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I'm a long time Toyota lover due to reliability. Have owned 3 Camrys and an Avalon. Am in the market for a smaller vehicle than my Avalon. Don't want another Camry. Have looked at some Rav4s, but the 2018 made me yawn and the 2019 did not appeal to me at all, interior or exterior. The closest Subaru dealership to me is an hour away, one way. I do like the looks of the 2019 Forester. Convince me to buy one.
 

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2017 Forester XT Premium
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Buy a Forester right now!


Did it work? And how do you expect anyone to convince you of anything? Drive one, look it over, smell it, feel it. Make your own choices.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I will make my own choices, but I was hoping you would tell me why you love yours and why you chose it over other models.
 

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2016 XT Premium
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Performance of the AWD system and good experiences with reliability from family members is what swayed me to go Subaru over a Jeep Cherokee or Rav4. I live in the central Colorado mountains, and there is a big difference in performance between AWD systems, Audi and Subaru are unrivaled in their consistent performance and reliability, all other AWD systems leave something to be desired when it comes to reaction time to a slipping wheel and general slick road performance. Obviously tires are very important in the snow, but even driving a family members BMW x-drive wagon, it has to 'think' a second after slipping before things hook up again.

If winter or wet driving is a part of your life Subaru is a no brainer. Reliability has been very good for me, I cant imagine it is much different from Toyotas currently. Both have good reliability reputations, but both companies can make a lemon every now and again.

I also live about an hour from my Subaru dealer, and rarely take it in. This car is super easy to perform an at-home oil change, the air filter is a 30-sec job, cabin air 5mins... so if you are DIY inclined distance from your dealer is no big deal
 

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19 Forester cvt
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What's the size of your family? No, not how many. How big? I'm 6'6" and fit with room to spare in both back and front seats of our Forester and Outback. Toyotas I fit with no room to spare in front, and don't quite fit in back.

Do you enjoy seeing the landscape you're driving through? The visibility from the Forester is not just a safety feature, although it's surely that. It also puts the tour in touring.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited CVT
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What's the size of your family? No, not how many. How big? I'm 6'6" and fit with room to spare in both back and front seats of our Forester and Outback. Toyotas I fit with no room to spare in front, and don't quite fit in back.

Do you enjoy seeing the landscape you're driving through? The visibility from the Forester is not just a safety feature, although it's surely that. It also puts the tour in touring.
This ^^^^^ and this ^^^^^ are important issues to consider. I am 6ft 2in and built like a football player. My height is evenly split over my upper and lower body. I can fit very easily in the Forester - both front and rear. I did look at the previous generation RAV4 when buying my Forester and felt a little snug in the front seat and no way in hell could I fit in the rear seat. My Forester? No problems front or rear.

Trying to compare an SUV or crossover to your medium to larger sized Toyota sedans is not going to be easy.

You will find the view out of the Forester to be exceptional and - pun intended - head-and-shoulders above above the Avalon or Camry. You sit higher and have a better view out. All the glass gives you clear lines of sight in every direction. And there's no rear trunk lid to see over to make you wonder "how close am I to that car behind me?"... The bigger windows give you the ability to see all around with ease. I did not find that to be the same in the RAV4 I tried.

The boxier shape and more upright stance of the Forester is better-looking - to me - then the slightly trendy lots of angles styling of the RAV4. But then again I also thought that Volvo's were exceptionally good-looking cars. I guess I kind of like the boxy look over swoops and pointed arrow-angles.

Think about your daily driving. Are you in a lot of stop-and-go traffic? Is weather a factor Where You Are? Does it rain a lot? I live in the Southern California deserts near Palm Springs and when it rains - the few times a year it does - we get lots of flooded streets. There's also the nearby winter Villages of Idlewild and Big Bear. So while all wheel drive may not be a necessity for every day, it's a great thing to have no matter what.

As was said above, the only true test would be for you to go to your Subaru dealer - even if there are a mile away - and drive one. Sitting it, kick the tires, see how it feels and how you fit. See how the other members of your family or circle of friends that will ride in it regularly fit and feel in it.

My mother will be 85 years old this year and one of the reasons I picked out my Forester over all of the other smaller crossover utility vehicles, is because it was the only one she could get into and out of easily and comfortably without hurting her back or hip. Is she in my car every day? No put on a weekly basis I'm taking her shopping or to the library or somewhere else and so she is regularly in my car. I looked at the Toyota RAV4, the Jeep Liberty and Patriot twins, the Nissan Rogue, and the Volkswagen Tiguan- that's the small one right? And even most of the rest dot-dot.

