2020 Subaru Forester

MSRP range: $24,495 - $34,595
(105)
MSRP$26,647
Edmunds suggests you pay$23,998

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2020 Subaru Forester Review

  • Standard all-wheel drive
  • A full complement of driver assist features is standard
  • Enhanced off-road capability thanks to better-than-average ground clearance
  • Generous cargo capacity
  • Engine is underpowered
  • Modest tow rating limits maximum utility
  • New lane centering function added to list of standard driving aids
  • All-Weather package now standard on Premium models
  • Part of the fifth Forester generation introduced for 2019

Subaru introduced the latest generation of its Forester in 2019, and this small crossover SUV returns almost unchanged for 2020. That's good news for adventurous buyers. The Forester delivers on nearly every area that you're likely interested in, including rugged capability along with comfort and technology at a good value. Critically for some shoppers, all-wheel drive is standard.

There's really only one significant downside here: The Forester isn't all that thrilling to drive. The main culprit is the standard 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that's connected to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). It delivers impressive fuel economy but lacks power. Acceleration is sluggish, whether from a stop or pulling ahead of slower cars on the freeway. And unlike a lot of other rival crossovers, a more powerful engine option isn't available.

Still, the Forester has personality. Its styling suggests the Forester will be at home in the mountains, and its features back up that sentiment. It has a higher ground clearance than many competitors, and several driving modes ensure the crossover is ready for different road conditions. Inside the comfortable cabin, there is enough technology, storage space, and driving assistance to keep everyone happy taking the long way home. Overall, we think the Forester is a smart pick for a small SUV.

EdmundsEdmunds' Expert Rating
Rated for you by America’s best test team
Aside from lackluster acceleration, there isn't much to dislike about the Subaru Forester. This crossover SUV delivers the feel and rugged attitude that buyers want, along with a comfortable cabin and plenty of features for the price.
A largely gutless engine holds the Forester back. The four-cylinder engine and CVT automatic take their time getting up to speed. The Forester accelerated from 0 to 60 mph in a slow 9.3 seconds during Edmunds testing. Its steering, handling and braking, on the other hand, are more respectable. While the Forester isn't sporty, especially not compared to top rivals, it feels planted and changes direction with speed and confidence.

The Forester shines off-road thanks to 8.7 inches of ground clearance and an X-Mode drive setting that includes trail capability and hill descent control. There's much more off-road prowess here than you get in a standard all-wheel-drive crossover.
Whether you've got a long daily commute or a refreshing retreat on the horizon, the Forester will keep you riding in comfort. The front seats are well-padded and have good bolstering and lumbar support, and the suspension easily smooths out bumps and ruts in the road.

Road noise is kept to a minimum. The Forester's tall profile does produce some wind noise, but it's a small price to pay for the commanding seat position and great visibility. Climate control knobs are right where they should be and easy to find without taking your eyes off the road. The available automatic climate control works well, and the Forester's higher trims offer heated seats front and rear.
All controls inside the Forester are clearly labeled and easy to reach. There's no fussing around or overdoing things. The available 8-inch center touchscreen is crisp and simple to navigate. It also supports a crisp display from the rearview camera.

Everything about the Forester seems to have been designed right. Getting in and out is aided by tall doors and an SUV-style ride height. There's enough room for four, and possibly five, seated adults. The driver's seat offers a wide range of adjustments, and the steering wheel has plenty of telescoping range.
Subaru provides infotainment features that any owner, tech-savvy or not, can appreciate. The dual-screen center layout is attractive and easy to use. The navigation system is clear and even takes voice commands well. If Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are more your flavor, Subaru has you covered by making them standard equipment. Multiple USB ports are in both the front and rear.

We're especially fans of the driving aids included with Subaru Eyesight. The adaptive cruise control system works well and lane keeping assist, now with lane centering, prevents the Forester from drifting out of its lane. Forward collision mitigation is also included and never activated when it wasn't needed in our test.
The Forester is slightly lower in total storage capacity compared with competitors such as the Honda CR-V, but a high roof and clever cargo layout make the space usable for large items. Parents will find the Forester a little disappointing when it comes to installing child safety seats, however. The car seat anchors are buried deep in the rear seats, and fitting large rear-facing seats will be a squeeze.

