Is the Suburu Forester a joke?

Submitted: Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:06
ThreadID: 110781 Views:5298 Replies:16 FollowUps:42
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I'm still knocking my head against the wall trying to decide whether to buy a 2015 CVT 2.5 litre petrol all wheel drive Suburu Forester.

My intent is using it mainly in the city then secondly on old station roads and tracks like the Tanami Track, but not the Canning Stock Route or across country, or anything beyond the vehicles ability.

Has anyone lowered themselves to buy a late model Forester and does it have any issues?

The CVT has me worried, but I like the soft ride and 220mm clearance.
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Reply By: AlbyNSW - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:12

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:12
Mick unless you fit a bike rack, love wearing Lycra bike pants, and drinking coffee in inner city cafes you will stand out like dogs balls amongst your peers

Sorry can't help you other than that :)
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Follow Up By: Hairy (NT) - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:26

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:26
Bwahahahahaha.....
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Reply By: Rangiephil - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:19

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:19
Foresters are very popular but I doubt that many do the Tanami!
IMHO soft ride and not very long suspension travel will equal lots of bottoming on high speed tracks with possible damage . The Tanami can be very rough on the WA side and I wouldn't take. A AWD car on it, although anything is possible if you are careful and slow.
Another issue is tyre size and strength.
Maybe an Outback would be better, but I would go for a competent AWD like say a Freelander, X trail,Kia, etc. And fit light truck tyres.
It's like owning a full 4wd, you only need 4wd low ratio 5% of the time but when you need it you REALLY need it
Regards Philip A
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Follow Up By: CSeaJay - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 15:10

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 15:10
'Rangiephil,
Not much difference in 'bushability' between the Outback and Forrester, not sure why you would recommend one over the other, or even whether you recommended the correct one over the other
CJ
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Follow Up By: Member - Mfewster(SA) - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:28

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:28
I don't follow this. I'd have thought a Forrester and an Outback were essentially the same car, same build except for some differences in the body shape. The Forrester has a little more clearance than the Outback. I'm not saying that either would handle the Tanami but I'd reckon a Forrester has a better chance than an Outback
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Follow Up By: Rangiephil - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:55

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:55
The Forester is a jacked up Impreza.

The Outback is a larger car based on the Liberty.

With an equal load the Outback should cope better.

Unfortunately the Subaru site does not have load capacities so one can only guess.

Regards Philip A

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Reply By: Member - mark D18 - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:26

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:26
Mick

Spare parts are a killer on the Forrester soft roaders , a nice car to drive but as a long term vehicle they are not a great proposition( over 5 years )
The Honda CRV is the pick of the soft roaders followed by Toyota Ravs.
The Honda and the Toyota will easily outlast a Forrester.
But as the previous punter said , you will stand out like a sore thumb On the Tanami with any of these 4x4 , They are not really suitable for these type of trips.
Good luck

Cheers


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Follow Up By: Member - mark D18 - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:30

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:30
Mick
Give the Freelander a big miss as well .
Its got a blinker on the left hand side of the steering column.!!!!

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Rosco from way back - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:17

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:17
As do all European jobs last time I looked ;o)
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Follow Up By: Member - Mfewster(SA) - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:25

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:25
I don't know about the RAV but I reckon a Forrester is a much tougher vehicle than a Honda CRV???
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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 18:36

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 18:36
The Subaru would make the CRV and the Rav4 look like they should have stayed in the shopping centre car park...
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Follow Up By: Member - mark D18 - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 19:51

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 19:51
Rosco

Yep
That is the point I was making.
Give all Euro 4x4 and cars a miss.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:33

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:33
Hi Mark,
Why are you so anti euro vehicles, have you had a bad experience with them?
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Follow Up By: AlanTH - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 09:35

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 09:35
He probably heard something down the pub about their suitability especially not having the indicator switch on the side he's used to. :-)))
The things some people complain about!
AlanH.
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Follow Up By: Member - mark D18 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 13:17

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 13:17
Allan

Sorry about the whole euro thing.
I must have hit a raw nerve with a euro 4x4 owner

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - mark D18 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 13:27

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 13:27
Alby

My best mate is a mechanic with his own Business for 30 years
The horror stories he tells me about European 4x4 and cars is scary.
Parts are expensive and reliability is still not up the standard of any of the Japanese car markers.


