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I’ve never had a new car before and found some info on YouTube about things you should and shouldn’t do when you get a new car. One of them includes not driving the car at a constant speed (fast or slow) for a long period. I ordered my Subaru from a dealer about 70 miles away, an easy drive but a drive none the less along a highway. Just looking for feedback from others on this matter. I also found the Outback Touring owners manual online and it confirms things stated in the video. Thoughts? Also, fuel I know Subaru says regular unleaded but what are your thoughts on premium fuel?
 

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I’ve never had a new car before and found some info on YouTube about things you should and shouldn’t do when you get a new car. One of them includes not driving the car at a constant speed (fast or slow) for a long period. I ordered my Subaru from a dealer about 70 miles away, an easy drive but a drive none the less along a highway. Just looking for feedback from others on this matter. I also found the Outback Touring owners manual online and it confirms things stated in the video. Thoughts? Also, fuel I know Subaru says regular unleaded but what are your thoughts on premium fuel?
Im in my 2nd Subaru out of about 340,000 miles between the two. Read the owners manual before you leave the parking lot.
I followed the Subaru break in process listed and never had any major issues.

Generally speaking any new car avoid cruise control the first 1500 miles. Vary the speed meaning don’t spend 70 minutes at 70mph on cruise. Go 65, 70, etc. last thing avoid heavy throttle 4000+ rpm. Give everything a chance to seat and settle into place before doing the drag strip runs at stop lights.

Fuel type will be listed in the owners manual. Given the back lash Subaru got for the old 3L H6 needing / requiring premium fuel I can’t see Subaru ever making a family hauler that requires premium fuel. But check the owners manual.
 

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I’ve never had a new car before and found some info on YouTube about things you should and shouldn’t do when you get a new car. One of them includes not driving the car at a constant speed (fast or slow) for a long period. I ordered my Subaru from a dealer about 70 miles away, an easy drive but a drive none the less along a highway. Just looking for feedback from others on this matter. I also found the Outback Touring owners manual online and it confirms things stated in the video. Thoughts? Also, fuel I know Subaru says regular unleaded but what are your thoughts on premium fuel?
Im in my 2nd Subaru out of about 340,000 miles between the two. Read the owners manual before you leave the parking lot.
I followed the Subaru break in process listed and never had any major issues.

Generally speaking any new car avoid cruise control the first 1500 miles. Vary the speed meaning don’t spend 70 minutes at 70mph on cruise. Go 65, 70, etc. last thing avoid heavy throttle 4000+ rpm. Give everything a chance to seat and settle into place before doing the drag strip runs at stop lights.

Fuel type will be listed in the owners manual. Given the back lash Subaru got for the old 3L H6 needing / requiring premium fuel I can’t see Subaru ever making a family hauler that requires premium fuel. But check the owners manual.
I know some people think premium fuel is a sham but I personally like it better than the cheap stuff. I can feel the difference. There was one time when I filled up using 87 octane and my car ran so crappy and sluggish, it was horrible. I had been using only 93 octane and went back to it the next fill up. That's all I use now.

I'd say it lasts longer in the tank (if the vehicle sits for long periods of time) and I think it burns cleaner.
 

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I know some people think premium fuel is a sham but I personally like it better than the cheap stuff. I can feel the difference. There was one time when I filled up using 87 octane and my car ran so crappy and sluggish, it was horrible. I had been using only 93 octane and went back to it the next fill up. That's all I use now.

I'd say it lasts longer in the tank (if the vehicle sits for long periods of time) and I think it burns cleaner.
Ascent has regular fuel recommended.


But I see your point. The '94 Jeep Grand Cherokee I had with a 4.0V6 seemed to run much better on Premium fuel and seemed to get better MPG as well. I know most sites say that it doesn't do anything but from my experience it does.


If you want to use premium you should have no issues doing so and might have slightly increased power like the Mazda CX-9. Downside is of course the price.
 

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Ascent has regular fuel recommended. If you want to use premium you should have no issues doing so...
Not quite. 87 is the minimum, but not the recommendation. It's semantics, but important semantics. :tango_face_wink:

So, anything 87 or above is the actual recommendation. Safe to go higher.


  • Use only unleaded gasoline with an octane rating of 87 AKI (90 RON) or higher.



(You) might have slightly increased power like the Mazda CX-9. Downside is of course the price.
Yep. Especially since the newer Subaru turbo setups register fuel quality and octane "on-the-fly" to adjust timing, etc, to help prevent knock and create a little bit better performance.
 

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I'd echo above - if you do primarily city or highway driving, try and mix it up for the break-in period. In my area, I can do either a city run or highway run to get to work. I'll probably do both. And yeah, don't use Cruise Control while you're in break-in and avoid hard starts and stops.


I'm really looking forward to people doing actual testing of 93 vs 87 going forward. The local Costco does supply 93 here, but I've never used it. I'd be willing to spend an extra couple of bucks a tank.

Premium fuel also tends to have a better detergent package, doesn't it? I know Shell has that "V-Power" thing, and Exxon has that "Synergy" pack. I think clean burning fuels is important for these cars (DI)... My wife's Honda manual specifically says use Top Tier only, and I'm waiting for the think to pop becuase the bargain bin fuel that keeps getting put in it. I won't stop her because I'm looking forward to her getting rid of that thing. :D
 

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My recommendation to people is don't over think it. Your RPMs are key. Keep them under 4000 and keep them moving. Every once in a while don't be afraid to hit 5000 or 5500 when you are getting on the freeway. Let your car experience it but not too much. If you are on a longer trip you will be fine unless its a really flat drive. Most hilly driving will keep your RPMs moving around just fine.
 

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Vary the speed a little on the highway until 500 miles on your new Ascent. Don't use cruise control for the first 500 miles except for a brief period to test it.

You should use 87 octane unless you are at high altitude where 85 is fine. If you are towing with your Ascent you should use premium fuel for the best performance.

Have fun with the new Ascent.
 

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Vary the speed a little on the highway until 500 miles on your new Ascent. Don't use cruise control for the first 500 miles except for a brief period to test it.

You should use 87 octane unless you are at high altitude where 85 is fine. If you are towing with your Ascent you should use premium fuel for the best performance.

Have fun with the new Ascent.
I never understood the don't use cruise control restriction. with ACC the speed/rpm's are constantly changing to follow the lead car in front of you. so shouldn't you be able to just use this during break-in so long as you aren't getting huge RPM swings that go above the 4k limit for the first 1000 miles?
 

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I never understood the don't use cruise control restriction. with ACC the speed/rpm's are constantly changing to follow the lead car in front of you. so shouldn't you be able to just use this during break-in so long as you aren't getting huge RPM swings that go above the 4k limit for the first 1000 miles?

Well, it depends on where you live. If I spent more time traveling to upstate NY like I used to, it would be rare that my car would change speeds from the set speed. OTOH, with the changing altitudes, the RPM would change a lot. But, lots of east west travel or travel elsewhere is a lot flatter, and one would possibly hit many miles at a static speed and more consistent rpm.

Fortunately (unfortunately for my morning commute), my current commutes range from dazzlingly fast speeds of zero to equally as impressive speeds of 30mph or 40mph (in 55mph zones). :sad:
 

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Just don't beat the **** out of it :)
 

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Well, it depends on where you live. If I spent more time traveling to upstate NY like I used to, it would be rare that my car would change speeds from the set speed. OTOH, with the changing altitudes, the RPM would change a lot. But, lots of east west travel or travel elsewhere is a lot flatter, and one would possibly hit many miles at a static speed and more consistent rpm.

Fortunately (unfortunately for my morning commute), my current commutes range from dazzlingly fast speeds of zero to equally as impressive speeds of 30mph or 40mph (in 55mph zones). :sad:
yah good point! I'm same as you with traffic galore. Lucky us.
 