The Ford Escape was out of the running from the get-go because of the far too busy dashboard design and snug tight fit interior. The Chevy and GMC smaller SUV crossovers we're just too cumbersome. The Dodge Durango was far too large, and the smaller Dodge SUV was not locally available with all-wheel drive or any option packages I would consider. Most of the dealer stock was aligned in lower trim levels and the most economical engine available.

I don't understand the draw and appeal of a BMW as in Europe it's not much more than a taxi cab. And Mazda's only had black Interiors here where I live. The Mercedes-Benz small SUV is just too expensive for what you get. You want me to pay over $60,000 and you're giving me vinyl seats? Not going to happen.

I also looked at the Outback and Crosstrek. and out of all, the Forester was the most comfortable for me, gave me the most room, and also was the most comfortable for my mom.

The most convincing argument will be the one you make yourself. If a wagon body style is something you're comfortable with, and if the features and safety Tech are things you want, and if the price point is where you want to be, then there is no need to talk you into a Forester over something else. You'll either get it or you won't.

In the end it comes down to what is most important for you.
 

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2018 XT Touring
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I own both brands in my family fleet: 2010 Toyota Tundra, 2012 Toyota Highlander, 2013 Subaru Outback, 2018 Subaru Forester XT. I also previously owned a 2008 Subaru Outback XT and my Mom drives a 2010 Subaru Impreza. When it's time to replace my wife's current Highlander, I'm sure a new Highlander and a new Ascent will be on the short list.

The biggest advantage the Forester will have over the RAV4 (or really any other crossover) is the AWD system. You can research it yourself but the Subaru AWD system is far more advanced than any AWD system that Toyota offers. The new 2019 RAV4 Hybrid will be an interesting choice - with separate electric engines powering the rear axle - but it won't be widely available until mid-year.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Now that's the kind of response I was looking for. I live in FL so the terrain is flat. We do have some rain, no make that downpours, from time to time. I am very interested in visibility and maneuverability. My Avalon, while quite pleasant to take on long trips, is not fun to drive around town, backup and park. The backup camera is probably one of the first that came out (2011), so it doesn't have the lines to assist.
 

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2015 Forester XT Touring cvt
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Fozzies and GFs posts, above, are really very good. I can’t add much to them. IMO, they have mentioned most all of the positive and valuable attributes of the Forester. In the snow zone, it’s unbeatable. The visibility is terrific.

I haven’t seen anyone mention the Forester “cons” compared to the Toyota line. There are a few, and might or might not be important to you. Generally speaking, the 2019 Forester engine and transmission will seem quite different from your Toyota’s, particularly those V-6 powered and using a standard step transmission like the Avalon. The 182 hp flat four/CVT results in a pretty underpowered, vehicle. The engine is also very loud, although better insulation has improved the clatter in earlier models. Fine pickup in town, but pretty limited at speed. But, for a small SUV, this results in superior mpg. If you have never driven or owned a CVT vehicle, also consider that closely. It’s definitely different, especially when pushed hard.

This is enough power for many people, but perhaps not if you carry a big load or traverse the mountains. You will decide when you test drive if it’s for you.

It’s why I have a Forester XT, which has a 250 hp turbo. Sadly, not available now.

Just noticed from your post above you are from Florida. Me too. One thing I had to do: put heat reducing ceramic window film on all windows and the moon roof, even the factory tinted rear. All of that nice window real estate will roast you without it down here. And you would find the a/c too weak. After tinting, no problem.

EJ


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2018 Forester 2.5I Prem CVT
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Now that's the kind of response I was looking for. I live in FL so the terrain is flat. We do have some rain, no make that downpours, from time to time. I am very interested in visibility and maneuverability. My Avalon, while quite pleasant to take on long trips, is not fun to drive around town, backup and park. The backup camera is probably one of the first that came out (2011), so it doesn't have the lines to assist.
If you care about visibility, you will be blown away when you sit in a forester. I can only speak about a 2018 model but no other model compared when I was looking. There is just no other comparison when it comes to visibility.
 

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I own a 2015 Forester Premium...but when shopping, other than a recomendation from my brother in law for the Foz, I had nothing to go by. But comparing the RAV4, CRV, CX-5, Forester, VW sportwagon(not in same class, I know) and Kia's offerings, I found that the ground clearance is better on the Forester. Also the height of the car, the rear legroom/space, fuel efficiency when comparing AWD options, cargo room, moon roof, and particularly the size of the windows and outward visibility - all better on the Forester (especially the rear/cargo windows - these were tiny on at least the 2015 model RAV4/CRV/CX-5). Price of the base Forester was also higher than the base competitors, but when you consider the price of the competition's AWD models, I do believe the Forester came out cheaper.

