2020 Subaru Forester

MSRP $24,495 - $34,595

Ranked #15 in Compact Suv

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2020 Subaru Forester Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: December 28, 2021

Nathan Dyer's image
Nathan Dyer 

Senior Editor

The Subaru, as a manufacturer, is known to do things a bit differently. It offers standard AWD and it is one of few still promoting wagons strongly. The Forester originated as a spruced up Impreza wagon but now, in its fourth generation, the 2020 Subaru Forester has evolved into a compact SUV.

It's a Subaru so standard All-Wheel-Drive is obvious as is the segment beating ground clearance, luggage capacity and great value for money. Now, the Forester also gets a quieter cabin and decent ride quality. The interior is as user-friendly as ever and the material quality is great too. However, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are unavailable.

More from 2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Subaru Forester Exclusive Interior and Exterior Pictures | View latest Pictures

2020 Subaru Forester Latest Updates

  • Jan' 17, 2022 : Subaru Showcases The STI E-RA Concept And The Solterra STI Concept At The 2022 Tokyo Auto Show Read More »
  • Jan' 12, 2022 : Subaru Forester and Outback Sells Over 150,000 Units Each Making Half Of Total Subaru Sales For 2021 Read More »
See detailed review »


Standard All-Wheel-Drive system

Plethora of standard Driver-Assist features

High ground clearance enables good offroad capabilities

Best-in-class cargo capacity


Underpowered engine

Rivals offer better tow-rating

What's New?

Lane Centering Function now standard

All-weather package now standard across premium trims

Tire-Pressure monitoring system now displays pressure in each tire


vehicle bio

base price



4dr Crossover

passenger capacity


top speed

117 mph


all wheel drive

engine type


152 cu.in.


182 hp @ 5800 rpm


176 ft-lb. @ 4400 rpm


continuously variable speed automatic


suspension front

Independent front strut suspension

suspension rear

Independent rear double wishbone suspension

brake rotors (f/r)

11.6/11.2 in.



105.1 in.


182.1 in.


71.5 in.


67.5 in.

curb weight

3449 lbs.

ground clearance

8.7 in.


passenger volume

111.9 cu ft.

cargo volume

74.3 cu ft.

towing capacity

1500 lbs.

payload capacity

1442 lbs.


zero to 60 mph

8.5 sec.

standing 1/4-mile

16.7 sec.

fuel economy


26/29/33 mpg


basic warranty

3 yr./ 36,000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

5 yr./ 60000 mi.

powertrain warranty

5 yr./ 60,000 mi.

corrosion warranty

5 yr./ unlimited mi.

roadside assistance


Pictures & Videos


Base$24,495 onwards

  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • Push-Button start
  • Rearview camera

Premium$27,395 onwards

  • Hill descent control
  • Panoramic sunroof
  • Power-Adjustable driver's seat

Sport$28,995 onwards

  • 18-inch black wheels
  • Led foglights

Limited$31,095 onwards

  • 8-Inch touchscreen
  • Adaptive headlights
  • Dual-Zone automatic climate control

Touring$34,595 onwards

  • Heated rear seats
  • Heated steering wheel
  • Power-Adjustable passenger seat
  • Premium leather upholstery

Colors and Styles

2020 Subaru Forester in Crystal Black Silica color
Crystal Black Silica

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.


Pricing and Features




Engine and Performance


Fuel Economy












Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide


Overall Rating

The Forester originated as a spruced up Impreza wagon but now, in its fourth generation, Subaru Forester has evolved into a compact SUV. Forester also gets a quieter cabin and decent ride quality.

With the prices starting at a reasonable $25k, the 2020 Forester confronts the likes of Nissan Rogue, Volkswagen Tiguan and the most familiar - Honda CR-V. So, does the Forester have what it takes to dominate these rivals? Let’s find out.


Engine and Performance

Fuel Economy





2020 Subaru Forester Features


"Good at most everything that matters to crossover buyers, spacious cabin, relaxed ride and handling." - Car and Driver

Forester comes with a  182 hp powertrain and a 7-speed CVT is the only transmission. Five trim levels are offered: Base, Premium, Limited, Touring, and a new Sport model. All models share a CVT as the only transmission option, and the latter two are offered with manual mode and steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters.

