Getting firsthand information from an actual car owner is one sure way to get an idea of car performance once it leaves the lot. Autobytel features real consumer reviews that give the unbiased experience of a car.
Pros: all wheel drive
Cons: my black paint shows every nick, scratch & water spot
Advice: must have the turboThis vehicle is fantastic in the snow! Handles puddles like they are not even there. I feel very confident driving in bad New England weather. The turbo has plenty of power and the 6-cd stereo is better than average. Pleanty of storage in the hatch for our camping gear. (Wish it had a remote trunk release.) The heated leather seats are comfortable and the sunroof is huge! An awesome winter car...but it will never replace my Mustang GT Convertible in the summer. p.s. I find the service at my Subaru dealer is excellent.
Pros: driveability and huge moonroof
Cons: could use a bit more power when fully loaded (but not premium gas/expensive to fix turbo)
Advice: Drive it. It handles more like a sporty sedan that a sport utility.Canadian SE edition came with everything we wanted: huge moonroof, heated seats, and steel rims so we can rotate in the full sized spare. This car sticks to all roads, gravel, snowy etc. Driveability is among the best of any fule efficient utility vehicle.
Pros: Boxer engine
Cons: Rear leg room
Advice: Buy the XT Premium, the windroof is a blast.Excellent handling, performance. The back is spacious enought to carry anything from groceries to garden supplies. Put down the back seats and haul home furniture (which it did like a dream). Finally, its great about town, as the ride is comfortable and quiet, but when you need power... it has it.
Pros: The safety
Cons: The lack of power in acceleration and no option for a V6
Advice: Get the turbo... or at least test drive both the stock and then the turbo.I test drove the stock model for 2005 and after all of my research, I was led to believe that the forrester was the best of the best as far as small suv's. And for the most part it seems that way. I even took it out on the highway and it has a fairly smooth ride. I'm told that the turbo has good pick up, but the stock model sure didn't. I really expected more power and actually get more out of my 4 cyl dodge dakota (that I've had for almost ten years - it's a 96 that I've beat up a LOT). I figured that since it had all wheel drive it would help. Not! There's something else that bothers me, but I just can't put my finger on it... I think it's that whole women's intution thing :)
Pros: Acceleration, AWD, Power driver seat, Heated seats, Very good audio system. Visibility and build quality.
Cons: When the front seats are all the way back, the legroom in the rear is a little tight.
Advice: Test drive the XT. You will be glad you did.Really great compact SUV. All wheel drive is very effective, it's like snow is non existent. Unbelievable acceleration. Handling and ride is excellent as well. Plenty of handy storage compartments throughout the vehicle. Rear cargo area is well designed and very usable, when you drop the flat folding rear seats the area is cavernous. Interior is well done and very comfortable. Love the power driver seat, both the driver and passenger seats are heated.
Pros: It is designed and built to meet your safety needs and exceed them.
Cons: My wife's driving - but you didn't sell me her.
Advice: Not everyone has the same level of driving skills - but this car helps keep you safe.My wife had an accident in this car - Thank You! The airbags deployed, the seat belt held, the car didn't flip, pieces of the car didn't impale the interior of the car and shortly thereafter she drove it home...only having to pry up a portion of the bumper. The State Highway Patrolman exclaimed if ever there was proof of a car's safety, this was it! She was on a superhighway, and hit the guardrail on the driver's side. She said she was doing 70 (but that means 80). This woman has had quadruple bypass open heart surgery twice...and in this accident she was merely bruised by the belt. Yep it's safe as you can get!!!! TRUE story - when you care enough to insure her safety.
Pros: Interior is nice
Cons: Too many repairs & rust
Advice: Be weary and do a lot of research. Buy a used one so you don't waste your $.I bought a 2003 Subaru Forester XS in 2002 when the first new models came out. I like the way it looks and feels, but overall I have had many problems with the car, including many repairs and dealer problems. Repairs/problems include: 2 Airbags replaced, transmission recall/slips, windows leak water, knocking in back and front suspension, gas mileage deteriorated to 14mpg from 23mpg, rust, roof rack broke, rear seatbelt installed backwards, stock tires replaced at 25K miles, rear differential always low on grease for some reason, AWD not very good in snow or mud, and dealerships are bad to do business with. I really wish that it did not have so many problems, otherwise I'd like it better and would feel like I got my money's worth (and would not worry about possibly breaking down soon). Now I am disappointed and feel jipped. I am going to sell it soon and never buy another new Subaru again. The resale value on them goes down quickly also. The dealership service is horrible here. :(