2003 Subaru Baja

  • 2003 Subaru Baja Base Pickup Truck

    Base Pickup Truck

    • MAX MPG
    • SEATS
    • ENGINE
      2.5L H4
    • MSRP
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2003 Subaru Baja Review

A vehicle for the active skier or surfer.

Reviewed by Automotive on


The 2003 Subaru Baja blends the comfort of a car with the ruggedness of a pickup truck. The front is similar to the Outback, with a prominent bumper, integrated fog lights, angled headlamps, foldable body-color mirrors, pumped-up front fenders and lower-body cladding. It features silver stone-hued cladding and a silver stone monochromatic model with matching body and bumper color as an upgrade.

The Range

Body Styles: crossover blend
Engines: 2.5-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: five-speed manual, four-speed automatic
Models: Subaru Baja, Subaru Baja Sport

What's New

The 2003 Subaru Baja is new for 2003.


The 2003 Subaru Baja offers three two-toned exterior colors, one being especially bright: Baja yellow/silver stone metallic, black granite pearl/silver stone metallic, and regatta red pearl/silver stone metallic. Also available is monochromatic silver stone metallic. The standard tires and wheels package includes 15-inch alloy wheels, a null spare wheel, P225/60R H tires, all-season tires, underbody mounted spare tire, and a temporary spare tire. The pickup bed can be expanded to 7.5 feet. For those who lead active lives and anticipate passengers, the ""switchback"" panel allows for reconfiguration of people and cargo. Special outer bed features include a bed liner, bed sport bars, bed light, and four tie-down hooks. Roof rails and crossbars are standard, ski, kayak, and snowboard attachments are available.

The 2003 Subaru Baja offers standard intermittent wipers, privacy glass, a power glass sunroof, and a roof rack. The 2003 Baja measures 70.1 inches wide, 64.2 inches high, and 193.3 inches long. Its ground clearance is 7.3 inches. The front track is 57.9 inches, the rear track is 57.7 inches, and the wheelbase is 104.3 inches. Maximum towing capacity is 2400 pounds and maximum payload is 1070 pounds when adequately equipped, which may require engine and/or other drivetrain upgrades.


The 2003 Subaru Baja offers only one interior color, which is grey, while consumers have a vinyl or cloth bucket seat covering option. Both models seat four people. Front head room measures at 38.3 inches, front hip room is 51.3 inches, front leg room is 43.4 inches, and front shoulder room is 53.9 inches. The driver’s seat has manual, adjustable lumbar support along with a height adjustment. It offers standard features, including a keyless entry system, perforated leather-trimmed upholstery, one-touch power windows, power mirrors and door locks, and a six-way power driver seat. Rear seats are split folding, and there is a storage center armrest once folded. There are rear ventilation air ducts. Standard interior convenience features include cruise control, front console with storage, front and rear cup holders, front door pockets, front seatback storage, power steering, 12-volt front power outlet, and a leather-wrapped tilt-adjustable steering wheel. Both models comes with standard air-conditioning, a cargo area light, front reading lights, front and rear floor mats, and dual illuminating vanity mirrors. Passengers can enjoy music on their way to their next adventure through four speakers, 80 watts of output, and an AM/FM in-dash single CD player stereo.

Performance & Handling

Both 2003 Subaru Baja models come with standard all-wheel drive, a viscous center differential, five-speed manual transmission, rear limited slip differential, and center locking differential. The suspension package is a standard four-wheel independent suspension.


The 2003 Subaru Baja features four-wheel anti-lock brakes, child seat anchors, ventilated front disc/solid rear disc brakes, rear door child safety locks, daytime running lights, front fog/driving lights, two front headrests, front seatbelt pretensioners, electronic brake force distribution, and front height adjustable headrests. It also comes equipped with a dual-stage front-passenger airbag. Identifix rates it with five out of five in the following categories: transmission and drivetrain, steering and suspension, brakes, heating and air-conditioning, starting and charging, and accessories. The engine receives a less than favorable review due to a periodic problem with failing cylinder head gaskets.

EPA Fuel Economy

Subaru Baja: 18/23 mpg city/ highway

You'll Like

  • Comfortable ride
  • Stable handling
  • Good gas mileage

You Won't Like

  • Limited towing and hauling capability
  • Non-removal mid gate glass

Sum Up

A vehicle for the active skier or surfer.

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