Upgrading to 2.5i Premium ($27,395) adds a panoramic power moonroof, alloy wheels, 7-inch infotainment screen and opens up the options like a power lift-gate. Most importantly you can have excellent Subaru EyeSight driver assistance technologies. Higher trims add amenities like leather-trim upholstery, auto-on/off headlights, and an 8-speaker Harman Kardon premium audio system.













Key Features

Automatic Headlamps

Panoramic Moonroof

LED Fog lights

Halogen Fog Lamps

Satin-Chrome exterior mirrors with automatic reverse tilt


Automatic climate control system

Rear AC vents

Orange and Black Silica Exterior Accents

Dual-Zone Automatic Climate Control System

2-position Driver Seat memory


6-way manually adjustable driver seat

10-way power-adjustable driver seat

Key-less access with push-button start

LED Steering Responsive Headlights

8-way power-adjustable driver/passenger seat


Cloth upholstery

Premium cloth upholstery

Roof Rails with integrated tie-downs

Powered Tail-gate

Roof-rails with silver accents and integrated tie-downs


17-inch Steel wheels

17-inch Aluminum alloy wheels

18-inch Aluminum Alloy wheels

Leather-trimmed Upholstery

Saddle Brown Leather Upholstery


Eye-sight driver technology

X-Mode with hill descent control

Dual-function X-Mode with hill descent control

Blind-spot detection with Lane Change Assist

DriverFocus Distraction Mitigation System


4-speaker setup

6-speaker setup

6.3-inch Multimedia Information display

Body-colored exterior mirrors with integrated turn indicators

Harman-Kardon 9-speaker Audio System

We Recommend

The base model of the Subaru Forester is well equipped with an economical price tag but it doesn't have what some owners may expect. The 2.5 limited variant hits the sweet spot as it comes with an all-weather package which will be very useful in winters.

2020 Subaru Forester Engine and Performance


"All Forester models are powered by the same 2.5-liter flat-four-cylinder engine that makes 182 horsepower and can tow 1500 pounds." - Car and Driver

Engine specs of the 2020 Subaru Forester

The turbocharged engine is substituted with a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder boxer engine. It makes 182 horsepower and 176 pound-feet of torque. The grunt is suitable for city rides and highway runs but still many will miss the lively turbocharged engine. Subaru says 90 percent of the engine components are fresh which incorporates a more robust block and a latest-gen direct-injection system.

2020 Subaru Forester Crossover

The engine is mated to 7 speed CVT which makes most of the power. It shifts quickly when the driver is being aggressive with the throttle. There is a seven-speed manual mode with paddle shifters for the CVT on the Sport and Touring. Steering mounted paddle shifters can be used to select those fake gears. When not in the mood, the CVT effortlessly does the job of varying ratios for you.


2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Nissan rogue

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V







2.5L, H-4 Naturally Aspirated

2.5L, I-4, Naturally Aspirated

2.0L, I-4, Turbocharged

2.4L, I-4, Naturally Aspirated


Lineartronic CVT

XTronic CVT

8-speed Torque-converter

CVT with Sport Mode

Power (hp@rpm)

182 hp @ 5800 RPM

170 hp@ 6000 RPM

184 hp@ 4400 RPM

190 hp@ 6400 RPM

Torque (lbs.-ft.@rpm)

176 lb-ft @ 4400 RPM

175 lb-ft @ 4400 RPM

221 lb-ft @ 1600 RPM

179 lb-ft @ 3900 RPM

The Forester isn't as quick as the CR-V, don't expect the CR-V to match the Forester in terms of off-road ability. The Volkswagen Tiguan also walks beside the  Honda CR-V and Subaru Forester in terms of power. Nissan Rogue is an exception here and isn't capable of off-road expeditions.

Acceleration of the 2020 Subaru Forester

Subaru Forester with the 2.5 L boxer 4 engines can do the 0 to 60 mph run in 8.5 seconds. That’s respectable for an SUV and competitors like Honda CR-V and Nissan Rogue take a similar time.

2020 Subaru Forester Crossover covers 0-60 in 8.5 sec 

The CVT is one of the best in the house impersonating a traditional 6 or 8-Speed Automatic impressively.


