"PRO :Consistent gas mileage. Easy to drive. Quick off the start from red light. Important to keep filters clean, liquids full, and oil changed regularly. Good in the mountains. Not quite a truck, but plenty of room for toys inside and out.
CON: A bit air noisy inside cab. Could use better air conditioner. Had head gasket redone in '14."
"I have owned my 2007 Forester Columbia Edition, automatic, for over a year and I love it. I bought it used in Dec 2014 with 90,000km (55,000 miles), now has 120,000km (75,000 miles). The only issue I have had was a bad AC idler pulley ($30) shortly after purchase. For a 9 year old vehicle I am very impressed every option works, no rust, and I have had no major mechanical issues. Before the Forester I've had mustangs, camaros, jeeps and various economy cars and non came close to the versatility or reliability of the Forester. I catch myself wanting to sell my Forester for something more "flashy" but it's such a great all-around vehicle I would absolutely regret it.
The Forester is not the best in any one category but it is excellent in many and probably the most well-rounded SUV. I average 30mpg from a car rated at 25mpg, AWD is great in any weather, lots of cargo space (especially with the rear seats down), has adequate passing power but it can easily tow my sea-doo and trailer. Ride is good and comfortable on long trips but not the best I've had. Engine noise is very low but wind noise from the frameless doors is excessive. The interior is simple and made from high quality plastics. The tops of the doors and dash have textured foam padding which is stylish and comfortable to the touch. The arm rests are covered in a foam/leather (faux leather?) but are very comfortable for long trips.
To summarize, the Forester is probably the best all-around SUV you can buy. There are competitors that are slightly faster, slightly better on gas, have slightly more space, etc. but they excel in one attribute in exchange for making another far worse. My Forester is part of the family now and I couldn't be happier!"
"Bought a previously enjoyed 2007 Subaru Forester; manual tranny. Seemed fine. Approx six months later at about 150K, the cruise light began to flash and the check engine light came on steady.
Oil started leaking furiously. Mechanic did a complete overhaul of engine, regasketing everything to the tune of over 3K (I bought the car for 5K cash) Has been having certain electrical problems as well. Less than a month after the engine job, it's leaking oil again.
I have probably put another 5K into this lemon for nothing. To think that I USED to have a '88 Subaru Justy that ran and ran and ran. That thing was reliable as the day is long and as solid as a tank.
Never again will I buy another Subaru as they are now junk.
I really didn't want a car payment at this point as I just bought a high end stereo (custom) for this junkpile. I also just bought a brand new LS Tractor and am making payments on that thing."
"I keep cars a long time - about 8 years on average. This is the first vehicle I chose up front and bought new.
I'm a big fan of buying according to your planned use and needs. For me, the Forester hit all the important buttons: extra safe features, decent mileage, four wheel drive and reasonable ground clearance for minor off highway traveling (we car camp). It is also very easy to get into and out of - important because I have bad knees.
Remember I said I usually keep cars about 8 years? I've had this one for ten already - and I'm not tired of it yet, and it is in great shape closing in on 100,000 miles."