2020 Subaru Forester review

Research, photos, specs, and expertise
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Subaru Forester highlights

Customer rating


  • Lots of interior room
  • Great off-road capability
  • All-wheel drive is standard


  • Engine can be noisy at higher speeds
  • Modest interior look and feel
  • Slow acceleration

Mileage (EPA estimate)

26 city, 33 highway, 29 combined

Pricing for current inventory

(no current inventory)

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A fun AWD crossover with tons of space.

The Subaru Forester is a great AWD midsize crossover with a variety of standard and optional features. So, if you need an excellent crossover with standard AWD and lots of cargo space, look no further. Whether you're navigating the urban commute or exploring the road less traveled, the Forester should definitely be on your shopping list. While we currently do not have many 2020 Subaru Foresters on our lots, we look forward to selling more in the future.

All Subaru Forester years

What is new for the 2020 Subaru Forester?

  • The Forester is available in a variety of new trims, including the Base, Limited, Premium, Sport, and Touring.
  • The 2.5I, 2.5I Limited, 2.5I Premium, 2.5I Sport, and 2.5I Touring trims have been discontinued for 2020.

2020 Subaru Forester trims

Curious how Subaru Forester trims differ? Use our side-by-side vehicle comparison to see the differences and similarities


  • The base Forester includes features like LED headlights, EyeSight Driver Assist Technology, automatic climate control, a 6.5-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, six-way manually adjustable driver seat, four-way manually adjustable front-passenger seat, rearview camera, satellite radio, and more.

  • View all Subaru Forester Bases in stock


  • The Forester Premium adds a rear spoiler, panoramic moonroof, leather-wrapped steering wheel, power adjustable driver seat, reclining rear seats, X-MODE off-road system with hill descent control, heated front seats, 10-way power-adjustable driver seat, a windshield de-icing system, and heated mirrors.

  • View all Subaru Forester Premiums in stock


  • The cool Sport adds additional features like SI-DRIVE with Sport Sharp mode, unique exterior and interior accents, LED fog lights, sport gauges with color LCD display, an additional 6.3-inch LCD display on top of the dash, rear USB ports, and keyless entry and ignition.

  • View all Subaru Forester Sports in stock


  • Adds leather-trimmed upholstery and chrome exterior trim plus a power liftgate, dual-zone automatic climate control, adaptive LED headlights, an eight-inch infotainment system, and dual rear USB ports.

  • View all Subaru Forester Limiteds in stock


  • Adds heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, power adjustable front passenger seat, navigation system, a high-end Harman Kardon audio system, driver aids like DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System, and reverse automatic braking.

  • View all Subaru Forester Tourings in stock

Subaru Forester photos

5 reasons to buy the 2020 Subaru Forester

1. Standard AWD

Like most cars and crossovers across the Subaru lineup, the 2020 Subaru Forester comes with standard AWD on all trim levels. That means more peace of mind in all weather conditions. It also means you can go farther off the beaten path. So your next road trip might be a bit more interesting—and include fewer paved roads—thanks to the Subaru Forester.

2. Passenger volume

2020 Subaru Forester: Backseats | CarMax

The 2020 Subaru Forester has a maximum passenger volume of 111.9 cubic feet. That means you can bring more family and friends to enjoy the fun. With space for five people, you're all set for a road trip, a weekend city adventure, or the carpool lane.

3. Driver assistance

2020 Subaru Forester: Tech Dash | CarMax

All 2020 Forester models come with standard EyeSight® Driver Assist Technology and standard Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive. You can also opt for Subaru's available DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System, which is standard on the Forester Touring. That translates to more confidence even beyond the standard traction of AWD to help you conquer rough conditions.

4. Cargo volume

2020 Subaru Forester: Trunk Cargo | CarMax

With total cargo space of 76.1 cubic feet with the rear seats folded flat, your Forester can max out the trip to the home improvement store. Even when carrying a full load of passengers, you'll still have a very usable 33.0 cubic feet. it's not just people that the Forester can haul, it's also plenty of cargo.

