Last post on Sep 10, 2008 at 2:00 PM
You are in the Subaru Forester
What is this discussion about?
Subaru Forester, Future Vehicle, Wagon
#56 of 148 Re: Kavoom [paisan]
Dec 27, 2006 (6:10 am)
I often think of those two lights under the headlights as "ditch lights" instead of fog lights, since they don't add much, but they do help a little and as you know, the ones that really do punch through the fog are probably not street-legal (even though a police officer would probably never ticket someone if that was the sole reason for a stop unless the lights were one step short of an arc-welder in intensity). I was so happy to see that Subaru finally put VDC in a Forester and then so frustrated to see what they cut in order to keep that price in some range. I would rather pay an extra $2000 and get an XT Limited with VDC and then maybe a $500 cut for ordering heated cloth seats instead of heated leather seats. That would be my perfect car, but Subaru, for some reason, does not allow much customization of its vehicles.
#57 of 148 Fog Lights and other Deletions
Dec 27, 2006 (9:50 am)
I was also rather surprised at first that some features were removed and some added in a rather odd fashion. The fog lights on my old '98 are useful for lighting up the roadsides and tricky corners (they would make fair cornering lights if hooked up to the turn signals). But the low beam headlights, with the sharp upper beam cutoff, actually are pretty good in fog by themselves.
The big problem with OEM fog lights is that they do NOT have a sharp upper OR lower beam cutoff. Therefore, they annoy oncoming drivers when they are used in anything other than fog conditions. Unfortunately, very many owners of vehicles with fogs leave them on all of the time. The result is that the upper cone of light is directly in the path of oncoming traffic and the lower portion reflects off rain or snow covered road surfaces and also tends to blind the oncoming driver.
I came to buy a Subaru Forester after owning 4 Saabs. The GMization of Saab resulted in some illogical decisions and a loss of quality and so I was pushed to find something better.
The reason I bought Saabs in the first place was that they were very practical and sturdy vehicles that were well suited to my driving environment. They were not sporty (except for the SPG) and had somewhat less than average power. But the total package was great including seat heaters, high quality cloth upholstery and a total package that made sense. My original Forester was the same (with the addition of the then optional Winter Driving Package).
Unfortunately, marketers tend to dream of upscale buyers whose purchasing decisions are relatively recession-proof and so they package the product to appeal to that segment. That is what happened to Saab and that seems to be what is happening to Subaru. So, when you price the package that makes the most sense as a premium item, you have to remove some of the sensible things in order for those buying at the high end to avoid feeling that they are paying too much for their package. Thus, those of us who do not want certain high end features end up having to sacrifice some of the practical items as well to get a lower price.
#58 of 148 All Good Points
Dec 27, 2006 (11:55 am)
For me, when looking at a new vehicle, generally I look for features that I can't easily add/replace with aftermarket items as "must haves".
For instance on my Armada, I bought the LE model but without the moonroof and navigation. Those 2 options saved me close to 6000 off the sticker price. I felt that if I really wanted a roof, I could add one in the aftermarket for around $1000-1500 later on. As for the navigation, I added my carputer for around $1000, and could have added an in-dash until from crutchfield for around $1000-1500 if I really wanted to.
The reasons for going for the LE over the SE for me were the puddle lights (not easily added aftermarket), interior lights, towing package (impossible to add aftermarket), and leather (not cheaply added aftermarket) with only a slight increase in price of the LE over the SE model.
The same would go for me on the Forester in terms of the VDC, that is not something you can add later on in any size/shape or form, so I see that as a good thing. Things like leather/heated seats, moonroofs, and especially fog/driving lights can always be upgraded later on in my opinion.
#59 of 148 Re: guys it's physics [paisan]
Dec 31, 2006 (12:27 pm)
anything you can do in a forester, you can do in an sTi better. Think about it. No matter what you will have aero against you. You will have weight up high against you.
