11 114179 replaced front seats with 2000 GC8 RS front seats
2006.02.16 114566 installed grille from 95 Legacy
2006.02.18 114702 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2006.02.21 114934 brake fluid flushed with ATE Super Blue DOT 4 brake fluid, replaced steering gear boots, replaced 1 front right wheel stud, 4-wheel alignment, changed to Kumho MX tires
2006.03.04 115714 replaced left mirror
2006.03.13 116081 replaced front right ABS sensor, front sway bar brackets
2006.03.20 116602 changed to Bridgestone RE900 tires
2006.04.01 117175 replaced A/C condenser, evaporator, freon recharged, changed to Kumho MX tires
2006.05.20 119914 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2006.06.17 121136 changed to Bridgestone RE900 tires
2006.06.28 121997 installed Hella 500 lights
2006.07.06 122401 replaced uppipe gaskets
2006.07.16 122833 replaced downpipe with HKS, air filter
2006.07.19 123240 painted hood original Ruby Mica Red
2006.08.01 123810 front brake pads replaced - kelvar Axxis Ultimate, front rotors replaced
2006.08.04 123996 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2006.12.13 129194 replaced right headlight and turn signal assembly
2007.02.10 129227 replaced downpipe gasket, vaccuum hoses
2007.04.07 130542 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2007.04.27 131397 rotated tires
2007.05.12 132232 mounted new Kumho Ecsta MX 205/55 16 tires on OEM GC8 16x7" wheels
2007.06.29 133574 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2007.07.28 134808 replaced turbo, BOV
2007.08.04 135000 replaced return fuel line
2007.08.09 135178 replaced right inner tie rod, CV boot, 4-wheel alignment
2007.08.18 135382 replaced battery
2007.08.21 135546 replaced AC compressor, AC o-rings
2007.09.15 136302 replaced front O2 sensor
2007.09.24 136493 complete body wax
2007.10.06 136924 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic, rotated tires
2007.10.20 137237 spark plugs replaced with NGK BKR7EIX
2007.12.06 138589 throttle cable replaced, mounted new Bridgestone Potenza G009 205/55 16 tires on OEM GC8 16x7" wheels
2007.12.15 138962 replaced rear wiper
2008.01.05 139515 replaced coil pack
2008.01.25 139915 replaced exhaust gaskets, installed custom 3" cat-back exhaust
2008.02.01 140057 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2008.02.21 140700 replaced rear O2 sensor
2008.03.05 141159 replaced front O2 sensor
2008.03.12 141384 replaced rear brake pads, changed to Kumho MX tires
2008.03.15 141384 radiator flush
2008.04.19 142639 replaced broken spring in shifter joint
2008.05.03 142882 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2008.06.15 144060 replaced front O2 sensor
2008.06.17 144219 brake fluid flushed with Valvoline High Perf Synpower
1995 Glacier White
Date miles Service and Modifications
2008.09.18 182737 oil/filter change at Valvoline
2009.03.27 183150 acquired car, thermostat replaced, radiator flush
2009.04.08 183212 replaced front seats with 2000 GC8 RS front seats
2009.04.18 183438 brake fluid flush with ATE TYP 200 DOT 4 brake fluid
2009.04.22 183660 changed to Kumho MX tires
2009.04.27 184411 oil/filter changed, center armrest changed
2009.04.29 184593 HVAC control unit replaced with one from a 97 Legacy
2009.05.02 184809 front wiper replaced
2009.05.03 184809 driver's door sensor replaced, paint touched up on door dings
2009.05.09 185083 front left axle replaced with Hillco remanufactured axle.
