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Probably a way to take the sport and give it an outback looks - bigger/beefier looking cladding/trim, maybe some all terrain tires instead of all seasons, maybe limited colors and (as above) a more sturdy interior material.
 

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I don't think that the Bronco Sport is really comparable to the Forester - except in the broadest sense of them both being SUVs.

Will the Bronco Sport have a superior 4 Wheel Drive setup? Sure. But is it a full time system or a part time system?

The base motor (the small 1.5-liter turbo) has power ratings just about the same as the Forester 2.5 motor. Bronco is 181 HP, 190 lb/ft torque. Forester is 182 hp, 176 lb/ft torque. Note that the Bronco requires premium unleaded for the rated output. Not sure of the levels on regular unleaded.

MPG has yet to be determined for the Bronco Sport as yet. But in a similarly sized Escape, it's a bit lower than the Forester when equipped with AWD. Again, this is the 1.5 motor to the 2.5 motor and not for the Escape hybrid.

Bronco Sport - no manual transmission option. On the larger Bronco, there is a manual, but only on the base model. No other manual transmission offered.

Bronco Sport does have a bit more trailer tow - 2200 lbs... Major dimensions (length, width, height, wheelbase, track) are all within an inch or two. Forester is a bit bigger in most interior measurements, cargo space bigger in Forester with rear folded, Bronco a bit bigger behind rear seat. Many of the interior measurements are a wash.

Luckily, the 1.5 motor has been around for a while so you won't have to deal with too many teething pains of a new motor or transmission design.

But again, it's not a true apple to apple comparison - as the Bronco Sport is geared more towards the Jeep shopper (those that want a Wrangler ability in a more traditional SUV package. The Forester is geared more towards the "regular" SUV shopper - looking at the CRV, RAV4 and the Escape from Ford, as well as the more traditional Jeep Compass and others in that market segment.

As we don't yet know what the Wilderness Package is going to be (just a looks package or a more off-road oriented Forester?) there's no way to compare it...

And seriously, the typical Forester shopper will not be a Bronco Sport shopper.
 

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PS - built a Forester Limited and a Bronco Sport Outer Banks and the similarly equipped Ford is about 2700 bucks more. Leather, sunroof, top line stereo packages, cargo mats, interior mats, etc..
 

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I wholeheartedly agree.

The Ford Bronco will cater to those already with a nostalgic tie to the first gen broncos of the 60's and 70s. For the average Forester owner, I don't see it as any sort of threat to sales for Subaru. Vehicles like the newer RAV4's, etc. are a different story.

Personally, I like the retro trend that started a number of years back and it's the reason I bought my 2010 Challenger R/T. Although I have a '69 Charger (and I love that year / car), I never was able to acquire the '70 Challenger I wanted. When the new Challengers hit the market in 2008 (and I saw all the design cues they took from the 1970 car), I had to have one.

You can't ignore the fact that the Bronco is a kind of niche vehicle in that is targeted at those kinds of people who feel a connection to that truck. Of course, they are also expecting others will like the design and the modern features, etc. and I think they will because the early Broncos design is simply one of those that just looks cool after all these years. .....just like the Camaros, Challengers, Mustangs, etc. It has a wide appeal to "car guys & gals".

The fact is, the typical Forester owner is a more "practical" type that isn't necessarily a car enthusiast or hung up on automotive nostalgia, cool looks, etc. like the rest of us. These are fairly generic looking vehicles but they also offer features, history, capability, etc. that some of us appreciate more than others.
For the retro aspect - I have a 2001 PT Cruiser... So I'm good with that retro... :) It's been in shows and has won awards (including runner up on a crowd favorite)...

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And that's really exactly it - the typical Forester shopper is ... well ... hard to pin down. Mostly, they're looking for reliable winter travel and that security that the AWD offers them. While there are some stereotypes out there of Subaru being driven by old hippies in patchouli and Birkenstocks, or lesbians (with the exception of the Speed Racer wannabe in the WRX), most of the typical Forester shoppers are won over by the safety and security of the AWD for inclement weather, the apparent economical operation and the safety features for keeping the occupants safe.

Of course, there are still a number of Subaru shoppers that want something a bit adventurous - able to easily cross between on and off-road travel with no fuss, no muss (well, maybe some mud and dust) and no bother. While the original Outback was just a modified Legacy wagon (and technically still kind of is), it was offered up that first time as a rugged "outdoorsy" vehicle. The Forester never really has offered up that "outdoorsy" persona - it was always offered up as a simple, classic "mini-SUV" with strong safety and security.

The Crosstrek was then brought out with a similar "outdoorsy" vibe like the Outback. And it's sold very well. So much so that there may not be an Impreza wagon offering in the near future, based on rumors. This is just like the demise of the Legacy wagon. At least in some markets, they'll still have the Levorg (the 2021 models were just announced) for the more traditional wagon (or in the UK - estate) shoppers.

