Independent, impartial advice for car buyers and car owners

Expert Rating

Subaru Forester

Our unique Expert Ratings combine scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites to give you a definitive rating on every new car

Expert Rating

The Subaru Forester is a medium-sized SUV/crossover that sits above the smaller XV in the Subaru family. The current model is the fifth generation, which was unveiled in 2018 before going on sale in the UK 2019. It is currently only available with a 2.0-litre petrol engine that also incorporates a small hybrid system.

The Forester has received mixed reviews from the UK motoring media, with mostly poor to average scores. As of August 2021, it holds an Expert Rating of 52% based on 15 UK reviews, which puts it in 10th place out of 12 similar-size vehicles we have analysed to date.

The Subaru Forester is highly regarded for its safety features and its off-road ability, both of which are considered as good as – if not better than – anything else in its class. However, it’s on-road comfort and performance are criticised as being off the pace of other SUV rivals, while several sources pointed out that is hybrid system does not deliver competitive real-world fuel economy.

Key specifications

Body style: Medium SUV/crossover
Engines: petrol
Price: From £36,335 on-road

- Advertisement -

Launched: Summer 2019
Last updated: Winter 2019/20
Replacement due: TBA

Image gallery


Reviews, road tests and comparisons from across the UK automotive media

The Car Expert


Auto Express


Auto Trader








Company Car Today


Honest John




The Sun


Top Gear


What Car?





Independent crash test and safety ratings from Euro NCAP

Overall rating: 5 stars
Date tested: January 2020









Note on safety
The Subaru Foretster is very highly regarded for the level of safety it provides, both in terms of active safety (helping you avoid an accident) and passive safety (protecting you in the event of an accident). In addition to a five-star safety rating from Euro NCAP, the safety organisation also rated the Forester as Best in Class for 2019 in the Small Off-Road/MPV category. Its four safety scores were all outstanding, and in particular the Child Occupant score is the highest-ever result in its class.

Eco Rating

Independent emissions and efficiency ratings from Green NCAP

No eco rating

The Subaru Forester has not yet been lab tested by Green NCAP. This is a new initiative, launched in 2018 as a sister organisation to Euro NCAP. As yet, very few new cars have been tested for environmental impact by Green NCAP, and the testing programme was halted in early 2020 by the coronavirus pandemic. It is due to resume in the second half of the year.

Security Rating

Independent vehicle theft and security ratings from Thatcham Research

Thatcham Research logo 150x65px

Rating: Superior | Good | Basic | Poor | Unacceptable
Relay Attack: Pass

Model tested: e-Boxer XE Premium
Date: March 2020

The Subaru Forester automatically received a Poor rating from Thatcham because it failed a relay attack test, which measures the security of a car’s keyless entry and/or keyless start system. The Forester is susceptible to thieves intercepting the car’s keyless signal and using it to steal the car.


Trophies, prizes and awards that the Subaru Forester has received


  • What Car? Awards – Technology Award
  • 4×4 Magazine Award – Best Small SUV

Find your perfect Subaru Forester

Explore thousands of cars for sale with Carsnip, the UK’s automotive search engine

Similar cars

If you’re interested in the Subaru Forester, you might also like to consider these alternatives

Citroën C5 Aircross | Hyundai Santa Fe | Kia SorentoLand Rover Discovery Sport | Mitsubishi Shogun Sport | Nissan X-Trail | Peugeot 5008 | SEAT Tarraco | Skoda Kodiaq | SsangYong Rexton | Suzuki Across | Toyota RAV4 | Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace

- Advertisement -

Best car rankings

Want to see how this car ranks against its rivals?

The Car Expert has the ultimate ranking of the best and worst new cars on sale, based on scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites

Best car rankings

Want to see how this car ranks against its rivals?

The Car Expert has the ultimate ranking of the best and worst new cars on sale, based on scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites