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  1. #1
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    Trying to Decide Between a Crosstrek or a Forester

    Am looking at the new Subaru Crosstrek and Forester. Would appreciate any input from any of you owners out there. I've looked and driven Toyota Rav4; Ford Escape, Hyundai Tucson, CRV, CX5, and Sportage. Have decided to go with the Subarus just trying to decide which one. Had my heart set on the new Crosstrek, but am used to keeping my bike in the car. Went to the dealer with my bike tried putting it in, it DOES go in but difficult.(Not as easy as my Matrix). Yeah i know I have dozens of options; i.e. take front wheel off, roof rack, hitch rack, etc. But I mostly travel by myself so like the bike inside for safekeeping. Just me, (hey each to their own, right?) The Forester is larger, yes indeed more room inside and room to carry more "stuff". REALLY like that Orange Crosstrek though. PLEASE no sarcasm just input based on your experiences on either of my choices.
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  2. #2
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    Both have same maintenance costs, basically same amenities available, same safety features, same AWD system, similar acceleration if you're looking at the normally aspirated engine in the '14 Forester.

    One isn't better than the other- it's a simple matter of:

    1. How much and what shape trunk space do you need
    2. How high or low do you like to sit in a car
    3. How much people space do you need (Forester has noticeably better backseat room)

    For some car companies, sometimes one model is noticeably better in it's segment than another model- like, look at how the Mazda3 stacked up against competitors (awesome car for the money), compared to the Mazda6 (an also-ran). But with these two cars, either due to shared componentry or just due to their designs, they are both superb.

    I would go with storage space versus color, but I am not you- follow your gut.
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  3. #3
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    Crosstrek is less expensive for a similarly equipped vehicle. In a month, I'll be moving to a town that has long, cold, and persistent winters, so the standard all weather package on the Crosstrek was nice.

    I'm 6'4" tall and I drive with the seat all the way back. I can sit behind the driver's seat comfortably, but I wouldn't go across the country like that though. I can fit my XL Santa Cruz Tallboy in the back with the seats down no problem, but the front wheel needs to come off. I almost never have a passenger, much less a third person, so back seat space isn't much of a concern for me.

    OP, I dunno, go with which one you can get the best deal on.

  4. #4
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    I have a 2013 Forrester I like quite a bit and my sister just bought the crosstrek. The crosstrek was out when I bought my car and I really liked it, but I needed the space of the Forrester. I was already downsizing from the outback and couldn't go to that small of a cargo area.

    I would imagine the crosstrek gets better mileage too

  5. #5
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    Crosstrek gets only 1mpg better than a '14 Forester. Pretty much a wash.
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  6. #6
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    Easy, if you need the trunk space, you need the Forester. If you like the Crosstrek that much more then there is always a way to make it work.
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  7. #7
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    Thank you all! Yes Silentfoe you are right, but I feel the need for more space so at this moment am shopping for a Forester.
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  8. #8
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    Outback. We traded the old one in for a new one. Awesome!

  9. #9
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    I have an '03 VW GTI which is smaller than both of the cars you are considering and its really no trouble at all taking off the front tire to get it in the back. I can see if you have not had to take off the tire in the past you may not want to in a future car but it doesn't bother me in the slightest. Its fast and easy. Just letting you know my experience.

  10. #10
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    I agree with Toff, it's just 'lazy" on my part but since '95 have had a car with the capacity to just "throw' my bike in the back. Thanks for you input.
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  11. #11
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    I'd go with the Crosstrek unless you find yourself hauling really big items. I can count on one hand over the last 10 years where I've wished my Impreza wagon could have a larger hatch opening and more storage space.

    Ultimately they're both going to drive about the same. Forester might put you in a more upright driving position, not sure exactly since I've been out of the Subaru forums and newsfeeds for years.

  12. #12
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    If you are leaning towards Forester, are you an IMBA member for at least 6 months now? It'll help you out big on the price. Most dealers around here are selling '14 Foresters anywhere from $500 over invoice or so, up to close to MSRP- the IMBA discount is invoice minus 2%.

    If you lean towards Crosstrek, it's not as beneficial, but still worthwhile.
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  13. #13
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    I REALLY like the Crosstrek, I like "smaller" cars. We have a nice minivan for long trips that is very comfy.
    BUT the Forester has more "bells and whistles" and room if I want to take a long trip with my wife, including dirt roads, etc. Been reading in many forums that either of the radios/navigation systems are not that good and difficult to use. Was wondering if anyone has installed an aftermarket sound/nav/speaker system? Thanks!
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  14. #14
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    I'd get the Crosscheck it's ORANGE and you can just mount a hitch the it for a bike rack.

  15. #15
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    For both vehicles, the navi is okay, not stellar, not crappy though (in terms of user interface). If it is an option (depending on trim level) I would pass, but if it is standard (like in a Forester Touring it comes standard, plus you get the Harmon/Kardon amps) I'd happily use it.

    Aftermarket is easily done- you can retain your steering wheel controls and all that. It just would obviously cost more on top of the cost of the car.

    As far as "bells and whistles", the only things that the Forester really offers over a similarly spec'd XV is power driver's seat, reclining rear seat, available dimming side mirrors, and available dual climate control. Everything else is the same between the two. There may be one or two tiny things I'm missing though.

