I purchased the Forester while looking for a small SUV. I thought about a Forester several years before, but passed on it. When I came back for another look, I knew it was for me after the test drive. Personally, I love the interior and the I4 engine is good enough for it. It's not going to go roaring down the interstate, but it's got more pep than many other I4's seem to have. I've had it for a year and I'm completely satisfied with it and would recommend it to anyone looking for a moderately priced small SUV without all the frills. All the usual convenience features are there.
Interior styling, above average get up and go for an I4.
Gas mileage seems to really go down when reaching 70mph plus.
Had a 2000 Forester and replaced it with the 2005 after looking at CRV, RAV4 and Sportage. Though few visible changes, I can see great improvements over the 2000 model in mileage, acceleration and interior trim. This is my third Subaru and they can't be beat for cold climates.
AWD, and you can still get a real stick shift. Great choice to trim levels and performance options. Strong owner community to tap into for information.
Radio controls on the steering wheel would be great.
I owned a 1998 Forester, and when it went up at 150,000 miles I had no hesitation at buying another. I feel that the 2005 is not as good as my 1998. Already the carpet on the driver side has a big tear (thin carpet), the windows rattle, and the compressor in my ac just went up. And the transmission doesn't shift smoothly. I'll be shopping around for a new manufacturer when this one goes up.
Cargo area with cover
Sturdier carpet, ridge around roof so when it rains the water doesn't drip.
Always wanted to own one but there are hardly any used ones available in So. California. So went out and bought a brand new one. Although basic model, driving in the past 2 years was a pleasant experience. I like the easy self-maintenance, such as oil and filter (cabin and air) changes. Interior is simple and durable. Driving position is very good and handling is fine. Body integrity could be better - a rattle developed in the rear/left without being able to localize the source. The extras that do not come with the car are easily available from Subaru dealers and fairly simply to install. Quality and workmanship is excellent.
Gated gear selector (a safety issue). Ample rear cargo space with split rear reclining seats. Sufficient ground clearance. Factory roof rack rails. Powerful air condition and heat. Simple and logical controls. Easy to handle and park. Firm yet controlled ride.
Tinted windows should have been standard in the southeast. Rear deck outside closing handle. It is available in Europe and Japan as an option, but not sold here. It helps to close rear gate when wet and muddy. Noticeable road noise from standard equipped tires.