With just 1,500 pounds of maximum towing capacity, towing is not the Forester's strong suit. It's better to look elsewhere if you're pulling anything substantial.
The EPA rates the Forester at 29 mpg combined (26 city/33 highway), which is near the top of the class. In testing, however, we found that the weak engine had us pinning the throttle more, which can make real-world fuel economy suffer a bit.
The Forester comes in five trim levels, giving buyers a lot of options depending on how much they want to spend and how fancy they like their cars. Subaru offers an average warranty for the class, while buyer satisfaction and residual values are historically outstanding for the brand.
Acceleration is the Forester's only notable weak point. While it's a big one, it's certainly not enough to detract from all of the vehicle's standout areas. Everything else, from comfort to technology to driver aids to storage capacity to outdoor adventure credentials, is top-notch. Its upright style and rugged components lend the Forester a unique personality, and standard all-wheel drive with a strong ride height backs it up.

Which Forester does Edmunds recommend?

If you're looking for an affordable crossover that can head for the outdoors in style while keeping your monthly payments reasonable, try the Forester Premium. Standard equipment includes a few useful extras that you don't get on the base model such as a panoramic sunroof, alloy wheels and raised roof rails, heated front seats, and a windshield wiper de-icer.

Subaru Forester models

Five trim levels are available on the 2020 Subaru Forester: base, Premium, Sport, Limited and Touring. All models come standard with all-wheel drive, and the only engine is a 2.5-liter four-cylinder (182 horsepower, 176 lb-ft of torque) mated to a CVT automatic.

The base Subaru Forester is nicely equipped. It offers seating for five and comes with features such as a rearview camera, push-button start, and 17-inch steel wheels on all-season tires. Inside, Subaru's Starlink app suite and EyeSight driver assistance system are standard. So is a 6.5-inch touchscreen and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.

In the Forester Premium, buyers will find an appealing set of upgrades. These include a panoramic sunroof, 17-inch alloy wheels, raised roof rails, a power-adjustable driver's seat and hill descent control. The All-Weather package is also standard, and it includes heated seats, heated side mirrors and a windshield wiper de-icer. Out on the trail? The Premium offers a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot and the X-Mode traction system. The number of speakers for the audio system also increases from four to six.

Upgrading to the Sport trim nets a series of minor changes such as 18-inch black wheels, LED foglights, and orange interior and exterior accents. The Forester Sport also gains an additional driving mode, an extra setting for the X-Mode traction system and paddle shifters to simulate seven gears. An optional upgrade package adds an 8-inch touchscreen, a navigation system, blind-spot detection, rear cross-traffic alert and reverse automatic braking.

The Limited tones down the styling a bit but adds adaptive headlights, dual-zone automatic climate control and leather upholstery. The 8-inch touchscreen becomes standard, as do blind-spot monitoring and a power liftgate. Finally, the top-trim Touring model adds just about all of the Forester's features. It also comes with a power-adjustable passenger seat, a heated steering wheel, heated rear seats, premium leather upholstery, and a driver distraction monitoring system (DriverFocus).

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2020 Subaru Forester.

Average user rating: 4.7 stars
105 total reviews
5 star reviews: 82%
4 star reviews: 12%
3 star reviews: 2%
2 star reviews: 4%
1 star reviews: 0%

Trending topics in reviews

  • comfort
  • interior
  • safety
  • appearance
  • handling & steering
  • value
  • technology
  • fuel efficiency
  • driving experience
  • spaciousness
  • seats
  • ride quality
  • visibility
  • sound system
  • dashboard
  • reliability & manufacturing quality
  • lights
  • climate control
  • wheels & tires
  • steering wheel
  • road noise
  • transmission
  • engine
  • infotainment system
  • acceleration
  • brakes
  • warranty
  • maintenance & parts
  • doors
  • cup holders
  • electrical system
  • towing

