2021 Subaru Forester, 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, 2022 Subaru Outback
Denis Flierl's picture

Subaru Reliability - The Most Reliable And Least Reliable Years And Models

Are the 2021 Subaru Forester, 2022 Outback, and 2021 Crosstrek engines reliable? Check out the most reliable models and years and least reliable Subaru Boxer engines.

Are the Subaru Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek engines reliable? The studies below suggest new 2021 Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek models are reliable. But there are some older Subaru Boxer engines and newer engines that have had reliability problems. But first, we'll look at the new J.D. Power, Consumer Reports, and iSeeCars reports and check recent model reliability scores.

J.D. Power

Subaru scored fair in the 2021 J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study but does improve from last year. Subaru picked up an individual award in the SUV segment; The 2021 Subaru Forester scores one of the top three models in dependability in the competitive compact SUV segment. Read the full report here.

2021 Subaru Forester, 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, 2022 Subaru Outback

Consumer Reports

Subaru scores number three overall among mainstream and luxury brands in the latest Consumer Reports annual report card ranking thirty-two car brands. Subaru scored ahead of Toyota, Honda, and Lexus.

Each car brand's overall score for individual models is based on four key factors: the road test, reliability, owner satisfaction, and safety. Out of Subaru's lineup, Subaru has five recommended models from CR. The 2021 Subaru Forester, Outback, Crosstrek, Impreza, and Legacy are top picks. Read the full report here.

2021 Subaru Forester, 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, 2022 Subaru Outback

iSeeCars study

In iSeeCars' recent Best Used Cars for 2021, they say the Subaru Outback is a superior choice because of its safety and reliability, and resale values are the highest compared with most other models.

What Subaru engines are the least reliable?

Subaru Report has documented the EJ25 2.5-liter turbocharged Boxer engine has had reliability problems. Subaru had three lawsuits claiming an engine defect in 2012-2017 WRX and WRX STI models equipped with the EJ25 2.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. Subaru of America settled the lawsuit, and you can read our full report here.

Subaru Corporation has discontinued the EJ25 2.5-liter turbocharged engine, the WRX STI, after the 2022 model year. The next-generation 2023 STI will likely be powered by the reliable 2.4-liter turbocharged engine currently used in the 2022 Ascent, 2022 Outback, 2022 Legacy, and all-new naturally-aspirated 2.4-liter in the 2022 BRZ sports coupe.

Do Subaru engines burn excessive oil?

Consumer Reports identified which automakers, engines, and model years owners report adding at least a quart of oil between oil changes. Subaru's 2.0-liter engine in the 2012-2013 Crosstrek and Impreza, the 2.5-liter engine in the 2013-2014 Forester, and the 3.6-liter engine in the 2010-2012 Outback are on the list.

Cash Cars Buyer suggests a few models experience more breakdowns than the 1999 through 2010 Subaru Forester or the Baja from 2003 through 2005. Gasket problems and engine repairs sometimes happen, including the Outback from 2000 to 2011 and the Legacy between 2000 and 2009.

Consumer Reports says the 2012 Subaru Forester 2.5-liter engine is most at risk for needing an expensive engine rebuild. Check out the full report here.

What Subaru engines are the most reliable?

Aside from a few model years, maintaining a Subaru is relatively inexpensive. The Subaru brand offers value since other brands that tend to reach high miles require more expensive parts and labor. It still comes down to driving habits, routine oil changes, and primary care of the car.

Most Subaru engines can be expected to last through 200,000 miles before needing significant maintenance or repairs. Forbes recently listed the Subaru Forester as one of the ten most likely models to run over 250,000 miles.

Treating your Subaru well means you'll likely see it last beyond the 200,000-mile mark before needing any major repairs. Today's newer models like the 2021 Subaru Forester, Outback, and Crosstrek should last beyond the 250,000-mile mark with good care.

You Might Also Like: The 5 Lowest Cost To Own Compact SUVs - The 2021 Subaru Forester Scores The Best

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. Check out 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.

