Product Reviews

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With its 2014 redesign the Forester topped our small-SUV ratings, easily out-pointing the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and other contenders. The secret: a back-to-basics design with large windows and big doors that brought the easiest access and best view out in the class; an excellent driving position; and unusually spacious rear seating. Its 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and new CVT transmission averaged an impressive 26 mpg in our tests. Tradeoffs included the ride, which is OK but not as composed as previously, and the handling, which, though competent, isn't very agile. Engine noise is pronounced at times, too. Controls are very simple but infotainment and connectivity offerings are a bit behind. Mid-trim Foresters bring a lot of content for the money, however.

See Reliability page for the latest 2013 Subaru Forester recalls.

Safety Equipment

ABS available, standard from 2001. Side air bags available from 2001, standard from 2003. ESC available from 2007, standard from 2009. Head protection air bags standard from 2009.

Road Test

This iteration of the Forester remained one of the best small SUVs out there. With perhaps the most comfortable ride of any small SUV, it also handles well. The cabin is spacious, well designed and offers great outward visibility. A new non-turbo eng...

Highs

  • Ride, handling, driving position, visibility, controls, access, rear seat, fuel economy.

Lows

  • Noise, unrefined transmission.

Specifications

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
AWD
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
4-door SUV
Transmissions Available
  • 5-speed Manual
  • 4-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 2.5-liter 4 turbo (224 hp)
  • 2.5-liter 4 (170 hp)