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Hello, im sorry if this breaks the forum rules but im looking for advice. Im looking to purchase my first car and have it narrowed down to two options. I know this forum may be a bit biased, but I have some questions I hope could be answered.

the first option is a 2003 subaru outback LTD anniversary 3L/6cylinder. it has 235000km and has a new alternator, power steering pump, and brakes done within a year. it is listed at $3900 Canadian

the other option is a 2004 Forester 2.5/4cylinder. It is listed as having work as follows: replaced the alternator, the CV boots, tires, spark plug wires, and rear brake shoes. A few weeks ago I replaced the following: Head gaskets, timing belt, valve cover gaskets, front calliper, rear struts, front brake pads, front sway bar links, spark plugs, air filter, oil & filter, coolant. it has 214---km and is listed at $4500 Canadian

body wise the forester has some small scratches and the interior is not perfect. used as a family car so some small stains, nothing major.

the outback is supposedly in near mint condition body and interior, with not scratches, dents, rips or tears.

I currently have a deposit on the forester and a 24hour hold, and I will be the first person to view the outback. Im wondering if it would be smarter to go with the vehicle that has had more work done, particularly head gaskets, or if the 6cylinder is reliable enough that I should not have to worry about that issue.

thanks!!


 

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G'day & Welcome @spookypanda

How will you use the vehicle? For example, unmodified the Foz would be better off-road and the OB better for touring. From what I have seen across forums is that the H6 is a more reliable engine. As to the work on the Foz I guess it depends who did it and what experience they have as it's very easy to stuff up a head gasket replacement - and did they use a Multi-Layer steel (MLS) gasket?
 

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@Kevin I would like to use it for both. I plan to travel vancouver island with it shortly, so it will be on logging roads and also the highway. but I would also continue to use it as my daily driver afterwards. I believe the work on the forester was done in a professional shop and not by the owner. the outback was serviced by a subaru dealership.
 

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@spookypanda so no rock crawling? The Foz has better approach and departure angles which is why it's better off-road. This certainly is a tough call without actually inspecting the vehicles or seeing the service records. Any rust? Even though I loved my Outback I too am leaning towards the Forester because of the recent work.
 
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