Most helpful consumer reviews

5/5 stars, Perfect SUV for me
Subie Fan,
Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)
I love my 2020 Forester Limited. This is my 5th Subaru and replaced my 2010 Forester Premium. I decided to upgrade to Limited and added on the upgraded Harmon Kardon audio package, heated steering wheel, and other upgrades so it's almost a Touring level vehicle. I appreciate the luxury inside -- heated leather seats, dual zone climate controls, heated steering wheel, navigation, upgraded audio system, and all the different ways I can listen to music (regular radio, Sirius XM radio, CD, iPod, Pandora). I kid that it's a jukebox on wheels. My car accelerates quickly and I get good gas mileage (26.7 mpg) on a mix of city-highway driving. The safety features are excellent -- backup camera that warns when there's obstacles or cross-traffic approaching, lane deviation warning, pre-collision braking, blind spot warning lights. The exterior is sporty looking, with a spoiler and black multispoke wheels. Really a classy looking SUV. As far as storage, it's quite a bit longer and wider than my 2010 so there's lots of room in the back seat and when the seats are folded. I mostly carry my bikes inside and they fit neatly with room to spare. The extra space means the front cockpit is also much more roomy and comfortable than my 2010. A few criticisms: The nav isn't as good finding some out of the way places that Google Maps can find easily. The voice recognition system isn't great for some things (nav) but good for others (regulating temperature). There's a feature that stops the engine at long traffic lights to save gas, and that can be slightly annoying. Sometimes my iPod doesn't work with the audio system, and I can't figure out why. There are a LOT of icons that pop up on the various screens, and not all are intuitive. I accidentally hit cruise control one day and couldn't figure out what that icon was. And last, there are 6 owner's manuals (3 full, 3 quick) which you have to read to understand the car and its various systems. I've had my car 2 months and I still find myself looking stuff up and figuring out how to customize the various features. (Example: for keyless unlocking, I wanted to unlock the driver's side door but also the passenger side door and lift gate, too.) Still, all in all, it's really the perfect SUV for me.
4/5 stars, The Forester Grows Up
RSJ,
Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)
I have owned the previous generation of the Forester and now drive a 2020 Premium. Subaru has incrementally improved the Forester to the point that it now has few drawbacks. The car is well built, the interior is well done and keeps controls fairly simple although the smallish touch screen does pick up fingerprints way too easily and is not the most intuitive. The basic 6-speaker stereo system is fine for most people - if you are an audiophile, you should upgrade to a model with the Harman Kardon system. The seats are comfortable and there's plenty of room inside for both passengers and cargo. The standard Eyesight Safety System is second to none in the industry. The new "Lance Centering System" which keeps the car in the middle of the lane you are in is a bit overaggressive for my taste - I turned it off. The automatic start/stop system is incredibly annoying - thank goodness there is a switch to turn it off! Like most AWD Subarus, this one handles and drives very good. I have read many reviewers say that the car is under-powered. It is not. I have learned after driving two generations of Foresters with the same basic engine and CVT that if you drive this vehicle "normally" it will reward you with smooth acceleration and plenty of pep. The improved CVT is now almost imperceptible and near perfect for tooling around town or cruising the highway. Its important to note that this Engine and CVT combo has never been good for aggressive driving. If you want something you can drive hard and fast, this is not the vehicle for you. CVT's are not good at jack-rabbit starts and aggressive driving. There's plenty of power for passing so no worries there. Take it easy with this car and you will LOVE the way it drives - buttery smooth and quiet! I drove the new CR-V before I decided on the 2020 Forester and the Forester still beats the CR-V with vastly better visibility, a more spacious feel and a "driver fit" that the CR-V and others just can't match. Driving the Forester is like putting on a comfortable pair of walking shoes and going for a stroll - as long as you don't try to race or sprint in them, you'll be happy! Be sure this SUV is on your test drive list if you are in the market.
5/5 stars, Not so "slow" as reviewers claim
Bernie K.,
Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)
I spent 3 months researching crossovers and came to the conclusion that, as no single vehicle offered everything I wanted, I'd have to decide where I'd be willing to compromise. I live in the Sierra foothills and having driven a very peppy V6 RAV4 for many years, one of the features I did not want to sacrifice was power. However, as this was not my sole priority, the Honda CX-5 turbo's history of oil infiltration issues and the Mazda CX-5 turbo's dismal gas mileage disqualified them as contenders early on. The new Subaru Outback Turbo was being sold at many thousands of dollars over MSRP, simply because of demand, which rendered it unaffordable. Once I considered the remaining vehicles, the Forester emerged as the one that, overall, ticked most of my boxes. Prior to to the test-drive, I'd been conditioned by reviewers' complaints to expect very lethargic performance but that was not my experience! While it failed to keep up with the RAV's oversized V6, it had no difficulty climbing hills and the handling was far superior to the RAV. We subsequently bought a 2020 Forester Premium and have found it's pretty easy to speed driving this vehicle. This makes me question reviewers' expectations regarding power. We need a crossover that will perform well in our rural N. CA locale-- on dirt, in snow, on steep, winding mountain roads. We don't need a sports car. I'm writing this review to assure potential Forester purchasers that, in my experience, this vehicle has plenty of power to do what its actually designed to do. Although I find the Edmunds review inaccurate regarding the Forester's power, it does a good job, otherwise, of describing this vehicle's considerable attributes.
5/5 stars, Awesome!
Diane,
Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)
Moved to bend and wanted an awd. My Subaru Forester Limited is so well-equipped. Easy to get in and out of. I read the reviews about the lack of power and I disagree. I had a Mercedes Benz 2 turbo sedan and crossed the Subaru off my list. After looking at other vehicles I went back to look at the Subaru Limited and did a test drive. The car has plenty of power. I did obtain the package that includes The back-up camera. Didn't know I would like it so much! I agree with someone else's review that 360 degree would be a good option. The Subaru Forester is not too big and not too small it's just right.

