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Subaru Forester vs Toyota RAV4



  • c14c14 Posts: 6
    Full Time AWD chews up tires and sucks up too much gas.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,786
    Chews up tires? Right. Then how did we get 60+K out of our original Impreza Outback's tires?

    Both our Subies get in the mid 20s, in terms of gas mileage; not exactly gas guzzlers...

  • dcm61dcm61 Posts: 1,541
    Chews up tires? Right. Then how did we get 60+K out of our original Impreza Outback's tires?

    Your car must be hard on tires because I got 70k miles on the origianl tires on my '96 Outback wagon. :-P 60k on the 2nd set and still looked good when I traded the car.

    45+k miles so far on the original RE92 Blotenzas on my '03 Outback wagon.

    Only got 50k though on the tiny 13" tires on my '89 GL-10 5 spd. FT-4WD Turbo Touring wagon.

    Damn cars are really chewing up the tires! :-D

  • I too just bought an 05 Forester X and love everything about it except for the rear drum brakes.

    Do you know he best way to go about upgrading them to discs? Estimated cost? I'm wondering if it would be worth the $$.

  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    Full Time AWD chews up tires and sucks up too much gas.

    A part time 4WD system like the Jeep Cherokee had will chew up tires when left engaged on dry pavement but Toyota's and Subaru's AWD systems are far more advanced.

    It's true that full-time AWD systems do cause a slight reduction in mpg but only in the 1-2 mpg range.

  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    Do you know he best way to go about upgrading them to discs? Estimated cost? I'm wondering if it would be worth the $$

    I think you're going to find it to be prohibitively expensive to upgrade to discs. While I agree that discs are better, the difference in performance between rear drum and disc brakes is very slight (fronts do most of the work).

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    My tires have actually worn very evenly (unlike FWD, where the fronts wear much faster).

    My current set has 43k miles on them and have not reached their wear bars. Can't complain.

    25.1mpg lifetime average, can't complain there either.

    Now that the troll is gone, let's get back to our regularly scheduled program...

  • manamalmanamal Posts: 434
    Lets see:

    $400/month for 72 months, not good credit. with $3550 down. Figure with your score, you are paying about 10% interest, so you are paying about $25500 out the door for the forester.

    I think that is a good deal!

    About the credit: the difference between good (700 + Beacon) and 620 beacon is about $50/month.

    Or another way:
    I just bought a forester LLBEAN for 24900 out the door, put down 4900, aqnd have a payment of 4900. Beacon is 740.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    refrain from spamming the boards. A single posting in the relevant discussion is adequate.

    tidester, host
  • mnfmnf Spokane WaPosts: 405
    This was explained to me by the Subaru manager of the dealer that I purchased from and came to find that we have the same friends of each other (small world) The way Subaru of America works is that if your credit score is lets say 620 and they run you through them (Chase) for the 1.9% if you qualify for a 6.5% from chase then Subaru America pays the differance from the 1.9%& 6.5%The same as if your were to qualify for 3.9% then the differace from 1.9%&3.95 would be paid by Subaru of America this was how it was explained to me. .... Matt
  • maedaymaeday Posts: 1
    Drove a Forest X and an Outback at the dealership today. Preferred the seat and leg room of the Forester. Two questions: Can I rely on the 22-28 mpg estimate? Also, the Forester seemed to vibrate on a smooth road. Could this be the tires? Anyone else have this experience? It would bother me on a long trip.
  • growler5growler5 Posts: 67
    EPA MPG range - I think it's legit. I have an '05 XS with 5sp manual, driven 8800 miles since Thanksgiving. Stated MPG is 23-30 mpg, I've never gone below 25, and have gotten 29-31 in the last month with a lot of highway miles. The EPA MPG range should hold up for warm weather driving, but you should expect to drop 2-3 mpg in cold (avg 20-30 degree) weather.

    Vibration. It's the tires or balance. I test-drove several Subies when I was shopping for the above-mentioned XS. Two of them had a problem with a vibration from a rear tire, which from my past experience has been a balance issue. To put your mind at ease, I'd test drive another sample or two.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    As they say, YMMV. But for me the 21/27 estimates on my Subaru were accurate, if anything maybe a big low.

    Excluding the times I've towed and driven on sand, my low was 20.7 mpg, not far below the 21 EPA city number. And I commute to the city.

    My best is 30.4 mpg, well above the highway number.

    I normally get around 22-27 mpg, though my lifetime average is actually slightly above 25.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Before they PDI the car the pressures are near 40psi. Air then down and I bet that fixed the issue. Ask them to do that and then test drive the exact vehicle you plan to buy to be sure it's quiet.

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 51,289
    Pretty quiet in here, but there's a new RAV4 out there. Anyone cross-shopping them?

    Steve, Host

    Moderator - Buying questions? Please include city or zip code and trim you are shopping, FWD or AWD, etc.

  • prosaprosa Posts: 280
    I suspect there won't be much cross-shopping between the '06 RAV4 and any Subarus. It falls between the Forester and the 'beca in terms of size and price and therefore doesn't really compete with either.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Interesting decision Toyota made to bring the LWB model here, as Europe gets a 5-seat only short wheelbase model. That's the one that would have competed with the Forester.

    Perhaps because Toyota owns a share of FHI, they decided to not let these overlap much. They went big and let Subaru stay smaller.

    In fact, I bet Toyota makes a bigger Highlander that doesn't compete much with the Tribeca as well.

