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2008 Subaru Forester

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2008 Subaru Forester Review

The perfect car for those who live in and never leave the city.

Reviewed by Automotive on

Overview

The Subaru Forester is starting to show a bit of age at this point, but it is still a practical vehicle for the cost savvy consumer. It may look like a standard SUV, and for the most part it is, but with all the entertainment features and optional items, the 2008 Forester is a great vehicle for the entire family. Also, the 2008 Subaru Forester is a bit smaller than the contemporary compact SUV. This delivers better maneuverability in the city. It is also a bit sportier than your average compact SUV, giving you a bit more thrill on the open road. No matter the reason, the Forester is priced right and feels even better.

The Range

Body Styles: crossover SUV
Engines: 2.5-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: five-speed manual, four-speed automatic
Models: Subaru Forester 2.5 X, Subaru Forester Sports 2.5 X, Subaru Forester 2.5 X Premium Package, Subaru Forester 2.5 X L.L. Bean Edition, Subaru Forester Sports 2.5 XT, Subaru Forester 2.5 XT Limited

What's New

There are a few minimal changes to the 2008 Subaru Forester. All turbocharged models receive stability control standard on those equipped with an automatic transmission. Standard equipment is shuffled a bit this year to accommodate all the different trim lines. The L.L. Bean Limited Edition loses the self-leveling rear suspension.

Exterior

The 2008 Subaru Forester is a bit smaller, with smaller dimensions and a lower curb weight than most of the competition. The tiny grille and rounded features are quite distinctive as well. Standard features on the base 2.5 X models include 16-inch steel wheels, a roof rack, and a rear wiper with deicer. The Sport edition loses the deicer but gets 16-inch alloy wheels instead. The Premium version has larger side mirrors with integrated turn signals, and a moonroof. The XT model receives 10-spoke 17-inch alloy wheels. The 2.5 XT Limited has five-spoke 17-inch alloy wheels instead.

Interior

The 2008 Subaru Forester’s interior is well equipped, even at the base level. There are some hard plastic materials, unfortunately, but the upscale leather upholstery and steering wheel make up for any ugliness. The front seats provide lots of room and are very comfortable. The back seats have less legroom, and taller adults might want to avoid them altogether. Cargo space is quite large though with the luggage area, providing 31 cubic feet of space with the seat up, and 69 cubic feet when the seats are folded forward.

Performance & Handling

The 2008 Subaru Forester comes with one of two engine types. The 2.5 X models, including the Sports, Premium, and L.L. Bean models, have the standard 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine that produces 173 horsepower with 166 lb-ft of torque. The Turbocharged version of the same engine produces 224 horsepower with 226 lb-ft of torque. All Forester models come with full-time all-wheel drive controlled by a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. The L.L. Bean model is automatic transmission only. Manual transmission models have a Hill Holder setting that keeps the vehicle in place when on a hill or incline. The base 2.5-liter engine is nothing to get excited over. In fact, it feels a bit aged in comparison to some of the larger, more refined engines offered by the competition. The turbocharged engine is a lot more fun though, able to get you really excited with its roar and crisp shifting. The handling is also great, able to handle most turns with ease and little to no body roll. The only problem with the drive is the excessive cabin noise from wind and the engine while on the freeway.

Safety

All 2008 Subaru Forester models come with standard anti-lock brakes. Turbocharged models receive complimentary stability and traction control. Other safety features spread out among the trim lines include active headrests for whiplash prevention, front-seat side airbags, and head and torso protection. The IIHS gave the 2008 Subaru Forester its best rating of ""good"" for frontal-offset and side-impact collisions and gave it top safety pick for its class. The NHTSA also gave the 2008 Subaru Forester a five out of five rating in all crash tests.

EPA Fuel Economy

Subaru Forester 2.5 X: 20/27 mpg city/highway
Subaru Forester Sports 2.5 X: 20/27 mpg city/highway
Subaru Forester 2.5 X Premium Package: 20/27 mpg city/highway
Subaru Forester 2.5 X L.L. Bean Edition: 20/26 mpg city/highway
Subaru Forester 2.5 XT: 19/25 mpg city/highway
Subaru Forester 2.5 XT Limited: 19/25 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Low fuel consumption
  • Great for city driving
  • Comfy interior

You Won't Like

  • Transmission searches
  • High price
  • Floor-mounted brake pedal
  • Wind and engine noise

Sum Up

The perfect car for those who live in and never leave the city.

If You Like This Vehicle

  • Toyota Prius

See the New 2015 Forester.

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