Subaru Forester Owners Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
2003 Forester
Joined
·
36 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I love my 03 Forester. I'm pretty sure the our Forester, a.k.a. "The Trapper", is the reason my life is awesome. But I've been thinking, if I had to get something else, what I would get? And I can't seem to come up with a list, so I'm putting out what I think is important and maybe everyone can help me out. Here are my-

Must haves:
1. Good ground clearance
2. Cheap, readily available parts and "mods"
3. Not crazy difficult to maintain
4. Better than 25mpg
5. AWD or something similar and effective for offroad use
6. Big enough to fit 4 adults or 2 adults and 3 kids, plus some gear

Would like to haves:
1. Get up and go
2. Ability to tow
3. Selectable traction control or diff
4. Comfortable to drive as a daily commuter
5. Sunroof
6. Be cool

Don't care about:
1. Engine type/size (other than it needs to get 25mpg, not be difficult to maintain, and cheap, redily available parts)
2. Trany type (same as above)
3. "What it sounds like"
4. The sound system
 

·
Registered
2003 Forester SG9 XT 5MT
Joined
·
15 Posts
IMHO, the foz is such a good all rounder and super value for money. Of course it is good and bad to be good at everything, outstanding at nothing. If I had to replace mine, and could afford $$, I would replace it with two cars. A Focus RS for daily, speed, sound and fun and a Jeep Wrangler or Landcruiser for off road/camping, probably the toyota given support in AU. Don't know if any of these hit your 25mpg, probably not huh.

Until I'm rich, I'll stick with the foz.
 

·
Registered
2004 Forester XS manual
Joined
·
11 Posts
I have an '04 and keep considering alternatives. My dream vehicle would have the space of a van (sleep in, hang out in bad weather) but the mpg, price, ground clearance, ease of exit/entry, mild off road capability, reliability etc. of the Forester. I don't want something much bigger to fit into tight places. I keep coming back to the Forester that fits my lifestyle and budget. As long as my '04 keeps being as reliable as it has been I think I will keep putting off getting a new one especially after reading such posts as the windshield problems.
 

·
Registered
2014 2.5i Limited CVT
Joined
·
651 Posts
From your list - the Foz is a pretty much "yep" to most questions, if not all. Finding the perfect Foz is the issue.

Or just take the one you have and make it more of what you want... It's got the room you want, the more-or-less affordable parts and maintenance and most of the rest....

The only other vehicle that is a bit more of what you want could be the Outback, as there appear to be more parts and such for the OB in the world... But it may be more because of target marketing of the OB more to camping and hiking folks and the Foz to - well, those looking at things like the CRV or some other mostly on-road SUV/CUV market place.
 

·
Registered
2003 Forester
Joined
·
36 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
One of the reasons that I posed the questions was that, yes the Trapper achieves most of what I have for requirements but... it could use more power, the AWD is great for 90% of what I demand, but there is the other 10% where a locker would be awesome, and it doesn't have a sunroof!
So I could, with the time, $ and knowledge, address some of these issues, but I don't really need a project car, I just need something to get me from A to B - every time I need to get from A to B. Trapper sometimes makes me wonder. Right now I've been running it on a almost blown head gasket, an impossible to remove downstream O2 that must be totally dead, exhaust that leaks starting at the manifold, a need for an additional 1.5" of lift on top of the 1" that I have, new tires before the snow flies, and a good interior detailing. Not that these are things that individually would make me think "it's time for something else" but the list of things as a whole does make me think "it's time for something else". Maybe the answer is a 3rd Gen XT?
 

·
Registered
2003 Forester XS 4EAT
Joined
·
7 Posts
I have an 03 foz as well! Personally, I'd get a 4runner if I had to replace my rig. It wouldn't get 25 mpg... but I'm averaging just 20 with my current lift/tire setup, and frankly even the most tricked out fozzies would be hard pressed to keep up with a even a stock 4runner.

I wheel with a buddy who has a stock '92 4runner, and there always comes to a point where we have to leave the foz behind to tackle the gnarliest sections. Makes me a bit jealous, especially because he claims to get 20 on the highway. I will say the foz is much nicer to drive on pavement, and i can still get to 85% of the places he can.

The newer 4runners are damn expensive and still are only getting around 20mpgs, but it only violates #4 of your needs and satisfies all your wants. The only car that would fit all of your criteria is (maybe) a jeep cherokee trailhawk, but need #3 could be tested hard there.

There's always a newer subie..
 

·
Registered
2003 Forester
Joined
·
36 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
I have an 03 foz as well! Personally, I'd get a 4runner if I had to replace my rig. It wouldn't get 25 mpg... but I'm averaging just 20 with my current lift/tire setup, and frankly even the most tricked out fozzies would be hard pressed to keep up with a even a stock 4runner.

I wheel with a buddy who has a stock '92 4runner, and there always comes to a point where we have to leave the foz behind to tackle the gnarliest sections. Makes me a bit jealous, especially because he claims to get 20 on the highway. I will say the foz is much nicer to drive on pavement, and i can still get to 85% of the places he can.

There's always a newer subie..
I've had 2x '95 4 Runners - loved them both but I was only getting like 17mpg on the highway. First one I totaled while wheeling and I had an "gentle" rollover. Second one blew a water pump, which then toasted the timing belt. After I made the repair (probably not my best work) it never ran right again, so I sold it for half what it was probably worth. I've actually been shopping for an Gen3 4Runner for a couple of years but everyone seems to know how awesome they are which keeps the $'s a little too high for ones that I would consider.

I also like several of the new subies (not a fan of the new Forester though) but once again the $'s are just to damn high.
 

·
Registered
2015 Forester 2.5i CVT
Joined
·
787 Posts
Keep your current Forester, maybe the new diff locker unit install in the rear, detail out the interior, replace the O2 sensor etc and enjoy your money saved over a new gadget laden Fozz.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
If you get your SG in tip-top condition, you will save a lot vs buying a newer one. With the criteria that you posted, it's hard to beat a Forester or Outback. These cars just give the best balance in those criteria. You have secondary off-road capability and you can handle corners much better than any ladder frame SUV.

Subaruers have determined that a 50mm lifted SF or SG still has a much lower centre of gravity vs the latest gen Grand Cherokee, which has a lower centre of gravity than other 4x4s. Ladder frame SUVs give you good off-road performance even when stock but they still drive like trucks on the highway, which we spend most of our time on.

By the way, the TorqMasters Locker for the R160 brings Subarus to a new level on the dirt. If you can live with the clicking on pavement, it's going to make your Subaru tackle much more obstacles than you can imagine. Cheers.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top