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2019 Forester CVT w/paddle shifters
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Hello all. I took possession of my 2019 Forester Touring model last November. I wanted to wait to post this thread until I had a little experience driving it and the post-purchase euphoria was worn off so my comments would be more meaningful. Here's a pic of it a couple of days after I got it.

I wanted any color but black and I really wanted the Saddle brown interior but finding one was tough. I had my local dealer looking for a month. It seemed like all the early Touring models delivered were black with a black interior. I got impatient and went back to the dealer and they did another search (supposedly) and told me that no one had any brown interiors on the lot in all of northern CA. The first one would be here in late Nov., a month later. The next day I bought mine from another dealer in town. So don't believe the dealer or the inventory listed on their websites for that matter. My car was still listed on the dealer's webpage five days after I drove it home!

So do I like it? You bet. I did extensive research and narrowed my choices down to the Forester, the CX-5 and the CRV. I test drove all three. Now, I'll admit I'm biased toward Subaru; my last car was a 2003 WRX sportwagon I bought new in December of 2002. I usually keep my cars about 8 years. That car was so fun and versatile I kept it 16! But even factoring in my bias, I felt the Subaru had the best mix of driving fun, space, efficiency, safety and off-road ability of the three. After 3000 miles I am convinced I made the right choice.

I've read all the Forester reviews posted on the web and it seems like there is a lot of anti-Subaru bias out there, especially form the big name publications. For example, automotive writers have long complained about the exhaust note of the boxer four motors. But now that Porsche came out with a four cylinder boxer suddenly the writers are changing their minds. I put far more weight on the experiences and opinions of all the good members of this forum than any auto journalist. I absolutely do not agree with the big criticisms of the new model: weak engine, noise, annoying safety systems and a crappy ride.

Here's my take so far. The engine has plenty of power to merge onto the freeway and to pass on two lane roads. It wasn't even an issue during the break-in period where you're not supposed to punch it or rev it above four grand. The ride is really nice, not too floaty or stiff and it handles responsively and tracks straight and true. Yeah, it doesn't handle as sweet as my WRX did, but NO SUV does. The infotainment system is great, the stereo sounds sweet (although I can only find seven of the nine speakers; anybody know where the other two are?), it's quiet and refined and I'm averaging over 29 mpg and routinely get 37 on the highway. While it's true that the Eyesight system beeps at you occasionally it's not annoying IMO. Well, maybe the beep every time the ACC locks onto a car or loses the lock is a liitle overkill, but you can silence it. Thanks Subaru. The only thing I don't like is the auto start-stop. It uses the starter and it's just not as silky smooth as the rest of the car. But again, you can turn it off. Although I wish you could turn it off permanently. But that's my only gripe.

The more I drive it, the better I like it.

 

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