2001 Subaru Forester

  • 2001 Subaru Forester L Sport Utility

    L Sport Utility

    • MAX MPG
    • SEATS
    • ENGINE
      2.5L H4
    • MSRP
  • 2001 Subaru Forester s Sport Utility

    s Sport Utility

    • MAX MPG
    • SEATS
    • ENGINE
      2.5L H4
    • MSRP
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2001 Subaru Forester Review

Handles well on the road, but lacks the off-road ability of other mini SUVs.

Reviewed by Automotive on


The 2001 Subaru Forester classifies as a compact SUV that sits on a car-based chassis. So, the Forester delivers better on-road performance and drivability than many truck-based SUVs. However at the same time, it lacks true off-road capability.

The 2001 Forester uses the same chassis as the Subaru Impreza and utilizes the same all-wheel-drive system that appears in many other Subaru models. The Forester has a low step-in height, a spacious cargo area, and a rear seat that feels spacious and accommodating.

For 2001 Subaru makes the Forester wagon in two trim levels: the base L and the upmarket S.

If you want a good, functional, all-wheel-drive vehicle that offers the rugged image of a truck, combined with the drivability of a car, the 2001 Forester may well be worth your while. While it’s far from perfect, the 2001 Forester proves spacious, fun to drive, and delivers a smooth carlike performance on the road. However if you need true off-road capability, you should look elsewhere.

The Range

Body styles: compact four-door SUV
Engines: 2.5-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: four-speed automatic, five-speed manual
Models: Subaru Forester L, Subaru Forester S

What's New

New additions made to the Subaru Forest for 2001 include slight modifications to the front and rear fasciae, interior upgrades, and the introduction of a new Premium Package.


The 2001 Subaru Forester serves as an all-wheel-drive wagon that features a taller and more squared-off looking body than many similar models in its class. The base L and the more upscale S both get restyled for 2001. These restylings include the addition of new front and rear bumpers, along with a revised mesh grille that features chrome accents, multi-reflector headlights, and clear-lens taillights. The S also features new titanium-color bumpers and lower body cladding.

Standard features for the L include a roof rack, a rear defogger, and a rear window wiper and washer. The S adds a chrome grille, alloy wheels, and bigger tires, while the Premium Package takes things further with gold accents on the wheels and a power moonroof.


Capable of seating five passengers, the interior of the 2001 Subaru Forester features a split rear seat that folds flat to create 63 cubic feet of cargo space. Rear seatbacks also recline. Middle seats for the base L and the upscale S feature a three-point seat belt. Other interior features include a digital ambient temperature gauge, storage bins, and four cup holders. One design flaw is that the two cup holders that slide out of the dashboard hinder access to the climate controls. Also, some of the secondary controls do not seem logically placed and the controls for the stereo can be difficult to manage. Standard features for the L include air-conditioning, a tachometer, power windows, a tilt steering wheel, power door locks, cruise control, and a stereo with a cassette player. Opting for the upmarket S sees the addition of a dash-mounted, six-disc CD changer.

Performance & Handling

The 2001 Forester draws power from a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine. That engine generates 165 horsepower and pairs with either a four-speed automatic or a five-speed manual transmission. The 2001 Subaru Forester features a standard four-wheel-drive system that’s permanently engaged. That system apportions power amongst the Forester’s four wheels for traction as needed. While the Forester lacks the rugged capability of a truck-based SUV, it provides decent traction. Large enough to accommodate a small family without any of the downsides of owning a standard SUV, such as poor fuel economy and a rough ride, the 2001 Forester makes a decent performer on the road but doesn’t really cut it in off-road situations.


The 2001 Subaru Forester includes a generous list of standard safety features such as four-wheel ABS, child seat anchors, rear-door child safety locks, fog lights, a rear center three-point seat belt, and electronic brake force distribution. In crash tests conducted by the NHTSA the Forester receives four out of five stars for passenger, driver, and side-impact rear collisions. It receives a perfect five-star rating for side-impact front collisions and three out of five stars in rollover tests. The Forester also earns a top rating of ""Good"" in frontal-offset tests conducted by the IIHS.

EPA Fuel Economy

Subaru Forester: 19/25 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • SUV styling
  • Carlike handling
  • Smooth ride quality
  • Functional and well-laid-out interior

You Won't Like

  • Cramped rear seat
  • Lacks true off-road capability

Sum Up

Handles well on the road, but lacks the off-road ability of other mini SUVs.

If You Like This Vehicle

  • Chevrolet Tracker
  • Nissan Xterra
  • Suzuki Grand Vitara
  • Toyota RAV4
  • Honda CR-V

See the New 2018 Forester.

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