2009.06.10 185319 engine, front subframe, steering rack, exhaust, hood swapped from red Legacy,
uppipe, clutch, flywheel, front sway bar, injectors, front right axle, fuel filter, oil, oil filter, coolant, thermostat, spark plugs replaced,
Apexi S-AFC installed,
and Road Tuned by Raw Performance with LM-2 wideband
2009.06.12 108319 complete body wax
2009.07.09 186380 installed boost gauge
2009.07.11 186578 4-wheel alignment
2009.09.14 188748 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2009.10.10 189466 replaced coolant line
2009.10.24 189466 rear view mirror swapped from Red Legacy
2009.10.26 189466 replaced windshield
2009.11.21 190317 removed intake silencer, replaced uppipe gasket, downpipe gasket, turbo oil return line
2009.12.03 190611 changed to Bridgestone Potenza G009 tires
2010.01.05 191719 installed hood from 1999 Outback SUS
2010.01.17 192154 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2010.01.20 192311 front washer fluid pump replaced
2010.02.07 192902 complete body wax
2010.02.15 193336 4-wheel alignment
2010.03.14 193997 changed to Kumho MX tires
2010.03.24 193997 replaced left headlight with Sylvannia XV
2010.04.03 194638 complete body wax
2010.04.24 195373 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2010.05.15 196216 replaced right headlight harness
2010.05.18 196292 rotated tires
2010.08.18 198642 replaced A/C low pressure line
2010.08.19 198642 replaced alternator
2010.09.03 199041 replaced alternator drive belt
2010.09.05 199041 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2010.11.19 202576 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2010.11.24 202840 front wipers replaced
2010.12.09 203559 changed to Bridgestone Potenza G009 tires
2011.01.27 204827 changed water pump, water pump gasket, timing idler pulleys, timing belt
2011.03.15 204827 heads rebuilt with all new intake valves, 5 exhaust valves, new camshaft
2011.03.27 204827 heads installed with new head and intake manifold gaskets
2011.04.16 204827 radiator, header gaskets, motor mount bolt, coolant replaced
2011.04.17 204827 battery tie-down replaced
2011.04.24 204827 timing belt covers, A/C idler adjustment nut replaced
2011.04.30 204827 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2011.05.30 205974 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic, adjust driver's side valve lash
2011.06.25 207488 fuel pump replaced
2011.06.26 207488 ignition coil replaced
2011.07.16 207488 fuel pump relay replaced
2011.09.10 207488 ignitor and plug wires replaced
2011.09.26 207488 ECU replaced
2011.12.10 207488 ignition coil replaced
2011.12.26 207488 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2012.06.23 207638 battery replaced
2013.01.26 208274 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2013.02.01 208274 replaced left headlight
2013.02.10 208543 replaced right outer brake light
2013.05.25 208772 replaced air filter
2013.06.09 209179 battery tie-down replaced
2013.06.16 209179 brake fluid bled
2013.07.19 209355 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2013.11.09 210108 changed front right wheel stud
2014.02.08 210790 changed 2 rear right wheel studs
2014.03.15 212970 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2014.05.23 213087 crankshaft sensor replaced
2014.06.07 213174 engine wiring harness replaced
2014.06.13 213174 ignitor replaced
2014.07.04 213174 ignition coil replaced
2015.02.21 215825 struts and springs replaced with rebuilt Feal 04 STi suspension
2015.03.10 215825 4-wheel alignment
2015.05.09 216426 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2015.05.26 216681 front passenger wheel stud replaced with ARP stud
2015.08.23 217223 front passenger wheel stud replaced with ARP stud
2015.10.17 217407 replaced turbo, air filter, return fuel line
2016.02.28 218282 spark plugs replaced with NGK BKR7EIX
2016.03.07 218283 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2016.07.10 218704 replaced turbo, starter signal wire
2016.07.31 218924 replaced turbo outlet hose
2016.08.13 218924 spark plugs replaced with NGK BKR7EIX
2016.08.14 218924 replaced turbo, turbo oil return line, PCV valve
2016.08.20 218933 front left axle replaced with SurTrack axle
2016.09.24 219061 oil/filter changed
2016.12.16 219125 rear passenger wheel stud replaced
2017.11.10 219887 front passenger wheel stud replaced with ARP stud
2017.12.06 220017 spark plugs replaced with NGK BKR7EIX, replaced passenger side exhaust rocker shaft bolt, retorqued all rocker shaft bolts, adjusted valve lash
2017.12.14 220017 replaced timing belt cover gaskets, passenger side header nut
2017.12.16 220089 replaced air filter
2018.01.14 220360 battery replaced
2018.02.17 220701 fuel pump replaced
2018.05.07 220850 replaced alternator
2018.07.09 221220 front right axle replaced with SurTrack axle
2018.07.14 221221 oil/filter changed with Mobil 1 synthetic
2018.09.22 221524 spark plugs replaced with NGK BKR7EIX


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