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New Subaru Forester Owners - Give Us Your Report!



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Keep those tires for summer, and just get winter tires mounted on steelies. A package like that from Tire Rack or Discount Tire Direct probably will cost less than $600, and it extends the life of your OE tires significantly (25% if you use the snows for 3 months).

    I have snows on my Forester and they've been fantastic in the freezing rain conditions we've had lately.

    I think that's probably safer and more cost effective than just tossing out the brand new tires for a new set of all seasons, which are still a compromise.

  • I could do that; but my point is I shouldn't have to. I didn't buy an Audi or even a Forester XT. I bought a standard Forester and it should come with good quality all season tires. Isn't that it's primary market and appeal? AWD stabiity in the rain and snow, not improved canyon carving performance.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    OE tires are always a compromise. FWIW, most people here find they're OK all-around tires, and we don't see that many complaints about them. A few owners even replaced them with the same tire the 2nd time around.

    I'd recommend the ones I have, Falken Ziex 512s, but even those aren't good in snow. They're great in the dry, and even when it's wet, but not in the snow.

    I'm sure the tires you liked had some trade-offs as well, perhaps extra noise, rolling resistance, or durability.

  • I'm thinking of buying a leftover 06 Forester from a local dealer in northern Va. I've never owned a Subie before and have been reading these posts for a couple of weeks. I got the info below off the local dealers website and this looks like a fair deal to me. What do you experts think?

    Leftover New 2006 Subaru Base Forester auto, blue
    X Wagon, Auto. Trans. Regal Blue Pearl, Gray Cloth.
    Options: tweeter kit, floor mats, cargo net rear vertical, rear bumper cover, cargo tray, auto dimming mirror/compass
    MSRP $23,740, Invoice $22,169, Internet price $18,564.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Good price *IF* that includes freight.

    If they charge extra for freight, the price is better. It's in Rockville, MD next to White Flint, not far from NoVA.

    If you go there look for Maurice, tell him "juice" from Edmunds sent ya. My family has bought about 5 Subarus there.

  • erics6erics6 Posts: 684
    I don't find my OEM tires bad in snow. Juice is right, if you really want good snow performance get some snow tires. AWD doesn't overcome the limitations of all season tires.
  • Thanks Juice. The price does not include freight, so I'd add another $625 on top of that. I may go to Rockville on Sat. My son plays soccer at the Sportsplex in Frederick. Hopefully, I can swing by before or afterward.

    And yes, dedicated snows make a huge difference. I have dedicated snows on my '05 Scion XB and it pulls great in the snow. I passed by the hulking SUVs that were spun off the road in last weeks storm.
  • Can you give me some Subaru info? This is the 1st Subie that I've researched. How will the Forester do as a daily commuter vehicle? I drive about 115 miles daily down to the DC metro area from the Winchester, Va. area, so I guess the auto tranny is the way to go for the stop and go traffic situation. How is the ride, reliability, MPG, regular maint. costs, etc.? Thanks for any info you can provide for my research.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I have a '98 Forester and work in DC, so I think I'm uniquely qualified to answer that question.

    Mine has averaged 25 mpg in its lifetime, though yours is an auto the EPA ratings are actually higher.

    It's a comfortable vehicle, you may even want to splurge and get a model with heated seats, since it gets cold in DC, and you also get heated mirrors to melt away the ice and even keep them clear in the rain.

    Ride is good, and the wheel travel is great for pot-holes. I take Canal Road and the Clara Barton Parkway and the pavement is in poor condition due to the snow/ice, so I've been using the Forester instead of my Miata that I use primarily in the summer.

    Maintenance is like any other vehicle, the only difference with AWD is that you have a rear differential that needs its oil changed every 30k or so (60k at most). Not a big deal, just 2 bolts to remove, one quart of 75w90 oil that you can get at the local parts store for a couple of bucks.

    e-mail me and I'll give you some more details. Use my handle and then add to the end of it. I think you'll be happy with one.

  • Juice
    Thanks for the feeedback on the Forester. I'm not sure if I want to go with the manual or auto tranny yet. Since my wife is totally loathe to driving a stick I may opt for the auto. How do you fare with the stick in the DC traffic? II commute from Winchester to Chantilly straight down RT 7 to 28. Once a week I go to Arlington. Is the Subie seat comfortable for long periods? I feel that I need a vehicle more substantial than my Scion XB. Pot holes and mounded snow have beaten up the Box in the past, but I really do like the MPG.
    Anyway thanks for your input and assistance with the Forester.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Auto is better for city traffic. My left knee can get sore on a really bad commute, gotta admit.

    Plus, if the wife ain't happy, noone's happy, right? ;)

  • erics6erics6 Posts: 684
    I second the auto. As much as I loath autos I went with one for my 05. Much nicer for commuting. Portland traffic isn't far behind DC traffic. I've still got my Miata and truck for rowing my own gears.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    A Miata and a Forester make a nice fleet, don't they?

    I have the same thing. :shades:

  • erics6erics6 Posts: 684
    I hadn't thought about that. I had a Outback/Miata combo before and I'm not planning for a bigger car like you, since my girls are older and I don't have a nanny. I could use a housekeeper though. Trying to keep up with teenage girls is a bit of a challenge.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    We could all use a little help! :shades:

    We have a property on the beach, and my kids are reaching the age where they'd like to bring a friend along. I'm just planning ahead and getting a vehicle that can accomodate that.

    The last 2 vehicles I've owned, I kept one for 7 years, the other for 9 years and counting. So I have to think WAY ahead.

  • I saw that Subaru has increased it's customer cash for the 07 Forester's. Since I've been researching the Forester for several weeks I have question on the fog lights. Does anyone use them extensively? How would you rate them? I'm asking because the 07 Forester X Sport has $2000 customer cash back, but the new bumper style is minus the fog lights.

    I'm trying to decide if I really need the fog lights in lieu of the extra $1000 Subaru is offering. How would you rate the new Sport X front end?
    Thanks to all.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    OEM ones are useless. For well under $1000 you can get some very high quality Hellas for your Forester!

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Or just buy them as accessories. They're not that expensive at all. I'm sure your dealer could install them for a couple hundred.

  • Thanks gang. I'll look into the Sport X this weekend, although I could really learn to appreciate the moon roof and heated seats with the Premium package.
This discussion has been closed.