Cheers
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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 19:03

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 19:03
I think you will find that most of the world drives with the blinker on the wrong side. Mechanics get upset when they have to work on things they aren't used to. I'll wager that the mechanics in Europe don't have the same opinion as your mate, perhaps the opposite? Whatever they are used to is what they like. It's possible to drive across 3 countries in Europe and not see a Jap car on the motorway, I know, I've done it.

How about this (randomly from Reuters)?

"Despite their decades-long presence, most Japanese car makers have failed to make significant inroads in the highly competitive market, which is dominated by western brands such as Volkswagen, PSA Peugeot Citroen, Renault and Ford... ....Toyota had a 4.2% market share in 2012, down from 5.4% in 2007."

Toyota's share is 18% in Australia. Someone forgot to tell the Europeans how good Jap cars are. Maybe they all don't like driving with the blinkers on the wrong side? :-) It's all a bit like footy teams really. Cheers.

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Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 20:21

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 20:21
Mark D18 that is a bit like a Ford diehard mechanic complaining about those crappy Holdens but everyone has their preferences and there is nothing wrong with that
I have no allegiances to any brand and have just as many euro vehicles as I have jap and have to say the Euro diesel stuff is way ahead of what the japs produce and find them reasonably comparable with repair costs
Having said that, when I go bush I go in a Toyota, I will never argue they are better but prefer to drive what the locals are driving as it is the best chance of getting repairs and parts when needed

I was talking with a German trained mechanic who lives here and runs his own workshop, he said to me the Japs know how to do electronics but the Euros know mechanical.
Apparently Toyota has entered a joint venture agreement with BMW where Toyota will share its Hybrid technology in return for BMW's diesel know how so he may not be too far from the truth?

When I was in Europe I was surprised how few Japanese cars are sold there. Toyota is about as popular as a Citroen is here.
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Reply By: Hairy (NT) - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:27

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:27
Gday,
I reckon the Tanami might be stretching the friendship a little....doable but not ideal.

Cheers
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Reply By: rocco2010 - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:44

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 14:44
Mick

There is an active Subaru club in WA. Check out their website for details of their activities and you will get an idea from owners who actually do the sort of stuff you are talking about.

Subaru4wdclubwa.asn.au

Cheers

Ross



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Follow Up By: Zippo - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:24

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:24
and a mildly active Subaru offroad forum where these types of antics abound.http://www.offroadsubarus.com/
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Reply By: BunderDog - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:02

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:02
Just have to laugh............My dad and I (was 9 years old) did the Tanami Track in 1961 in a Peugeot 403 with skinny Michelin tyres. No problems at all, just drove to the conditions.
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Follow Up By: garrycol - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:07

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:07
Exactly - and as long as the Forester was loaded to its correct load capacity there is no reason why it would not be able to easily do the roads/tracks mentioned.

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Follow Up By: Hairy (NT) - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 17:24

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 17:24
Ive driven it in two wheel drives too, and blackfellas do it daily.........doesnt to them any good though. They're just not built for it.
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Reply By: Curlynan - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:50

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 16:50
Hi Mick

If you think you can go where you plan in an AWD and think you won't need 4x4 then I'm sure it could be done. It's knowing the vehicles capability and also the confidence you have in your own driving then go with your gut feeling. Buggar what everyone else thinks.
We owned a 2002 Kia Sportage 4x4 auto. No extras on it not even a bulbar. Just a roof rack. Listed below is where we travelled to in our " Little K "

