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2009 Subaru Forester



  • irollitirollit Posts: 20
    We ordered June 5 and were very surprised when we were called Friday to come pick up our Newport Blue Limited (Automatic). That was a 7 weeks and 1 day wait. We were told that it would arrive by the end of July so we were so pleased that it came earlier. We really love the color.

    I had called SOA that morning to ask about the car. They had no idea where it was at all. The dealership was surprised too when it came off the truck. They were not notified.

    I have only driven it home, about 15 miles. The average mileage was 22.5 coming downhill from the foothills to the flatlands. There was only 7 miles on the odometer when we picked it up.

    I sprayed Scotch Guard on the fabric door trim, headliner and around the handles above the doors. It is light colored and a textured fabric so it will get dirty easily. Does anyone have another product they could recommend that would be better? I was envisioning some kind of clingy vinyl or fabric to put around those handles to protect the headliner fabric.

    I will put around 200 miles a week on it so time will tell how the mileage will be. It came with the moon roof air deflector. It gives it a unique look compared to other small SUVs that I have seen. I have only seen one other 2009 Forester during our wait.
  • pharmd718pharmd718 Posts: 78
    I ordered the same color. It looks great. Originaly I thought yours was a limited.
  • pharmd718pharmd718 Posts: 78
    Congrats on the XT limited. A week after placing an order for my X limited I was told that the car was right on schedual and should take 10-12 weeks.
    I hope it comes earlier then yours.
  • orcorc Posts: 39
    Irrolit... At first play with ave mileage gauge and keep up the two trip odometers by clearing them and resetting. I thinks folks are fooled that they are getting worse mileage than they really are. After a few thousand miles you'll notice mileage will be quite good if you don't use the low gear shifter option a lot.

    Scotch Guard is good stuff. It should work well. I had some rather potent bug juice on my leg while wearing shorts and it rubbed off on the driver's side arm rest and it dissolved some of the paint-plastic making it look bad. Oh well... what can I do? Stuff happens but it hurts the worst when the car is new eh?

    I agree that the new Forester has a very cool and sporty look compared to other small SUV's. I also like the fact that the Forester will actually out handle the others on twisty roads and gravel/dirt roads.
  • what a great post!!!! awesome pics too!!! i couldn't agree more about your first impressions with the 09 forester. picked mine up 3 days before setting off for the adirondacks. we stayed at a cabin on a tricky unpaved road during some torrential downpours and man was i glad i had my subie. it kept me, the wife, 4 yr old son and our new 8 week old daughter safe and comfy the whole time. drove the hell out of US9 coming down from fort ticonderoga and Hague (lots of twists and turns, some steep hills) and it was a pleasure all the way. i'm not in the turbo unfortunately, but threw on the sport shift for a few hills to make up for it. MPG hovered around 27-28 according to the in-dash readout. During one leg my wife sat in the back betw 2 bulky child seats to keep the pacifier jammed in baby girls mouth - she was completely comfortable and i'm 6'3'' so you can imagine i ate up a lot of the leg room. even though NY and VT are the subie meccas here on the east coast, i didn' see any other 09's either (saw a ton of 08's and other foresters / outbacks ) but i'm sure that will change soon. my only complaint is the ipod interface, otherwise, i'm loving it. thanks for the pics - i'll headed up the hudson valley next week again so i'll have some pics for ya.

    keep on truckin' and posting those awesome pics

  • orcorc Posts: 39
    The area your talking of is really nice but I haven't been there for a very long time. Upstate NY and Vermont/NH are beautiful places. I was near there for a short time in the 70's when in the military.

    I'm 6'4" and the 09 Forester is just big enough for me. I don't fit the '08 version very well. One more car pic near our home.

  • irollitirollit Posts: 20
    My car is a X Limited also. I didn't specify which limited we bought. I hope it comes early for you too. It was such a surprise for everyone involved.
  • irollitirollit Posts: 20
    At first play with ave mileage gauge and keep up the two trip odometers by clearing them and resetting.

    Thank you for your excellent suggestion. My interpretation of what you are saying would be to keep the A trip meter going from fillup to the next fillup without clearing it, keeping a record of mileage, then clearing it. The B trip meter could be used for my 20 mile commute, mostly freeway and some city driving. I suppose I could take the time to clear it after city driving so I could record the freeway driving separately.
  • pharmd718pharmd718 Posts: 78
    Does anyone know the specs of the factory subwoofer? I would like to know the freq response and if the stock stereo has a crossover that will redirect the low freq from the 6 inch stock speakers to the subwoofer.
  • bigfrank3bigfrank3 Posts: 426
    I thought I had seen this info somewhere but now can't seem to find where. If you look at the last page of the installation document, here:

    you can get some info. It appears that there is a gain and cut-off adjustment on the sub. This is new, the 3 I have previously used didn't have this. Mine in my 06 is fixed gain and cut-off, and I believe it rolls-off at 250Hz.

