Best Bet
  • (4.3) 36 reviews
  • MSRP: $3,872–$11,748
  • Body Style: Sedan
  • Combined MPG: 20-23
  • Engine: 243-hp, 2.5-liter H-4 (premium)
  • Drivetrain: All-wheel Drive
  • Transmission: 5-speed automatic w/OD and auto-manual
2008 Subaru Legacy

Our Take on the Latest Model 2008 Subaru Legacy

What We Don't Like

  • Not as roomy as some competitors
  • Some cheap interior elements
  • Premium gasoline recommended
  • Stability system not available on all trims

Notable Features

  • New front and rear styling
  • Sedan and wagon body styles
  • Standard AWD
  • Manual or automatic transmission
  • New 245-hp six-cylinder

2008 Subaru Legacy Reviews

Vehicle Overview
Three years after it introduced the latest Legacy sedan and wagon, Subaru offers a mildly restyled version for 2008. In lieu of the three-piece winged grille splayed across the Impreza sedan and B9 Tribeca SUV, the Legacy offers a more conservative, single-piece grille bisected by a winged crossbar. (This looks like one wing Subaru's marketers can get behind: It doesn't require a grille that makes shoppers take flight.)

Other changes include the addition of Subaru's 3.0-liter, horizontally opposed six-cylinder engine in the Legacy 3.0 R Limited. That trim level effectively replaces last year's Legacy 2.5 GT Spec B. Other Legacys continue to use a naturally aspirated or turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder. Subaru's SI-Drive system, which allows drivers to program accelerator response, is included in the 3.0 R Limited.

Subaru gave its Outback sedan and wagon similar updates for 2008.


Exterior
Changes to the front end include larger fog lights, a revised grille with a winged crossbar, and a reshaped front air dam. In back, smaller taillights have chrome borders. The bumper sports dimpled reflectors on either side, and the side mirrors include turn signals.

Although it replaces the Spec B, the 3.0 R Limited looks more reserved. Its hood has no air scoop, and its 18-inch alloy wheels have thicker spokes. The suspension includes many components — including sport-tuned Bilstein shocks — from before.


Interior
Changes to the cabin for 2008 are minimal, and most are related to new equipment. Subaru's SI-Drive control knob sits below the transmission shifter, and redundant SI-Drive controls are mounted on the steering wheel. Add them to the available paddle shifters, cruise controls and stereo adjustments, and the steering wheel has 16 buttons — a tricky layout where a wrong move could inadvertently remap the accelerator's response or downshift the transmission.

All Legacys include staples like power windows and door locks, remote keyless entry and a CD stereo. Features on the Legacy 2.5 GT Limited and 3.0 R Limited include leather upholstery, power front seats with four-stage seat heaters, dual-zone automatic climate control and a moonroof. The 3.0 R Limited also includes a navigation system.


Under the Hood
Standard Legacys use a 175-horsepower, 2.5-liter horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine. It teams with a four-speed automatic or five-speed manual transmission. The 2.5 GT Limited uses a turbocharged 2.5-liter engine that makes 243 hp and uses a five-speed automatic or five-speed manual. The 3.0 R Limited has a 245-hp six-cylinder and uses a five-speed automatic. With the automatic transmission, both the 2.5 GT Limited and 3.0 R Limited have steering-wheel paddle shifters for manual operation.

Subaru's SI-Drive works with the 3.0 R Limited and 2.5 GT Limited by mapping accelerator response and shift points according to three settings. Subaru says Intelligent mode yields up to a 10 percent increase in gas mileage, while Sport mode nets quicker accelerator response for better performance. Finally, Sport Sharp modifies the accelerator and transmission for maximum performance.

Like all Subarus, the Legacy has standard all-wheel drive. Subaru is performing fuel tests as of this writing, but the automaker expects the 2008 four-cylinder engines to achieve slightly better fuel economy than the previous models.


Safety
Four-wheel-disc antilock brakes, side-impact airbags and side curtain airbags are standard on every Legacy. The 3.0 R Limited and 2.5 GT Limited with an automatic transmission include an electronic stability system.

Consumer Reviews

4.3

Average based on 36 reviews

Write a Review

Excellent

by delgo04 from Oak Park, IL on November 15, 2017

2008 Legacy GT 5spd manual - This car after 10 years still runs and drives like new. I rent cars frequently while traveling for work and few cars made today match the quality, performance, drive-abil... Read Full Review

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5 Trims Available

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Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2008 Subaru Legacy trim comparison will help you decide.
 

Subaru Legacy Articles

2008 Subaru Legacy Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports

IIHS Ratings

Based on Subaru Legacy 2.5GT Limited

Head Restraints and Seats
G
Moderate overlap front
G
Side
G

IIHS Ratings

Based on Subaru Legacy 2.5GT Limited

G Good
A Acceptable
M Marginal
P Poor

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
G
Overall Rear
G
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
G

Moderate overlap front

Chest
G
Head/Neck
G
Left Leg/Foot
G
Overall Front
G
Restraints
G
Right Leg/Foot
G
Structure/safety cage
G

Side

Driver Head Protection
G
Driver Head and Neck
G
Driver Pelvis/Leg
G
Driver Torso
A
Overall Side
G
Rear Passenger Head Protection
G
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
G
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
G
Rear Passenger Torso
G
Structure/safety cage
G
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers. IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal or poor based on performance in high-speed front and side crash tests. IIHS also evaluates seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts.

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Subaru Legacy 2.5GT Limited

Overall Rollover Rating

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Subaru Legacy 2.5GT Limited

Overall Rollover Rating
Driver's
Passenger's
Side Barrier Rating Driver
Side Barrier Rating Passenger Rear Seat
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. NHTSA provides vehicle safety information such as front- and side-crash ratings and rollover ratings. Vehicles are rated using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Recalls

There are currently 5 recalls for this car.


Safety defects and recalls are relatively common. Stay informed and know what to do ahead of time.

Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $4,100 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

Warranty Coverage

Bumper-to-Bumper

36mo/36,000mi

Powertrain

60mo/60,000mi

Roadside Assistance Coverage

36mo/36,000mi

What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained

Bumper-to-Bumper

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

Powertrain

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

Other Years