There’s a new 2014 Subaru Forester in town, but you might not have noticed it. Completely redesigned, the 2014 Forester adheres to a tried-and-true crossover SUV formula that blends room for five people with Subaru hallmarks including a boxer-type 4-cylinder engine, standard all-wheel drive, plenty of ground clearance, quirky styling, and an underlying Ring-Shaped Reinforcement Frame structure engineered to keep everyone aboard safe and sound.
This is not to say that Subaru hasn’t improved the new 2014 Forester. This year, the popular crossover is longer, wider, and bigger inside than ever, and is rated to get better fuel economy. The all-wheel-drive system is upgraded, a new continuously variable transmission (CVT) debuts, and the optional turbocharged engine is more powerful than before. New safety and connectivity technologies are also on the menu.
To see how well the new Forester might compete against a slew of other compact crossover SUVs, especially heavy hitters like the Chevrolet Equinox, Ford Escape, Honda CR-V, and Toyota RAV4, I borrowed one for a week of daily-driver family duty. As it turns out, there are plenty of reasons to recommend the redesigned 2014 Subaru Forester, and a couple of reasons not to.