2020 Subaru Forester videos

ELANA SCHERR: Ooh, what have we got here? Looks like more small SUVs. Seriously, don't any of you guys want to buy a station wagon? No? You know what? I get it, because SUVs have that up high driving position, and they carry a lot of people and cargo. They're very useful. But with so many of them out there, how are you going to pick one? We recently did a three SUV comparison of the Honda CR-V, the Toyota RAV4, and the Mazda CX-5. In the comments on that video, everybody was like, oh hey, guys, what about the Subaru Forester? Where does it fit in? So we thought we're going to take the winner of that comparison-- oops,spoiler-- and match it up with the Forester. Before we do, though, visit us at Edmunds for all your car shopping needs. The CR-V and the Forester are almost identical if you just go by the numbers-- horsepower, seating, fuel economy, price. It's all almost the same. Those specs are useful, but they don't really tell you about the personality of a car. And that matters. I mean, you're going to be using this thing almost every day for years. Don't think of it like an appliance. Think of it like a partner in crime or like a buddy. So here we are-- Honda CR-V versus Subaru Forester. Who will win? And why? The CR-V is sleeker, with a streamlined front end and a higher door line. It looks sort of like a smaller Honda Pilot. So think minivan adjacent, but not fully committed to the minivan lifestyle. It works as a family car. But it would be just as happy taking a group of adults to a wine tasting. The Subaru Forester has a totally different personality than the Honda. It's nowhere near as ruggedly oddball as it was when it was introduced in the late '90s. But it still has a bit of that raised up station wagon feel, especially from the side with that squared off nose and those big windows. Like the CR-V, it's great for family duties. But in its non-working hours, the Forester would like you to take it camping. The interior of the Forester, like the rest of it, is very user friendly. All of the controls and all the information are neatly divided up and easy to find. So whether you're looking at the steering wheel, at the gauge package in front of you, or at either of these two screens, you always know what you're going to find and where you're going to find it. I particularly like the bright, big screen here in the center stack and this clever third screen which sort of recaps all the information for you but keeps it out of your way so you can focus on driving. I was really surprised by the materials in the Forester. They're all soft touch, and there's a lot of interesting textures and cool stitching. It reflects the fun quality of the car. Honda does a good job on interiors. There's always plenty of clever storage options, a lot of room for the driver and passenger, and nice materials, especially in the CR-V. Look at this wood trim-- classy. One of the ways that the CR-V made so much room for storage is by moving the shifter up to the center stack. That's not actually something that I love. First of all, I think it's ergonomically weird. Especially if you're doing a three-point turn where you're going drive, reverse, drive, it's kind of awkward. But even worse, it takes up a lot of space that could be infotainment screen. So this is already a strange shape. And then the actual usable part is really small. I mean, it's about half of the physical screen. I don't know why they did that. And I don't like it-- B-minus. The CR-V does get some points back, though, because it's so family friendly. Check this out. If you're trying to keep an eye on whoever's in the back, got a wide-angle mirror. I can see you. Another place where the CR-V has a distinct advantage over the Forester is in cargo space. With 39.2 cubic feet compared to the Forester's 33, the CR-V just has more room for everything, which is great if three of your coworkers just had new babies. Congrats, guys. [CHEERING] The only real bummer about the Subaru is the power plant. The naturally aspirated 2.5 liter four cylinder makes 182 horsepower, which is only eight less than the CR-V, but it feels like 80. It's loud, and it's slow. Look. That's floored. Sad, Subaru. Sad. The transmission always feels like you woke it up from a nap if you ask for passing power. Oh, there you are. Did you have a