New face, same charm

2022 marks the 30th year for the Subaru brand in South Africa and they’re starting it off strong with the release of an updated Subaru Forester.

To add to its appeal, the 2022 Subaru forester is receiving a mid-life facelift offering a more aggressive front profile and improved driver aids and safety features. The Forester will be offered in four derivatives including the 2.0-litre and 2.5-litre variants in their respective Sport and Premium trims and specifications, developing a 115kW/196Nm and 136kW/239Nm power-and-torque combination respectively.

The biggest change for the updated Forester certainly lies in its looks and particularly at the front. A larger, hexagonal grille takes centre stage with a reduced headlight design, resulting in a more dynamic and muscular stance. The grille and front bumper now incorporate more use of black elements around the redesigned headlight and foglamp clusters. The reworked headlights include an array of LED bulbs for improved driver vision as part of the Forester Adaptive Headlamps and High Beam Assist features. On the Forester Sport, the fog lamps are six-bulb LED units within a black housing; while the Premium Forester’s fog lamp housing includes three chromed horizontal pieces for a more sophisticated finish.

Further along the flanks of the Forester, the mirror caps, A and B-pillar covers as well as the rear spoiler and tailgate finishes have all been enhanced. On the Forester Sport, the mirror caps and rear are finished in a geometric textured material, where the Premium Forester is finished in chromed mirror covers and a high gloss black cover. The new Forester also received some new wheels, now riding on redesigned 17-inch alloy wheels on the base model and 18-inch on the higher spec version. An additional colour – Cascade Green Silica – has been added and in Sport guise the use of orange has been slightly decreased.

Under the skin, the vehicle remains pretty much unchanged with the continuation of existing powertrains. However, the suspension has been tweaked to improve steering responsiveness, ride quality and handling by reworking the coil springs and dampers. A convenient addition to Subaru’s smart all-terrain programme, X-mode, is the ability to re-engage at speeds of 35 km/h or below, after the system has dis-engaged beyond that speed. This allows for less intervention by the driver to continually re-engage the system if the all-terrain environment requires it – certainly a welcome and convenient addition to the Subaru’s already impressive off-road repertoire. Additional changes to the X-mode system includes improved Hill Descent Control speed management and to enhance driver control, the revised system allows for manual acceleration on descent, with the system re-engaging Hill descent Control when the driver stops accelerating.

From a safety perspective, a more advanced version of EyeSight Driver Assist Technology is introduced to allow for use in a wider array of conditions and environments thanks dot a new dual camera with a much wider field of view. Improved software allows for a faster and more intuitive system with the existing functions such as Adaptive Cruise Control, Automatic Pre-collision Braking, Lane Departure and Sway Warning giving even more control. Also offered with EyeSight 4.0 are three new technologies that employ active steering inputs:

  • Active Lane Centering works within the Adaptive Cruise Control function to ensures the vehicle remains in the centre of the lane, reducing driver fatigue.
  • Lane Departure Prevention assists in keeping the vehicle within the correct lane by actively steering back into the correct lane.
  • Autonomous Emergency Steering works as an accident prevention function and can steer the vehicle to avoid an accident, be it a pedestrian, another vehicle or a cyclist. Autonomous Emergency Steering sometimes works in conjunction with the Emergency braking function but can also work when the system deems emergency braking is not adequate to reduce the severity of a collision.

Enhancing its versatile SUV heritage, the roof rails on the face-lift Forester have also been strengthened and redesigned to allow for a higher load capacity and to ensure the safe use of roof-top tents. Additional tie-down locations have also been integrated into the rails as have two additional utility hooks been added to the roof of the rear cargo area.

 Model line-up & pricing:

  • 2.0i CVT: R486 000
  • 2.0i-S ES CVT: R564 000
  • 2.5i-Sport ES CVT: R599 000
  • 2.5i S ES CVT: R649 000

*The new Subaru Forester is sold with a 3-year/75 000km full Maintenance Plan as well as 5-year/150 000km Warranty. These are extendable, with various plans available to Subaru customers.

**For a driving impression with the previous model Forester and our thoughts:

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