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Subaru Forester (up to 2005)



  • wbaslerwbasler Posts: 1
    Where can I rent or lease a Subaru Forester for my vacation to the mountains and seashore(wife's desire). I have been following ratings on them for several years now, and I am interested in purchasing one and thought I could best convince my wife during a combined venture of this sort. We live in wisconsin and figure easten seahore and Blueridge mountains would be perfect for putting vehicle to the test. Leaving end of June for couple of weeks, would consider leasing or renting for a month if possible.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I'd love to see VDC, I only hope it doesn't affect the price too much.

    psfod3: wax the rims, seriously.

    wbasler: I've only seen Subarus for rent in Colorado.

    I live not too far from the Blue Ridge Mountains, and haven't seen or heard of any places in the MD/DC/VA area that rent Subies. Hopefully someone else will chime in.

  • drwalesdrwales Posts: 18
    I rent regularly from the Hertz in Downtown Washington DC (11th & NY Ave). I've had an Outback a couple of times, and I've seen Tribecas there. I've also seen them at the Hertz depot at BWI airport. But its only Tribecas, Outbacks and Legacies; I've never seen a Forester there (other than my own!).

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Cool! I did not know that, and I even work down town.

    My dad used to work on 13th and NY, but he retired a few years ago, so I haven't been in that area since.

  • bat1161bat1161 Posts: 1,784
    Check with a Subaru dealer to see if they rent any Foresters. I know I've gotten one as a loaner from Flemington Subaru.

  • magoosh1magoosh1 Posts: 13
    My wife and I will be driving away on Monday with our first Forester.

    Should she get her first oil change at 3K or later? I think I read that the first one is at 7,500 miles. Is that right? I have a 99 Civic I bought with 18K. This brand spanking new car thing is new to me. Help me please!

    Thanks! :)
  • once_for_allonce_for_all Posts: 1,640
    depends on how OCD you are...

    If it bugs you, change at 1,000 miles. I did that with my Forester and have been on a Mobil 1 diet every since, every 7,500 miles.

    It's cheap to change the oil, especially the first one. Do it early.

  • poodog13poodog13 Posts: 320
    Anyone know if you can use E-85 instead of regular gas in an 05 Forester?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    No, absolutely not.

    Cars made to run on E85 are specialized, the ethanol is corrosive to some of the seals that regular gas-powered cars use.

    Keep in mind that while E85 is cheaper than gas, it also contains less energy, so your mileage drops by about the same amount. In the end, it costs you about the same per mile but you lose a lot of range. No real savings there until they can get the cost down a bit (this despite subsidies).

    In Brazil, they produce ethanol from sugar cane, and can do so at a competitive price. The US mostly uses surplus corn crops.

  • mnfmnf Posts: 404
    I am looking for a site that showed factory Subaru Warranty costs from a dealer it was on a old post . I am thinking on getting a 06 to ad with our 04 Forester. I bargained on my 04 so i am just looking for a tool to use at the table

    Thanks Matt
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I never saw that, but just ask the dealer to show you his cost book and offer them $100 over their cost. It's worth it for them to write up the deal for that amount, because it only takes a few minutes.

  • joseph50joseph50 Posts: 235
    This category got a black ball in the Consumer Reports review. What's up with that? What is being referred to? I don't recall many complaints with that area here.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    That's when mine reached its peak. And mileage improved by a nice amount, +2 or 3 mpg.

    '01 - drive train probably includes the wheel bearings. We did see a lot of those failures, but they changed the design in '03, so if you're shopping used I'd suggest an '03 with more miles.

  • leo2633leo2633 Posts: 589
    Wheel bearings, and the clutch issues, are both drivetrain related. I know, I've experienced both on my '01 Forester.

  • rochcomrochcom Posts: 247
    Although I do not subscribe to Consumer Reports and thus have not been involved in the survey, I would say the drivetrain report relates to wheel bearing problems. I have had to have the right rear wheel bearings AND axle shaft replaced TWICE - one under warranty, once not. Cost $723. CU's survey takes cost as well as frequency into account. Many others have reported similar problems.

    I have had repetitive problems with engine seal leaks, although all of these were under warranty.

    I have had repetitive problems with EGR system clogging. The dealer now has a fix for this, adding an aftermarket filter. Because of labor resulting from inaccessability, this cost nearly $180 each time. In my old car, the EGR valve was an $8 item replaceable in two minutes.

    The clutch was replaced under warranty after numerous trips to the dealer to complain about it not engaging properly (chattering) under cool, wet conditions. The problem started again within 10,000 miles and has been a constant annoyance since. This was reported by many Forester owners over 4 to 5 model years. The manual clutch is included under drivetrain at CU (no longer a separate item since manuals are so rare).

    What is truly annoying is that many of the problems experienced by early Forester owners were not corrected until 5 or more years later, resulting in multiple repairs for the same problem.

    I will be buying a new vehicle next year, and while I truly love many of the features of my Forester, especially its handling and performance, I have to consider overall cost of ownership, and that has been high. I had expected to pay part of the cost of the new vehicle with SubaruBucks certificates from the credit card program, but I have used up all of them on unexpected repairs and then paid even more out of pocket.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The clutch and bearings issues were common, but keep in mind there are plenty of us who had few/no problems as well, including me. Mine is 9 years old and has cost me zero in repairs, I've had to spend my Subaru Bucks on accessories. :D

    Still have $600 saved up, too.

    Ken traded his Forester in for a Legacy, Frank got a Forester XT, lark6 got a Forester XT. Kate's Forester has well over 100k miles and counting. Hutch trade in for a WRX, though he's traded that in now.

    Most of the regulars here had a good enough experience that they either own another Subaru or still have the original one.

    My sister's 03 Forester has been perfect. By then all the issues you bring up where pretty much ironed out.

    Any how, overall, Consumer Reports still recommends used Foresters as a Best Bet.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Not sure if you saw this in another thread, but a chipmunk ate some of our wiring and it threw a check-engine light. New wires and it's resolved. :D

  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,110
    Please check your email.

    tidester, host
  • rochcomrochcom Posts: 247
    It is true that many Foresters have had good repair records is shown by CU's surveys. And there have been good things with mine, for example, the original brakes lasted 80,000.

    But I did not report all of the problems. When the brakes were replaced, the rotors were too thin to turn and had to be replaced too, then a caliper problem wore the fronts out and damaged a rotor prematurely 20,000 miles later.

    Other problems included a failed speed sensor, failed airbag steering contact, both fairly expensive. Then there was the gas tank leak at the seam, the deteriorated flange on the exhaust system (the dealer wanted to replace the rear exhaust section at $500+ - I had a muffler shop weld a new flange for 1/10 of that,) the cracked front exhaust pipe, and the belt that cracked a few thousand miles after it was replaced. Granted it has 125,000 miles, but my 4 previous vehicles, Saabs, were more reliable and less expensive (even considering inflation) to drive similar mileages. Since the Forester was maintained by the book, never driven off road and about 80% of the driving was on expressways, I really expected better.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    YMMV applies to reliability, too. You just had an atypical ownership experience.

    Especially with that exhaust, we hear complaints about loose heat shields, but I've never heard of another complaint like yours.

This discussion has been closed.