    I also don't believe there is any crossover in the stereo, all frequencies get sent to the sub and it filters out at the roll-off. The standard door speakers will continue to reproduce whatever they can, but they clearly can't pass the lows that the sub can.

    Personally, I find that the tweeters and the sub fill in the sound nicely.
  • volkovvolkov Posts: 1,306
    Ah, so you did the highway 37 route based on the pic of the sign at Kitwanga. That means you came through PG! I'd really like to do the loop when we get a new travel trailer.
  • hitoyouhitoyou Posts: 14
    Hi again,

    I don't know the exact date my Newport Blue Pearl Limited was ordered because dealer tried to swap vehicles, etc. I put a downpayment down on April 25th. I just called the dealer and he said the vehicle would be coming in this week. After it arrives they will have to put on whatever options weren't added at the port. If they have to order these options, it will take a few more days. My car is at the port now in New Jersey. I never thought I would have to wait this long for a vehicle. I hope it is going to be a good car for me after all this. I hope your vehical comes in early.
  • eps105eps105 Posts: 216
    Hi all,

    I've been a long-time follower of these boards, but have been a lurker most recently. I've owned a 97 Outback Sport and 99 Forester L prior to my current beloved 03 Forester XS Premium. I've been researching the new Forester (at near-OCD levels, mind you) to determine if I can justify upgrading to an 09 while my 03 still has some good trade-in value or if I should just run it into the ground.

    My biggest ergonomic gripes were addressed -- steering wheel audio controls, telescoping steering (albeit only in XT's), more legroom, and better interior lighting. But I'm really bummed about the lack of 5-speed auto in a $30k car, and wish they hadn't skimped on the lack of a glovebox light, sun visor extenders, or decent cup holders.

    Other than the 5EAT, those gripes are minor, and I'm really thinking about getting a loaded XT Limited with Nav. However, I'm looking for owners with real-world feedback who might be able to provide me some additional insight on some things I'm having trouble finding out:

    1) I'm not a huge fan of the previous gen Yokohama tires and I've read some posts saying the current ones aren't much better. Has anyone ever heard of being able to negotiate a credit when buying a new car to take off the new tires? How much credit is reasonable? I was thinking like $250. I'd like to put a set of Michelin MXV4 Primacy's from day 1 rather than waiting to get to 30k before I can have some decent handling, quiet tires.

    2) I was leaning towards saving money with an aftermarket nav, but there seems to be some compelling features with the OEM nav than may overshadow its deficiencies (namely, lack of USB or iPod interface or internal hard drive for music, as well as lack of available rear-view camera). I'd be thrilled to get feedback from actual nav owners, as the last two times I was at my dealer, they didn't have any nav units on the lot...

    a) I know the unit reads WMA/MP3 files from CD. Does it also read them from DVD's? In other words, if I could put 4.7 GB worth of music on DVD's, I could fit my whole library on two discs. Not a bad tradeoff to lack of iPod interface.

    b) I understand that the nav system lets you configure various customized options with the car, like security system settings and key lock options. Does anyone have a definitive list of all the options that can be configured?

    c) Similarly, I also believe the nav adds enhanced trip computer functions beyond just the avg. MPG displayed on the console. Anyone know what else it does?

    d) I've read that the programming lock-out can be easily overridden by grounding one wire to make it think the e-brake is on. Has anyone done this? Do the trip computer functions and everything else still work when this is done?

    e) Anyone installed the Bluetooth microphone for their cell phone? How is the sound quality? Is it loud enough? Can the calls be activated and ended using the steering wheel controls?

    3) Lastly, when I recently received an 09 X as a loaner, I found the driver's and passenger's headrests to be pitched so far forward that it was impossible to get comfortable and actually started to give me a headache, no matter how high or low I set them. I don't recall the XT I test drove a few days earlier being that unfomfortable, but I haven't been back to my dealer to check if there are really any differences. Has anyone else noticed and been bothered by this ergonomic flaw (disguised as a safety feature)? Does anyone know if the XT Limited headrests are of a different design or maybe just more forgiving because of the softer leather? Since these are "active" head restraints, I would have expected them to be placed in a more comfortable position until they are triggered in an accident. If my wife is not comfortable in the passenger seat, it's a complete deal-breaker! Anyone ever heard of aftermarket headrests?

    Sorry this is so long, but I've been lurking too long and all of my questions are pent up! :sick: Thanks in advance to anyone who replies with some definitive answers!