good sleep? That said, if you're not looking for top speed, just cruising around town, the Subaru's quiet and comfortable. This is nice. I like the Forester's big windows. Makes the car feel smaller than it is. And the boxy shape makes it really easy to park, even if you didn't have camera technology to help you. But you do. Subaru has rally in its blood. And while I would not choose the Forester as my race entry, it does have 8.7 inches of ground clearance, hill descent, and a train selector that gives you options for mud and sand. It's not a rock crawler. But it's definitely more off-road savvy than most small SUVs. And it can get you to places like this. The Forester's tech is surprisingly good. I guess I wasn't expecting it to be, because it looked so much more analog than the Honda. But it comes with a long list of standard safety features and optional ones. And everything is easy to use. Both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard. Subaru's EyeSight, which is its driving aid, is really good. I didn't really know what to expect from that, because I hadn't ever been in a car that had it before. But it watches your face. And it can tell if you're not paying attention, looking away. And it reminds you to keep your eyes on the road. Occasionally, I do feel a little bit scolded. But it's not aggressive about it. And you can always turn it off. Adaptive cruise control is awesome in the Forester. It feels very natural. It'll bring you to a complete stop and then all the way back up to freeway speed. It's not herky-jerky. I really like it. They did a good job. Small turbo-charged engines can really struggle in big, heavy vehicles, but not the 1.5 liter turbo-charged four cylinder in the CR-V. It's a real surprise in terms of passing power and off the line performance-- way faster than the Forester. Even with only 190 horsepower, it really delivers. And you're never in a situation where you're shaking the steering wheel and on the gas and going, come on, come on. No, you got it. It's pretty quick. One of the things that makes the CR-V such a pleasant drive experience is that even though it has a CVT transmission, it doesn't do that sad vacuum cleaner thing where it goes, [GROAN], like makes more noise and no more power. Seems like the engineers at Honda have really figured out CVTs. Everything in the CR-V is nicely balanced-- so steering, braking, throttle response, the handling. It's all predictable and enjoyable. The CR-V is not sold specifically as an off-road vehicle. But it is available with all-wheel drive, and it has enough ground clearance that you can go off pavement. There is a physical volume knob in the CR-V. And honestly, that's the best thing about the infotainment system. And really, I mean, you don't know that you would miss one of those until they take them away. So Honda did put it back. But the rest of the infotainment, the screen and everything, is pretty disappointing. It's small, and it's slow. And the native nav isn't great. Luckily Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, both standard in all but the base trim. So just plug your phone in and call it good. Adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring, forward collision warning, and automatic emergency braking are all standard on everything except for the LX trim. Don't you feel safe? Don't you feel cared for? The CR-V is our top-ranked small SUV on the Edmunds website, because it's just so good at so many things. If you want a car that has safety and convenience totally covered, the CR-V is your pick. The Forester has some flaws-- that loud, slow engine mostly. But it also has a sense of adventure that the CR-V is lacking. If you want a car with a little more personality, take a look at the Forester. Let me put it to you this way-- if I was hiring one of these cars for a job, I would call the CR-V. But if I wanted to invite one over for a barbecue, that would be the Forester. Visit us at Edmunds for all your car shopping needs. If you like this video, please subscribe, and make sure you follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Honda CR-V vs. Subaru Forester ― Two Very Different Ways to Do a Crossover

NOTE: This video is about the 2019 Subaru Forester, but since the 2020 Subaru Forester is part of the same generation, our earlier analysis still applies.

