Leased this 2009 2.5X in late summer of 2008 and for the most part this has been a very reliable car. I was looking for a basic SUV/Crossover and this is basic. I'd recommend it, but with reservations...
Leased this 2009 2.5X in late summer of 2008 and for the most part this has been a very reliable car. I was looking for a basic SUV/Crossover and this is basic. I'd recommend it, but with reservations.
I haven't experienced any of the major problems that I've noted in some of the negative reviews, nor have I experienced anywhere near the astounding mileage that some are claiming. I'm getting almost exactly what Consumers' Reports states in the Forester review - 22.5mpg overall. Definitely not terrible for an AWD vehicle, but definitely not a fuel efficient vehicle, especially with gas prices that have been well over $4.00 gallon here recently.
Handling/cornering, ride quality, relatively low road noise. Seats are relatively firm but could use better lumbar support. Visibility is good with few blind spots. Cargo space is good, I have no problems laying my rear seatback flat to extend cargo space. This is much more easily done than in some other cars where you have to wrestle with removing the headrests to be able to lower the seatback. The
audio controls are relatively straight forward and the audio quality is decent.
Acceleration. Trying to pass another vehicle really challenges the hamsters under the hood. This would be more acceptable if the mileage was anything but mediocre. A/C is rather weak, a drawback here in the desert. It's necessary to turn off the A/C to be able to get any acceleration to enter the freeway, not a pleasant thing on a 110 degree day. Interior surfaces are cheap. The exterior paint is thin and scratches really easily. The inefficient 4 speed automatic probably adds to the mediocre mileage. The bottomless pit of the center console makes finding anything impossible except with major excavation.
I was considering buying a new car when the lease is up on this one, but considering the overall reliability of this car, I'll probably buy it off the lease. The residual will be considerably less than what these are selling for on the used market.