Possible opportunity for straight trade of 2013 Subaru Outback Premium for new 2015 Prius Two

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by ecsdude, Feb 19, 2016.

  1. ecsdude

    ecsdude New Member

    Feb 19, 2016
    2015 Prius
    Hi I could use some advice from Prius owners who maybe also own Subarus. Here's a little background:

    2013 Subaru Outback Premium 2.5i PZEV purchased new, now at 43K mi. Got it for $5K off MSRP, so it came out to about just under $25K including all taxes, title, license fees. It got into an accident on the highway (someone spun out onto my lane) causing some moderate damage to the front left. Repairs came out to around $8000. There was some very a very slight bent portion of frame that the body shop said was minor and they banged back to within acceptable range. My insurance company AAA covered everything. The body shop used all brand new OEM parts and based on CarMax appraisers they did a quality job. The at fault party's insurance company settled with me and gave me $1300 for diminution of value claim I filed plus another $1800 for "pain and suffering". I was not really injured from the accident, so I kind of just considered it $3100 total towards my Subaru payoff, if I wish to do that. I still owe $9500 on it.

    Toyota dealership is indicating they'd accept a straight trade, out the door, including all fees. I'd give them my Subaru Outback Premium 2.5i PZEV w/ 43K mi on it and 1 moderate accident for a brand new 2015 Toyota Prius Model Two. I'd simply have my existing Subaru loan paid off by Toyota and I'd hold a Toyota loan for the same $9500 balance I owe on the Outback, at the same interest rate. So nothing changes in that regard. It could possibly even mean lower monthly payments if they spread it out over 60 months.

    Their incentive for doing so right now are probably three-fold: (1) they're probably already blowing out the 2015's for $5K off MSRP to make way for the 2016, (2) gas prices are low right now so sales of Prius are probably down, (3) They have demand for Subaru Outback AWD vehicles and believe they can sell it for a profit in their used lot.

    2015 Prius Model Two MSRP is like $25,035. With $5K off right now to clear them out, it's about $20K + taxes, title, license fees, so maybe roughly $22K out the door.

    CarMax is offering me $16K for the Outback. KBB and Edmunds seem to indicate it's worth about $19K in the private market. This would be for a car that wasn't in a moderate accident. Since my car has been in a moderate accident, I'm not sure I could get the same amount.

    As I see it, here are the pros and cons of doing the trade:

    1. Brand new car with 0 miles on it, new 3 year warranty.
    2. Fewer moving parts and parts that could need replacing/repair down the road. In about another 15K miles (or one year), I may need to replace brake pads, tires, and pay for 60K mi service, followed by 75K mi service, then 100K mi service.
    3. No additional out of pocket expense to me to do this trade. Possibly lower monthly payments if the carry-over $9500 balance from the Subaru loan moved to Toyota would be spread over 60 months.
    4. Gas prices are lower, but I still save about $400 a year on gas, at least. If prices go up and/or my mileage goes up, I save even more. 26mpg vs 50mpg.
    5. Backup camera, keyless entry and push button start.

    1. No AWD (I don't drive in snow much at all (once in the last 2.5 years only), but in heavy rains and winds, I've felt safer in the Outback than I have in my old Civic or other cars I've driven. It really feels well gripped to the road. I'm thinking since the Prius is about 600 lbs lighter, and front wheel drive with narrower and smaller tires, I might not feel as stable during high winds and heavy rains.
    2. In the Outback, felt very secure in the collision. Subaru is rated the highest across the board five stars for
    crash protection. Prius has good overall crash protection rating but the front impact is only four stars. I think in most accident scenarios the Prius should be fine, but compared to the Outback, I would be sacrificing some crash safety I think.
    3. The Outback is more spacious inside. Wider, longer, and better headroom for back passengers. Back seats also recline. Also have heated front seats. Cargo room is also greater by maybe 30cubic feet when
    comparing space with rear seats folded down.
    4. Less horsepower with Prius. The Outback has like 170HP. Using ECO mode on the Prius won't cut it in accelerating to merge onto freeway, but that's only a brief period of time when you need to switch to Power mode so maybe no big deal.
    5. Battery should last me at least 150K mi and in California I think that is supposed to be required of dealers.
    But if it's 100K and suddenly goes bad around 101K out of warranty, I'd be stuck paying $2k for a new battery.

    I like the idea of getting a brand new car that 's more efficient and saves on gas in the event gas prices go up again, for no additional out of pocket cost, just a straight swap. I like the fewer parts and reliability, which could mean lower costs of ownership down the road. But the cons noted above make me not so sure.

