2014 Subaru Forester Review
The Subaru Forester is quickly establishing itself in Kenya as a top tier SUV outperforming most of its rivals such as the Nissan X-Trail, Honda CRV, Toyota Rav-4, Mazda CX-5, Suzuki Vitara and Mitsubishi Outlander. What sets the Forester apart is the ingenious symmetrical All-Wheel-Drive system and the choice of engines that include the turbocharged DIT engine that propels the Forester from 0 to 100 km/hour in 7.5 Seconds
This is an update to the 2013 Subaru Forester Review. Changes include the introduction of X-BREAK and 2.0XT Eyesight Advantage Line grades.
The Subaru Forester is a 5-seater compact SUV that has been in production for five generations starting from 1997 to present. It’s built on the same platform as the Subaru Impreza with which it shares many other components. The first generation known as the SF was in production from 1997 to 2002, the second generation known as SG from 2002 to 2009, the third generation known as SH from 2009 to 2012, the fourth generation known as SJ from 2012 to 2018 and the fifth generation known as the SK from 2018 to present.
Among the most notable differences with the previous generations is the lack of intercooler vent on the bonnet for turbocharged versions. The plumbing has been reworked to incorporate the vent into the grille assembly and its now hidden from view. The only way to identify the turbocharged versions is through the XT badge on the tailgate.
The 2014 Subaru Forester is offered with 2 engine choices which are all petrol; these are the 2.0 Litre naturally aspirated FB20 engine and the 2.0 Litre turbocharged FA20 DIT engine, which is linked to either a Lineartronic CVT transmission or a 6-speed Manual Transmission and is available in fulltime 4WD. For more information on these engines especially on reliability and which one you should buy, click here to purchase a copy of the Subaru Forester Buyer’s Guide
2014 Subaru Forester Grades
- Subaru Forester 2.0i – This is the base grade that comes with the 2.0L naturally aspirated engine, a choice of manual or automatic transmission, 17-Inch alloy rims, manually operated driver’s seats, CD/Radio player.
- Subaru Forester 2.0iL – This is an intermediate grade that comes with the 2.0L naturally aspirated engine, a choice of manual or automatic transmission, 17-Inch alloy rims, electrically operated driver’s seats, CD/Radio player.
- Subaru Forester 2.0iL Eyesight – This grade comes with the 2.0L naturally aspirated engine, automatic transmission, 17-Inch alloy rims, electrically operated driver’s seats, CD/Radio player with Bluetooth and Subaru Eyesight.
- Subaru Forester 2.0iL Eyesight X BREAK – This grade comes with the 2.0L naturally aspirated engine, automatic transmission, 17-Inch alloy rims, electrically operated driver’s seat, CD/Radio player with Bluetooth, Eyesight, synthetic leather with orange stitch, water repellant cargo floor board, leather wrapped steering wheel and silver roof rails.
- Subaru Forester 2.0iS Eyesight – This is a sports grade that comes with the 2.0L naturally aspirated engine, automatic transmission, 18-Inch alloy rims, electrically operated driver’s seats, CD/Radio player with Bluetooth, Subaru Eyesight and paddle shift.
- Subaru Forester 2.0XT – This is a sports grade that comes with the 2.0L turbocharged engine, automatic transmission, 18-Inch alloy rims, electrically operated driver’s seats, CD/Radio player with Bluetooth and paddle shift.
- Subaru Forester 2.0XT Eyesight – This is the top of the range grade that comes with the 2.0L turbocharged engine, automatic transmission, 18-Inch alloy rims, electrically operated driver’s seats, CD/Radio player with Bluetooth, paddle shift and Subaru Eyesight
- Subaru Forester 2.0XT Eyesight Advantage Line – This is the top of the range grade that comes with the 2.0L turbocharged engine, automatic transmission, 18-Inch alloy rims, electrically operated driver’s seats, CD/Radio player with Bluetooth, paddle shift, Eyesight, satin plated door mirrors, high grade genuine leather and cast metallic finishing on steering wheel.
2014 Subaru Forester Interior
The fourth generation Forester is larger and longer than its predecessors and this affords it more legroom and interior space. At the first row, the legroom is excellent and the seats can adjust to fit any desired seating position. At the second row, the legroom is similarly impressive and passengers are afforded with ample space. The cabin styling and equipment borrows heavily from the Impreza and XV which we love for being modern and functional.
