Pros Bluetooth cell speakerphone, ipod adapter, audio and video inputs, turbocharged engine, comfortable seating, huge sunroof, and of course the awd.
Cons Agreed...I wish it had a 5 speed auto or manual but the 4 spd auto that comes with it is smooth. 6 speaker adequate stereo should be a harman kardon.
Summary Besides having the turbocharged engine and awd the xt is the most techy subaru so far. You just need the nav option which gives you many other tech options. Bluetooth cell phone speaker phone which allows you to dial through the touch screen nav, Audio/Video imputs, Ipod adapter allowing you to control the ipod through the nav, and vehicle dynamics control (traction control)
"Wrong info"on by ChadBraunbeck
Pros Its faster than it needs to be for those special occasions
Cons less mpgs than the non turbo and premium fuel required
Summary There IS an iPod interface kit available as an option for both the NAV and non NAV cars part# H621SSC200. Also did you turn on the "Circle Surround" it makes a huge difference in sound quality.
Pros 1.Suspension tuning: Great compromise between strong handling and comfortable ride. 2. Steering: Nicely weighted and has great feel. 3. Turbo boxer engine: Smooth rush of power with minimal turbo lag. 4. Balanced and pro-active symmetrical AWD system
Cons The 4-speed automatic transmission is the weak point in an otherwise strong drivetrain. The torque of the turbo motor helps overcome the transmission's deficieny but it's short comings are quite obvious in the normally aspirated Forester 2.5X models.
Summary As one who's never been a fan of SUVs and their all-too-often detracted driving experience, I was pleasantly surprised by the Forester 2.5XT. Forgive the tired expression but it really is more car like than one might imagine. Save the increased ride height which is really only noticeable in hard cornering, the Forester really is more akin to driving a nimble wagon instead of a SUV with almost 9 inches of ground clearance (by the way, the Forester has best-in-class ground clearance, even better than the Land Rover LR2). The turbocharged boxer engine only adds to the character and fun factor of the Forester. All this combined with an intelligently designed interior with thoughtful features and smart use of space, it's little wonder the Forester has proven to be such a hit for Subaru.
A few things to note in the orginal article posted by Mr. Cunningham. iPod integration is indeed available as a dealer-installed accessory. Also, as a personal opinion, it appeared that Mr. Cunningham approached his review from a car-based view rather than evaluating the Forester as an SUV first. Or at least specifically relating to the following, "Shooting it around a corner, we quickly get the message that the Forester isn't a sports car, its high center making itself known despite the standard all-wheel-drive." With great respect, any SUV, which by nature have an increased ride height, will never match the capabilties of a sports car (save perhaps the Porsche Cayenne). I make this point to reinforce the fact that the Forester offers impressive handling for a compact SUV and bests many of its competitors in this category.
Pros Cockpit is very driver friendly. Controls and instrument placements well done. Passenger seating is super as is the seating and leg room for rear passengers. Ride and handling are super. The car handles great and it is fun to drive. The AWD system gives y
Cons The sunroof would be best if left as an option on the Premium as it tends to make the cabin more difficult to cool and it is something I just don't need or use. Needs and overdrive on the AT, it just seems like it wants to change gears one more time. As g
Summary My only regret is not buying a Subaru before now. This is one of the best cars on the road and it gets nowhere near the respect it should get. I have not owned a car that was just plan fun to drive. I look for a reason to go somewhere with this car. I do have a super service department in my area. That is one of the most overlooked areas that people buying cars overlook.
Pros Rankings in both Lemon-aid and Consumer reports are outstanding in all areas. It has excellent visibility, and handling. People are talking about road noise, but there is next to none in the one I bought. Not to mention a second to none awd.
Cons The stereo is lacking. The rear hatch doesn't close well. I bought a manual, because the 4 speed auto is lacking. The options for a manual such as a turbo do not exist. I didnt like the wheels or the tires that came with it.
Summary This compact suv is the best value dollar for dollar in my search for something larger. I am 6'4" and needed something with head room. I did not like the blind spots in the tuscon, RAV4 or the CRV. The visibility in the forester is comparable to the corolla which I used to drive. Not to mention leg room... the rav4 is brutal in that compartment. The only other two compact SUVs I drove with head room and leg room, which were comparable in price was the CRV and the TUSCON.
The crv doesnt even make a manual transmission. One thing I dont like about any of the automatic Compact suvs out there is that they hesitate. I heard its a safety feature, but I have a feeling it causes more accidents than it prevents.
The CRV makes considerably more road noise than the Forester, and the rav4/tuscon is comparable to the Forester.
When it comes to power and acceleration... the manual Forester out does them all. I mean it isn't a rocket, but it has the torque and acceleration when I need it. The CRV lags cause its auto, and the Rav 4 is lacking too... unless you bump up to a v6. The tuscon has surprisingly little power/acceleration for its v6 and feels like a tank.
The handling is amazing, and incredibly responsive. It feels like driving a car. Anyone who says different hasn't driven a forester. Anyone who hasnt test drove all the non-luxury compact SUVs is not in a good position to judge. I noticibly feel a difference when turning at high speeds compared to other models. The crv is the only one comparable to the Forester.
I didnt even test drive anything from north america, after looking through lemon aid and consumer reports... I didnt want the head aches. The ford escape got decent ratings in consumer reports, but not in lemon aid. Infact the writer of lemon aid suspects shady deals between ford and consumer reports. Nothing personal... I just stay clear of problems, and hope the north american product will outgrow its current reputation.
As for the interiors... i dont see what everyone is complaining about. The Toyotas have got to have the ugliest interiors going. The forester isnt the best, but its not the ugliest... and is comparable to the hyundai style. The CRV did have the best one, but it costs the vehicle in the front visibility department. I noticed, and I am 6'4". I would imagine its really visible if your shorter than 6'.
Not to mention the best AWD system on the market... the only other one comparable is AUDI. But I am comparing lower end models.
In the end automatic Forester is weak, but the manual out does the competition. The only other comparable model is the CRV, but the difference in price pound for pound is close to 8000 all in. And we arent talking about just getting a 2 wheel drive p.o.s. crv for driving around the city. We are talking about a comparable model with either 4wd or awd.
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