Bring on the Subaru…. No, I didn’t get rid of my truck. A man needs his 4×4. We did however replace my wife’s POS VW passat with something a bit more….our style. When we first bought the Passat I felt like I had purchased my first grown up car. It had so many wonderful features and was refined and comfortable. What I learned is that all those little features cause big headaches and expensive repairs, not just down the road but constantly. I also learned that I really value the utility of a car not necessarily the refinement. I don’t really need a burl-wood dash. The climate control drove me crazy as I heard it constantly switching modes as I drove down the road trying to keep my non-existent passenger as comfortable as I. The electric 6 way adjustable seats were nice but not needed. How hard is it to pull the lever up and scoot? How often do people adjust their seat after the first time anyway? The buttons fell off the radio randomly and were never to be found again and cost like 20 bucks to replace and we had put a lot of money into repairs in the short time we had the car. Lastly the need for premium fuel and the 6.5 quart oil changes just pushed me too far. My truck doesn’t even take as much oil as that car. Every fluid is special from the dealer and even oil filters weren’t available except through the dealer or the internet. VW feels like a quality product but in reality it was just a big money pit that we started to find rather untrustworthy. I hate to say it but I think my German car days are over. I once had someone tell me my yard looked like a German redneck lived there based on all the VW Van projects I had going.
I don’t mean to make people mad but in my humble opinion, Japanese cars are just built better. I have owned my share of German cars, American cars, and Japanese cars over the years and the Japanese cars just run. You change the oil, the tires, the brakes, and maybe a battery and they just keep running. We decided the XV CrossTrek from Subaru fit our needs perfectly. Capable enough to handle the rough roads we occasionally drive with awesome gas mileage (33 MPG) Highway and an excellent safety rating to boot. I also like that the car has enough refinement to be comfortable yet not all the unnecessary gadgets that always brake. And lets face it Subaru caters to active people who need their cars to do more that just drive on the freeway. I drove a rental car for work the other day (American Muscle with a slight Italian accent) that had rear heated seats, a heated steering wheel, and a button you could push (through a menu of course in the console) that made all the head rests in the rear sets fold flat. Is that really needed? I did enjoy not needing to insert the key to make the car run but really is that really more than a gimmick? The modern day 4×4 is pretty much a dying breed here in the US. Replaced by Cross Over SUV vehicles that have zero capability offroad and 27 cup holders in just the back seat alone. The cross part leans more toward the mini van market than a 4×4. What this country needs in my opinion is to bring some of the Diesel utility 4×4 vehicles available everywhere else except the US and revive the dying market. Something like the 70 series land-cruisers would be awesome. How come everyone else gets the fun toys. It really can’t be that there aren’t enough people who want this type of vehicle.