Now we have the potential "outdoorsy" offering on the Forester (FINALLY!)... Depending on what the package actually includes (will it just be a style package of cladding, unique colors, unique upholstery and the like or will it be something with a bit more off-road abilities?) that could become a game changer. While I doubt that the Forester will ever be a true "off-roader" like a Jeep (or even the upcoming Bronco Sport), it will be interesting to see what they do with this new package.

Here's hoping it is more than just looks and that there is some steak with that sizzle...
 

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That is definitely a Forester, not a Crosstrek.

Should be the same wheel/tire combo as the Outback Wilderness - just for the simple cost and ordering benefits. It would be great if they did the reveal at the NYAS in a few weeks, but it's doubtful, as they'd not want to steal a bit of thunder from the WRX reveal. It could be that they may wait for the official reveal at the Las Vegas/Motor Trend Auto Show (Sept 10-12) but do a soft-reveal online.

Personally? From what I know and have seen, it's probably not a "ohmygodihavetohavethis" vehicle. But it is surely worth a look-see and a test drive at my local shop once they get them...
 

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Chances are the powertrain will be the existing 2.5 n/a four and not a turbo with a mildly revised CVT (to match the lower gearing for the Outback).

But we'll know in a few days/weeks/month.
 

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What you need to do is not think of the Outback Wilderness as a model on top of a basic Outback. Instead it really is more of a model on top of an Outback XT.

I go back to a question asked about the origin of the 2.4 liter Turbo 4.

Is the 2.4 Turbo motor imported as a single unit manufactured by Subaru in Japan?

OR

Is the 2.4 Turbo built in the US based upon US/North American sourced parts of parts sourced from Japan?​

If the answer to this question is yes to #2 - then it is not likely that the 2.4 Turbo will find a home under the hood of the Forester. Simply because the logistics of making the motor here and shipping it back to Japan is not viable. I do not think that the 2.4 Turbo is available outside of the US/North American markets. I don't think the Ascent or the Outback XTs are available outside of US and Canada...

If the answer to this question is yes to #1 - then it IS at least possible that the 2.4 Turbo could find a home under the hood of the Forester Wilderness. Of course, this then raises the other question about why it hasn't found a home under the hood of a Forester Sport XT or similar model.

As the current Forester is not really "gimped" in off-road situations (face it, it's never going to be a Jeep Wrangler competitor at Moab) and it has proven as a solid option for many "soft-roaders" (just like the n/a Outback and the Crosstrek, no matter which motor), there's not a lot of incentive for Subaru to put the turbo under the hood of the Forester. They've had 3 years of the SK generation to put the 2.4 under the hood - the same 3 years it's been in the Ascent; even if you just go for the first appearance of the XT Outback, it's been 2 years that could have found the engine in a Forester. Given how many threads and posts on here, as well as lamentations by car reviews and magazines and online blogs and so many other places, Subaru could have/should have/would have done this already. If anything, we may see it under the hood of the next generation (SL?) of the Forester which would be after 2023 model year.

As I said before - we'll just have to wait until more information s officially released by Subaru because everything else is just rumor, opinion, supposition and innuendo.
 

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The Outback Wilderness IS more than just an appearance package. Turbo motor notwithstanding, there are other functional changes to the Wilderness (over an Outback or Outback XT) with a lift, different front and rear bumper/fascia units, certain mechanical changes (again beyond the turbo) and more. It's much more than just an appearance package.

Logic would allow us to "guess" that the Forester Wilderness will have those same types of mechanical changes beyond just wheels and cladding. We will probably see a reprogrammed CVT and driveline, the additional lift, the new front/rear fasciae and more.

Beyond the calls by a few hundred voices for a Turbo, it's an unlikely update for the SK generation Forester - no matter what trim you want to purchase. As said, they've had 3 years to find a way to stuff the 2.4 turbo under the hood - and they have not done that.
 

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Subaru teased that Wilderness batch picture on Twitter and pretty sure it's the Forester and this bring the question, the Wilderness trim in the Outback come with the bigger motor only so there is a possibility that the extra skills they want to give to the Wilderness batch means they require a beefier motor to handle the extra while going wild.

We will know in a few days now I guess.
Technically, it's not a bigger motor... 2.5 vs 2.4 = smaller.

But for a full discussion on that - see the other thread...
 

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The Wilderness is not built for speed. If, like Tom Cruise (as Maverick in Top Gun), you "feel the need, the need for speed", a Wilderness model would not be your first choice.

