On this topic .. what does my Forester share with other cars in the Subaru lineup. For instance, I know that an Outback is really just a rebodied Impreza which is also a WRX, yes? Is the Forester built on the same platform? When looking at suspension parts, like shocks/struts/springs for example ... which other model's parts would fit my forester?
Yep, they pretty much all fit each other, except the different bushings for various swaybar thicknesses, the best reference you can make would be to request the bushings for a 98 RS Impreza, but even more recent model specs should go on.
The only other variations I can think of are steering rack bushings (25mm vs 30mm width bracket), and the change of swaybar links in 04 (?)