Review: Subaru Forester
The fourth-gen car looks to build on this success by offering a bigger, more refined and better-equipped package.
With these words, Senior launched the fourth-generation Forester, a car to which buyers have been coming in big numbers since 1998. Amazingly, given the relatively short period in which the Forester has existed, it is now the best-selling Subaru in the brand’s 40-year Australian history.
The fourth-gen car looks to build on this success by offering a bigger, more refined and better-equipped package. At 4595mm, the new car is 35mm longer and sits on a 2640mm wheelbase (up 25mm).
Initially the Forester will be offered with two naturally aspirated petrol flat-fours and a turbo-diesel four-cylinder. The entry-level Forester is now fitted with the 110kW/198Nm 2.0-litre boxer that also sees duty in the Impreza and XV. This engine is mated to a six-speed manual, up one ratio over the old car.
Aside from an occasionally unsettled low-speed ride from the 18-inch alloys on the top-spec 2.5i S, the new Forester is a vastly more refined car than the old one.
Given its off-road pretensions, the Forester is the most-refined car in the current Subaru line-up. On blacktop or gravel, it lopes along, soaking up the worst impacts with aplomb, while there’s enough body control to limit head-toss from the tall-boy body. On gravel, the ESC is well-judged, allowing a little bit of slip if you’re smooth with your inputs or clamping down hard on any sudden loss of traction.
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