    For me, again, the deciding factor would be how much space you need, and seating position/handling.
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  16. #16
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    Thanks for the input. The Crosstrek is just so cute!! Love it's looks but at my advanced age and body problems, the "electric chair" is very very nice to make the ride nicer. If you could install any radio/cd/HD/Nav etc system what have people installed, used, suggest to me please? Am getting very excited. Too bad I'm so far away from Xjaredx.
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  17. #17
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    Something to consider: If you are looking at a Forester or XV with nav: the nav comes with SiriusXM radio, backup camera, full iPod control, Bluetooth- the problem with aftermarket radios, is you'll buy the base head unit, but then have to pay extra for additional hardware for things like XM radio or backup camera support, depending on the radio.

    As an example:

    Clarion NX702 Navigation receiver at Crutchfield.com

    ...$800, plus $50 for a SiriusXM tuner, plus whatever the cost is to make your steering wheel controls work with it, etc etc... if you are looking at a base model Forester, or a Premium, this would be a viable option, but if you are looking at a Limited, the cost difference to the Touring (which gives you navi plus other stuff) might just make it worthwhile to get a Touring model with the OEM nav.

    Go to a dealer, find a patient salesperson, and ask them if you can just play with the nav and audio for a while.
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  18. #18
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    To anyone that has a smartphone. Quit stressing about factory navigation and download the Waze app. It's so much better than any other navigation system since it crowdsources traffic data from users in realtime.

    Also, satellite radio is going to be dead in a few years since everything is moving to online radio. Was a fine transitional medium though.

  19. #19
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    Personally, I dont like built in navi, specifically because I use my phone for that, when needed. As long as a car has Bluetooth audio for me to stream my music from my phone, and as long as I have SiriusXM, I'm good. I don't disagree that SiriusXM has an iffy future, but I personally love it- if only for one or two channels that I simply cannot replicate with internet radio stations. Satellite radio, if done right, can't be beat if you prefer live sets and good DJ's mixed in with your typical music. But this is for another thread
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  20. #20
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    Go used Audi A6 Avant (if you can find one).
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  21. #21
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    Trying to Decide Between a Crosstrek or a Forester

    Love the Forester. Haven't driven the Crosstrek yet, but it looks like the old Outback Sport, which I didn't really care for. The Forester has much more room.

    Personally the only thing I don't like about the Subarus is the stereos (I've had 3, my husband's on his second). Haven't had one with nav to comment.

    Otherwise until they get over 100k, ice found the maintenance on them to be regular and fairly stress free.
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  22. #22
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    Here in VT, there have been too many fatal crashes involving old rusted out Subarus. Let's face it, Subaus rust and rust when they are driven by clueless people in winter. That is why I am trying to promote used Audi and Volkswagen models.
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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    Here in VT, there have been too many fatal crashes involving old rusted out Subarus. Let's face it, Subaus rust and rust when they are driven by clueless people in winter. That is why I am trying to promote used Audi and Volkswagen models.
    LOL you are serious? I don't even know where to begin with this... the part where you are positing that a VAG product is safer/more reliable or the part where you mention that Subarus rust quicker than other cars. Where are your numbers to support these mass Subaru deaths?
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  24. #24
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    Even the most engineered car will be compromised if it spends 15 winters in a row bathed in calcium chloride. Just sayin...

    Volkswagen....Yeah....That's a mistake I'm never going to make again. They're kinda fun, and kinda sporty, and they have a lot of "perceived quality" like a nice sound system, but at the end of the day, you've still got a German designed car, most likely made by Mexicans, loaded with 30 parts, when 15 will do the job, and 7 of the extra parts are sensors for the other useless 8.

    Friends don't let friends buy VW, BMW, or Benz that don't have a factory warranty.

  25. #25
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    The VAG quality thing is peculiar- when they are new, they seem really nice. The interiors have fantastic initial build quality. But when they are like 6+ years old, around 100,000 miles, they are hunks of junk. That strangely always smell like crayons when they are traded in.

    The only thing I can think of, is there are a lot of rusty Subarus in New England, because they run freaking forever. Most Japanese cars from the 70's-80's did have rust issues; the only real pervasive rust issue on the 90's-2000's Subarus is that spot on the quarter panel where it touches the bumper cover. Which I really, really doubt affects crash statistics to the point where people are dying left and right in them lol.

    Add to that that Subaru, in lieu of lots of fancy interior doodads, engineers a ton of proprietary safety features into their cars that you just don't find elsewhere. Much of what one buys in a Subaru is hard to get people excited about. Like, I'll talk about how the engine shears off and goes under the car in a severe frontal impact (only very few manufacturers do that, believe it or not), or how they have a ton of structural reinforcement not found on other cars, or how they have that little bolt on the bottom of the rear door that locks into the frame to further protect the kiddies in the back seat, etc... I'm not sure how that all adds up to death and dismemberment.

    Further to my point, and granted this is for the newer models, but consider this:

    2013 Toyota RAV4 earns 'poor' rating in IIHS small overlap crash test [w/video] - Autoblog

    ...note that only two vehicles so far got the Top Safety Pick+ rating in the Forester's class. I'm not sure, but I think that having the steering wheel move so far to the side that your face misses the airbag is a Bad Thing.
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