Categories: Modification

Subaru Forester's design has been significantly changed since the third generation

table of contents
●The third generation model that changed the design concept and became an orthodox "SUV"
●The difference between Japan and North America is the presence or absence of "Outback Sport"
●The size increases and the body becomes more powerful, becoming the main SUV of Subaru.

Transformed the design concept into a third-generation model of an orthodox "SUV"


The minimum ground clearance of the third-generation Forester has been greatly increased, and the height of the cabin has been increased. The impression is very different from that of the second-generation Forester.

Although Subaru is good at 4WD, it does not launch orthodox off-road models built on ladder chassis like other Japanese car manufacturers. For Subaru, which has never produced off-road vehicles on its own, the main SUV model is the "Forester".

The first to second generation models launched in 1997 were based on the Impresa and equipped with a touring body with a higher height. Its minimum ground clearance is 200mm to distinguish it from other car manufacturers. It is a model that can be used in any scenario. Both are Crossover SUVs with excellent driving performance.

In 2007, the design was changed in response to the needs of Subaru's main sales market, and a third-generation off-road style SUV with upgraded size and practicality was launched.

When the car was launched, the reviews in Japan were quite polarizing, but later on, the Forester became popular as the most SUV-like Subaru model.

The difference between Japan and North America is the presence or absence of "Outback Sport"


As a "small crossover SUV", the Outback Sport based on the Impresa has achieved outstanding sales results in the North American market. There is a demand in North America for SUV models that want the Forester to be upgraded in size and have a more powerful overall style.

The Forester, launched in 1997, "has an orthodox full-time four-wheel drive and a boxer engine to create excellent drivability, and is both a small car, an upsized station wagon, and a highly practical RV." It is very popular in Japan and has been used as a model. The design concept continues for two generations of models.

When the first-generation Forester model was launched, no matter whether it was a station wagon, an SUV or an MPV, it was called a "touring car". A car like the Forester, which has multiple qualities and is more practical than the Impresa Wagon, which is a small hatchback, is extremely popular.

However, the second-generation Forester, which is very popular in Japan, still has shortcomings in North America, Subaru's main market.

The reason was found to be that the Impreza Wagon Gravel EX, which was discontinued as a touring car in Japan, was sold as an "Outback Sport" in North America and was well received. At the same time, there was also dissatisfaction with the Forester's cabin space, especially the comfort of the rear seat.

In other words, in terms of American dimensions, there is not much difference between the Outback Sport and the Forester. North America just needs a roomier cabin than the Outback Sport and its successor model "XV" (now Crosstrek), and a larger cabin than the Legacy. The Outback based on it is more of an orthodox SUV.

Because of this, Forester has changed a lot since the third generation, which surprised Japanese car fans. We can also say that the "XV" launched in Japan in 2010 is essentially the successor to the first and second generation Forester (although the trunk space capacity is completely different).

The size is larger and it becomes more powerful, becoming the main SUV of Subaru.


In addition to the new-generation SI chassis and efforts to lower the center of gravity, there are many features worth mentioning, but basically the main feature of the third-generation Forester is "while maintaining excellent bad road handling and convenience of trunk use. The seat design greatly improves the comfort of the spindle."

In this way, it is slightly larger than the second-generation Forester. If you look closely at its size specifications, you will know its purpose.

What is the purpose of upgrading the length, width and height? After the wheelbase is significantly extended, the rear seat leg space can be expanded. As the rear suspension is changed to a double-arm suspension, the rear seats are also changed to reclining seats, which greatly improves rear seat comfort.

After the vehicle height upgrade, the minimum ground clearance is raised, and combined with the enlarged departure angle due to the shortened rear overhang, the driving performance on bad roads is improved. As the cabin height increases, the seat height will also be raised to make the line of sight clearer, greatly improving the performance and riding comfort of the SUV.

The wheelbase that expands along with the vehicle width increases the turning angle of the front wheels. Although the vehicle body becomes larger, the minimum turning radius decreases, making the vehicle body more flexible.

In other words, the Forester has changed from "a station wagon popular in Japan with excellent driving performance" to "an SUV popular in North America, spacious and comfortable, and not affected by poor road conditions with excellent driving performance." The development goals have had a huge impact. conversion.

Although there are doubts in Japan such as "Is it okay for the Forester to become like this?", in fact, the weight of the car has not increased much after the size upgrade. In addition to the NA turbine to increase the maximum output, the EJ20 engine is also equipped with a setting to increase torque from low speeds. Certainly.

(Later, the NA specification EJ20 was replaced by the new generation FB20 with good fuel consumption, and the EJ25 turbine model with more horsepower was added).

In addition, you can still choose the 5-speed MT model, so Subaru fans will naturally accept the Forester SUV model.

Therefore, in addition to being a manufacturer of Sport Sedan and Sport Wagon, Subaru is also exerting its presence as an SUV manufacturer. Therefore, we can say that the design conversion of the third-generation Forester is correct.


Original source:Subaru Forester has undergone a major change in concept since the third generation
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This post was last modified on December 12, 2023 6:31 am

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