Monday, October 1, 2007

2008 Subaru Forester Review

The 2008 Subaru Forester, which is the latest in the second-generation of the car, doesn't have much about its appearance to distinguish it from the previous version, but it does have an updated chassis with a stiffer body, a roomier interior, and a few more features that are offered standard. It's also about 90 pounds lighter (curb weight) than the older version.

This year's Forester is offered in two main trim levels, the 2.5 X and XT, but there are Sport and L.L. Bean versions of the X and there are Sport and Limited versions of the XT. MSRPs range from $21,195 (for the base X) to $27,895 (for the Limited XT). The XS trim from previous years has been discontinued for the 2008 model year.

Under the hood of the 2008 Subaru Forester you'll find their proprietary "Boxer" engine. The X has 173 horsepower and 166 pounds/feet of torque while the XT is both supercharged and intercooled, and has 224 horsepower providing 226 pounds of torque. All versions of this vehicle have all-wheel drive, a feature Subaru has always been known for. As well, anti-lock brakes are standard while stability and traction control systems are available across the line. The standard transmission is a four-speed automatic, but 4-speed manual, and 5-speed automatic and manual are also available.

Inside the Forester, features change depending on the trim. The base model comes with a fairly standard AM/FM Radio/CD player system with four speakers, but the Sport, LL Bean, and Limited models gain three more speakers and the capability to have SIRIUS satellite radio installed. Other available upgrades include heated, leather front seats, a powered moon-roof and automation for the climate control system.

The 2008 Subaru Forester was awarded a five-star rating in front- and side-impact crash tests, and averages 18/20 mpg in the city and 23/27 on the highway, depending on the engine and transmission.

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