Oodnadatta Track x 2 times.
Tanami Track x 1 time.
Birdsville track x 1 time.
Gibb River Road x 2 times this taking in, Windjana Gorge and Tunnel Creek, Bell Gorge, Manning Gorge, Mornington Wilderness Sanctuary, Mitchell Falls (crossed the King Edward River running at 600cm + each time.) Crossed Pentacost River at about 1/2 metre deep.
Flinders Ranges & Gammon Ranges x 2 times
Fraser Island x 1 time.
Gurig Gunak Barlu National Park (Cobourg Peninsula) through Arnhem Land. x 1 time
Old telegraph Track to Cape York (The tip) x 1 time. Did ALL crossings have pics to prove.
Finke Gorge NP. x 1 time.
Bungle Bungles x 1 time just after the road opened after the wet season into there in 2004. Most crossings were quite high.
Various sandy beaches in Qld, SA & WA.

I hope you take something from this info.
The only 2 times we ever got into trouble was:
1: on Fraser Island we got bogged in MUD (had a snap strap and got pulled out)
2: Lost 4x4 function up at the tip going to Punsand Bay and a quad bike pulled us back to where we didn't need 4x4 to get back and get the vehicle fixed in Bamaga (Cost $80) . The bloke on the quad bike got the video for bragging rights :P

Mind you we now have a Landcruiser but must admit we have repeated some of those places we did in the Kia and really didn't feel like a challenge like it always was in the Kia.

Good Luck.... :)

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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 18:38

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 18:38
Sorry mate..you must be dreaming..
If you haven't got the latest Toyota or Nissan then it cant be done...
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Follow Up By: CSeaJay - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 13:19

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 13:19
Ha Ha Ha that's so true from some forumites!
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Reply By: Tony H15 - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 18:37

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 18:37
All the SUVs, be they Rav4, CRV, ASX, Outlander, Xtrail, Sportage, IX35, etc, are much of a muchness, one may have better approach/departure angles, more power, higher ground clearance, whatever, they all have plusses and minuses - the only real difference is brand preference. Don't get sucked in to one is better than the other. That said, they are not 4WDs, they are SUVs and not made for places like the Tanami. It's not a matter of whether an SUV will will get you there, it's a matter of what condition the vehicle will be in when it does.
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Follow Up By: garrycol - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:14

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:14
Why are we using the term SUV - that is not a AWD/4wd vehicle but something like a Falcon XR8 Ute or a Commodore SS Ute.

SUV is an American term - we live in Aust not the good ole US of A.

Why do we constantly pollute the Aussie version of the English language with Americanisms.
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Follow Up By: gbc - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:34

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:34
try having a look at something like "subaru awd versus the rest" online and you might start to well and truly eat your "only brand preference" words. But hey, you made me laugh so it was worth something.
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Follow Up By: Tony H15 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 12:07

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 12:07
Garrycol
SS or XR8 utes are not SUVs, they are 'UTES'. Pick up any Australian motoring magazine, look up any Australian site, talk to anyone who owns one - and what do they call them? 'UTES'! Join any club for owners of these vehicles and what do you suppose they call these clubs? 'UTE' Clubs.

Similarly, look up those very same magazines or online sites or talk to anyone who owns a Forrester, CRV, Rav4, ASX, Outlander, CX5 (you remember the CX5 don't you? it's the 'SUV' everyone prefers over the Subaru) and what do they call them? 'SUVs'

Like them or lump them, Americanisms are here to stay. Time to move on - the XK Falcon station wagon is long gone!

Why do we constantly polute this forum with stupidity?

gbc
Indeed, look up "Subaru AWD versus the rest' and what do we see? Mazda CX5 streets ahead. Indeed, many writers put the Rav4 and CRV out in front.

If you want to put Subaru's 'off road' credentials forward, by all means do so, but you'd be putting them in the same bracket as Landcruisers, Prados, Hiluxes. They are not 4WDs, they are shopping baskets!

So in the face of 'facts' like that, I guess you could say you would be suffering greatly from 'brand preference' if you think Subaru the best!