Instead, the Wilderness is what many Forester owners have been asking for - or at least building - a more capable, stock-from-the-box soft-roader with the lift and other bits from the factory and - therefore - covered by the factory warranties, rather than hopefully covered by some 3rd party provider.

As for the MPG drop - it is more going to be because of the added weight of the Wilderness specific equipment, change in tires, change in gearing/final drive ratios. Those all-terrain Geolandars have a higher rolling resistance than those (currently) standard Ecopia all season rubber.

In comparing a Wilderness to the Outback model with the same 2.4 turbo, you see a similar drop (actually a small bit less) between the Wilderness and Outback XT models.

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That variance would be due to the weight and the added equipment and "mechanical" differences between those two models.
 

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Oddly, @adc - I see more than a few SJ generation XTs here in the Palm Springs area... but still not anything compared to the number of 2.5 N/A models I see...
 

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It will probably look like a Forester with a lift and some black wheels and a slightly different front and rear fascia, possibly a different roof rack set up - different side rails and possibly integrated crossbars like the Outback Wilderness.. It should be offered in a few colors including the Wilderness specific blue that the Outback Wilderness is available in, with the flat-black center section on the hood.

A friend of mine went from a 2020 Forester in green (totaled when they were hit from behind by a speeding Ford Fusion driven by some drugged out guy) and just bought a new 2022 Outback Wilderness (also in the green color) and they love it (so far!)...
 

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Carscoops is a lot like Torquenews - a bit of clickbait. I'd seen an article a few weeks ago about the WRX being released at the NY show, but there was no mention of the Forester Wilderness at that time. Beyond some of the clickbait sites, I don't recall seeing any official release date for the Wilderness. Best guesses would have been the next big show (the LA show in November?) ...

As for the legitimacy of the quote - that supposed Subaru spokesperson could be anybody - even a mechanic at the local Subaru shop. WIthout a specific reference to "Bob Jones, VP of Subaru of America" or similar, it's still just (in the legal terms) hearsay.

Logically, it would not make sense for Subaru to release the Wilderness trim level at the same time as the WRX - as one would overshadow the other, depending on your preference for a sporty 4-door sedan or a spec'ed out SUV....
 

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Little disappointed they pushed back the WRX introduction after the cancellation of the NYIAS but I guess it makes sense since they'll need a bit of time to set up their own media event. I would gather they're ready to show it by September at the latest.
Who knows? Maybe they'll do a "soft" announcement/release of the WRX and the Wilderness at the upcoming Subiefest event in So Cal (October)... I know (got a notification from Subiefest) that the BRZ will be on display at the Subiefest Midwest event later this month (or is it early September?)...
 

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The WRX S209 (is that the right models?) were presented back in 2019 at Subiefest SoCal... I didn't get to go to the cancelled Subiefest 2020 which ended up being the Subaru parade world record attempt in Orange County, but I know that there were some Subies on display (drive by) during the event from the pics I've seen. And on the last update for Subiefest Midwest shows the S209 WRX as well.
 

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Maybe not a new Eyesight system, just a repackaging of the system - to make it less obtrusive on interior space and the view out the windshield.

The e-Boxer may come to the US in the next year, who knows? Chances are probably not, but we can hope/dream?

Not a huge fan of the new front fascia... some colors look better than others, but not sure of that extra space between the lamps and the grill... I'd rather see the grill get wider and closer to the lamps and maybe more closely mimic the lower grill (bottom of the fascia).
 

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I don't like the tail lights. Also can't imagine how expensive those headlights would be to replace...
I don't really understand why they would create body lines that would be tricky to follow/replicate after a collision...
I can more or less concur on the tail lights - not a huge fan of that lobster claw look. But they're the current styling trend (for now) and will be replaced by something else either in the next generation (SL?) or the one following (SM?)...

Headlamps will probably not be much more expensive to replace compared to the current lamp units. I think the only reason we're seeing that extension of the LED claw/boomerang light along the top is so that they didn't have to redesign a new hood panel to meet the fascia panel.

About that body line though - which one are you referring to? The big change is to the front fascia and - with the mid-cycle refresh there usually is not any major body panel (door, fender, hood, hatch, etc.) change beyond the fascia and grills and light units. So a post collision repair would be virtually the same as the current SK models...

And usually a front or rear fascia is replaced and not often repaired if damaged in a collision and they're just flexible resin/plastic material and not something stiff like the metal body panels.
 

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The current Crosstrek Hybrid is no great powerhouse either and yet we have it on our shores? But I think that would be a bigger announcement than the Wilderness trim level.

But as I'd said - it's probably not coming over this way.
 

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That's very well true, Zach... but then again, they're also working on that Solterra in the next few years as an add to the product line... so that may be another reason not to bring the eboxer to the USDM...

At least in theory...
 
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