Subaru Forester IV – The Forester is an individualist in the richly populated SUV segment. So what does “above the program” offer? Let’s get to know the opinions of the owners of used Subaru Forester IV.
Subaru Forester’s career has been going on since the late 1990s, making it one of the longest-produced SUVs in the European (including Polish) market. To date, Subaru has already presented 5 incarnations of the Forester (the latest, the fifth, in 2019). The car has never faced an equal fight with rivals (more or less successful), at least when we take into account the sales results. The Forester, however, is a very thought-out and in its way unique car and the demand for it could have been slowed down by the highly calculated price. What is the strength of this model? In perfect, permanent 4-wheel drive (but only in conjunction with manual gearboxes), long-refined boxer engines (with a push-pull cylinder arrangement) and a functional, generously glazed body. The Forester is one of the few SUVs that are not afraid to drive off the asphalt. It can even be said that in worse conditions it feels better than on highways, where the scant isolation from external noises is revealed. Even though the body is up to 22 cm from the ground, the chassis and Subaru suspension (multi-link at the rear) keep it in check while quickly negotiating road bends, the car also remains very direct to drive. On the other hand, travelers will record each passing through a larger hole.
Subaru Forester IV – interior
Forester’s cockpit does not try to pretend to be modern and eye-catching. However, it convinces with the ease of use and a few nice details. It is also readable and quite functional. The quality of finishing materials? Typically Japanese, which means that hard plastics predominate, including some that easily take on scratches. There are no major objections to their assembly: they rather do not harass users with unpleasant crackles and creaks. Foresters IV in poorer versions had an extensive radio with a modest display, but a frequent addition is colored screens above the central console, showing, among others, air conditioning and onboard computer settings.
The Subaru Forester receives a lot of praise for its interior. In comfortable conditions, it can accommodate four adults, for short distances – also one additional (the optimal middle tunnel does not mind). The armchairs do not impress with their cubature, it is also in vain to expect an unusually profiled seat. The couch is also flat but has an adjustable backrest. The interior is optically enlarged by large glass panes with a low “running” line of windows: this treatment has a positive effect on the visibility from the center of the Forester. The trunk will fit a decent 505 liters. Spoiled on the finish (the wheel arches are covered with scratch-prone plastic), but the low loading threshold leads to it. By folding the backrests of the couch, we increase it to 1,577 l (an even loading surface is created).
Subaru Forester IV – engine
Subaru has traditionally used units with a push-pull cylinder arrangement, the so-called boxers. Gasoline Foresters for the European market are always “2 liters”. The basic 2.0i (150 HP) uses multi-point fuel injection, while the top Forester XT – direct injection and turbocharging. In this way, it achieved 240 hp and as much as 350 Nm of torque, a small value of which was a bane in the naturally aspirated variant (only 198 Nm). Imported foresters (mainly from the USA) can have a 2.5-liter unit with 171 HP under the hood. The assembly of the boxer turbo diesel from its predecessor, the 2.0D / 147hp, continued. This engine caused a lot of confusion in its predecessor, hence Subaru systematically introduced improvements to it. Nevertheless, it enjoys moderate popularity. The diesel, along with the base gasoline variant, was combined with a 6-speed manual gearbox and a continuously variable Lineartronic (standard on Forester XT). As already mentioned, the permanent 4 × 4 drive only went to Subaru with manual transmissions. Cars with CVT have an attached system.
Subaru Forester IV – failure rate, common faults
The Subaru engines can hardly be faulted in terms of reliability: high mileage is not a challenge even for the Boxer Diesel variety, which in its predecessor generated considerable problems with cracking heads or crankshafts. In this incarnation of the off-road Subaru, you should focus more on failures of worn-out accessories (but rather after exceeding 200,000 km., Which is a distant value in most copies). So far, the owners only had to change something about the suspension – stabilizer links or metal-rubber elements. A lot of complaints go towards the soft paint of the body (it quickly takes on scratches) and the sloppy interior finish. The radio locks up sporadically or one of the equipment options does not work. Overall, it’s very good, although at this point it’s not so easy to get replacements.
Subaru Forester IV – summary
Subaru Forester is an SUV that is not afraid of unpaved roads, and at the same time very functional and almost failure-free. This configuration has to cost a lot, but future users will benefit from a slight loss in the value of the car. There is also another plus – the Forester will stand out in the maze of off-road cars.