Dorky looks don't hinder the 2016 Subaru Forester's capability
At a time when auto makers have been [UNKNOWN] their SUVs and Sedan's and [UNKNOWN] The 2016 Subaru Forester looks [INAUDIBLE]
During the last recession, Subaru did embarrassingly well when other auto makers were flailing.
I think it's because people were in a practical mindset and Subarus are imminently practical.
Most Subarus get good fuel economy, they come standard with all wheel drive, and they have roomy cabins.
With a lot of cargo area.
The Forester, in particular, has a straight roof line which makes for a really open and airy cabin.
Now, Subaru oddly classifies this as a compact SUV.
I think it prints a little bit bigger than that.
It slots between the Outback and the XV Crosstrek in the range.
I'm driving the Forester 2.5i Limited.
Which means it has a 2.5 liter four cylinder engine under the hood.
That's good for 170 horsepower, 174 pound feet of torque.
That's a modest amount of power, but it gets most jobs done.
Estimated to a continuously variable transmission, I find this engine and transmission combination mostly livable, although under acceleration, you can hear some rough engine Subaru's secret sauce it their all wheel drive system.
The Forrester comes standard with it and it's been a big selling point for the last decade.
In this limited trim Forrester I have what Subaru calls, X-mode.
If I push this button down here by the shifter, that engages the special traction control program designed to go slow over slippery.
Of road surfaces.
I wouldn't take the Forrester boulder crawling, but I did have it coming down a pretty steep rudded, rocky road and it did alright.
On the dashboard here I have the Subaru Starlink system, that's right it's called Starlink.
That's a seven inch touch screen that does navigation Phone, stereo, and some limited app integration.
This navigation system looks pretty good.
And on a long drive it was actually giving me route alternatives when there was bad traffic ahead so I like that.
I have got some limited app integration here too.
I have got my iPhone plugged into the car's USB port.
It's running The Star Link Apps, so that gives me some information functions there like news, plus I have Aha and Pandora, it's nice if you use those services.
And one more high tech feature here that I really like is Subaru's Eye Sight systems, that's these two cameras mounted above the windshield and these do a stereoscopic image of traffic ahead, this gives me a depth of cruise control, lane departure warning, and collision warning If we had some cruise control system here.
I really like how it works.
Really cool thing is even if traffic is at a completely stopped it will bring the Forester to a complete stop as well.
The base model Forester goes for $23245 delivered, that's with the 2.5 liter engine, all wheel drive, and a manual transmission.
Bump it up to $29,645, for the limited edition.
Then add $2,145 to do it up c|net style, with the navigation and isight package.
That comes out to a total of $31,790.
I'm not all that crazy about the Forester's looks, but it is a really practical road trip car.
That EyeSight system takes the stress off of long distance driving, it gets good fuel economy, and that all wheel drive system can take you to places other cars might not.
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