I bought this car new and still own it after almost 9 years. This car now has over 100k miles and the only maintenance I have ever done is oil changes and replaced the front brake pads at 98,000 miles. That is correct the front originial brake pads lasted until 98k miles and the back pads still have 1/2 wear left so they have never been replaced. The AWD works great and I will buy another Subaru when and if this one ever wears out. If you need a 4 wheel drive vehicle then I don't think you can beat a Subaru. I only wish they made pick up trucks.
I LOVE my Forester! I put 15k miles a year on it, and I drive it hard! 5 speed and the engine pulls great. I had one problem, the headgasket, but it was covered under the service bulletin/warranty to 100k. I currently have 112k miles and this car is great. I really enjoy it. Reliable, fun, but maybe a little small for a family of four. Stereo/tape was lousy, I replaced it with an OEM 6-CD changer from a Subaru WRX for $100. MPG: if I drive hard (wide open throttle) I get 21.4, if I set cruise at the speed limit, 28.4. AWD uses more gas but is a blast to drive spirited! We miss our other Subaru (95 Legacy) and plan to purchase another when we can. I'm so glad I got this vehicle.
Strong engine, reliability, AWD is fun for cornering!
I bought this car used in '01, and had nothing but problems ever since. 2 sensor replacements, a transmission replacement (2 if you count that the first replacement put in didn't work), an engine seal replacement, 2 wheel bearing replacements (same wheel, and I think it's going again), short in power door locks that make them unusable, cruise and horn stopped working, CD player only works when it wants to, and there is a constant squeak when driving that no one can find the source of. I had good luck with a previous Subaru, but am looking to replace this one and will probably not be getting another Subaru again.
It is fun to drive, and I like the AWD.
Bad cup holder placement, seats not quite comfortable for taller people, no backseat legroom. Oh yeah, and all the stuff I listed above.
I love my Forester. I searched far and wide ending on eBay for one with the right price and look, but the engine was a disaster just waiting to occur. I could hear some kind of rod knock but all the dealerships said it could run for another 100K. 10K later the car was at 115K and it cost $4400 to get a new engine. Now it's in good shape. It still only gets 20mpg compared to 27 by rating, but all the girls love it!
Great Forester, bad engine, had to replace at 115K miles. It's great for mountain biking trips.
Sort out the engine problems. Can you get leather seats, tinted windows, and a sunroof?
Bought this as second forester for our family with teenagers starting to drive. Excellent reliability, not tippy like other SUVís. Only complaint is lack of attractive exterior appearance. Doesnít bother me. About 20mpg city/25 highway with automatic transmission. Looking to get another used forester as my other teens start driving.
Reliability, excellent handling esp. on ice/snow/wet roads, excellent steering/turning radius. Easy for new drivers.