2017 Subaru Forester 2.5i Premium Review: A Little Old, a Little New (Video)
2017 Subaru Forester 2.5i Premium Review: A Little Old, a Little New (Video)

2017 Subaru Forester 2.5i Premium Review: A Little Old, a Little New “Video”

This is a brand new, 2017 Forester 2.5i Premium with the All-Weather package! The All-Weather Package is a staple of most Subaru’s, adding heated side mirrors, a windshield wiper deicer and heated front seats.

The 2017 model year marks the 20th anniversary of the wagon-ish Forester’s introduction, and a fitting time to introduce a mid-cycle refresh. Minor tweaks to the exterior, including an updated front bumper on 2.5i models, a new grille, and LED daytime running lights and tail lights, give the Forester a refined look, while the interior gets an updated steering wheel design and available saddle brown upholstery. But the most notable addition for 2017 is the third-generation version of Subaru’s EyeSight driver assist suite, which has evolved into one of the most well-rounded safety packages on the non-premium market and now includes reverse automatic braking, steering responsive headlights and lane keep assist.

The reverse automatic braking system works in the same manner as forward collision mitigation but is geared toward low-speed scenarios like backing out of a driveway or parking spot. Say, for example, a bicycle or garbage can is left at the bottom of the driveway. The system will alert the driver and, if nothing is done to avoid the obstruction, will intervene by applying the brakes to bring the Forester to a jarring halt.

Not much has changed elsewhere, with the same roomy interior and sizeable cargo area that offers 34.4 cu-ft with the rear seats upright and 74.7 cu-ft with them folded, the latter of which proves more than the larger Dodge Journey with both rows of rear seats folded.

Under the Forester’s hood lies the familiar choice of a pair of four-cylinder boxer engines depending on trim level — a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter in 2.5i models, like the one we’re driving, or a turbocharged 2.0-liter in 2.0XT models. The former makes 170 hp and 174 lb-ft of torque, and can be paired with the choice of six-speed manual gearbox or a reworked continuously variable transmission, while the latter makes 250 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque, but, sadly, only comes mated to a CVT.

Regardless of engine or transmission, all Foresters put power down through full-time all-wheel drive in typical Subaru fashion. And about that all-wheel drive…



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