The fifth-generation 2019 Subaru Forester has launched and now features a driver recognition system as well as better safety and convenience features priced from $33,490 plus on-road costs.
At launch, four variants of the Forester are available – 2.5i, 2.5i-L, 2.5i Premium and 2.5i-S.
For 2019 the Forester has grown, it’s now 15mm longer at 4625mm, 20mm wider at 1815mm and the wheelbase is stretched 30mm to 2770mm. These changes have also translated into more interior space.
Externally the Forester offers a classical hexagonal grille and a C-shaped headlight motif which is shared with the Impreza and XV stablemates.
At the rear, a new C-shape LED rear light design complements the front headlights. Also new are the 17- and 18-inch alloy wheel designs.
For added practicality the rear seat backs and folding mechanism have been redesigned to create a flatter floor, the lighting in the cargo area is now in the roof area and the powered cargo door is now faster.
Beginning with the 2.5i all Forester variants get the updated eyesight driver assist package that includes emergency lane keep assist, lane centering control and speed limiter, which can be operated from the new steering wheel.
There is also a 6.5-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, a new electronic park brake, electronic heated folding door mirrors, rain sensing windscreen wipers and steering responsive headlights with dusk-sensing and integrated daytime running lights.
For the Forester 2.5i-L, reverse automatic braking and vision assist have been added, but the headline act is the driver monitoring system (DMS) which allows for personalisation of the cabin with up to five drivers able to be registered. In the Forester 2.5i-L, DMS recognises driver preferences for air conditioning and some instrument displays (in the Forester 2.5i Premium and 2.5i-S it also remembers door mirrors and driver’s seat preferences).
Moving to the Forester 2.5i Premium brings satellite navigation and a larger 8.0-inch infotainment system display. There is also alloy pedals, auto dipping passenger door mirrors, splashes of chrome, upgraded cloth trim, power adjustable front seats and electric folding rear seats.
The top-spec Forester 2.5i-S gets a 9-speaker Harmon Kardon audio system, electric sunroof, leather trim and the new X Mode that delivers improved off-road and steep hill performance.
Differentiating the exterior of the 2.5i-S is silver finish lower bumpers, side sill garnish, roof rail tie-down highlights and mirrors, as well as a piano black finish on the LED fog lights and front grille which also has a chrome surround.
A “90 per cent” new 2.5-litre direct injection four-cylinder horizontally-opposed Boxer engine offers 136kW of power (up from 126kW) and 239Nm of torque (up from 235Nm). It is mated with an upgraded continuously variable transmission (CVT) with a seven-speed manual mode that sends power to all four wheels.
In a win for owners (and common sense) the new Forester range has transitioned to a 12-month/12,500km service schedule in line with the Impreza and XV.
2019 Subaru Forester pricing (excluding on-road costs):
Forester 2.5i AWD - $33,490
Forester 2.5i-L AWD - $35,490
Forester 2.5i Premium AWD - $38,490
Forester 2.5i-S AWD - $41,490
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