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2020 Forester Premium
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Forum,
I have a 2020 Forester Premium with Eyesight/Lane assist. Purchased in Sept 2019. I nearly always drive with Lane Assist OFF. I'm happy with just about everything and really excited to have a New Forester after putting 260K on my last one - a 2009. BUT, since the day I took delivery the car never seemed to drive as easily down the highway as my older Forester. The car will hunt a little from one side of the lane to the other and seems to have a very slight dead zone - meaning that steering wheel corrections of 3 or 4 degrees or less don't get much response.

What I'm wondering is:
a) Is this just an alignment issue? Bad toe? Would have thought you never get better alignment than right from the factory.
b) Is this something typical of Foresters with lane assist? I keep lane assist off but am wondering if the lane assist unit adds a little freeplay in the steering.

The problem is very slight. My wife doesn't notice a thing but I am kind of a handling fusspot and was expecting a brand new car to be perfect, at least for a few months. The car has been babied since I got it. No pothole hits or off-roading (yet). 15K miles so far and I don't see any tire unusual wear. I know I should just take it to the dealer and have them check/adjust but that is such a hassle where I live I figured I'd check the knowledge base here first.

Update: Since I started this thread I have done the following:
1) Checked tire pressure meticulously with two different gates. Correct pressure does not fix the handling issue.
2) Had an alignment done. No change in handling with new alignment.
3) Let the misses spin the car out in a snow storm and bang head on into a snow bank causing minor damage to the grill an left headlight. No change in handling though.
4) Bought Michelin X-ICE tires mounted on factory alloy rims and had an alignment done too. No change in handling. If anything it handed worse after the new tires and alignment.
5) Started playing with the I Drive vs. S Drive setting. Some vehicle makers that have similar S (sport ?) and I (intelligent?) settings tell you that the setting alters gas pedal responsiveness AND steering responsiveness. The Subaru owners manual seems to say that the S/I setting alters only gas pedal responsiveness. The Subaru manual doesn't say anything about the S/I setting altering the steering response. Yet, I could swear that I'm much happier with how the car handles when S/I is set to S. I have tried to do a controlled experiment where I hit the S/I button several times until I no longer know what the setting is and then try to tell is it S or I without looking. I can guess right only about 60% of the time.

At this point I've decided one (or more) of the following is true.
1) S/I does indeed alter steering responsiveness in the '20 Forester and the "I" setting sucks.
2) S/I doesn't alter steering. My handling sucks compared to my '09 Forester because the '20 is bigger, lighter and I now drive 80 instead of 65 because it is also quieter and revs lower at 80 because of the CVT tranny.
3) Its all just obsessive compulsive disorder.
4) My subconscious is telling me it wanted a Corvette
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Oh - I should add that I did check the front end for loose tie rod ends or any other unusual free-play and everything was tighter than a gnatsass stretched over a rain-barrel.
 

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2001 Forester S, 4EAT
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I would have the dealer check the alignment. The alignment would definitely affect the "feel" of steering, ie either very sensitive or very vague. Since the Subaru is AWD, you're looking for 0 Toe on the front and slight toe-in on the rear. And a bit of negative camber at all 4 corners.
 

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2019 Forester Sport
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191 Posts
Definitely get it checked out, who knows what might have happened in transit or before you bought it.
 

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Mine is the same! Exactly as you write it! I have my20 and august 2019 build. Been in 13 times! They can’t fix it. It’s all over the shop. I can’t wait to sell it.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited CVT
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While I don't have a 2019/2020 Foz, I've driven a few with the lane keep assist and wanted to add something to this conversation.

Remember that Eyesight (and the Lane Keep feature) uses cameras for acquiring the lanes. So if there are solid and very visible marking for the lanes, then the system shouldn't have any issues. I noticed that the Lane Keep does tend to keep the Foz in the center of the lane (which I wasn't a fan of) - trying to keep equal distance from left and right markings.

If the markings are not always visible or if there is something blocking the view of the cameras (like road dirt/grime, window tinting, glare, etc.), this COULD cause erratic actions by the Lane Keep feature.

When I was driving Foresters with the Eyesight and Lane Keep features (and also an Outback or 2, an Ascent), I noticed that the Foz WOULD drift a bit in the lane, based on the clear lane markings and such. And as a driver, I'd feel the slight adjustment in the wheel and try to correct the correction. This then causes the system to fight more to make the correction - basically correcting my correction to the original correction.... LIke that old shampoo commerce - I told two friends and they told two friends and so on and so on and so on...

I also prefer to ride NOT in the center of the lane - keeping a bit more left or right, depending on which lane of traffic I'm in - if I'm in the left lane, I keep on the left side of the lane and the right side of the lane when in the right lane.

Those minute corrections could be "felt" as free-play in the steering or wandering... And there is a bit of resistance in the wheel if you do start to turn the wheel one direction or another WITHOUT using your signal, as the system may think you're drifting in the lane; but use the turn signal and it thinks you're changing lanes and allows the course change without feedback or resistance.

Again, the clear visibility of the lane markings is a key to the performance of the system If the lane markings wander a bit (and sometimes, they do!) then the Foz will wander a bit too.
 

