2005 Subaru Forester X AWD 4dr Wagon (2.5L 4cyl 5M)
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.