Subaru Report - We’ve got you covered! Check back tomorrow for more unique, informative SUBARU news, reviews, and previews you can trust.

Leave your comments below, share the article with friends and tweet it out to your followers!

Photo credit: Subaru

Subscribe to Torque News on YouTube.

Follow Torque News on YouTube, Twitter and Facebook.


Interested in Subaru
2012 Subaru Forester three different engines all consumed more than two quarts every thousand miles. Constantly burned out headlights and the front CV joints needed to replacements twice in 60,000 mi
We drive an Outback! We have now had three Subaru's, two Forester's, and the last one a 2015 Outback. We do like our “Subby's” We also like Jeeps and have had many different models over the years. Our 2015 Outback has only 51K and is just like new yet. I bought a replacement Jeep, a 2012 Liberty (98K) as a second car. We were really surprised, our Liberty's CABIN is much quieter than than our Outback! Lot less wind noise in our Jeep? Our Subaru was recalled for wind noise a few years back but I could hear no difference after the dealer made changes? But we still like our Subaru's!! Noisy or not. Just trivia information.
Is year 2010 Subaru Forester engine is reliable ?
The numbers regarding the reliability and number of miles until any major repair or maintenance are way exagerated. Any Subaru will require gasket replacement after 100 K miles. Mine, a Forester 2004 bought new from dealership has now less than 100k and dry soon vI will need a new belt,water pump and pulleys and a little later major transmission repair, bearings and almost certain anew gasket as lately it hardly catch its breath . The car has been well Maintained . It has an accident involving body repairs but nothing at the engine and transmission. It was staying in storage for six years because of lack of funds. I bought it exactly because of these lies about the reliability and durability but turned out that all was just a "legal lie" as they calling advertising. Noted that I've never forced the engine and I was quite carefully with it. Big disappointment.
The EJ20 and EJ22 were honestly the best engines never had gasket issues or oil burning...still used a timing belt but hey it was non+interference design so they easily chugged past 200,000kms..
My 2001 Impreza 2.5RS has the EJ2.5 and once the upgraded head bolts were done it has been bulletproof despite the hard life it lives on mid grade gas and cheap oil changes.
I have a Forester 2011 and has 144K mileage and goes low in oil every 3-4 thousand miles way earlier than the 7500 service schedule. I first observed it around 120K. The Subaru mechanic also identified a head gasket issue mixing oil and water at 143K and cost $5K and of course I didn't repair it. I hardly imagine I can drive it to 200K. Its horizontal cylinders make it harder to fix head gasket issues on the side of the engine. It is a well known issue since many years ago, I complained to Subaru but they told me Powertrain warranty expired many years ago and didn't stand behind their car. The car cabin is noisy and get worse with higher mileage. When I bought Forester they also told me similar stories about high mileage 250K and so on, please don't believe it. Recent models haven't been on road enough, so cannot claim issues fixed.
I am the owner of a Subaru Forester 2.5l, automatic, 2008. I have had great pleasure driving my car until she started giving problems. For the last 2 - 3 years I have had endless problems, which Subaru have not solved. I was told that my car is 11 years old and that it was wear and tear. I have been struggling to try and have my car fixed. I have been for periods without a car for weeks and depended on favours. For the last week and next week it is at a gearbox and electrical centre. I am a working pensioner and do not have finances for another car. I would appreciate if something can be done and I have my own dependable transport again. Thank you.
200,000 miles expected? Really? Then perhaps that’s what the warranty should say. If that’s Subaru statement then stand behind it. That’s what Hyundai and KIA do.
Our 2014 Forester burns oil like crazy. Just put in a quart only 3,000 mile after oil change. On a trip the dashboard lit up like a Christmas tree. $1,400 transmission job. Subaru replaced rear springs and found right front end needed replaced. Hate this car
I have a 2014 Forester XT 2.5 litre turbo. Has 151,000K on it. I have had rear coil springs replaced and CVT valve replaced both under warranty. It does not use oil. I like this car but do worry about what might happen next. Thinking of trading it in, maybe for a Honda Odyssey.