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2020 Forester, Crystal While Pearl, Saddle Brown Leather
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When I was driving Foresters with the Eyesight and Lane Keep features (and also an Outback or 2, an Ascent), I noticed that the Foz WOULD drift a bit in the lane, based on the clear lane markings and such. And as a driver, I'd feel the slight adjustment in the wheel and try to correct the correction. This then causes the system to fight more to make the correction - basically correcting my correction to the original correction.... LIke that old shampoo commerce - I told two friends and they told two friends and so on and so on and so on...
Operator induced oscillations: Pilot-induced oscillation - Wikipedia
 

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2012 Forester X Auto
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@@CaptainJohnParker - There are places (Discount Tire is one I know of) that will give you decent money for a trade in on slightly used tires if you decide not to wait...
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Mine is the same! Exactly as you write it! I have my20 and august 2019 build. Been in 13 times! They can’t fix it. It’s all over the shop. I can’t wait to sell it.
Bummer! I was afraid that this might just be how the car handles. Can you tell us more about your experience with your shop? Specifically - did they actually adjust the alignment? Also was a realignment covered by the warranty?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
While I don't have a 2019/2020 Foz, I've driven a few with the lane keep assist and wanted to add something to this conversation.

Remember that Eyesight (and the Lane Keep feature) uses cameras for acquiring the lanes. So if there are solid and very visible marking for the lanes, then the system shouldn't have any issues. I noticed that the Lane Keep does tend to keep the Foz in the center of the lane (which I wasn't a fan of) - trying to keep equal distance from left and right markings.

If the markings are not always visible or if there is something blocking the view of the cameras (like road dirt/grime, window tinting, glare, etc.), this COULD cause erratic actions by the Lane Keep feature.

When I was driving Foresters with the Eyesight and Lane Keep features (and also an Outback or 2, an Ascent), I noticed that the Foz WOULD drift a bit in the lane, based on the clear lane markings and such. And as a driver, I'd feel the slight adjustment in the wheel and try to correct the correction. This then causes the system to fight more to make the correction - basically correcting my correction to the original correction.... LIke that old shampoo commerce - I told two friends and they told two friends and so on and so on and so on...

I also prefer to ride NOT in the center of the lane - keeping a bit more left or right, depending on which lane of traffic I'm in - if I'm in the left lane, I keep on the left side of the lane and the right side of the lane when in the right lane.

Those minute corrections could be "felt" as free-play in the steering or wandering... And there is a bit of resistance in the wheel if you do start to turn the wheel one direction or another WITHOUT using your signal, as the system may think you're drifting in the lane; but use the turn signal and it thinks you're changing lanes and allows the course change without feedback or resistance.

Again, the clear visibility of the lane markings is a key to the performance of the system If the lane markings wander a bit (and sometimes, they do!) then the Foz will wander a bit too.
Thanks for the insight FozzieBalou, My experience with Lane Keep on is quite different. With Lane Keep on and ideal conditions (clear day and well defined lane markings) Lane keep doesn't seem to do much of anything with the wheel until the car is quite close to crossing the lane markings and then at that point there is a very noticeable correction motion in the steering wheel. Also my experience with Lane Keep is that it does a very poor job of returning the car to an orientation where it will follow the lane with no input from the driver. If I were to apply no correction force of my own, Lane Keep would drive the car in a path that bounces back and fourth from one side on the lane to the other rather dramatically. I didn't think this is a defect with my car. I thought this was a design feature - meaning that Lane keep gives the driver unimpeded road-feel up until the point a correction is needed to avoid crossing the lane marker. I am open to the idea that in my car Lane Keep is not behaving correctly because there is a dead zone in my steering and Lane Keep's small corrections don't get the response from the vehicle it should.

With all that said my original complaint was about how my car behaves with Lane Keep off. So, I'm rather sure the dead zone I'm experiencing is not from minute Lane Keep corrections.
 

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2019 Forester Sport Lineartronic® CVT
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Lane assist is not intended to drive the car, it just "suggestively like" nudges you back away from the lane edges it can see. The opening poster complained when his lane assist was turned off anyway. I think it's just the "feel" of electricaly assisted power steering.
 

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Is there any real solution to the problem of constantly having to correct the steering (at highway speed of 100km/hr) to keep the vehicle in a straight ahead course. Is it tyres, alignment, tyre pressures or simply a design problem from Subaru which they will not acknowledge?? Rang the dealer and they have no knowledge of the situation????? 25000 km on clock and I am almost ready to get new tyres or get rid of the vehicle!! Grrrrrrr. HELP PLEASE anything PLEASE to help me resolve the situation.
 

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2019 Forester Touring CWP/Brown 2018 Crosstrek Limited White/Gray
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I have a 2019 Touring so I have the lane keep rather than lane centering. To me it feels like the power steering or that my tires are over inflated with the lane keep on. I rarely use it.
 

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@BCK

Assuming you're not talking about how the car reacts with the lane centering feature on, look up "tramlining". I've had this issue before with a new set of tires. Some are worse than others but there are a number of factors that can cause it and/or mitigate the problem including tire pressure.
 

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Is there any real solution to the problem of constantly having to correct the steering (at highway speed of 100km/hr) to keep the vehicle in a straight ahead course. Is it tyres, alignment, tyre pressures or simply a design problem from Subaru which they will not acknowledge?? Rang the dealer and they have no knowledge of the situation????? 25000 km on clock and I am almost ready to get new tyres or get rid of the vehicle!! Grrrrrrr. HELP PLEASE anything PLEASE to help me resolve the situation.
they know about the issue as I hammered them for almost 6 months on it. They basically said I would need legal representation.
 

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Bummer! I was afraid that this might just be how the car handles. Can you tell us more about your experience with your shop? Specifically - did they actually adjust the alignment? Also was a realignment covered by the warranty?
I ended up taking it to 4 different places. I think it’s a fault of the car. It’s as if there is actually no centre on the steering. I just keep moving left and right. Most noticeably on freeways. I’ve spent over $800 on alinements and Subaru won’t compensate.
 
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