Both the Subaru Forester and the Honda CR-V are competent family haulers with plenty of cargo space, high-tech safety features and available AWD for mild off-road driving. What makes them different, and which is the right one for you?

Features & Specs

Base MSRP
$24,495
MPG & Fuel
26 City / 33 Hwy / 29 Combined
Fuel Tank Capacity: 16.6 gal. capacity
Seating
5 seats
Drivetrain
Type: all wheel drive
Transmission: Continuously variable-speed automatic
Engine
Flat 4 cylinder
Horsepower: 182 hp @ 5800 rpm
Torque: 176 lb-ft @ 4400 rpm
Basic Warranty
3 yr./ 36000 mi.
Dimensions
Length: 182.1 in. / Height: 67.5 in. / Width: 71.5 in.
Curb Weight: 3449 lbs.
Cargo Capacity, All Seats In Place: 35.4 cu.ft.
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At a Glance:
  • 9 Colors
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  • $24,795starting MSRP

Safety

Our experts’ favorite Forester safety features:

EyeSight Driver Assist Technology
Helps prevent accidents, with features such as lane departure warning, lane keeping assist and automatic emergency braking.
Reverse Automatic Braking
Helps reduce collisions by applying the brakes if an automobile is detected crossing the Forester's path while it's in reverse.
DriverFocus
Sounds an alert when the head-tracking system detects that the driver is distracted.

NHTSA Overall Rating 5 out of 5 stars

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.

Frontal Barrier Crash RatingRating
Overall5 / 5
Driver5 / 5
Passenger5 / 5
Side Crash RatingRating
Overall5 / 5
Side Barrier RatingRating
Overall5 / 5
Driver5 / 5
Passenger5 / 5
Combined Side Barrier & Pole RatingsRating
Front Seat5 / 5
Back Seat5 / 5
RolloverRating
Rollover4 / 5
Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
Risk Of Rollover16.9%

IIHS Rating

The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.

Side Impact Test
Good
Roof Strength Test
Good
Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
Good
IIHS Small Overlap Front TestNot Tested
Moderate Overlap Front Test
Good


Subaru Forester vs. the competition

2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Subaru Forester

2019 Honda CR-V

2019 Honda CR-V

Subaru Forester vs. Honda CR-V

The Honda CR-V is one of the most well-rounded SUVs available. It offers a choice of two four-cylinder engines (one turbo and one not), and it now includes a hybrid option. The Forester is more adventure-minded, and all-wheel drive doesn't cost extra. But it's hard to beat the CR-V for overall value and satisfaction. Read Edmunds' long-term road test of the Honda CR-V.

Compare Subaru Forester & Honda CR-V features 

Subaru Forester vs. Mazda CX-5

The Mazda CX-5 is the driver's crossover, offering sharp handling and a more luxurious cabin than you might expect. Engine choices include a base engine, a gutsy turbo and even a diesel. The higher trims are a little pricey, however, and rear cargo space isn't as expansive. The Forester is better-suited for venturing off-road because of its higher ground clearance and additional traction modes.

Compare Subaru Forester & Mazda CX-5 features 

Subaru Forester vs. Jeep Cherokee

The Jeep Cherokee is one of the only small crossovers that can rival the Forester's off-road ability, especially in its top Trailhawk trim. The Cherokee also offers three engine choices and exceptional towing for the class. The Forester bests it in terms of ride quality and fuel efficiency, however.

Compare Subaru Forester & Jeep Cherokee features 

FAQ

Is the Subaru Forester a good car?

