Subaru Legacy: The Years to Avoid and Safe Alternatives

If you’re considering purchasing a Subaru Legacy, it’s essential to know which years and models to avoid. The Legacy has a reputation for being a reliable and safe family car, but certain model years have had mechanical and safety issues that you’ll want to steer clear of. In this article, we’ll go over the years and models of the Subaru Legacy that you should avoid and recommend alternatives that may be a better fit for your needs.

Years to Avoid

2010 – 2014 Subaru Legacy

These years of the Legacy have had issues with excessive oil consumption, which can cause engine failure. Additionally, these models have problems with their continuously variable transmissions (CVTs), which can cause shuddering and hesitation. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has also received complaints about airbag sensor failures in these years of the Legacy.

2015 – 2019 Subaru Legacy

The 2015-2019 Legacy models have had issues with their Starlink infotainment system, which can be slow to respond and may freeze. These models have also had problems with their CVTs, including shuddering and reduced fuel efficiency. There have also been complaints about exterior lighting and electrical issues in these years of the Legacy.

Safe Alternatives

2016 – 2020 Subaru Legacy

The 2016-2020 Legacy models are generally considered to be safe and reliable. These models have updated infotainment systems, improved transmissions, and better fuel efficiency. The 2020 model has earned a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), making it one of the safest cars on the market.

See also  How to Remove Car Stereo 1992 Subaru Legacy: A Step-by-Step Guide

2017 – 2020 Subaru Legacy 3.6R Limited

If you’re looking for a high-performance Legacy, the 2017-2020 Legacy 3.6R Limited models are a good option. These models feature a powerful 3.6-liter six-cylinder engine and all-wheel drive, making them fun to drive and capable in all weather conditions.


Is the Subaru Legacy a reliable car?

Overall, the Subaru Legacy has a reputation for being a reliable car. However, certain model years have had mechanical and safety issues that you’ll want to avoid.

What should I look for when buying a Subaru Legacy?

When buying a Subaru Legacy, you’ll want to look for a model that has been well-maintained and has a good service history. You’ll also want to test drive the car to make sure it feels comfortable and performs well. Be sure to check for any recalls or issues with the specific model year you’re interested in.

Are all Subaru Legacy models all-wheel drive?

Yes, all Subaru Legacy models come standard with all-wheel drive, making them capable in all weather conditions.

Avatar photo

Billy Covington

With a passion for all things automotive, Billy is our go-to expert on Subaru performance upgrades and modifications. He's been featured in several car magazines and blogs, and his extensive knowledge and expertise make him a valuable member of our team. When he's not working on cars, he enjoys playing guitar and writing music.

Recommended Articles