If you two hadn't made me laugh so hard I would call you dopes, so in lieu of that, I guess I'd have to call you two 'jokes'.
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Follow Up By: gbc - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 14:23

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 14:23
did it for you - keep on giggling.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ooQRxlChvMw

All 5 speed auto foresters had the same torque sensing diffs these days as the gt liberty in the vid.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_HBoq3ZDp90&src_vid=OeZptGAXMeQ&feature=iv&annotation_id=annotation_3162918585

Heres one with the crv/rav/cx5/forester - dont even guess which was the only one to make it up.......

Sure most people would buy a 10 years newer cx5/crv/rav4 for running around town, but the o.p. actually wants to go offroad, and that's where those awd's fall straight on their arses - much like your statement about them all being the same.

Forester is by no means the be all and end all of awds and they certainly dont compete with the toyotas you mentioned, but it goes o.k. for what it is and to moot that any other brand awd is the same because it is a similar size and shape, are as good offroad shows your complete ignorance of awd systems and their varying forms of actuation (or lack thereof).


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Follow Up By: Tony H15 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 15:46

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 15:46
Yep, still giggling after watching your videos. But you are right, it goes ok for a shopping basket. I had two of them a Brumby and a Sportswagon, loved them both and both were great shopping baskets. Now have a diesel ASX, same as, and a great shopping basket
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Follow Up By: Tony H15 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 18:07

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 18:07
I remember back in the 80s watching a chap in a Sportswagon tackling the Treachery Beach hill - interesting!
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Reply By: Michael H9 - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:24

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:24
I know at least 4 Foresters that have done the Simpson Desert so Tanami should be ok. Just stick some decent tyres on it. As for ability off road, check this comparison...

Subaru All Wheel Drive Traction Testing: http://youtu.be/kRniF4JQN2U

The Honda CRV has to be the most useless off road vehicle I have ever been on a trip with. I've been off road with most of the soft roaders.
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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:36

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:36
The Aboriginals were driving old holdens and fords out there long before they could afford a 4wd. Subaru forester/outback will bolt it in IF driven to conditions. The same applies to the top of the range tojos and nissans .
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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:41

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 20:41
Exactly, I only said stick some decent tyres on because Subarus come stock with the softest ht tyres there is. They go flat by just looking at a lucky stone. Been there done that. :-)
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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:02

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:02
Interesting test. Hadn,t seen it before. Plenty of "real " 4wds come with crappy tyres from new as well.
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Follow Up By: Gronk - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:13

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:13
Yep, the subie is an AWD...the others are an AWD WHEN the electronics decide to make it one..

I haven't seen the Tanami, but it looks like a red dirt road !

Seen a few dark blokes along the Plenty hwy in Commodores, and that road seems to get some people worried as well ?? don't know why ??

The Subie is a nice car to drive, and comments about long term ownership seem way off the mark....it would outlast all those other awd's mentioned..

I'd say go for it..
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 23:37

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 23:37
As far as that "test" goes, the 2001 Commodore with traction control that we recently sold, could have driven up that ramp purely because the brake would have been applied to the spinning LH rear wheel allowing the RH rear to drive the car forward. The same for any 2WD rear drive vehicle. The front obviously are doing nothing because they are both on rollers.
Nifty bit of marketing to those who don't fully understand what is going on under their vehicles.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: Member - Mfewster(SA) - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 07:50

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 07:50
Michael H9. Re tyres. Are you sure you have "been there, done that"? I have an Outback. It comes with AT tyres, not the ht tyres you state. It comes with the Yokohama Geolander tyres. These are pretty good tyres for both highway and dirt travel. You can find other threads where owners also speak well of this tyre. I am yet to have a puncture.
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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 09:41

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 09:41
My Outback came with Yoko Geolander HT's and they were so soft. By contrast, the Yoko Geolander AT-S are a great tyre. I'm in the Subaru Club so I've seen a few.
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Follow Up By: Member - Mfewster(SA) - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 11:09

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 11:09
That's curious. Mine came with the ATs.
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Follow Up By: Tony H15 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 12:10

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 12:10
I know a bloke who did the Tanami in a hire Hiace campervan...
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Follow Up By: FatGaz - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 16:47

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 16:47
Hire cars go anywhere. Especially with the oil light flashing.
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Reply By: Ron N - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:28

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:28
The Subaru Forester will do all you want as long as you don't overload it and attempt speed records in it on dirt roads.
However, it's not a "true" 4WD - it's an AWD, so it does have its limitations.

