The new MY09 Forester has been upgraded in all respects, it now offers better fuel economy, safety as well as practicality and performance.
With over 105,000 Foresters sold in Australia since 1997, the new the new-generation has grown to appeal to a wider audience, it's now 75 mm longer, 110 mm taller (including roof rails) and 60 mm wider.
The front grille has changed with more chrome highlights and clear lens “hawk eye” headlights, the rear receives integrated taillights, with metallic highlights.
Most importantly the new car has come in line with the rest of the Subaru line-up, receiving the highly sought after maximum five-star rating for occupant protection from ANCAP (three-star pedestrian rating).
Don't think for a minute that the extra safety equipment and reinforcing has made the car less economical and sluggish, the new-generation car offers fuel consumption improvements of up to 7.8 per cent.
Another reason why the Japanese manufacturer continues to remain on top of its game is the introduction of standard ESP (Vehicle Dynamics Control - VDC) across the Forester range.
Engine lineup has remained relatively the same with naturally aspirated models using a Single Overhead Camshaft (SOHC) four-cylinder 2.5-litre horizontally opposed boxer engine that produces 126kW and 229Nm of torque. 0-100km/h takes 10.4 seconds.
The range-topping Forester XT makes use of the new Double Overhead Camshaft (DOHC) four-cylinder 2.5-litre turbocharged MY08 WRX engine, which generates its torque (320Nm) 400 revs lower in the range at 3200 rpm. Power is rated at 169kW.
Manual XT variants will do the 0-100km/h dash in 7.1 seconds while the four-speed automatic XT gets there in 7.9 seconds.
Subaru has stuck with the electronically controlled four-speed SPORTSHIFT automatic transmission for all variants.
Subaru has improved the handling dynamics with the addition of a newly designed double wishbone rear suspension setup which also allows for more cargo space.
Other improvements include the higher ground clearance, now 220mm on the X/XS and 225mm on XT, height and telescopic adjustable steering, hill start assist, MP3/WMA compatibility, SPORTSHIFT auto transmission (all auto models) and a shorter rear overhang.
Like the new Impreza, the 2009 Forester has reverted to framed doors, apparently for improved safety, solidity and major reductions in NVH (Noise Vibration and Harshness).
As for the interior, the 90 mm longer wheelbase (compared to the MY08) offers more head, leg and shoulder room. Steering-wheel audio and cruise control buttons as well as a more ergonomic dashboard have also been added.
CarAdvice will be behind the wheel of the new Forester soon.
2009 Subaru Forester Model Lineup:
- ABS anti-lock brakes with four-wheel discs (ventilated front, solid rear), Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist
- Active headrests
- Automatic transmission lock-out - need foot on brake, key in ignition “on” position, to release lever
- Child seat anchor points including ISO FIX
- Constant All-Wheel Drive
- Curtain airbags – full length (front and rear)
- Dual front airbags
- Dual range on X and XS manual
- Dual side airbags
- Front seatbelts with pretensioners and load limiters
- Double pretensioners on driver’s seatbelt
- Front adjustable seatbelt anchorage
- Height adjustable seatbelt anchors
- Hill Start Assist (manual models)
- Rear door child lock
- Safety pedals - shock absorbing brake and clutch pedals
- Seatbelt indicator lights – front seats
- Side intrusion bars
- Three-point A/ELR rear centre seatbelt
- Vehicle Dynamics Control
- AM/FM radio, single in-dash CD, MP3/WMA compatible, four speakers – steering wheel controls
- Bottle holders in each door + two cup holders in auto centre consoles – one in manual
- Cargo area light
- Cargo hooks (four)
- Cargo security blind
- Central locking - remote
- Cruise control – steering wheel buttons
- Driver’s footrest
- Height and reach adjustable steering column
- Height adjustable driver’s seat
- Immobiliser security system
- Luggage hooks (four)
- Luminescent gauges with blue highlights
- Manual air conditioning with anti-dust filters
- Map lights (2)
- Overhead console
- Multi-information dashboard display
- Power steering, mirrors and windows
- Rear seat centre armrest
- Rear seat recline
- Remote fuel lid release – tethered fuel cap
- Seatback pocket (passenger side)
- Security blind
- SPORTSHIFT four-speed automatic transmission option
- Two remote central locking keys
- Vanity mirror
- 60/40 split/fold rear seat
- 12V/120W power jacks (three)
- 16-inch steel wheels – full size spare
- Chrome-highlight grille
- Rear roof mounted radio antenna
- Rear wiper
- Roof rails
- Auto hatch unlock on key
- DataDot security technology
- Electronic Throttle Control (ETC)
- Three-year unlimited kilometre warranty
- 2.5 litre SOHC horizontally opposed boxer engine. 126 kW/6000 rpm, 229 Nm/3200 rpm
Forester XS adds:
- Alloy matt finish door handles
- Climate control air conditioning with anti-dust filters
- Colour-coded door mirrors
- Front fog lights
- Privacy glass – rear, rear quarter, tailgate
- Rear seat retractable tray with cup holders
- Self-levelling rear suspension
- Six-stack CD with seven speakers (including subwoofer)
- Woodgrain-type centre console surround
- 16-inch alloy wheels- full size steel spare
Forester XS Premium adds:
- Eight-way adjustable power driver’s seat
- Leather trim, including steering wheel and gearshift
Forester XT adds (to XS specification – not XS Premium):
- Alloy pedals
- Engine cover
- Rear roof spoiler with LED brake light
- Xenon headlights (low beam) – self levelling with pop-up washers
- 17-inch alloy wheels
- 2.5-litre DOHC horizontally opposed turbocharged boxer engine. 169 kw/5200 rpm, 320 Nm/2800 rpm.
Forester XT Premium adds (to XT specification):
- Eight-way adjustable power driver’s seat
- Leather trim
- DVD Satellite navigation with WMA/MP3/Bluetooth compatibility
- Satellite navigation (XS Premium) - $2990.
Forester MY09 pricing
These are recommended retail prices and do not include dealer and statutory charges.
- Forester X manual $30,490
- Forester X SPORTSHIFT auto $32,490
- Forester XS manual $33,990
- Forester XS SPORTSHIFT auto $35,990
- Forester XS Premium manual $37,490
- Forester XS Premium SPORTSHIFT auto $39,490
- Forester XT manual $38,990
- Forester XT SPORTSHIFT auto $40,990
- Forester XT Premium manual $44,990
- Forester XT Premium SPORTSHIFT auto $46,990