2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Nissan rogue

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

0-60 MPH (Sec)





Quarter mile (Sec)






2.5L, H-4 Naturally Aspirated

2.5L, I-4, Naturally Aspirated

2.0L, I-4, Turbocharged

2.4L, I-4, Naturally Aspirated

While this flat-four engine is fine for navigating around town, it's noticeably slow when striving to accelerate for highway passing or merging. Numerous opponents deliver more satisfying acceleration, appear more dynamic, or offer a turbocharged engine option.

Braking of the 2020 Subaru Forester

Subaru has also worked on Forester's brake pedal which travels less than the previous variant. The bite remains the same after repetitive use and less pedal stroke before braking inspires confidence.

2020 Subaru Forester Crossover has Front Brake of 11.6 inches.

Forester's brake-based torque-vectoring system squeezes the inside wheel calipers in hard cornering to provide a more nimble feel. The Forester is easy to modulate around town and on highway speed.


2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Nissan rogue

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

Brake Front(in)





Brake Rear(in)





Curb Weight(lbs)





60-0 MPH (ft.)





The Honda CR-V scores the best number when it comes to braking followed by Subaru Forester. Nissan Rogue is the lightest among rivalry, still takes 127 feet to stop from 60 mph. The Volks Wagen Tiguan is the worst performer here taking 131 feet to stop from 60 mph because of its heft.

Ride and Handling of the 2020 Subaru Forester

The new 2.5-liter boxer engine, with 182 horsepower and 175 lb-ft of torque, feels satisfactory if not overpowering. It is sufficient to move this 3,500-pound SUV up to the mountain without any evident lag. The new Subaru Global Platform that underpins the Impreza, Crosstrek, all-new three-row Ascent, and now the Forester is 40 % more rigid than the outgoing model.

The ride quality is excellent with minimal body roll on corners. The Forester is equipped with a stellar suspension with 8.7 inches of ground clearance which can tackle any terrain with ease. 

2020 Subaru Forester Crossover Rear View

The ride quality is excellent on the revised suspension. It's electronically assisted chunky steering is heavy at first but feels composed after some time with an immediate response. It also features two drive modes, the intelligent mode favors fuel economy but still leaves a lively response when the gas is hammered. Sport mode inclines things up with the eager throttle response.

2020 Subaru Forester Fuel Economy


"With EPA fuel-economy ratings that match much of the compact-crossover segment, the Forester will likely satisfy buyers seeking efficiency." - Car and Driver

The Subaru Forester returns an estimated 26 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway. It is able to manage 28 mpg combined which is better than most of the cars in this segment. It comes with an automatic stop/start system when you are at a stoplight which also helps in preserving fuel. If you don’t push it too hard, then Forester’s 16.6-gallon tank can ensure you cover at least 480 miles without having to worry about gas stations.


2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Nissan rogue

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

MPG (City)





MPG (Highway) 





MPG (Combined) 





Those numbers are pretty good for the class, and none of the rivals can match it. Counting the fact that Subaru comes with all-wheel drive as a system, it does not affect the fuel efficiency. The Tiguan appears out to be the least fuel-efficient contender here, despite having the humblest engine in the segment.

2020 Subaru Forester Interior


"The Forester's cabin is a straight-forward, frill-free affair with a good driving position and great outward visibility." - Car and Driver

Seating of the 2020 Subaru Forester

The Subaru has finally addressed the long-standing issue of irritating noise filtering in the cabin. There are plenty of soft-touch materials here and the whole cabin is simple and usable with a focus on ergonomics. As it’s a Subaru, plenty of fronts and rear-seat legroom and headroom is a given. 

Subaru's new Global Platform has a 30-millimeter longer wheelbase over the outgoing Forester. This accounts for the more interior room; the rear seat is spacious enough for two adults and a third if needed with plenty of head- and legroom. The interior is crafted from durable material and it seems like it will last a decade.

2020 Subaru Forester Crossover's Front Seats

The Forester can seat five people in real comfort affording them space to spread out with its generous legroom and headroom. Also, while some will find the interior delightfully simple, some may dismiss it as boring.


2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Nissan rogue

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

Passenger capacity





Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg)






Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg)






Third (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.)