Here's a good (American) webpage with a couple of interesting videos on the Subaru CVT.

Subaru CVT transmission

The Subaru CVT is no more complex than a normal multi-plate-clutch auto tranny.
The CVT still uses a regular torque converter, in conjunction with an electro-hydraulically-controlled set of vari-speed steel pulleys and steel chain, and some additional gears.

Traditional auto transmissions shift during a given minimum and maximum RPM.
This decreases your fuel economy and produces wear on the drivetrain with regular gear changes, associated with matching substantial variations between engine speeds and road speeds.
The Subaru engine runs at a much lower speed under light loads with CVT, and doesn't need major rev variations to adjust to speed and load.
The fuel economy of the CVT-equipped Subaru's is outstanding.

For the blokes knocking the Subaru, here's something to think about;

1. Subaru's have a very high owner satisfaction level.
2. Subaru's have excellent resale values.
3. Many smaller Subaru components are built by Toyota and Nissan! (Fuji Industries aren't big enough on their own to produce all the componentry required for the number of vehicles they knock out annually).
4. The Subaru CVT has been around for nearly 5 yrs. If it had major problems, they would have appeared by now.
5. I've seen current-model Foresters touring Outback dirt roads quite happily.
6. Fuji Industries was born out of Nakajima, Japan's aircraft manufacturer from 1919. The Subaru engine was based on aircraft engine design. Subaru engines are regularly converted to be used in ultralights, such is their reliability and good design.
9. There's still a lot of Subaru 1800's from the mid-1980's still going strong!

You can go lots of places with care on formed roads, just with a 2WD, with adequate ground clearance. 220mm is adequate ground clearance.
We used to travel all the Outback roads in the '60's, in 2WD Holden utes - loaded to the hilt - on 13" rag tyres and with 7" (180mm) ground clearance! LOL

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: garrycol - Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:49

Sunday, Jan 18, 2015 at 21:49
If you mean that it is not a 4wd because it does not have low range then well yes it may not be considered to be 4wd but it is not an awd - it does have an arrangement that works similar to a center diff lock but it is up to the computer to decide when it locks up front and rear drive.

Also - not having low range does not necessarily mean it is not a full on 4wd though clearly the Forester is not but the fitment of low range should not be a criterion.
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Reply By: Member - Neil L1 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 01:14

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 01:14
I have owned Subarus and know people who do own the latest Forrester. I don't believe that a Forrester would have any problems on the Tanami or any other outback "road" providing it was driven to the conditions. And that goes for any modern 4x4. Perhaps better A/T tyres would be a good idea. They are a brilliant crossover in my opinion.
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Follow Up By: Life Member-Doug T NSW - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 07:50

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 07:50
The locals drive Falcons and beat up old Holdens up the Tanami, so I see no reason why a Subaru can't do same, I had a 1976 Subaru wagon, in AWD it was good in slippery soil around Wagga .


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Reply By: Mick T3 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 12:27

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 12:27
These are well informed responses, both experiential and technical. Thank you so much everybody.

I suppose the bottom line is not to drive a Forester beyond its capabilities like I did with my Hyundai Excel on the top part of the Tanami Track. The body is bent and the doors won't close.

The second is to expect scorn from the heavy duty 4WD travellers, some of whom are true experts in bush travel. (I always wondered why people pointed and smiled and took photos on the Tanami and Duncan Roads as I drove by in the mighty Excel, the busted boot bouncing up and down.)

The third is to fit stronger tyres.

The fourth is to find the courage and resolve to make the decision to purchase a vehicle.

