2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

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2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby theholycow » Fri Nov 25, 2011 9:07 am

My mom bought a 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT. I drove it last night. I only have a small impression...didn't go far and it was dark out, so I can't provide numeric ratings.

Ride, comfort, and handling - I fit well, but I couldn't shake the feeling that my hand should be on a real shifter and my foot should be on a clutch pedal; it seems natural for this car. The ride is nicely gentle. I was expecting a classic Subaru "sporty" (read: stiff) ride and was pleasantly surprised. Handling went untested because mom got scared long before I was pushing it.

Fuel economy - Rated 23/31, no idea how it will do IRL. Mom's no speed demon but neither is she aware of particular efficient driving techniques.

Reliability - No idea. Surely it will be fine.

Fun - This must be why so many here hate automatics and CVTs. The CVT is programmed to wait a couple seconds after you slam the go-pedal. I assume this is for fuel economy to prevent unintended downshifting when you go over a bump or your foot twitches. It has paddle shifters, which would actually be useful...without knowing about that delay I would have expected shifters on a CVT to be as useless as tits on a bull. A minor change in programming would really wake this car up.

Practicality – The trunk is spacious but the opening is tiny. Go on a long-term bulk grocery shopping trip if you want, but don't buy furniture anywhere other than Ikea (and even then don't buy a glass-top table). I forgot to try the backseat. AWD means mom can risk her life in more slippery conditions than with FWD and get to work to make those monthly car payments.

Style - This is a new car I could drive every day. It looks generic, indistinguishable from other sheep on the road. It won't draw the attention of that cop who likes to hassle guys with beards, or whatever it is that gets me in trouble the second I slightly disobey a traffic law. This is a welcome change from the seemingly more common practice of making every car stick out like a sore thumb with "HEY LOOK AT ME I'M AN ATTENTION WHORE" styling.

Power - The 2.5 is hampered by that CVT input delay. Specifications show it almost exactly as powerful as my VW's 2.5 was, and the car a few hundred pounds heavier. It's certainly fast enough to get my license taken away or put me behind bars if my judgement fails.

Value - Not sure how much she paid for it, and not current with market pricing to be able to comment even if I did ask.

Overall - Seems like a nice car. I could roll it, given (of course) one more pedal.

CVT note - It doesn't do the faux-shifting that I thought was silly in the 2008 Jeep Patriot's CVT, but it isn't the completely smooth stepless acceleration I expected either. One thing that many here would like, which I dislike, is the automatic engine braking; you take your foot off the accelerator and at first it rolls nicely like a GM automatic, then after a few seconds it downshifts (or whatever you want to call it in a CVT) and provides engine braking.
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby theholycow » Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:45 pm

Why do that, when I can drive my Buick? It's loud (though much less loud since I fixed half of the exhaust) and it's a boat, right? :D
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby theholycow » Fri Nov 25, 2011 10:22 pm

:lol: I get it. Well that's the thing, it's not as steady as I expected.
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby 4onthefloor » Fri Dec 02, 2011 3:54 pm

I'm not big on the new Legacy (looks-wise, I've never driven one). If it were the 2.5i I'd just as soon get the Impreza (which I did). Same power but in a smaller package.

I do however like the idea of the Legacy GT. Classy, mid-sized sedan with 265 HP and a 6MT.

One car I would not hesitate to jump on if I found one in my price range is a last-gen Legacy GT Spec B.

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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby ElectroGhandi » Sat Mar 31, 2012 11:17 am

Subaru's CVT isn't smooth? How does it compare to Nissan's CVT? That's the only CVT I've driven and it was certainly smooth. Why don't you like the automatic engine braking? If I remember correctly, it only does that above a certain speed and a manual would probably do the same thing at the same speed.
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby theholycow » Sat Mar 31, 2012 11:57 am

I can't compare to Nissan. The only other CVT I've driven was a 2008 Jeep Patriot which had faux-gear shifting; it basically felt like a traditional 4 speed automatic.

A manual wouldn't engine brake for me because I'd have it in neutral when I don't want engine braking.
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby ElectroGhandi » Sat Mar 31, 2012 1:38 pm

You could always shift to neutral in a CVT too!
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby theholycow » Sat Mar 31, 2012 1:44 pm

Agreed, but it's not convenient enough to do as readily as with a manual. You don't just flick it in and out of gear; you have to wait for it to engage. Besides, if it's going to be automated then it should be programmed the way I like it. If I had one then a custom tune would fix that for me.
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby ElectroGhandi » Sat Mar 31, 2012 1:59 pm

The automatic engine braking was one of my favorite things about the CVT when I drove it. I guess it's just a difference in driving style. :lol:
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby MisterTwo » Sun Mar 30, 2014 5:30 pm

I had a 2014 Impreza CVT as a loaner last week.

I just couldn't get used to the CVT thing. My brain kept asking "Why is my car accelerating when the engine noise isn't changing?".

Another thing, shouldn't paddle shifters be on the column not the steering wheel? In playing round, I found that I wanted the 1-2 shift while unwinding from a turn-from-stopped-type maneuver, but that wasn't an option until the wheel was fully straight. Huh.
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Re: 2012 Subaru Legacy 2.5 CVT

Postby tankinbeans » Sun Mar 30, 2014 6:34 pm

The first few posts make it look like you're taking to yourself. Crazy much? :lol:

I'm sure mods deleted stuff.

Anyway, after 3 years how is it holding up?
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