Subaru forrester review

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  • Subaru Forester review | Autocar
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  • Subaru has got the Forester on track. Able and sensible, it's not about style and it's better for it.

    It might look just like the last one, but there are plenty of changes hidden under the skin. The question is, how does the all-new Subaru Forester.

    Edmunds' expert review of the Subaru Forester provides the latest look at trim-level features and specs, performance, safety, and comfort. At Edmunds we.

    Ads can be annoying. Subaru Forester review. If I'm to register any complaint about the Forester's insides, it's that the cockpit design feels a bit busy, with lots of lines and angles and different-shaped protrusions. Intended to snare American buyers keen on rugged outdoor pursuits, it was promoted under the catchy slogan of 'SUV tough, car easy'. The SUV's design hasn't changed all that much, either, and retains such characteristically Forester elements as a large glasshouse, approachable height and chunky overall aesthetics.

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    You could be forgiven for not recognizing the Subaru Forester as an all-new vehicle. And truth be told, that's intentional. The Forester has been a runaway success for Subaru , specifically in its most recent fourth generation where it doubled the sales of the third-gen model. That in mind, it's no surprise that Subaru is very smartly sticking to the mantra of, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

    Still, the model arrives with a number of updates. It's bigger, stronger and packed with even more comfort and tech amenities than ever before.

    But after a day of testing this fifth-generation SUV in the hills of North Carolina, the best thing I can say is that it looks, feels and drives exactly like a Forester should. Subaru says its customers love the just-right size of the current Forester. So despite moving the SUV to the same global architecture that underpins the Impreza , Crosstrek and Ascent , Subaru has managed to keep the Forester's footprint remarkably similar. The model grows by less than an inch in both length and width, while still boasting a bit more legroom inside, as well as a few more cubic feet of cargo space not to mention the widest load-in aperture in the class.

    The SUV's design hasn't changed all that much, either, and retains such characteristically Forester elements as a large glasshouse, approachable height and chunky overall aesthetics. It's not pretty, but it's purposeful. And more importantly, it's immediately recognizable as a Forester.

    A new Sport trim joins the lineup for , immediately identifiable thanks to its bright orange exterior and interior accents which I can't say I love , as well as its black-painted, inch alloy wheels. But aside from some slightly different transmission programming when driven in Sport mode, this new trim is mechanically identical to every other Forester. The Forester rolls into with a single powertrain option: That's right, the turbocharged XT model is dead, ditto the base car's manual gearbox.

    Subaru says both of these versions accounted for maybe 5 percent of overall Forester sales, so the effort needed to keep 'em alive wouldn't be worth it in the end. That's fine, because the Forester's updated 2. There's horsepower and pound-feet of torque on offer, gains of just 12 and 2, respectively, compared to the outgoing model. The CVT is largely unobtrusive most of the time, quietly humming away and keeping the engine pegged in its powerband.

    Really dig into the throttle and the transmission will change to a stepped shift pattern that mimics the action of a conventional seven-speed automatic, and available paddle shifters will let you move through those faux gears manually. Honestly, though, you're better off leaving it alone. EPA ratings of 26 miles per gallon city, 33 mpg highway and 29 mpg combined only represent 1-mpg increases in the highway and combined cycles compared to the Forester.

    With its predictable body roll and nicely weighted steering, the Forester is a smooth operator. The Forester's new architecture results in a percent gain in torsional rigidity, and improves overall ride and handling characteristics. Subaru uses a new variable steering system in the Forester, but since it's only changing between Instead, drivers will just enjoy accurate, nicely weighted steering. Being a Forester, Subaru's Symmetrical all-wheel drive is standard across all trim levels.

    And if you'll find yourself hitting dusty or muddy trails, there are two different levels of Subaru's X-Mode to help get you through the rough stuff. The Premium trim has a single X-Mode setting that changes the intervention point of the traction control. On a short off-road course, X-Mode seems to get through the muddy stuff well enough, though a touchy throttle often means you'll give the Forester more oomph than it needs to get out of sticky situations.

    Subaru Forester SUV 2008 - 2012 review - CarBuyer

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