The facelifted 2022 Subaru Forester has been unveiled, ahead of an Australian launch in the coming months (during the third quarter of 2021, spanning July to September inclusive).
As reported by CarAdvice in May, changes to the updated Model Year 2022 Forester are relatively minor compared to a typical mid-life facelift, comprising mild exterior design tweaks, new interior trim choices, updated safety systems and revised transmission tuning for Subaru's popular mid-size SUV.
Up front, the facelifted Forester scores a larger hexagonal grille with a restyled horizontal bar, flanked by reshaped LED headlights, placed above new lower intake and faux skid plate designs.
While no changes have occurred at the rear, new 18-inch alloy wheels fill the arches on flagship grades (with 17-inch units offered on entry-level models), while three new exterior colours are available in Japan: Autumn Green Metallic, Cascade Green Silica and Brilliant Bronze Metallic.
Inside, the pre-facelift Forester's 8.0-inch infotainment touchscreen (with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto) and 6.3-inch digital driver's display carry over to the 2022 model, though the CD player integrated below the central screen appears to have been dropped for the new Model Year.
Japanese buyers are now offered three new seat trim materials on certain grades: waterproof polyurethane with orange stitching on the mid-spec X-Break, a suede and leather combination (with silver stitching) on the Sport, and a choice of black or saddle brown (with silver stitching) on the Advance.
While the Levorg's more advanced lane-keep assist system hasn't made its way to the Forester (as rumoured in May), the updated mid-size SUV gains an upgraded autonomous emergency braking system with an expanded field-of-view to perform better across intersections, along with refinements to the adaptive cruise control system.
Carry-over active safety features on range-topping models include lane-keep assist, lane-departure warning, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and driver fatigue monitoring through an interior camera.
Under the skin, all models' suspension tunes are claimed to have been "improved" to deliver "suppleness and sportiness at a high level", while all hybrid models benefit from improved CVT transmission programming, branded as 'E-Active Shift Control'.
Australia-bound MY22 Subaru Forester models are all but confirmed to continue with a choice of two carry-over powertrains: a 136kW/239Nm 2.5-litre naturally-aspirated petrol four-cylinder engine, and an 'e-Boxer' hybrid system pairing a 110kW/196Nm 2.0-litre four-cylinder with a 12.3kW electric motor.
Both offerings send drive to all four wheels through continuously-variable automatic transmissions (CVTs).
Available in Japan is a 130kW/300Nm 1.8-litre turbocharged petrol four-cylinder introduced with the pre-update model in 2020, though a Subaru Australia spokesperson previously confirmed to CarAdvice there are "no immediate plans" for a turbocharged Forester Down Under.
The facelifted 2022 Subaru Forester is now available to order in Japan.
An Australian launch is due to occur in the third quarter of 2021 (July to September inclusive), as a Model Year 2022 vehicle.