2014 Subaru forester Exterior
On the outside, the body styling has been redesigned in pursuit of the SUV look which Subaru has aggressively been trying to achieve. It now looks more masculine and rounder than its predecessors and its SUV orientation cannot be mistaken . The XT Version comes with stylish 18-Inch alloy rims that blend well with its aggressive 4×4 look.
There are several storage compartments in the cabin that are useful for storing items such as smartphones, beverages, goggles, handbags etc. At the first row there are 4 cup-holders, door panel storage, a glovebox and the center-box. For the second row, there are 4 cupholders, front seat jacket pockets and door pockets.
2014 Subaru Forester Boot Space
The boot is big enough to carry luggage for a family of five. When extra space is required, the second row seats can be folded in a split configuration to free up a sizable amount of space.
Extras: USB Charging Ports, Premium Sound, LCD Displays, Electric/Memory Tailgate, SI DRIVE, Fuel Economy Monitor
2014 Subaru Forester Safety Features: SRS Airbags, Curtain airbags, VDC, ABS, Electronic Stability Control, Pre-crash Safety System, Radar Cruise Control, Subaru EyeSight
2014 Subaru Forester Fuel Consumption
2014 Subaru Forester 2.0L fuel consumption: 15.2 km/L
2014 Subaru Forester 2.0L Turbo fuel consumption: 13.2 km/L
2014 Subaru Forester Acceleration
2014 Subaru Forester 2.0L accelerates from 0-100 km/h in 10.6 sec.
2014 Subaru Forester 2.0L Turbo accelerates from 0-100 km/h in 7.5 sec.
2014 Subaru Forester Fuel Tank Capacity: 60.2 Litres
2014 Subaru Forester Stability and Handling
The Subaru Forester outperforms most of its rivals such as the X-Trail, RAV4, CX-5, CRV etc., both on-road and off-road. The diesel version of the CX-5 has a similar feel but still the Forester is a step ahead. The 2.0XT in particular is a powerful car that accelerates so fast that you forget it’s an actual SUV. The newly developed 2.0L DIT engine is in perfect sync with the transmission and the gear shifts are fluid. The twin-scroll turbo spools amazingly well at low revs and there’s no noticeable turbo lag whatsoever. Around corners, there’s minimal body roll and the steering feels reassuringly firm.
2014 Subaru Forester Service Intervals
Minor Service: At 5,000 km. Requires Air Cleaner, Oil Filter, and Engine Oil
Major Service: At 10,000km. Requires Air Cleaner, Oil Filter, Fuel Filter, ATF Filter, Cabin Filter, Plugs, Front Brake Pads, Rear Brake Pads, ATF Oil, and Engine Oil
Subaru Forester Spare Parts Availability, Cost & Where to buy
Service parts are available and fairly priced in Kenya. Body parts on the other hand are expensive and mostly available from Subaru Kenya.
2014 Subaru Forester Reliability
The Subaru Forester has historically been a reliable car with few problems. The new DIT engine has introduced sensors and systems that add a layer of complexity. The XT version also requires extra care due to the turbo engine. But let not this worry you. We have put together a guide for Kenyan buyers with a detailed analysis of all the engines and which one you should buy. We also give you important tips on what to look out for when buying a Subaru Forester. All this information is contained in the guide that’s now available for purchase on our website. Click here to purchase the Subaru Forester Buyer’s Guide
Resale Value: Good
Cost of Ownership
What we like about the 2014 Subaru Forester
- Powerful acceleration and excellent handling
- Spacious interior
- Modern interior
- Exceptional off-road performance
What we don’t
- Expensive body parts
The 2014 Subaru Forester is a top quality SUV that performs well both on the road and off the road. It is an excellent family car with a 5 Star safety rating that’s guaranteed to keep your family safe in case of an accident. The cabin is comfortable and spacious with a modern feel that is comparable to the Audi Q5. For those that are performance minded, the 2.0XT is swift and can accelerate from 0-100 km/h in 7.5 seconds which none of its rivals can match.
When thrown in slippery conditions, it employs the Symmetrical All-Wheel-Drive system which coupled with the X-MODE work like magic to extract the Forester from muddy situations where the likes of RAV4 and CR-V will founder miserably.
If you are planning to own or currently own the 2014 Subaru Forester, it’s vital that you read the Owner’s Manual. Click here to download the 2013 Subaru Forester Owner’s Manual in English
Where to Buy the 2014 Subaru Forester in Kenya
If you are looking to either import or buy the Forester locally, we can help you with this process. Over the years, we have developed a network of trusted dealers both in Kenya and Japan who supply us with exceptional cars. Simply call us or send us a message through our contacts below and we’ll get you the right car at the right price.
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