Bought new in 2007, currently has ~ 55,000 miles. Mostly driven by my wife. Great handling (though no traction control, but very good in snow). No mechanical problems. LL Bean version has self-leveling rear struts, which I thought would be better for trailer towing. Only pulled a utility trailer a few times, so not sure if it helped. Had to replace the struts at 45,000 miles - very expensive (> $1100!). Never rode in the back seats, but the front seats aren't very comfortable for very long. Seat bottom is too short, so thigh support is lacking; needs better arm rests; sun visor doesn't cover the center of the windshield, and when turned to the side window it doesn't extend back far enough to keep the sun out of my eyes. Radio display is hard to see during the day. I really like driving it, but the ergonomics aren't that good. I might check out an Outback for my next purchase.
I purchased a 2007 Forester XT Sport (the turbo version) with the expectation that I would be getting a car that was fun to drive, reliable, and had AWD. It has been anything, but reliable.
At about 44k miles, the check engine light came on. When I went to have the car diagnosed, the dealer said I had P1410, P2431, P2432, and P2444 fault codes showing up indicating that I had a problem with the secondary air valve. That problem, was a $1200 fix, as my car was outside the 36k warranty.
At 61k miles, the radiator cracked and sprayed fluid all over the engine bay. That was a $540 repair.
Needless to say, I am done with this car and will not be buying another Subaru because of it.
Appearance (Sports XT model), AWD, heated seats.
Dislikes: 4 speed automatic, premium gas, poor gas mileage, very expensive maintenance intervals (30k, 60k, and 90k miles), interior rattling sound, and other problems that were mentioned in the review.
The stuck secondary air valve is a known issue for Subaru turbo models.
This valve routes air to the catalytic converter, but Subaru does not consider it part of the emissions system.
Thus, it is not covered under that warranty and is a costly repair.
Subaru should acknowledge there is a problem, recall all vehicles with this valve or include it with the emissions warranty.
I purchased the Forester after many months of comparison shopping and test drives and 15,000 miles later, I couldn't be happier with my choice.
I get around 27 mpg from mostly highway driving and have the safety and security of AWD to boot! Last winter, Chicago had one of the worst snowstorms in its history. Despite whiteout conditions and huge snow drifts, my Forester got me home and was sure footed and confident the whole time.
The car has great outward vision, decent pickup for merging and great handling thanks to its flat four and lower ride height.
In my opinion, the Forester is perfect for someone who wants more space but doesn't want to give up the fun of a small car.
1. AWD is the main reason I bought it. I'm a much more confident driver knowing that in the rain, sleet, snow and ice my car won't let me down. On a few occasions, I've had to make evasive manuevers in the wet and the dry and the Forester handled it with amplomb and never showed signs of skidding.
2. Other things I like about this car is the easy load in for cargo. I'm a bassist and I have enough room to put all my equipment in the back without folding the seats down.
3. I also like how easy it is to see in this car. With so much glass, I have a clear view of the road and blind spots are not as prevalent as they are in other small SUV's.
1. Although the engine performance is quite the improvement over my last car, I wouldn't mind a few extra horses to give the car a little more oophm from a standing start. Merging at highway speeds and changing lanes has not been a problem for me.
2. The radio could use 6 speakers instead of 4. Losing the speakers in the back by the tailgate can give some songs a tinny sound and has left me wondering if a speaker had blown or not.
3. It is just the base model, but the body roll when pushed really hard is a little unsettling. I don't feel unsafe or anything it just feels a little numb.
I am writing this just in case someone is thinking of buying a new Subaru. This 2007 is my wifes second car and we have had major engine problems with both. Not only are they expensive to maintain but they do not have the long life they had in the past.