2021 Subaru Forester - There's Still No Turbo, Which Trim Is The Best Pick Now
The 2021 Subaru Forester arrives in five trim levels, but which model is the best? Subaru won't bring back a Forester 2.0XT turbocharged model, so it's not an option for fans who want one. A turbocharged model could come back but as a smaller, more fuel-efficient version next year. For now, there are two trim levels that we think are good and one that is the best.
The 2021 Subaru Forester Premium trim ($28,845) hits the sweet spot and is a good option for most compact SUV shoppers. It comes with the features most buyers are looking for with heated front seats, heated exterior mirrors and windshield wiper de-icer for those who live in cold climates. The Premium also brings a 10-way power driver's seat with power lumbar support, roof rails for carrying extra cargo, dark tint privacy glass to keep it cool in the summer, and a panoramic power moonroof.
In addition to LED steering responsive headlights and high beam assist, the 2021 model change Forester Premium also comes standard with keyless access, push-button start, and fog lights. If you want leather seats, you will have to move up to the Limited trim ($32,445).
The Sport trim is the best option for Forester buyers who live in cold climates and lead active lifestyles. The 2021 Subaru Forester Sport ($30,445) adds features that offer the lineup's best value. In addition to the Premium trim's features, Sport adds safety technology and increased all-weather capability.
The Forester Sport now adds blind-spot detection with lane change assist and rear cross-traffic alert as standard equipment. This safety system was formerly optional.
One of the best features in the Forester lineup available on the Sport, Limited and Touring trims is dual-function X-Mode that adds deep snow and mud settings. The standard X-Mode on the Premium trim is good and changes the Forester's brakes by locking up one wheel if it senses it spinning. The system knows it needs extra grip instead of letting the wheel spin.
The new dual-function X-Mode uses a knob on the console, allowing the driver to switch from Snow and Dirt mode to Deep Snow and Deep Mud Mode. This mode enables the Forester Sport to maintain momentum, adding the capability for a broader range of weather conditions. It's the best feature if you live where the snow falls in feet, not inches.
The Sport trim brings the most features for outdoor enthusiasts who will use the compact SUV to get farther off the beaten path for hiking, mountain biking, fishing, camping, or ski trips. Overall, the 2021 Subaru Forester Sport offers the best off-pavement ability and value in the lineup.
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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press and the founder of Subaru Report where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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