One thing much better done in a Forester XT than in a WRX STi: avoiding law enforcement attention. The taller vehicle has a lower profile, so to speak. (Aside: not long ago I was following an STi down an interstate and noticed the STi's rear wing vibrating up and down at speed. It made me question its value; perhaps it needed to be made of carbon fiber? )
On topic: There's not much I can add to the discussion as to what the Forester needs that hasn't been already written. An additional gear or two in the AT, along with the Sportshift manual shift option, are something I've clamored for for years. I also wanted to see VTD/VDC, if only to get the AT Foresters into more of a RWD bias. From what I've read thus far, not everyone is sold on those features in the '07 models, so maybe I should go drive one myself to be sure.
I'm more on board as to what I don't want to see in the next Forester. Please don't make it much larger, in the RAV-4/Outlander vein; there's no need to stuff a third row of seats in it - that's what the Tribeca was for, after all! CR-V sized is fine so long as it retains its current handling characteristics. (I'm concerned that between the Tribeca and the next Impreza hatches, there may not be a need for the Forester in the model lineup; but why would Subaru kill the model with the highest rate of repeat ownership?)
Please also do not succumb to the current styling trend of sweeping the rear sheetmetal upwards and widening the C- and D-pillars such that rear visibility is reduced. Very few cars offer the excellent all-round (especially to the rear) outward visibility of the Forester. Several people who have ridden in my car have remarked on that to me, including some who I don't consider "car people" who pick up on details like that. I'd hate to see that disappear in the name of style.
#60 of 148 Re: guys it's physics [lark6]
Dec 31, 2006 (5:02 pm)
Ed, I'm pretty much in agreement with all you said. I really don't think you need to worry about, if gets larger, it will no longer be fun to drive.
The EVO is larger than the WRX, and it handles just fine—and I haven't heard anyone complain about how the 108.7" wheelbase 3-Series BMW handles.
It really comes down to suspension tuning, and how FHI/SOA want to deal with that. I say keep it sporty, as it currently is.
#61 of 148 Low-Profile
Jan 02, 2007 (12:14 am)
I agree, you'll avoid the cops more in a Forester than an STi, but how fast are you guys going on the highway? I mean I cruise at 75-80 all day long and put on 20-30k miles a year and rarely get pulled over driving the Armada or the Legacy. We'll see when I get the GTO how that works out though....
Jan 08, 2007 (7:31 am)
I have a 2004 forester... former jeep owner.
While I love the forester it is just too small to really compete in the American market... Sure older folks and women love the car.... but the forester was finally dethroned by honda, and toyota as their own small SUVs have become larger; even coming with a 3rd row of seats...
Americans are big people and to really catch the demographic of folks who want a reliable, environment ally friendly, and capable SUV you need a vehicle that is pushing the midsize ranger.
Even if the forester grew to the size of lets say... a nissan murano or the new Santa fe
subaru is the only car company I know who makes their cars on the same small platforms... Toyota has the rav 4, the highlander and so forth, but subaru builds the forester on another small platform.
The forester is due to be redesigned in 2008. There are whispers of it being enlarged.... However I am skeptical subaru is committed to truely updating this vehicle. However if they want to stay competitive with toyota and honda (and even the new santa fe and outlander are larger and getting good reviews) they are going to have to do a serious redesign.
#63 of 148 Re: Needs to be larger [knickerbocker]
Jan 08, 2007 (9:24 am)
I can tell you that Subaru will lose a customer if they make it as big and cumbersome as these "small" SUV's like the Santa Fe and Rav4. Next step is that they'll put the H6 n and take away the turbo and five speed. I like my forester nice and nimble. Not big and ponderous.
#64 of 148 Re: Needs to be larger [tazereli]
Jan 08, 2007 (10:24 am)
I'm not talking about supersizing the forester.. But they could make some modest changes to enlarge it slightly.
Subaru already has the ugly tribeca... so it should not go that large... I hear they are already scrapping the tribeca front end design... now if they would make one that took regular gas....
Also I am hearing rumors of a deisel... so a bio-deisel would be nice or a gas electric hybrid.
#65 of 148 Re: Needs to be larger [knickerbocker]
Jan 08, 2007 (3:54 pm)
A larger Forester? No thanks.