    The one thing that does invite comparisons are the performance the V6 model and the Forester XT offer. C&D hit 60mph in just 6.3 seconds with the V6 RAV4, but their XT models have been in the low/mid 5 second range. Only the Saturn Vue Redline can even come close to either of those.

    But even in this performance niche, one has a V6, the other forced induction, and those tend to appeal to different people.

  • prosaprosa Posts: 280
    Interesting decision Toyota made to bring the LWB model here, as Europe gets a 5-seat only short wheelbase model. That's the one that would have competed with the Forester.
    Perhaps because Toyota owns a share of FHI, they decided to not let these overlap much. They went big and let Subaru stay smaller.

    Could be. I would think, however, that Toyota made its decision regarding non-importation of the SWB model well before its recent acquisition of the FHI stake.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Good point. And in the USA, bigger is better, so maybe that it what motivated their decision.

    I wonder if the SWB model will show up later? Imagine the V6 in that lighter, more agile model? I bet it would be a hoot to drive.

  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    And while Subaru is at it, they should put the 300hp in the Forester and bump the STi. 300hp in the gawd that thing would fly.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I've been asking for a Forester STI (they started capitalizing the 3rd letter this year) for a long time.

    More so than the 300hp, it could use some starch in the suspension. The 2006 models were raised up about half an inch and have a comfier ride, but it's less sporty now. The XT has 7.9" of clearance, other models 8.1". It used to be 7.5" for all models.

    RAV4 has 7.5", so it actually sits lower.

    I think a Forester STI could be lowered to maybe 7" or so, with bigger sway bars and higher spring rates. Give it the self-leveling shocks from the LL Bean model so that the rear end doesn't sag with heavy loads, and to keep it level. That would be a hoot.

    Forester XT is the king of acceleration, but I'd like to see them fine-tune the handling so it can outrun, say, an X3 Sport Package, in the turns.

  • I must be the outlier, as I am cross-shopping the FXT and the RAV4. I just saw a couple of the new RAV4's yesterday, a white Base model and a black Limited, and they have my attention. A bit larger than the FXT, but no more than a welterweight at most. I am waiting to see how the V6/5sp AT RAV4 compares with a FXT 4spd AT, since thats the tranny I am looking for. I wouldn't be surprised if the RAV4 eases ahead in acceleration, especially since I believe they lowered the final drive ratio in the '06 FXT AT's.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    I'm sure you know the XT 5spd has been clocked at about 5.3 to 60. That's going to be hard to beat.
  • The question for me is which will turn out quicker with an automatic tranny (my preference), or will it be a wash? I am aware that the MT FXT can go sub-6 0-60, but I have not seen a clear answer regarding the performance of the auto tranny version. Some posters are suggesting that it is a second or more slower than the MT'ed sample. Matching the characteristics of an automatic transmission to the boost curve is critical for good performance; if it is a second slower, that would suggest that the match is not ideal.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The auto XT took 6.1 seconds or so to hit 60mph, vs. 5.3 for the manual (5.9 IIRC for the '06s).

    They relaxed the gearing on the M/T models, I don't think the autos changed.

    They did gain a bit of boost, about 1psi extra, and went from a claimed 210hp to 230hp. So it should be at least as quick as the original.

    A large displacement V6 will have better throttle response, but the V6 is a revver and makes its power high up in the rev band, while the turbo makes peak torque at just 3600 rpm, so in the boost it should pull away, especially at higher altitudes with thinner air.

    Both are plenty quick, in the big picture.

  • ...thanks for the info on the auto XT 0-60 time, that's better than I had heard was my understanding that they reduced the gearing for the '06 AT XT from 4.44 to 4.11...that takes away a bit of the lowend grunt...

    ...I havent seen a plot of the V6's torque curve, or determined how much the extra gear in the 5AT will mask any low end weakness...I do know that properly sized turbos can make plenty of low end grunt, once they get up on the stuff!...
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The only thing that even comes close to these two autos is the Saturn Vue Redline, and even then it's a step or two behind.

  • kumarikumari Posts: 72
    I am also cross shopping the Subaru Forester with the RAV4. I also drove the Honda CRV, Mitsubishi Outlander, BMW X3, and Toyota Highlander. I found thata the CRV drove like a "tin can on wheels" and was shoddily appointed inside, the Mitsubishi was nicer, but still felt like an economy car (and I was driving the premium model), the BMW X3 was not as impressive as I thought it would be and the Highlander was too much like a luxury SUV in ride and handling (for that matter, so was the BMW and I tested the sports version).

    After 11 years in a large tip-over prone SUV, I'm looking for something different, but still need the SUV space. My other cars were a muscle car, sports car and sports sedan. I thought the Forester and the RAV4 handled the most like a sports car which I miss driving. I am leaning toward the Forestser XT Limited, but am waiting until the RAV4-V6 comes out and will drive the sport package in that model to really compare. And, then the dealership will have to let me drive it on the freeway, like I did with the two Forester models (X & XT). I do have more problems with the RAV4 than with the Forester - I HATE that rear-mounted spare tire - HATE IT! And, I think the interior is too busy, with the multileveled dash and all those lights and dials - gives me a headache just to look at the brochure! And, it has a little teeny sunroof, compared with the gigantic one offered by Subaru that's almost a convertible!

    Interested in reading what everyone else thinks.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Perhaps you can rig something to fit the spare inside, maybe lay it on the floor and built a "false floor" around it from wood, then carpet over it.

    I used to do stuff like that back in college, mostly to mount subwoofers and audio equipment. :shades:

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