It’s the Volkswagen Tiguan that holds the edge due to its 7-seating capacity. None of the other vehicles in this equation can seat more than five. In terms of curb weight and interior space, the Subaru Forester and Nissan Rogue are pretty similar. On witnessing, it turns out that the Honda CR-V offers sufficient space at the rear bench than the Nissan.

Interior Features of the 2020 Subaru Forester

The 2020 Subaru Forester  has been loaded with a ton of features that keeps up with the segment, some of these features are:

  • 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat
  • Heated front seats
  • The leather-wrapped steering wheel and gear shifter
  • The heated steering wheel and front seats
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control
  • 60/40 split flat-folding rear seats

Cargo Capacity of the  2020 Subaru Forester

Forester as the name intimates made for souls who love trails and long distances. It comes with an extraordinary space that can hold a large amount of cargo. Forester has 35.4 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats and a maximum of 76.1 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down. 

2020 Subaru Forester Crossover has good Cargo Area

The wide rear gate opening of 51.2 inches and automated liftgate makes loading of luggage a breeze.


2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Nissan rogue

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

Volume (with all rows upright) (ft cube)





Volume (with third row folded) (ft cube)





Volume (with all rows folded) (ft cube)





The Tiguan loses this competition hands down, as its third-row takes up good space and hence it sits out of this comparison. With all the seats down, its the Forester that that takes the lead which is then followed closely by the Honda CR-V, however, its the Honda CR-V that takes the lead in terms of space behind the second row. Also, The Nissan Rogue stacks up head-to-head with it in the same regard.

Infotainment System of the 2020 Subaru Forester

The base 2018 Subaru Forester 2.5i gets the Subaru Starlink infotainment system with a 6.2-inch touchscreen. You also get Bluetooth audio streaming and a 3.5 mm auxiliary jack. The base trim has a basic 4 speaker audio system. The higher Forester Premium and Limited get Starlink infotainment system with a 7-inch touchscreen and 6-Speaker audio system.

2020 Subaru Forester Crossover has 7-inches of Infotainment Screen

The Touring trim comes with upgraded 7-Inch touchscreen infotainment with navigation. Audiophiles will be delighted here with a Harman Kardon Premium audio system. This option is also available in the 2.5i Limited trim ($1,350). However, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are sorely missed especially when most other Subarus get them as standard.

Some of the outstanding features are:

  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
  • Pandora and Aha app integration
  • NFC technology
  • Voice-activated controls
  • Dual-USB ports
  • Bluetooth audio streaming with hands-free feature

2020 Subaru Forester Exterior


"It's similar in size to the Outback station wagon but offers a little extra ground clearance for when hauling your kayak by hand down to the shoreline is too much trouble. " - Car and Driver 

Exterior features of the 2020 Subaru Forester

The Subaru Forester exterior has moved away from its wagon roots. While the base trim gets black rearview mirrors and steel wheels, the higher trims are adorned with LED headlights and 18-inch alloys. The raised roof rails complete the outdoor look.

The Forester is also one of the boxiest vehicles currently available.es especially around the headlamps that impart an “eye-brow” effect to them. The overall look now has a certain SUV-like road presence. The front grill features some chrome accents which add more points to its premium scorecard.

2020 Subaru Forester Crossover Right Side View

The 2020 Forester is much like the previous one as Subaru doesn't want to mess with the success mantra. Front, side, and rear under guards are standard, as is lower body cladding to protect against mud and rocks. The new Sport model is distinguished by its gloss-black exterior trim and orange accents on the black under guards and roof-rail mounts, plus orange stitching on the inside.me.


2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Nissan rogue

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

Curb Weight(lbs)




















Ground clearance(in)










The Subaru Forester weighs 3449 pounds – light for the segment. At 182.1 inches, its length is average among competition but it’s the narrowest in segment at 71.5 inches. Hence, maneuvering in tight spaces should not be much of an issue. However, at 67.5 inches, it’s among the tallest. Combined with the segment beating 8.7-inch ground clearance, the Forester does look like an old-school SUV.

