New Subaru Forester SUVs — Portland Area

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New 2016 Subaru Forester

2016 Subaru Forester Overview

  • New STARLINK system with enhanced connectivity
  • Compact crossover with standard all-wheel drive
  • IIHS Top Safety Pick+ award winner
The 2016 Subaru Forester gets some new technology for 2016, adding Subaru’s new STARLINK system that offers a mix of connectivity and safety services.

STARLINK is Subaru’s latest attempt to augment the technology in their vehicles and makes its debut across the lineup for 2016, starting with the Forester. It functions like a mix of infotainment and OnStar, controlling both in-cabin connectivity like Bluetooth and USB connections, but also offers a mix of safety services as well. STARLINK comes standard on all Forester models, but features vary by trim level. On Premium, Limited, and Touring models, the system can read text messages and offers an extra USB port. There are two safety packages available on a subscription basis: Safety Plus, or Safety Plus and Security Plus. Safety Plus offers automatic collision notification, an SOS button, roadside assistance, and remote services like monthly diagnostics sent to your phone or email. Security Plus adds on stolen vehicle recovery, remote lock/unlock, and a vehicle locator.

Under the hood, there are two engine options, both “boxer” horizontally opposed four-cylinder setups. Subaru the Forester into two models: 2.5 and 2.0XT. The 2.5 comes with (predictably) a 170-hp, 2.5-liter H-4 that makes 174 pounds-feet of torque and comes with either a six-speed manual or a CVT. 2.0XT variants get a more powerful engine, a 250-hp, turbocharged 2.0-liter H-4 which pumps out 258 pounds-feet of torque and is only available with the CVT. All-wheel drive is standard (this is a Subaru after all). Underneath the Forester is 8.7 inches of ground clearance, which gives it more off-road capability than other compact crossovers.

The Forester performs well when it comes to fuel efficiency, with very good EPA estimates for an AWD crossover. 2.5 models come in at 24/32 mpg city/highway with the CVT (22/29 mpg with the manual). The XT falls slightly behind those marks, 23/28 mpg city/highway.

There assorted trim levels of the Forester available, including base (“i”), Premium, Limited, and Touring (the 2.0XT is only offered in Premium and Touring). The Forester already offered pretty good value for this segment, but the addition of STARLINK augments that even further. Standard features include Bluetooth connectivity, USB/auxiliary audio inputs, air conditioning, and a 60/40-split folding rear seat. The Forester’s rear seat is very roomy with lots of leg room/head room and great visibility, which is augmented even further if the optional panoramic moonroof is present.  Leather upholstery, heated front seats, and a navigation system are also available.

The 2016 Forester pulls off an impressive double, earning a full five-star overall crash test rating from the NHTSA and a Top Safety Pick+ award from the IIHS, the highest designation each organization offers. Standard safety features include seven airbags, antilock brakes, electronic stability control, a rearview camera, and automatic headlights. Precollision braking, lane departure warning, and adaptive cruise control are also available as a part of Subaru’s EyeSight driver assist technology system.
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