2019 Subaru Forester MPG: Our Real-World Testing Results

01-subaru-forester-2019-angle--blue--dynamic--engine--front.jpg 2019 Subaru Forester | photos by Christian Lantry

The redesigned 2019 Subaru Forester earned a solid second-place finish overall in our recent test to find the best compact SUV of 2019, where we gathered seven popular models for a week of testing. The Forester competed against the Honda CR-V, Hyundai Tucson, Jeep Cherokee, Nissan Rogue, Toyota RAV4 and Volkswagen Tiguan. Our testing included a fuel economy drive where we took the SUVs on a 200-plus-mile route consisting of suburban streets, interstates and country roads to simulate a short road trip.

At the end of our drive, our Forester Touring’s observed fuel economy was 27.9 mpg. That was good enough for third best in our test, but it’s less than the SUV’s 29 mpg EPA combined rating and well below its 33 mpg highway rating even though our route favored highway-type driving.

Related: What’s the Best Compact SUV of 2019?

All Foresters are powered by a 182-horsepower, 2.5-liter horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine that works with a continuously variable automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is standard, and the Forester is rated 26/33/29 mpg city/highway/combined by the EPA. The Forester’s 29 mpg combined rating tied the CR-V Touring for highest combined estimate in our test. Regular gas was recommended for all seven SUVs we tested.

The Forester’s observed gas mileage of 27.9 mpg was calculated by averaging the trip computer mpg reading and the SUV’s fill-up fuel economy. The Forester’s trip computer showed 28.3 mpg at the end of our route while the pump-based number was 27.5 mpg. Observed gas mileage for the other six SUVs, in descending order, was 29 mpg (RAV4), 28.5 mpg (CR-V), 26.5 mpg (Tiguan), 26.1 mpg (Cherokee) and 25.7 mpg (Tucson and Rogue).


Fuel economy was one of the many things we tested when evaluating these SUVs. For more information on the subjective and objective test categories, check out the How We Tested page.

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