  • pharmd718pharmd718 Posts: 78
    Just got the latest issue of motor trend. They compared the new VW suv with the 2.0 turbo, the mazda CX7, and the XT limited. Guess who came out on top? Yep...the subi. It was a 1st place winner by a wide margin.

    One of the things they did not like about the subi was the fact that they did not offer a back up camera as an option. But the forester does not need a back up camera!!! Visibility is great!!! The other car companies have horrible rear view visibility and then try to sell you the rear view camera for lots of $$$.

    Another nit pick was the fact that the subi was the only one that did not have a multi CD changer. But this is because they had the Nav system which is 1 CD only. If they did not get the Nav they would have had a 6 disk CD changer.

    In short the subi best them both in 0-60;MPG;cargo capacity; ride quality; and most importantly.... PRICE :shades:
  • awesome news... i agree about the visibility thing, it was a big selling point for me. some of the cars i sat in looked really cool but felt like i was in a cave (FJ cruiser) i'd like to see the "backup camera" crowd try and navigate on the highway once they've packed up their car and can't see out the back window! ;)
  • eps105eps105 Posts: 216
    sidewaksurfin: It seems that you inadvertently gave a good reason why the Forester should have a backup camera! No matter how good the visibility is out back, it won't help if you have a ton of cargo blocking the back window, and it would certainly help when you're trying to back into a tight parking space, even in a Forester.

    I just took my Forester camping this weekend and had it so loaded I couldn't see out the back at all. A rear view camera would have really been useful, both for backing up and while driving down the highway (since most will allow you to set them to a monitor mode even when in Drive).

    I for one would be willing to pay for one in a new Forester and think Subaru should at least add it as an accessory option, like the Bluetooth microphone add-on. IIRC, the JDM Forester does offer a rear camera. :cry:

  • volkovvolkov Posts: 1,306
    Agreed on all points. Unfortunately for us Subie isn't big enough for aftermaket add-ons that can patch into the nav system like there are available for Toyota models. Most nav screens will have unused inputs that can be accessed for widely available back-up cameras by the more electronically competant. It is ridiculous to me that it can't be made available as a dealer option if not factory.
  • orcorc Posts: 39
    Eps.. The tire swap thing would depend on the individual dealer and a $250 offer is not out of line and should help close any deal I would think but some dealers are lazy and some sales manager folks don't like messing with such things. Hopefully you can get it done reasonably before taking delivery.

    Yes... the headrests are tilted too far forward and are close to worthless for taking a nap with the seat reclined. I tried that as a passenger on our recent trip when the wife was driving and it was sore spot with me. Luckily we brought along a couple of those Ox-Bow shaped memory foam pillows which helped a lot.
  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    How embarrassing! Here I've lived in Arizona for almost two years and still haven't driven up the Schnebly Hill Road in my Forester but someone from Western Canada has in his :blush:

  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    I put a downpayment down on April 25th.

    Had your dealer actually ordered your vehicle when you gave them your deposit you'd already be driving it. Maybe they thought they could do a dealer trade and get you into one faster but that obviously didn't work out :(

    After it arrives they will have to put on whatever options weren't added at the port. If they have to order these options, it will take a few more days

    Which makes me wonder if they ever did place a factory order for you? Any options on a factory ordered vehicle will be installed at either the factory or the port... not by the dealer.

  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    I've been researching the new Forester (at near-OCD levels, mind you)

    From that post I'd say you're way beyond "near-OCD"... you've got a full-blown case of it :P

  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,798
    The headrests are designed to protect you/loved ones in case of accident, and according to IIHS, '09 Forester headrests work very well for that.

    Unfortunately what makes headrests work well for accidents makes them less desirable as things to rest your head on, unless the seat is reclined __way__ back. ;)
  • orcorc Posts: 39
    Though we commonly travel through Western Canada we're actually from SE Alaska. I didn't know about the safety thing with the headrest angles. Maybe they should be called head/neck safety devices instead of headrests. LOL
  • Hi Elliot

    apologies - i guess i should have followed my comments with a more serious take on the situation - i really was just trying to comment on the almost panaoramic-style visibility in the forester as compared to some other cars in a joking way. i agree that a backup camera would be cool as well, but honestly, is anyone really driving on the highway with just their backup cam as their rear visibility as someone else posted? that seems really dangerous to me.

  • You reside in New Jersey? Canadian dealers have run out of the inventory due to high demand. I suspect many will be waiting because of this demand. Enjoy your Forester when it arrives...and outstanding product!
  • sgloonsgloon Posts: 323
    Ok. I need definitely need some help.