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Follow Up By: AlanTH - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 14:02

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 14:02
Whatever you decide Mick, enjoy doing what you want to do not what someone else thinks.
Plenty of experts on here who if you don't drive what they do will heap scorn upon you.:-))
Bollocks to them.
AlanH.
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Follow Up By: gbc - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 14:30

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 14:30
Don't worry about the knockers, I know a bloke who goes kayak fishing up the gulf every dry in a 1988 suzuki swift - it's been up 9 times - all around where the all 4 adventure vids are shot :). You don't think he gets laughed at fueling up at Hells gates to go and turn himself into croc bleep - again. He's the one who we all want to talk to about stories of adventure though.....
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Follow Up By: FatGaz - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 16:51

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 16:51
There is "perfect" and "acceptable".
Better to be out and about with an "acceptable" vehicle.
Than have a "perfect" one sitting idle on your driveway.
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Reply By: Member - Alastair D (NSW) - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 17:05

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 17:05
Mick,
We bought a new Forester 3 years ago as a daily runabout. The Pros as I see it are:
good space, comfortable, nice height for aging bodies to get in and out, good reputation for reliability, good build quality.
Cons:
disappointing fuel economy, low power/torque for a modern 2.5L engine

We have been 4wd campers for 40+years and still have LC for the outback. Our 65K_km experience with the Subaru is mostly on bitumen but I have no doubt that driven to conditions the Forester would do well on roads like the Tanami. I would put tyres on that had decent sidewall strength and a higher profile. I have met 2 Subaru drivers searching for new tyres in country towns after having ruined one. I am sure that you could find a suitable tyre that is more available.

When travelling in the bush try and check out road conditions on the big stretches before you head off. Sometimes recently graded dirt roads with loose rocks and sharp stones will be the worst conditions for a vehicle like the Forester. Slowing down and using lower tyre pressures can sometimes help as it allows the tyres to 'mould' around the object rather than hammer into it.

Keep the load as light as possible so you keep the ride height, sensible tyres and sensible driving and I am sure you will have a good time.

cheers
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Reply By: 671 - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 20:30

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 20:30
When you read about trips like this, a Subaru over the Tamani these days should be a breeze.

first car to Birdsville

Driving a Subaru in the Outback reminds me of the day in 1973 when I drove into one of the roadhouses on the then unsealed section of the Nullarbor in SA. Parked out the front was a Subaru sedan with a map of Australia on the boot lid. Written on it were the words "We come to Australia from Japan".

Inside the cafe were two young Japanese men who could not speak a word of English. I just happened to have two Japanese speaking American tourists with me. The story was they had flown down from Japan and were taking the Subaru on a 14 day lap of the country then going home again.

I don't know if they were on a private holiday or were working for Subaru but someone must have had a lot of faith in the car at a time when they were a rare sight on Australian roads.
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Reply By: deserter - Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 20:44

Monday, Jan 19, 2015 at 20:44
Had my Forester for 6 months. Had a Prado previously and so far the Forester has easily done every track that the Prado did. EASILY!! I have been blown away by how well the thing goes in sand/mud/steep loose gravel.

Check the forums. Plenty have done the Simpson. They are all over Fraser.

BTW - they have more clearance than the Outback.

AnswerID: 544585

Reply By: Nathan M - Sunday, Jan 25, 2015 at 17:15

Sunday, Jan 25, 2015 at 17:15
Mate,

I haven't done it personally but think it will be easy.

1. Sump guard/ skid plate (essential)
2. Tyres BF Goodrich 225/70/16, (essential) pick up some stock 16" off E bay
3. Lift kit (optional)

http://get-primitive.com/suspension-lift-kits/149-product.html

www.subaxtreme.com


AnswerID: 544850

Follow Up By: Mick T3 - Sunday, Jan 25, 2015 at 23:15

Sunday, Jan 25, 2015 at 23:15
These are inspiring and practically helpful responses.

I take notice a Forester would look like "dog balls" amongst the Land Cruisers and Patrols, but I'll accept that.

Thanks, everyone.
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FollowupID: 832241

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