Forester 2012 2.5 vs Outback 2012 2.5 - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-27-2011, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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Forester 2012 2.5 vs Outback 2012 2.5

Having a truly difficult time deciding which one to buy! Kind of like the looks of the Forester better but fuel economy and engine is more advanced in Outback. I mostly drive on expressway approximately 85% of the time and would like to go off-roading but rarely. Help!
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-27-2011, 11:26 AM
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I beleive the '12 forester has the new FB engine in it as well. What are you saying the outback has that gives it better milage?
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-27-2011, 11:30 AM
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You just need to compare them yourself. Engines are the same. Outback has CVT Forester is 4 speed Auto.

Be careful what you wish for.
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-27-2011, 11:38 AM
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'12 OB has the older EJ engine. The CVT is the key to better fuel economy in the OB.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-27-2011, 12:01 PM
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To understand the differences between the two, you need to consider the platform each is built around. The Forester is built around the Impreza platform. The Outback is built around the Legacy platform. The Outback will be heavier and won't have the lighter touch feel like the Forester as far as handling goes. Personally, I'd stay away from the CVT. The 4EAT transmission in the Forester is pretty proven and robust.

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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-27-2011, 01:35 PM
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I like the planted feel of the Outbacks. And if you drive lots of highway, the better fuel economy might be a selling point.
Drive both, see which you prefer.

Whatever you do, do it right.

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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-27-2011, 03:51 PM
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OB with CVT will win the MPG battle. Drive both and see what feels better for you. Both can handle light off road duties in their stock forms. Many 4th Gen OB owners add a stiffer rear antisway bar to improve the handling off the bat.

I haven't driven the current generation of either the OB or the Foz to remark on that.

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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-28-2011, 02:03 AM Thread Starter
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I noticed the Outback form has a ton of threads bashing Forester and claiming Outback has a much smoother ride and more upscale. Are Outback people just more passionate than Forester's?
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-28-2011, 05:08 AM
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The outback definitely has a bit of an edge in regards to being upscale, as that's where it fits in within subaru's lineup. The interior etc feels a bit more high end and quieter.

For highway use I'd probably go with the outback. The CVT or 6mt will give better highway mileage, and it has a bit smoother and more planted feel on highway use.

Forester wins out for around town, offroad etc.

Not sure if they've fixed the issue, but outbacks have had problems in the past with a steering "shake" issue.

I'd try to get as thorough a test drive as possible with both, it's really up to personal preference. I personally like the 05-09 outback and 03-08 forester much more than the newer ones. I like the 09+ foresters, but they do feel a bit cheaper than the older models imo.

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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-28-2011, 07:08 AM
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I have the older engine but M5, get 27-28 expressway 70-75, I have not driven the OB, Foz is competent, have done several 800 mi trips.

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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-28-2011, 08:23 AM
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I actually let looks decide. :-) I like the look of the Forester better.

I do think the current generation OB looks pretty cool too, but I still prefer the look of the Foz.

As for OB owners bashing Foresters - in my experience if you pay more $ than someone else for a car, you spend a lot of time convincing yourself you made the right choice. Both the Forester and OB are top rated in their respective categories.
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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-28-2011, 04:27 PM
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As someone who owns an OB and has driven a Forester, I find them hard to compare.

People who like their vehicle feeling like a car like the OB and not the Foz.
People who like their vehicle feeling more like a SUV like the Foz and not OB.

In my opinion, the Legacy/Outback platform seems to be the mainstream "flagship" for SoA, so it seems mildly more upscale in quality...but honestly, I just preferred the way it handled and the cargo are layout. I would, and probably will, own both without complaint (other than styling).

My wife wanted a wagon and not a small SUV, which she considers the Foz due to the driver's height and sight lines.

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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-31-2011, 06:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by funkymonkey1002 View Post
The outback definitely has a bit of an edge in regards to being upscale, as that's where it fits in within subaru's lineup. The interior etc feels a bit more high end and quieter.

For highway use I'd probably go with the outback. The CVT or 6mt will give better highway mileage, and it has a bit smoother and more planted feel on highway use.

Forester wins out for around town, offroad etc.

Not sure if they've fixed the issue, but outbacks have had problems in the past with a steering "shake" issue.

I'd try to get as thorough a test drive as possible with both, it's really up to personal preference. I personally like the 05-09 outback and 03-08 forester much more than the newer ones. I like the 09+ foresters, but they do feel a bit cheaper than the older models imo.

My thoughts exactly in regards to the steering wheel shake / schimmy on the Outback as well as Legacy. Can anyone confirm if this has been fixed on the 2010/2011 models OB and Legacy ?
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-31-2011, 09:52 PM
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Mid 2011 and newer OB's seem to have little to no issues reported. Prior builds is a crap shoot...some shake immediately, others 5k, 30k, others with no shake at 30k+ miles.

Newer is better for the 4th Gen Legacy/Outback platform.

2003 Outback 2.5 AWP.
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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 11-01-2011, 02:33 AM
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Forester va outback

I like the Forester (2010 turbo)

What are the prices? the FXT (forester turbo) i think was a little cheaper than the outback, last i looked.

85% highway: outback is a better road car in handling/feeling

some off road: FXT better, hands down. great handling at 80 on a gravel road (as would be the outback)

better high speed mileage in the outback.

super visibility in the FXT. Wonderful head clearance/space
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