When last I wrote on the subject it was a question of whether it would be a
4 or 6. The answer it is to be a white 2018 Outback Touring with the 3.6
engine. I would have taken a green since it just looks more Subie than the
white but they are really scarce. I just got back from the dealership after
paying my deposit and just need to wait until the delivery is made -- it is
at another dealership and will need to be brought in. They say it will
certainly be here in no more than 48 hours although with a snow front
blowing through and the general ineptitude of local drivers in those
conditions it might be a bit more.
Years ago, Outbacks were available in a rich hunter green. By the time
I was ready for a new Subie in 2013, they had changed it to a dull
grayish green, which it still is. So I got the dark red instead. (I
really liked the dark red, but I already had a Porsche in a similar
color, so I thought I should get something different. :-) But I sold
the Porsche a couple of years go, so now I don't have redundantly
colored cars.) I see that the 3.6 Touring is only available in four
colors, so that isn't much choice.
Yeah. The limited colour palette is a bit of a bother. I would have jumped
on the metallic red had it been available. That would have made my sixth
red vehicle -- Fiat 124 coupe, Fiat 124 roadster, two Mazda Miatas, and a
Dodge pickup. I have to say that the chocolate-brown leather interior in
the Touring model is quite a looker even if it is only available in limited
exterior colours. There will be an insane amount of technology to figure
out in the new car although some bits proved easy and useful while test
driving. Engine power seems absolutely immense when compared to the 2008
2.5i. OK so that isn't saying much...
Well, I was right about the weather being a factor -- now they are saying
that I can pick it up Friday afternoon. Oh well, I have been essentially
waiting for ten years now so what is an extra day...
Oh, and I emptied out the 2008. An amazing amount of _stuff_ there. How it
accumulates is a mystery.
You'd think that a vehicle like the Outback or Forester would be a bit less
prone to clutter since there is no trunk/boot where you can hide your sins
-- everything in these cars is pretty much in plain sight. Every time I go
through this I swear I won't do it again. I think that the only cars in
which I didn't accumulate masses were the roadsters where there wasn't
anyplace larger than a breadbox to store things but even those weren't
totally immune since I just got more creative as the years went by.
No a woman in a Chrysler PT Cruiser made a left turn and hit me head on.
She said she had the right of way and it was my fault but the police
did not think that way and she was ticketed. She was also hospitalized
with a back injury but Forester behaved perfectly and I was uninjured.
I did not realize I had so much stuff in the car until I had to go to
the tow yard to remove it and contrary to what other respondent wrote,
stuff in the "boot" was under the cover shield.
Got the new car on the 19th of January and I'm finally getting used to it.
Although the new car is a bit bigger than the 2008 in every direction it
feels bigger. This is very noticeable when parking in the (very crowded)
garage. I finally figured out what I was doing wrong with the rear hatch
height memory so that it won't go full up and hit the garage door pull
bracket. I also have pretty well figured out the (literally) dozens of
user-configurable settings and preferences held back by having important
ones hidden in a couple of different locations. Some of the audible
warnings (lane departure and the like) may be superfluous but I think I'll
leave them turned on -- I'm not getting any younger and maybe I need them
more than I want to admit. The intelligent cruise control is a pleasure
although it will be more useful on long highway trips than just driving
around town as I have been. Voice control is a learning process and since
I'm already used to calling on Alexis in the office it may be as much of an
un-learning and re-learning as simple learning.
The car drives quite nicely and is more quiet than the old one. I've not
driven far enough to make any definitive pronouncements but it appears that
the around-town fuel economy is no worse with the new six over the old
four. I put that down to engine improvements and the CVT. Just driving
around, you'd never know that the tranny is a CVT -- none of that rubber
band effect the first generation showed.
Despite the angst caused by writing a check for that amount of money it
appears to have been a wise purchase. At least if I keep it for 10+ years
as I have with recent cars.
What's "intelligent" cruise control?
I rarely use the CC on my Outback. I don't think I even used it (maybe
a little bit) when I drove roundtrip from California to Idaho for the
eclipse, even though driving through Nevada is pretty much the definition
of a perfect place for CC. :-)
Basically you tell the car how fast you want to go and how closely you want
to follow any traffic in front of you. If nobody is in front within the set
distance in your lane it drives at the selected speed but if traffic in
front is going more slowly it will slow automatically. It will even brake
as necessary rather than just going to a throttle-off as the old style
cruise control does. Very handy when the traffic flow is not steady. I've
always been a cruise control user on long highway trips even in my Miatas
and this is a big improvement over the old style -- for one thing it won't
blithely drive you up somebody's rear.
I had this on my 2014 Legacy. It can be a blessing on a long trip. When
I did a 13 hour trip from central Ohio to north of Boston, I loved it.
If the traffic slows down, so do you without having to reset the cruise
control settings. Then when the traffic clears, you return to your
desired setting. You don't have to keep turning CC off and then back on
or adjusting the speed setting. One thing I learned is that if traffic
slows significantly, turn off the CC. It is disconcerting when the car
decides to speed up from 35 to 70 because there is suddenly a gap in
front of you but you are still in a construction zone.
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