Though it provides cargo utility and off-highway capability, the Subaru Forester is not a sport-utility vehicle in the traditional sense. It drives more like a car than a truck. That means it offers superior handling to trucks in all but the roughest terrain. There's nothing to fear from snow, mud, dirt, gravel or wet pavement with Subaru's well-designed suspension and excellent all-wheel-drive system. Yet crisp throttle response and competent handling make the Forester fun to drive on dry pavement.
All Subarus sold today are equipped with all-wheel drive and all Foresters are powered by Subaru's biggest engine, a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder boxer engine that produces 165 horsepower. Forester is available with 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission.
Two trim levels are available: L and S.
Forester L ($20,295) comes with a high level of standard equipment, which includes air conditioning, power windows, power locks, fog lights, roof rack, rear window defogger, trailer harness connector, reclining front bucket seats with adjustable lumbar support, tilt steering, AM/FM/cassette stereo and a cargo tray. The S model ($22,895) adds four-wheel disc brakes (in place of the rear drum brakes) with ABS, limited-slip rear differential, remote keyless entry, color-keyed heated mirrors, in-dash 6-disc CD changer, dual mode heated front seats, 16-inch tires, alloy wheels, upgraded cloth, heated windshield washer nozzles.