Subaru Forester debuts at LA Auto Show: hybrid power, classic 4x4 strength

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【Summary】Subaru has unveiled the latest version of its Forester at the LA Auto Show. The new model retains the familiar design but features updated headlights and grille, as well as a wider stance. It will come with symmetrical all-wheel drive and upgraded ground clearance. The biggest news is the introduction of a full-hybrid model next year, marking Subaru's move toward electrification.

FutureCar Staff    Nov 17, 2023 3:17 PM PT
Subaru Forester debuts at LA Auto Show: hybrid power, classic 4x4 strength

Subaru unveiled its latest Forester at the LA Auto Show, although it may appear to be a facelift rather than a completely new car. The Forester has been a popular choice in UK Subaru showrooms, and the new model is anticipated to make its way to the UK.

With over 2.6 million cars sold in the US alone, Subaru seems confident in the success of the Forester, now in its fifth generation. The recognizable five-door design remains, but with updated head and tail lamps, a more upright grille, and a wider stance.

Underneath the surface, the new model retains symmetrical all-wheel drive, now enhanced with dual-function X-mode and 221mm of ground clearance. While US models will be equipped with a 2.5-litre flat-four engine, the UK version will feature a 2.0-litre unit.

The major announcement, however, is the introduction of the Forester's first full-hybrid model next year, signaling a move towards electrification. Subaru CEO Atsushi Osaki not only unveiled the new Forester but also revealed plans to launch four new full EVs by 2026, with an additional four arriving by 2028. This is in addition to the current Solterra EV, which is being produced alongside the Toyota bZ4X.

The new Forester boasts a chassis that is ten per cent stiffer than its predecessor, promising a smoother ride and reduced noise levels. The interior has also received upgrades in terms of quality and infotainment. It now features an 11.6-inch touchscreen in a portrait layout, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and wireless smartphone charging. The EyeSight driver assistance system has been improved with a wider field of view and enhanced cyclist and pedestrian detection. Even the tailgate has been revamped with a tech makeover, allowing it to open with a wave of a foot under the front bumper.

Expected to arrive in the US market by mid-next year, the new Subaru Forester is also anticipated to reach the UK in 2024. Prices are likely to increase from the current starting price of just under £38,000 to around £40,000.

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