I've had my Forester for a little over 4 years now. It has served me well in the city and on back-country roads. It does an excellent job in ice and snow, is easy to park, and carries a lot of gear. With the XT package it has more than enough pick up and is a lot of fun to drive.
Performance, flexibility of use - a little bit of everything from small SUV to sports car.
Sunroof mechanism is notoriously unreliable (dealer replaced my for free even though it was out of warranty); needs heated side view mirrors; needs better rear cup holders; headlights should be easier for the owner to replace (as designed the entire assembly has to be removed).