    I have had three instances of the whole car vibrating, steering wheel & shifter, and you can feel it in you seat, the passenger can too. It it very dramatic and painful to drive it this way.

    The first time, I was going about 35mph on smooth pavement. It stopped after coming to a full stop. (This is probably a coincidence.)

    The second time, it was on cruise control going 55mph. It did not stop with braking or stopping. Took about 5 minutes to go away.

    The 3rd time, was going about 40 or 45 when it started. Braking/stopping didn't affect it. Manipulated the speed, worse with increased speed. Hurt my hands to hold the wheel. Lasted for over 1/2 hour of driving on pavement, curvy roads. Then on to dirt roads and it continued for a while... sounds like possibly something with the wheels/tires???, but I don't know what... The shaking was so bad, the moonroof slider slid to the rear on its own while going up a smooth paved incline.

    Brought it into the dealer. They said they checked the balance on the tires. they said wheel balance checked out OK. Didn't happen on their test drive. (No surprise there.) They said it was due to dirt & dust on the wheels. They said "less than 1/4 inch of dirt/dust can cause this".

    They had washed the car, so it was clean. It happened again 1/2 hour after leaving the dealer, although it was not as strong as the 3rd time which was unbearable.

    The problem is, the car/wheels had been cleaned before it happened all 3 times. All 3 incidences happened on paved roads. However, I had been on a dirt road by the time I brought it to the dealer. The dirt thing sounds bogus to me. I can't believe that a little dirt and dust would cause the whole car to shake this badly. Besides, I had washed the car and the wheels, and hadn't been on a dirt road prior to all 3 incidents. I wouldn't want a car that would shake this badly with a little dirt on it. Should I have another dealer look at it? Any thoughts as to what it could be?

    I had a suggestion of the ABS braking system being a possible earlier, however, I hadn't touched the brakes at all around when the vibrating started. One time was on cruise control, no braking there... If ABS can cause shaking, can the ABS system go off on its own? (This is my first car with ABS brakes, so have no experience with them.

    Any help in determining a cause would be appreciated.
  • eps105eps105 Posts: 216
    sqloon - You might have a defective spark plug cable or spark plug that is showing up intermittently. I've had this happen, and an engine running on 3 cyclinders is so out of balance that it feels like the whole car is going to shake apart.

    If this is your problem, you will also notice a decrease in power while accelerating. If you have full acceleration, this not your problem.

    Since the problem is intermittent and did not go away with washing, I would rule out anything with the tire balance or dirt in the tires. Sounds more like an electro-mechanical problem where something isn't engaging properly or is engaging improperly. Could be malfunctioning ABS, rear differential, spark plugs, etc.

    Is your check engine light going on? If not, suggests something more on the mechanical side that the ECU is not sensing.

    It sounds like it's dangerous to drive or at least potentially harmful to the car. Since it's happening so much, I suggest giving it to the dealer and tell them to keep it until they can reproduce it and fix it!

  • eps105eps105 Posts: 216
    From that post I'd say you're way beyond "near-OCD"... you've got a full-blown case of it

    Frank - yeah, you're right, who am I kidding? :blush: Fact is, if I'm dropping $30k for something, it had better do exactly what I want it to! So I do my research up front so I'm not disappointed later on.

    The reason for asking so many questions about the nav is because I was going to go aftermarket and get iPod control and rear camera for less money than the $2k factory system, but some of the functions integrated with the car seem compelling, and I've heard mixed things about steering wheel audio control compatibility with aftermarket systems. Now if I could just get my hands on the nav user manual, I could get all of my questions answered! :mad:

    Thanks to all for the feedback on the tires and headrest.

  • eps105eps105 Posts: 216
    Unfortunately for us Subie isn't big enough for aftermarket add-ons that can patch into the nav system like there are available for Toyota models.

    This isn't true. They have tons more accessories for JDM and other countries. From a marketing perspective, Subaru of America is limiting how upscale you can configure a Forester in order to keep it differentiated from the more upmarket 5 passenger Tribeca.

    The rear camera for the same nav system is available as a dealer-installed option in the UK: Check this out from Subaru UK

    Just another example of the US getting shortchanged.

  • I followed up my eMail of 5/5 to Subaru in which I asked when the iPod interface would be available for the audio system in the Limited/Bean models (which apparently is made by a different company than that in the X/X Premium), and was told "summer". Here's their answer from yesterday:

    The iPod Interface for your 2009 Forester 2.5XT Ltd has just become available at our Parts Warehouses. The part number is H621SSC200. You can order and purchase this through an authorized Subaru dealership now.

    Finally--my plan is to have this and the subwoofer installed at the same time.
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