2003 Subaru Forester Consumer Review: Good bang for your buck

2003 Subaru Forester - Consumer Review

Average Consumer Rating

184 Total Reviews

X Wagon (2.5L 4-cyl. AWD 5-speed Manual)

Build Quality
Reliability Value
Good bang for your buck
By R.J. on


2003 Subaru Forester X AWD 4dr Wagon (2.5L 4cyl 5M)


Had the vehicle for about 3 years now. Very satisfied with the fit and finish of the car. It has a lot of standard equipment for a base model. The 4 speed automatic transmission is a little bit lazy getting the car moving. The Forester fairs very well in inclement weather; it is also a very highly rated vehicle safetywise by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), especially when compared against rivals in this price range. My only real complaints are the tight back seat and the antiquated rear drum brakes on the 2.5X, with the perpetual squeaking problem that a dealer rep advised me was just a poor brake shoe design inherent on this model.

Best Features

Safety ratings, all-wheel drive system, standard content and excellent build quality.

Worst Features

More room for rear passengers. Disc brakes for the rear wheels; the standard drums have a perpetual squeaking problem no matter how often they are cleaned.
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