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2019 Subaru Forester sports modest base-price bump, huge tech gains

New standard tech includes Apple CarPlay and Subaru's EyeSight safety suite.

Subaru

It's always nice when a new car loads itself up with fresh standard equipment without sending its price tag to the high heavens. Today, that car is the 2019 Subaru Forester.

The 2019 Subaru Forester will start at $24,295 before destination, a bump of just $500 over last year. Standard equipment includes 17-inch steel wheels, the Subaru Starlink infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as the EyeSight suite of driver aids, which includes adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning and automatic braking. Both EyeSight and the upgraded Starlink system are new additions to the Forester's list of standard equipment.

The next trim level is the $26,695 Forester Premium, which is also $500 more expensive than last year. This trim level adds alloy wheels, roof rails, a panoramic moonroof and Subaru's off-road X-Mode with hill descent control. The interior gets a leather-wrapped steering wheel, a power driver's seat and an available Wi-Fi hotspot.

A Subaru? In the snow? Well, I never!

(All-wheel drive is still standard, by the way.)

Subaru

There's a new trim for 2019, as well. The Forester Sport lends a hint of anger to the Forester's aesthetic by way of black exterior accents, black alloy wheels and a spoiler on the roof. There are also a few orange accents scattered about, including the stitching on the unique-to-Forester-Sport gray seats. The Forester Sport also gains a "Sport Sharp" mode on its mode dial, in addition to the Intelligent (read: Normal) and Sport modes available on other trims. Standard equipment includes heated seats, keyless access and LED fog lights.

Now, at this point, you might be wondering where the turbocharged XT trims are. I'm sorry to say, but Subaru has nixed all 2.0-liter variants of the Forester. The sole engine on offer now is a 2.5-liter flat-four with 182 horsepower and 176 pound-feet of torque. You can say goodbye to the six-speed manual, too -- the CVT is all that's left.

Subaru's first Forester trim to cross the $30,000 mark is the $30,795 Limited trim. Here, you get bigger wheels, leather upholstery, fancier dashboard trim and leather on both the steering wheel and gear lever. Additional equipment includes dual-zone automatic climate control and two USB ports in the back, as well as a power rear tailgate.

If, somehow, that still isn't enough, there's one trim to go -- the $34,295 Forester Touring. Here, you get an 8-inch infotainment system with embedded navigation, reverse automatic braking, as well as a new DriverFocus system that monitors your face for signs of fatigue. There's more chrome on the outside and exclusive perforated leather inside, in addition to a power front passenger seat.

Check out a full breakdown of the 2019 Forester's pricing, including comparisons to 2.5-liter 2018 Forester trims, below. It hits dealerships in the fall.

2019 Subaru Forester pricing

Trim 2019 MSRP 2018 MSRP Net change
Base $24,295 $23,795 $500
Premium $26,695 $26,195 $500
Sport $28,795 N/A N/A
Limited $30,795 $29,395 $1,400
Touring $34,295 $33,090 $1,205