The Edmunds experts tested the 2020 Forester both on the road and at the track, giving it a 7.8 out of 10. You probably care about Subaru Forester fuel economy, so it's important to know that the Forester gets an EPA-estimated 29 mpg. What about cargo capacity? When you're thinking about carrying stuff in your new car, keep in mind that carrying capacity for the Forester ranges from 33.0 to 35.4 cubic feet of trunk space. And then there's safety and reliability. Edmunds has all the latest NHTSA and IIHS crash-test scores, plus industry-leading expert and consumer reviews to help you understand what it's like to own and maintain a Subaru Forester. Learn more

What's new in the 2020 Subaru Forester?

According to Edmunds’ car experts, here’s what’s new for the 2020 Subaru Forester:

  • New lane centering function added to list of standard driving aids
  • All-Weather package now standard on Premium models
  • Part of the fifth Forester generation introduced for 2019
Learn more

Is the Subaru Forester reliable?

To determine whether the Subaru Forester is reliable, read Edmunds' authentic consumer reviews, which come from real owners and reveal what it's like to live with the Forester. Look for specific complaints that keep popping up in the reviews, and be sure to compare the Forester's average consumer rating to that of competing vehicles. Learn more

Is the 2020 Subaru Forester a good car?

There's a lot to consider if you're wondering whether the 2020 Subaru Forester is a good car. Edmunds' expert testing team reviewed the 2020 Forester and gave it a 7.8 out of 10. Safety scores, fuel economy, cargo capacity and feature availability should all be factors in determining whether the 2020 Forester is a good car for you. Learn more

How much should I pay for a 2020 Subaru Forester?

The least-expensive 2020 Subaru Forester is the 2020 Subaru Forester 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $24,495.

Other versions include:

  • Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) which starts at $27,395
  • Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) which starts at $31,095
  • Sport 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) which starts at $28,995
  • Touring 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) which starts at $34,595
  • 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) which starts at $24,495
Learn more

What are the different models of Subaru Forester?

If you're interested in the Subaru Forester, the next question is, which Forester model is right for you? Forester variants include Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT), Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT), Sport 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT), and Touring 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT). For a full list of Forester models, check out Edmunds’ Features & Specs page. Learn more

More about the 2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Subaru Forester Overview

The 2020 Subaru Forester is offered in the following submodels: Forester SUV. Available styles include Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT), Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT), Sport 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT), Touring 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT), and 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT).

What do people think of the 2020 Subaru Forester?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2020 Subaru Forester and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2020 Forester 4.7 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2020 Forester.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2020 Subaru Forester and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2020 Forester featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

What's a good price for a New 2020 Subaru Forester?

2020 Subaru Forester 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)

The 2020 Subaru Forester 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $26,647. The average price paid for a new 2020 Subaru Forester 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is trending $2,649 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $2,649 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is $23,998.

The average savings for the 2020 Subaru Forester 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is 9.9% below the MSRP.

2020 Subaru Forester Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)

The 2020 Subaru Forester Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $30,161. The average price paid for a new 2020 Subaru Forester Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is trending $2,817 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $2,817 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is $27,344.

The average savings for the 2020 Subaru Forester Premium 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is 9.3% below the MSRP.

2020 Subaru Forester Sport 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)

The 2020 Subaru Forester Sport 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $32,962. The average price paid for a new 2020 Subaru Forester Sport 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is trending $3,059 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $3,059 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is $29,903.

The average savings for the 2020 Subaru Forester Sport 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is 9.3% below the MSRP.

2020 Subaru Forester Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)

The 2020 Subaru Forester Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $34,757. The average price paid for a new 2020 Subaru Forester Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is trending $3,240 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $3,240 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is $31,517.

The average savings for the 2020 Subaru Forester Limited 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is 9.3% below the MSRP.

2020 Subaru Forester Touring 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT)

The 2020 Subaru Forester Touring 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $36,745. The average price paid for a new 2020 Subaru Forester Touring 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is trending $3,984 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $3,984 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is $32,761.

The average savings for the 2020 Subaru Forester Touring 4dr SUV AWD (2.5L 4cyl CVT) is 10.8% below the MSRP.

Which 2020 Subaru Foresters are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2020 Subaru Forester for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2020 Subaru Forester.

Can't find a new 2020 Subaru Foresters you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a new Subaru for sale - 5 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $14,924.

Why trust Edmunds?

Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2020 Subaru Forester?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Subaru lease specials