5. Off-road prowess

The Forester isn't just a great family hauler. With 8.7 inches of ground clearance, you can overcome quite a few obstacles as well. Add the available X-MODE® off-road system (standard on all trim levels but the base Forester) and the Forester will tackle bad weather and off-road trails to take you away from the hustle and bustle for a nice long weekend.

Similar vehicles

If you're interested in the 2020 Subaru Forester, you should also check out these similar vehicles from Previous generation years.

Image of Subaru Crosstrek

The go-anywhere attitude of the 2017-2020 Subaru Crosstrek starts with standard symmetrical all-wheel drive. The Subaru AWD system uses advanced torque vectoring to get power to the wheels with the most grip, helping you get places you didn't think were accessible. A 152-hp four-cylinder engine powers all three trims. There's 20.8 cubic feet of cargo space at the rear, and the 2017-2020 Subaru Crosstrek AWD with the 2.0L engine can tow an estimated 1,500 lbs., when properly equipped.

Standard features on the 2017-2019 Subaru Crosstrek include:

  • 6.5-inch touchscreen with smartphone app integration

  • Android Auto and Apple CarPlay® connectivity

  • Symmetrical AWD with multiple surface modes

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Ratings & reliability

Customer ratings

Above Average

RepairPal gave the Subaru Forester an overall reliability rating of 3.5 out of 5 stars, which RepairPal describes as Above Average. This rating ranks Subaru Forester 22nd out of 29 among Compact SUVs.

View RepairPal's full rating of the Subaru Forester

Subaru Forester features and specs

Premium 4WD/AWD 4D Sport Utility

Standard Features

  • 4WD/AWD
  • ABS Brakes
  • Air Conditioning
  • Alloy Wheels
  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Android Auto
  • Apple CarPlay
  • Automated Cruise Control
  • Automatic Transmission
  • Auxiliary Audio Input
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • CD Audio
  • Cloth Seats
  • Front Seat Heaters
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Overhead Airbags
  • Panoramic Sunroof
  • Parking Sensors
  • Power Locks
  • Power Mirrors
  • Power Seat(s)
  • Power Windows
  • Rear Defroster
  • Rear View Camera
  • Satellite Radio Ready
  • Side Airbags
  • Traction Control
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Full Roof Rack
  • Parking Sensors
  • Power Hatch/Deck Lid
  • Remote Start
  • Rockford Fosgate Sound
  • Smart Key
  • Tow Hitch

Drive Wheels

All Wheel Drive (4WD/AWD)

Engine size




Torque (ft-lbs)


Engine type


Fuel capacity




Overall length






Leg room

F 43.3"/R 39.4"

Head room

F 40.2"/R 37.7"

Front tires


Rear tires


Seating capacity


Max towing capacity

150/1500 lbs.



2020 Subaru Forester FAQ

More about the 2020 Subaru Forester

Color options

Exterior colors

  • Crimson Red Pearl

  • Crystal Black Silica

  • Crystal White Pearl

  • Dark Blue Pearl

  • Horizon Blue Pearl

  • Ice Silver Metallic

  • Jasper Green Metallic

  • Magnetite Gray Metallic

  • Sepia Bronze Metallic

Interior details

The 2020 Subaru Forester is available with lots of great interior features:

  • 76.1 cubic feet of total cargo space with the rear seat folded flat, and 33.0 cubic feet when carrying a full load of passengers.

  • Seating capacity up to five adults, with standard cloth and available leather seating surfaces.

  • Standard 6.5-inch Subaru STARLINK touchscreen infotainment system, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability with available eight-inch infotainment screen.

  • Standard six-way manually adjustable driver seat and four-way manually adjustable front-passenger seat, with available 10-way power driver seat and eight-way power front-passenger seat.

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