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I've broken in two OBs with totally different approaches. My '15 I ordered and it showed up one day before we planned a trip to Fort Collins. Driving 1500 miles didn't take long down I-88 and I-80. The second OB was broken in more by the book. Both average(d) 27-28 mixed use MPGs. No issues with either, other than the steering column recall in the second OB.

So, I'm not the best to give a fair response.
 
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As a mechanic I would tell you that you should follow the owners manual, but when mine comes in I am just going to drive it. It's not 1960 anymore and as with the example given by @jd33 it is probably not going to matter how you break in your modern engine.


As to premium vs. regular, I would say that if you have a car that is smart enough to sense the difference and built to take advantage of it then yes it would help to use premium. If not you are probably wasting your money. The one caveat being if you are able to get alcohol free premium. If so, then you probably do get better performance and fuel mileage out of your run of the mill car because you don't have the ethanol dragging you down.
 

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My Sequoia will run on 87 but for improved performance per the owners manual premium is suggested. So for around town typical stuff it gets 87. When we do road trips where high speeds and mountain climbs are in play it gets 91. Yes there is a power difference and no pinging which can surface on 87 occasionally under hard throttle. 91 zero pinging. So our trip from SF to Yellowstone it got 91 SF to Reno over the Sierras, it got 91 for the 80-85mph run across Nevada to Twin Falls ID. 91 from Twinfalls to West Yellowstone. We had a solid 16mpg average. The 6 days in Yellowstone it burned one tank of 87 at 21mpg thanks to never going over 50mph. On the way home 91 again.

Any car that can alter timing to address octane/fuel stability it makes sense to run lower octane/cost fuel when your use pattern doesn’t involve higher throttle loads.
 

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Not quite. 87 is the minimum, but not the recommendation. It's semantics, but important semantics. :tango_face_wink:

So, anything 87 or above is the actual recommendation. Safe to go higher.


  • Use only unleaded gasoline with an octane rating of 87 AKI (90 RON) or higher.





Yep. Especially since the newer Subaru turbo setups register fuel quality and octane "on-the-fly" to adjust timing, etc, to help prevent knock and create a little bit better performance.
I think it mentions 85 at altitude and I don't think you can find lower than 87 near me (MD).
 

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The car is designed for 87 octane - stick with it. If you deviate from it, that's your call, but that's just wasting money; and it's assumed that you're smarter than the Subaru engineers. If you want to spend the money, go pump the car with 100% unleaded fuel, non-ethanol stuff.
 

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I never understood the don't use cruise control restriction. with ACC the speed/rpm's are constantly changing to follow the lead car in front of you. so shouldn't you be able to just use this during break-in so long as you aren't getting huge RPM swings that go above the 4k limit for the first 1000 miles?
That's because this restriction came from the old days, before Adaptive Cruise Control.
 

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As to premium vs. regular, I would say that if you have a car that is smart enough to sense the difference and built to take advantage of it then yes it would help to use premium. If not you are probably wasting your money. The one caveat being if you are able to get alcohol free premium. If so, then you probably do get better performance and fuel mileage out of your run of the mill car because you don't have the ethanol dragging you down.
I'm going to add one more caveat to the above, simply because of where I am, we have ALL grades and blends of gas available. Do a quick cost benefit analysis.

It's 40 cents per gallon difference locally between 87 Octane E10 and 91 Octane E10, and 80 cents per gallon difference to get to 91 Octane 100% gas. On the same fill-up - where you're putting 10 gallons in - and you get 26 mpg with 87 Octane (so 260 miles), and you get 29 mpg with 91 Octane for the $8.00 difference - that 30 miles in difference. At $2.40 per gallon for 87 Octane E10 (which is what it is locally), you would need an extra 84 miles difference for the 100% 91 Octane to be cost effective. Not to say you shouldn't put a tank of good stuff in every so often, but ...
 

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That's because this restriction came from the old days, before Adaptive Cruise Control.
If you are on the open road with no one in front of you ...you could cruise along for hundreds of miles......At a steady 65-70-80 mph.Unlikely Maybe but possible....
Many cars will be delivered during the summer, vacation season.....,The time of long road trips...
Seems to still be valid advice....
 
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