Exterior Features of the  2020 Subaru Forester

The Subaru Forester has been endowed with some signature design cues that set it apart from the division in some way or the other. Some of these features are:

  • LED Steering Responsive Headlights
  • Rear Spoiler
  • Panoramic moonroof
  • Windshield wiper de-icer with heated external mirrors
  • Satin chrome exterior mirrors with integrated indicators
  • Roof Rails

2020 Subaru Forester Safety


"The Forester earned a five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and a Top Safety Pick designation from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for 2019. " - Car and Driver

The safety rating of the 2020 Subaru Forester

The Subaru brand is now increasingly focusing on safety. The acclaimed Subaru Eyesight driver assistance technology is optional in 2.5i Premium and 2.5 Limited and it's standard on both the Touring trims. Strangely, the Eyesight system is not available even as an option in the 2.0XT Premium trim.

Safety features of the 2020 Subaru Forester

  • Adaptive Cruise Control
  • Pre-collision Braking
  • Lane Departure and Sway Warning
  • Lane Keep Assist
2020 Subaru Forester Safety feature

 Some of the other safety features include :

  • Automatic pre-collision braking
  • Advanced adaptive cruise control with lane-centering
  • Lane departure prevention
  • Driver monitoring system
  • Rear Cross-traffic alert
  • Blind-spot detection system
  • SUBARU Starlink safety and security services

2020 Subaru Forester Competition


2020 Subaru Forester vs 2020 Nissan Rogue:

The 2020 Subaru Forester is faster, more capacious and also costs less than the Nissan Rogue. Apart from its greater fuel economy and somewhat more cargo space, the Nissan Rogue is totally overshadowed by the Subaru. The Forester’s standard feature list is also more significant than the Rogue’s. Hence, we think if you can negotiate slightly on the fuel economy front, then it’s the Subaru Forester that acquires this contest hands down.

2020 Nissan Rogue

The Nissan Rogue and Subaru Forester have a lot of things in common. Both of the vehicles have lots of legroom and headroom. The Subaru Forester undercuts the Nissan Rogue by $500 and also comes with standard all-wheel drive. In Nissan, you have to pay extra for 4WD, which makes the Forester an obvious winner.

2020 Subaru Forester vs 2020 Volkswagen Tiguan:

The Volkswagen Tiguan is somewhat more powerful and efficient than the Subaru Forester. It is also the more spacious of the two, thanks to its third row that can incorporate two kids at least. In terms of sturdy build character, the Subaru is quite up-to-the-mark but then the Volkswagen seems more solidly put together. Since they both can be bought for the same amount of money, we think that the Tiguan wins this battle for doing everything that the Subaru can, just better, of course at much lower fuel economy than the latter.

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Subaru Forester vs 2020 Honda CR-V

The Honda CR-V is lauded as the most practical compact SUV and with good reasons. It has the best in class cargo capacity, plenty of interior appointments, a great combination of ride and handling, and superior fuel economy. However, the Subaru Forester closely matches the CR-V in terms of practicality and its USP is its genuine off-road capability.

2020 Honda CR-V

The Subaru Forester and Honda CR-V have similar fuel economies and sizes. The Honda CR-V has the best in class cargo space which the Forester can't match. The 1.5-liter turbocharged powertrain of CR-C is far better in terms of performance when compared to the Forester. The Forester is a capable off-roader and the CR-V can't match its ability. Opting one depends on what you desire, city jaunts or adventure junkie.

2020 Subaru Forester Final Verdict

The Subaru Forester is a complete package that distinguishes itself from the competitors by combining such conflicting characteristics as off-road capability, fuel efficiency, and fun-to-drive road manners. The interior is spacious too with cavernous luggage capacity. The low cost of ownership and phenomenal reliability with slow depreciation further sweeten the deal. If you can agree on a bit on the fuel economy front, then we think that the 2020 Subaru Forester justifies each and every cent that you consume on it, if not more.

2020 Subaru Forester


Also read:

2020 Subaru Forester FAQs

What is the engine configuration of the 2020 Subaru Forester?

How is the fuel efficiency of the 2020 Subaru Forester?

How is the cargo space offering of the 2020 Subaru Forester?

What is the curb weight of the 2020 Subaru Forester?

Is the 2020 Subaru Forester a reliable vehicle?

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