    Could someone with experience share some advice on whether this would be a good deal for me to go through with the trade?
  2. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

    Nov 10, 2013
    Los Angeles, CA
    2010 Prius
    You seem to have all the information, you don't need anyone to justify this for you.

    I believe the Prius is a great car for California driving. You'll get a 2 year newer car with zero miles for no additional cost. Also financing the new Prius might get you 0 percent for 60 months if you ask for it.

    The only negative would be resale value. Although you might be getting 2 years for free now....down the road, the Subaru might sell for the same price 10 years later.
  3. 2k1Toaster

    2k1Toaster Brand New Prius Batteries

    Feb 14, 2010
    Rocky Mountains
    2006 Prius
    I've owned a Subaru and they are great cars. But the Prius is nothing like it and I would take the trade in an instant.

    1) If I can drive the Prius in this all the time with no problems, you'll be fine in California lol


    2) Prius is also excellent in crashes. The frontal overlap test is what killed the all-5-star rating and IMHO that's a stupid made up test. There will always be a way for something to hurt you in the car. A giant steel pipe can fall off a truck and impale you through the windscreen for instant death, yet there is no crash rating for that. And how come people care more about one stupid test than another?

    3) The Subaru does have more cargo, but really the Prius has a bunch. Here is 1500lbs of wet mulch in the Prius:


    4) The Outback has 170HP and the Prius has 134HP. The Outback has a 0-60mph time of 10.7 seconds. The Prius does it faster in 10.6 seconds and doesn't require and gear shifting so it can make that time every time and not just when you're having a good track day. The 1/4 mile times are also similar 18.2 seconds for the Outback, 18.0 seconds for the Prius. So you are obviously getting the "Prius is slow" mentality from people that spout it off not knowing a thing about the cars. The Prius is just as fast as many other cars out there that nobody cares whether they are fast or slow. I am always the first person off the line, and have beat many muscle cars and sports cars being driven by idiots. Those cars driven by good drivers will easily beat a Prius. But if you don't know how to shift, you won't make the advertised 0-60 times. The Prius doesn't do that, so if you just keep the pedal down, you win. Also, in ECO mode, PWR mode, or normal mode, the accelerator pedal has the exact same performance. It just remaps the curve, so it takes more pressure to make the power, but it is all there. Meaning if you floor it, it is the same 100% power output.

    5) And why don't you worry about transmissions or clutches? What about all the money you save with brake changes and other maintenance items. No starter to go bad. No torque converter in the transmission to give out. Heck, no transmission to go out. There have been cases of the battery dying early (I think the earliest I read was about 86K) but that is a huge abnormality. The 100K number is the warranty. Just like the engine is warranted for 36K miles. Are you worried that the engine is going to explode at 36,001 miles? No. Nobody cares. The warranty is just a warranty number. And yes in CA (and other CARB states) it is 150K miles. Many people are at 250K+ miles on their original batteries. Some of the taxis that get the heaviest service have had their batteries last 300K to 400K miles. No clutch would last that long, and not many trannies.

    There are lots of other benefits. My favourite being that it is so smooth. The HSD is a miracle. I still have "like new" brakes at 140K miles. Everything is original except the auxiliary 12v battery that lasted 10 years (average life is 3 years on all my ICE cars with the harsh climate here).
    Hasan and ftl like this.
  4. VovCA

    VovCA Member

    Sep 10, 2015
    San Jose
    2013 Prius
    We don't have heavy rains in California, you'll be fine. Yesterday, I was driving under "heavy rain" in 22 miles commute, it is quite good. There drawbacks in Prius, like road noise on high speeds, handling on curves when you drive in high speed. For our SFBA commute it's a perfect car, as utility it's a good car. As for maintenance, it is a cheap car, for safety it is a very good car. Gen 3 is like AK-47. Drive it more, if you like how it feels, go for it.
  5. mmmodem

    mmmodem Senior Taste Tester

    Nov 17, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Plug-in Base
    Let's look at the math:
    Assume you get the maximum selling your Subaru privately = $19,000
    You have an outstanding loan of $9,500 meaning you have $9,500 in equity in the vehicle.

    Toyota is offering you $22,000 OTD for the Prius. You will have the same $9500 on a loan. Meaning Toyota will pay $12,500 for your $9,500 trade-in equity.

    $3000 in your pocket. No brainer. Do it.