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Subaru Reveals 2020 Forester With 3 New Upgrades, Still No Hybrid Model

Subaru announces the 2020 Forester is coming with new upgrades. See what improvements and changes are coming on the compact SUV.


Subaru will bring a 2020 Forester for customers later this year, so if you didn’t buy the newly-remodeled 2019 model, a few more improvements have been made. Subaru Japan will get the new models next month, but U.S. customers will have to wait until fall. Subaru Corp announced the 2020 Forester will get a new color, new exterior upgrades, and a new safety feature.

The 2020 Subaru Forester will get a new exterior color, Magnetic Gray Metallic, pictured here on the Japan-spec Forester X-Break, the same as the U.S. trim Forester Sport. The 2020 Forester will also feature a new LED license plate lamp that will come standard on Sport, Limited and Touring trims.

2020 Subaru Forester Magnetic GreyForester safety reminder

For the 2020 model year, all Subaru Forester trims will come with a new Rear Seat Reminder like we reported the 2020 Ascent will get. The new feature will give the driver a reminder to check the rear seat before exiting the SUV. It’s designed to assist in preventing a child or a pet from accidentally being locked and trapped in the vehicle.

Subaru says the system will not be able to physically sense the presence of children or pets in the rear seat area, but it will turn on if one of the following conditions is met: the vehicle is started within 30 minutes after a rear side door is opened and closed; a rear side door is opened and closed when the vehicle is running and stationary; the vehicle is turned off and back on again within 30 minutes, and the rear side doors remained closed.

Watch 2020 Subaru Forester Changes and How Child Lock Reminder Works and Subscribe to Torque News Youtube For Daily Subaru and Automotive News.

The Rear Seat Reminder will alert the driver with an audible sound after the vehicle is turned off and will display a warning message in the Combination Meter Display, reminding the driver to check the rear seat area. It could also be a good reminder to check for valuables or electronic devices left in plain sight after a shopping or road trip.

No e-Boxer Hybrid

Subaru Corp also announced the Japan-spec Forester e-Boxer hybrid model is selling better than expected. The hybrid model now accounts for nearly half of all Forester sales (47%) in the home country of Japan. This model has not been announced for U.S. customers, so they can only look and not touch.

You Might Also Like: Subaru Reveals All-New Forester e-Boxer Hybrid Details

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Photo credit: Subaru Corp


David P (not verified)    June 11, 2019 - 10:01PM

In reply to by Denis Flierl

My 18 Forester is the best of six Subarus I've owned. I'm trading it in for a Toyota RAV4 Hybrid when it gets in later this month. Subaru missed the boat for market share by withholding its hybrid Forester here. Most of us who care about the environment want a product that does more to reduce our carbon impact, sooner than later. The Crosstrek isn't big enough and sacrifices too much space to integrate its battery into a vehicle not designed for it. Wake up Subaru. Two years too late isn't good enough to keep my business.

Marcel Bermudez (not verified)    June 12, 2019 - 9:55PM

In reply to by David P (not verified)

Could never figure how a hybrid is good for the enviroment. Battery production is disastrous on the enviroment and the batteries are charged on the grid. Go figure.

Paul (not verified)    June 27, 2019 - 8:10AM

In reply to by Marcel Bermudez (not verified)

Hybrids like the RAV4 and E-Boxer use regenerative braking to recharge, not the grid. Plugin hybrids (PHEV) can use grid power but remember that much of the grid is moving to renewable energy and if you have solar panels (like I do), recharging can happen by solar. Battery production is not as disastrous for the environment as fossil fuel extraction (most of it in the US comes from fracking) and processing/delivery/storage which affects many places worldwide whereas battery production only affects a few isolated mines in places like Africa and China.

Nick (not verified)    July 1, 2019 - 2:50PM

In reply to by Paul (not verified)

Actually, if you read a bit more about the RAV4 hybrid, you'll find out that the vehicle can go on the battery only for a short mileage: "In reality, the Toyota wasn't designed to make long battery-powered trips. Instead, the RAV4's electric motor is intended to keep you mobile at times when running the petrol engine would be wasteful, such as when inching forwards in stop-start traffic, or manoeuvering at low speeds at the beginning and end of your journey."
So there isn't big advantage, over the petrol version, yet you'll have one additional power source to worry about. Because the hybrid battery does get hot, and because of this, it has it's own cooling system ( which often fails). You can read all this in Toyota hybrid forums.

Chip (not verified)    September 8, 2019 - 3:31PM

In reply to by Nick (not verified)

There is a GIANT difference, check out the mpg difference. In stop/go traffic you are constantly charging the battery. The only area you dont get as big of a difference is on long interstate journeys.

ATBonine (not verified)    July 23, 2019 - 11:17PM

In reply to by Denis Flierl

Yes. I would buy one.
From what I’ve read, the Hybrid will make initial acceleration much better on the electric motor.
The one thing that irritates me is Subaru’s inability to set a schedule on what the engine will be available when.
So, do I need to lease a 2020 Forrester for a year and lose money to finally get a 2021 Hybrid?
That kind of sucks.
Maybe I’ll simply abandon Subaru and get a 2019 or 2020 Hybrid RAV4 or CRV now.
Like the old saying goes, “you snooze, you lose.”.

W Prather (not verified)    July 25, 2019 - 3:02AM

In reply to by Denis Flierl

Yep, I am also driving a 2008 Forester. Want the new safety features, but was holding out until I found out if we are getting the hybrid Forester in the US this year. Apparently not. All electric doesn't give me enough range. Looks like I'll be buying a RAV4.

Chip (not verified)    September 8, 2019 - 3:28PM

In reply to by Denis Flierl

Of course! Rav4 hybrids sell like hotcakes. In fact, i came to this page looking for an alternative to rav4 (i love them but forester was slightly safer). Subaru is making the wrong move if they are worried it won't sell. The fact that it sold better than they thought shows the company is run too cautiously. Bring the hybrid over!

JP (not verified)    June 11, 2019 - 4:25PM

I am unable to find the source for this information. Can you lead me to the announcement by Subaru?