The rugged and determined Subaru Forester has been around for some time, improving over five generations. We featured the earlier model some time ago here at MHH Japanese Cars but time moves on and, like all other car makers, Subaru are turning to hybrid technology to keep pace with global concerns.
The conventional car is available as usual from our stock, powered by the legendary two litre Boxer engine and offers all the reliability and robustness buyers expect from this brand. Here though, we are are concentrating on the new and award-winning hybrid variant.
Greatly revised to accommodate hybrid technology, the Subaru Forester has a completely new power-train which combines an electric motor with two of Subaru’s core features, namely the horizontally-opposed 2.0L Boxer engine and Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive. The lithium-ion battery unit is mounted within the boot (trunk) floor and allows for pure-electric driving at speeds of up to 25miles per hour (40kph). This 4x4 sport utility vehicle (SUV) offers advanced safety performance and a more enjoyable driving experience.
The re-designed Forester, as with all the other Subaru models, is now built on a new platform upon which the electric motor assist and battery pack are aligned longitudinally with the heavy motor placed near the vehicle’s centre of gravity. The battery and other components are positioned above the rear axle which plants the car on the road giving noticeable handling improvements and achieving a balanced weight distribution.
On The Road
The family-friendly Subaru Forester e-Boxer is a solid and dependable drive with, as ever, the ability to venture off-road when the occasion demands. On the road it has an even braking feel in emergencies and the transition between electric-only and petrol engine driving is seamless.
In addition, the latest safety technology ensures that the car is mores secure in all weather conditions, the driver assisted by the unique EyeSight driver assist technology (see image), Subaru Rear Vehicle Detection, Reverse Automatic Braking, and Driver Monitoring System (which keeps an eye on the pilot), all of which are standard across the range.
Drive is via a thankfully updated Lineartronic automatic transmission which is so much better than it used to be, thank goodness, feeling these days like a regular auto ‘box.
The windscreen-mounted EyeSight technology acts as a second pair of eyes for the driver and, depending on the vehicle’s speed, can completely avoid and significantly reduce the severity of accidents at high speed. There are two stereo cameras, mounted on each side of the rear-view mirror, using image recognition to capture three-dimensional colour images with clinical precision. The technology can distinguish vehicles, motorbikes, bicycles, pedestrians, lane markings and road furniture and can differentiate between these and determine the general traffic conditions. It works too.
On The Inside
Subaru are all about practicality and the interiors are no different. They are not about top-show gimmicks. Everything has a purpose, yet the interior still feels comfortable and roomy, with a good sized luggage area. On the dashboard there’s an eight-inch multi-function colour touchscreen that is easy to use and contains Apple CarPlay and Android Auto alongside DAB radio and Bluetooth connectivity.
The interior also benefits from a new electronic parking brake and 8-way power adjustable driver and front passenger seats. Some variants offer heated front seats and a heated steering wheel. Prices are competitive and buyers can at least be content that these cars are so solid and dependable. Check out our website.