Noisy-yes, no automatic headlights, transmission shifting is not smooth from reverse to drive, very comfortable and safe. Automatic stopping works very well, especially for deer. 95 plus percent of driving was on paved highways. Needed to replace front brakes at 20,783 miles due to glazed rotors and pads having debris ground into surface. Seriously? It IS an SUV right? Of course, the ridiculously overpriced extended warranty did not cover this.
We purchased our 2015 Subaru Forester 2.5i primarily because it was the only crossover on the market available with all wheel drive and a proper manual transmission. Immediately we had issues with oil consumption which the dealer told us was normal. Oil consumption like this is not normal. We also have a BMW with over 250k on the odometer that doesn't consume any oil. After going back and forth with the dealer for nearly two years they finally agreed to fix the problem and replaced the short block, this reduced the oil consumption significantly, but it still needs about a 1/2 to full quart between changes. Around the 80k mile marker one of the rear coil springs broke, it was not under warranty and we were stuck with the cost of replacement. I found this very disconcerting considering the car has never been off road or abused. Then just recently at the 90k mark the passenger CV axle failed and needed to be replaced, again we're stuck with the cost. We bought the vehicle thinking Subaru's are extremely reliable, but this doesn't seem to be the case. I don't mind a bit of upkeep, but while I'm making payments on a car I don't expect to have to put this much into it. Overall it is a decent vehicle, but Subaru quality isn't what it used to be.
Everything about the car is just as claimed by Subaru. I had a strange situation happen to me twice not more than 2 months apart about 1 year ago but not since or before. I have owned the car for exactly 4 years now. What happened was; as I was driving the engine suddenly for no reason started to under rpm and I could not get the engine to rev higher no matter how far I pushed on the gas pedal. The car was restricted to going less than 15 mph; all the warning and indicator lights were coming on. I had to keep my foot with steady and hard pressure on the gas pedal or it seemed it would shut down. I pulled over and shut the engine down, waited 3 minutes and put some engine oil in (it was low about half a quart). Started the engine up and it was almost normal in operation. This happened again about 3-4 weeks later. I shut the engine off again and waited a few minutes and the problem subsided. I told the dealer and they told me the car would have to be diagnosed at $100 an hour. I still don't have a clue as to what the problem was.
This is our first Subaru... the reasons for choosin it over the Mazda CX-5 and others were as follows: Safety, the AWD, Turbo, Extended Warranty, easy in/out access for aging parents, reputation for reliability, off road capability, and resale. This is a great car for performance!!! We love the turbo, but they have done away with it for 2019 so we will probably be leaving the Subaru family for that reason and some others I will articulate later. Another thing we didn't think about at first, but that we really like now is the great turning radius. The freeway mileage is over 30 like 32 or 33, but I haven't validated that lately. We choose to get the manufacturer extended warranty (we do NOT recommend ANY third party warranty). Subaru threw in 2 yrs of normal service (not severe which is really what most people need), which is a plus. We opted for the 100K 84mo/7yr Gold mfg extended warranty AND WE ARE USING IT. We have not liked our dealer experience. The problems started on the day I drove it home. On the way home on the 5 fwy it smoked so bad I had to roll down the windows... it was a coating put on the engine to prevent corrosion as it crossed the Pacific. I think it was the first oil change that I encountered a problem with the dealership. The service guys forgot to put the engine cover on, which I discovered at home, and I had to return to the dealership to get it put on. The another time time they put too much oil in the crankcase... fortunately I checked it at home and they fixed that. Then, at about 36K and 2.5 yrs, the drivers side left bottom seat bolster has begun peeling and cracking. They agreed this wasn't normal and in March told me they would call me when the part came in... they never called. In June took it in to have the oil changed & a multipoint inspection using the Express Service (not scheduled), but they said it would be 2 hrs before they could get to it. I left and called the next time and finally got it in. They told me the front differential was leaking and that it would be a whole day to service it. We decided not to have them do it because we didn't want a major service to go wrong on our road trip. We used our Honda for the trip & scheduled it for when we came back 7/31... while we were gone they reschduled it to 8/1 via email with no reason given as to why. I took it in and they said it wasn't the front differential after all, but the CVT (transmission). They said if it was in the front they could fix it there, but if it was in the back they would have to replace the transmission and that could take up to 4 days. I thank God that we bought the Added Security Plus Gold $0 deductible warranty as this would have cost thousands of dollars. This happened at 40K, just beyond the normal warranty. I would NOT recommend buying a Subaru without the mfg extended warranty. Now, let me say that a lot of the problem is most likely my dealership, which has awards and is a #1 Subaru seller I think. It has, up until recently, always seemed very crowded and I attribute that to the increased sales. I would also say that we like the car, but that we feel Subaru is not listening to us as customers. We have talked with corporate customer service about things, but we feel there is a lack of listening on the part of the corporation. One of the biggest selling points for us is Safety... Safety includes not just crash proofing, and crash avoidance; but reliability, braking, and performance to get out of situations. When we purchased the "Subie" as we affectionately call it, it was an IIHS TSP. However, they seem to have done nothing to imporve it year after year, only cosmetic facelifts, which really are a waste of resources in our opinion. We would have prefered they raise the passenger side crash 4 Star rating to 5 Stars and innovatively found a way to change the rollover from 4 stars to 5 stars. We would have liked them to have offered the 2.5L 305 HP STi turbo with a CVT or manual as an option. We would have liked them to have tried to garner the best NHTSA numbers and IIHS numbers for safety and raised their standing/rating with Informed for Life. We would have liked to have seen them add a front passenger seat height adjustment & addressed customer complaints about the driver's seat. Instead of stepping up to the challenge, they have blamed the customers for low sales of the manual and turbo and used these sales #s as an excuse to drop them. The real problem is corporate decision makers... make the turbo run on unleaded & get 28 around town & 35-40 on the hwy & give it more power (after all the WRX STi is a manual with a 305 HP turbo). If 6% of their sales are manual Foresters and another 5% are turbos.. that is 11% of their sales for their best selling model... really it is inexcusable to disenfrancise and lose these customers because you can't won't engineer, innovate, pioneer, and adapt. They could make it a Hybrid with the rear electric rear wheels (Think Tesla Model X).