2016 Subaru Forester Buyer's Guide

By KBB.com Editors on December 15, 2015 11:54 AM

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Starting Price: $24,245 (with automatic transmission) | Build

Above Average: Practicality, safety, visibility, off-road capability

Below Average: Infotainment, bland styling, lack of upscale features

Consensus: Its go-anywhere attitude is tailor-made for fans of the great outdoors

The Unofficial Compact SUV of Dirt and Snow

Disproportionately popular in colder areas of the country and with the outdoorsy set, Subaru's compact SUV continues to grow increasingly competitive with segment stalwarts like the Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape. But the Subaru Forester's calling card remains a superior all-wheel-drive system favored by those who experience traction deficiencies on a seasonal basis. 

All-Wheel-Driving It

The Forester matches a low step-in height with credible ground clearance. And its low center of gravity (relative to other compact SUVs) has a payoff in stability, as noted in our 2016 Subaru Forester full review: "Thanks to a rigid central structure, wide track and Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, Subaru's 2016 Forester crossover SUV delivers stellar performance on- and off-road."

Subaru Forester Shoppers Also Look At

Build and Price

Forester pricing starts a hair over $23K for the base model and can exceed $36,000 fully loaded. Regardless of investment, Subaru's historically high resale values ensure you'll get a good chunk of your money back. Build your own 2016 Subaru Forester to unlock its Kelley Blue Book Fair Purchase Price, 5-Year Cost to Own and more.

Forester Awards

Last year the Subaru Forester was recognized as one of the 10 Best SUVs Under $25,000, and one of our 10 Best All-Wheel-Drive Vehicles Under $25,000

Subaru Community

For many owners, Subaru is a lifestyle. Take a quick peek at the online version of Subaru's Drive magazine to see all the activities bringing these folks together.

Consumer Reviews

KBB.com visitor and Forester owner Spryguy did extensive research before buying his current-gen Subaru Forester -- the first Subaru he's ever owned. "I researched and drove new and slightly used vehicles of all kinds and brands for over 10 mos., and felt that this car was the best value available for my needs. So far, I'm not disappointed...The only gripe might be the Electronic Power Steering. While it's great for the twisty and hilly country roads I drive 95% of the time, when on the highway it lacks the positive feel of power steering that centers, which most of us are used to having or feeling this feedback at high speeds." Read more consumer reviews of the latest Subaru Forester.

Getting it Dirty

In our most recent video review of the current-generation Subaru Forester (shot when it was new in 2014), we explore the interior, go off road and taunt cows and a hitchhiker.

Other Choices

The Subaru Forester offers a better-than-most AWD system, but most compact SUVs are as capable as most buyers will ever need them to be. Check out our Compact SUV Buyer's Guide to see all your choices and get up to speed in a hurry.

Photo Gallery: Subaru Forester Inside and Out


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