Of course it depends on what you like. You need to get into and see the differences and then decide. For example, the CX-5 used to come out in the front of this class for drive quality, and some friends of mine swear by the interior comforts. For me though, I found that the CX-5's sun roof was TINY compared to the expansive one on the Forester. While I found the interior comfortable in the CX-5, I found it to be too much like my wife's old Mazda 2...in other words, to small, too cramped, not nearly as much cargo room, and terribly visibility when doing shoulder checks. More aerodynamic, yes, but I think that impacts usable space with the interior.

But that's why you need to get into one to see and think about what you like personally. For me, I like the Forester enough that I probably wouldn't consider the others anymore as long as the new ones fit my needs.
 

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2019 Crosstrek 2018 XT
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Foresters probably hold their values better.
Since you don't have snow that's not an issue.
All vehicles today are just so good.

Visibility of Forester is superior. Unlike a CRV Forester is really a fun car to drive. You really need to drive one.
 

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2019 Forester Sport
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Now that's the kind of response I was looking for. I live in FL so the terrain is flat. We do have some rain, no make that downpours, from time to time. I am very interested in visibility and maneuverability. My Avalon, while quite pleasant to take on long trips, is not fun to drive around town, backup and park. The backup camera is probably one of the first that came out (2011), so it doesn't have the lines to assist.
I, too, live in FL. The Subaru AWD system is the best and most highly regarded in the world. You don't need snow to see the benefits of AWD. With the downpours we get here, AWD is an excellent safety feature that will help keep your car on the road. As others have stated, the visibility is second to none...it continues to be one of the safest SUVs on the road...the EyeSight system is also the most highly regarded in the industry...the vehicle, now built on the new Global Platform is solid as a rock and quiet and bests the prior gen model.

You just can't go wrong with a Forester and its blows the RAV4 and Honda CRV right out of the water:wink2:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thank you all so much. This discussion has been so helpful. I've got to get to the nearest Subaru dealer to me which is an hour away and test drive one soon. I probably wouldn't buy the car there, but would go to a larger market to get mine.
 

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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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Very good arguments made. I agree with adc about resale value of the Subarus. Honda and Subaru lead the pack. The 2019 Sport is my second Forester. My first is a 2009. The best car I ever owned. I bought it in late 09 with 20k miles for $19k. Base model sold for 23k.

I came from a 2003 Land Rover Freelander which broke and was worth about $7k. I carried the negative equity of the loan and borrowed $24k or so. I blew the motor racing a WRX up the mountain and rebuilt the motor at 100k miles. I still owed about $4k on the car at that time in 2014 and it was the best decision I made. I now have 171k miles on it. Its been paid off for about 4 years and it is the first car in my life that I got rid of because I wanted to and not because I had to. I'm selling it for $8800.

This car is the best I have ever owned and still runs and drives perfectly. I am only selling it because the 2019 Sport is the first Forester I have been excited about in 10 years. I will never buy another Land Rover, that is for sure.

Subarus are hold their resale value andcan take high miles and are reliable for many years. I like that!
 

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2017 Forester 2.5i CVT
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I'm a long time Toyota lover due to reliability. Have owned 3 Camrys and an Avalon. Am in the market for a smaller vehicle than my Avalon. Don't want another Camry. Have looked at some Rav4s, but the 2018 made me yawn and the 2019 did not appeal to me at all, interior or exterior. The closest Subaru dealership to me is an hour away, one way. I do like the looks of the 2019 Forester. Convince me to buy one.
Longtime Toyota/Honda lover. Selling a 380kmile 4Runner and a 180kmile RSX

Crosstrek was the trifecta.
-Ground clearance for service roads
-Manual transmission
-Good clean economy

It got rear end smashed... during that time I had a Forester loaner with the CVT, and I loved it. Felt like an electric car. Just goes and goes. No unexpected lurching and gear hunting like a old school hydraulic auto does. So when I went for replacement got the Forester.

Haven’t had either long enough to speak for longevity.
I suspect a RAV4 FWD with the keep it simple corolla/camry tried and proven platform has better longevity.

My recommendations to people is this.
RAV4 FWD if you want the ultimate in reliability for pavement commuting grocery getting. The soccer mom.
Forester AWD for the adventurous friends or MT converts, out into the wilderness, service roads, hauling mtbs and camping gear.



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Sahuarita, Arizona USA 2018 Forester Limited
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I owner and drove three Toyotas between 1980 and 2010. I bought a 2010 Forester and never looked back. After putting almost 200k trouble-free miles on the 2010, I bought a 2018 Forester.
 

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I cannot add anything to these responses. They are truly great! Bought our first Subaru (Forester) 3 years ago and just bought our second (Outback) last month. Won’t ever look back!

I have enjoyed reading everyone’s replies!

Hope the OP can find what they are looking for - maybe even in a Forester or other model Subaru ;)
 
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