Positives
+ Seating position is high
+ Full-time all-wheel drive
+ Expected mechanical reliability

Negatives
– Styling is excessively boxy
– Rear seat is just adequate
– Interior lacks pizazz

Competitors:
Chevrolet Equinox
Dodge Journey
Ford Escape
Honda CR-V
Jeep Cherokee
Hyundai Santa Fe Sport
Mazda CX-5
Mitsubishi Outlander
Nissan Rogue
Toyota RAV4
Volkswagen Tiguan

By Jeff Voth

The 2015 Subaru Forester is a go-anywhere compact SUV that is right-sized for today’s on-the-go family. It is rugged enough to tackle the muddiest and most unruly of road surfaces, or take on shuttle duty with the kids and their bags of gear on the way to hockey or figure skating practice. Cleaned up and dressed for prime time, it is also an excellent choice for a night on the town.

Power comes in the form of a 2.5L DOHC four-cylinder gasoline engine matched to a CVT transmission. Equipped with a lock-up torque converter, steering wheel mounted paddle-shifters, multiple transmission modes including off-road oriented X-mode, it delivers a robust 170 horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 174 lb-ft of torque at 4,100 rpm. Fuel consumption is rated at 7.5 and 9.6 L/100 km city/highway.

Onboard features in our test vehicle included EyeSight pre-collision warning and active safety features such as brake assist and throttle management. A large glass panoramic sunroof provides a sense of airiness to the Forester, while a leather-wrapped steering wheel, 10-way adjustable driver’s seat and heated front seats that work extremely well add to the overall luxurious appeal. The power liftgate is a nice touch, but not necessary given the overall midsize measurements of the Forester.

Crash Test Results:
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)

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