940.000 km driving with only the left foot and towing a camping trailer most of the time. this is the story about Roger Söderbergs Subaru outback.
Since I own this Subaru outback I keep asking myself, why? Why drove this man that many kilometers. He must almost lived in this car.
So to find that out, Rick, Viktor and myself drove all way down to Sunne. 1500 km from where I live. Sunne is a little village in Sweden where the outback was sold and had all her services. We met the owner of the car garage that sold this car and told me a lot about the history of this Subaru.
Roger was on disablement pension deu to an injury at birth. But ever since he got his drivers license want to spent as much time behind the wheel. When he drove he has exactly the same capacity as everyone else who drives a car. It was like a therapy for him. So, to make all those kilometers he start helping caravan business to pickup and drop off caravans through whole Europe. With his right leg in a cage because, he had no control over his right leg. So using only his left leg to break and accelerate.
In 1996 he bought his first Subaru. All the other car brands last for two years, but Subaru was something else. Roger drove in 4 years 670.000 km with his outback without any problems. Until the outback needed a service. One of the car mechanic’s didn’t know that the outback had the gas pedal on the left side, because Roger couldn’t use is right leg. So instead of the clutch he hit the gas pedal and drove the outback through a wall.
At the same time there was standing an other outback in the showroom that was only used for test drives and had 12.000 km on it. This was Byr.
From the year 2000 until 2007 Roger drove 940.000 km with this car. With the same engine and transmission. Only at 680.000 km he changed a head gasket on one side. So the engine still has the original head gasket on the otherside. They changed bearings in the rear wheels and the front differential.
But suspension and even exhaust are still all original.
In Japan they couldn’t understand that someone drove that much with one of there products. So Subaru of Japan invited Roger in the Subaru factory. So they know about the story and this Subaru.
Picture of Roger Söderberg at Subaru Japan (the man in the wheelchair).
In 2007 Roger couldn’t drive anymore and gave the car back to the garage where he bought her. Roger Söderberg passed away October/18/2016.
After 6 years of standing outside in whatever weather Viktor walked into the garage and saw Byr standing there and he was wondering what that car was doing between the new ones. He asked the salesman and he told him the story about byr. He wants to buy it but, the sales man said no. For 2 months Viktor kept calling the sales man every week. Until the sales man gets sick of it and told him to get it for 1.000 euro. He bought it and want to drive Byr up to a million km.
But at the 960.000 the transmission gets really bad and was totally destroyed. So Viktor had to change the transmission. Sadly but not bad after towing caravans all those distances.
After 980.000 km Viktor had a accident. He hit with 80 km/h a moose and the car was destroyed. Whatever it takes him, byr had to reach the one million so he pushed out the roof and put new windows in.
10 years after Roger left Byr with 940.000 his car hit the one million km. But in 2018 the outback had too much rust and didn’t went through the inspection. Viktor didn’t had the time and money to fix here up. So he asked me or I had intrest. I told him before that I was thinking to drive my Legacy from the Netherlands to Japan. But after I crashed my Legacy that plan was gone. So when Viktor asked me or I want to have this outback I didn’t have to think twice.
I’ve driven 32 hours in one weekend to pick up Byr.
An picture from Roger when Byr passed the inspection without any problems and 807.810km(left). And a picture from me standing with Byr at the same spot(the picture on the bottom).
The outback is called Byr because of the first 3 letters of the license plate (see the picture on fhe top).
I was in shock how bad byr was. Never seen that much rust on a car. Probably because Byr has standing for 6 years outside not driving. After Viktor bought Byr he start using her as a daily car. Viktor lifs near Gothenburg. A very bad place to own a car. Because they have the salt of the roads during winter and the salt of the sea.
After spending 6 months of welding and replacing breaks and bearings she was finally ready to get back on the road.
People called me crazy and insane that I spent that much time and money on that old wreck. For me it’s something different. A car with a history like this and a patrol engine that drove over a million can’t end on the junkyard.