Subaru Debuts Redesigned 2009 Forester At Detroit Auto Show

Michael James

Subaru of America, Inc., has introduced the redesigned, third-generation 2009 Forester, a crossover built on the manufacturer’s strong reputation for safety, dependability and versatility. The 2009 Subaru Forester expands that reputation.

It features a bolder, more SUV-like design, and advancements in safety technology, comfort, and driving dynamics.

The unveiling at the Detroit Auto Show occurred about three months before the Forester will arrive at dealerships nationwide.

As with all Subaru models, the 2009 Forester comes equipped as standard with Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive. The new 2009 Forester again blends positive SUV attributes, including a high seating point and interior versatility with passenger car comfort, handling and fuel efficiency.

The 2009 Forester is built on an all-new platform featuring a 3.6-inch longer wheelbase (now 103.0 inches) that improves ride and interior space, especially rear seat legroom.

The 2009 Forester also features increased hip and shoulder room. In addition, the new platform improves crash-worthiness and provides a stiffer platform for crisper handling. A new double-wishbone rear suspension, mounted to a sub frame, replaces the previous strut-type configuration to provide improved ride and handling and increased cargo room.  The enhancement of body rigidity and new suspension help reduce levels of Noise, Vibration, and Harshness (NVH).

All Forester models for 2009 feature standard side-curtain airbags with a rollover sensor, and the Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC) stability and traction control system is standard on all models for the first time. With the Subaru Dynamic Chassis Control Concept (Subaru DC3), Subaru optimized all elements of the Forester’s chassis to deliver a better balance of ride, handling response, quietness and overall traction performance.

The 2009 Forester offers naturally aspirated and turbocharged/intercooled 2.5-liter Boxer engines, both revised to provide better performance. In particular, low-end and mid-range torque is improved for both engines for more responsive everyday performance.

The robust body structure, heavy-duty raised four-wheel independent suspension and up to 8.9 inches of ground clearance help make Forester equally adept at negotiating twisty roads and absorbing ruts and bumps. The ride quality, acclaimed in the previous model as one of the best in the segment, is now even smoother and quieter.

All Forester models feature a quicker steering ratio and a more rigid steering mounting.  Forester models with 16-inch steel wheels use 215/65R16 tires; models with 17-inch aluminum-alloy wheels feature 225/55R17 tires.

Rear passenger comfort is enhanced by a central armrest in all models, and new available retractable rear center tray that can securely hold food and drinks is available, as is a reclining rear seatback function.

The standard 60/40-split rear seatbacks fold to provide a flat cargo floor, made wider between the wheelhouses by the new double-wishbone suspension. The cargo area is large enough to accommodate four Tour-sized golf bags or four large overnight suitcases with the rear seat backs raised.

Heated front seats, heated exterior mirrors, and a windshield wiper de-icer are available as optional features. The available AM/FM 100-watt premium stereo includes a 6-disc in-dash CD changer with MP3/WMA audio file capability. The accompanying 6-speaker audio system with SRS Circle Surround Automotive® is also available in other Subaru models. An auxiliary audio input jack enables connection of an iPod® or MP3 player.

Additional available comfort touches include a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio and cruise control buttons and a leather-wrapped shifter handle.

An All-Wheel Drive pioneer, Subaru is the only brand to equip all its models with Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive as standard. Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive is comprised of the Boxer engine and the full-time power distribution system, which varies by model and transmission.  The aluminum Boxer engine and simple, symmetrical drivetrain layout help to lower the center of gravity, which in turn contributes to handling precision.

Subaru began offering four-wheel drive passenger cars 35 years ago and introduced innovative automatic full-time All-Wheel Drive in 1987. In 1997, Subaru became the first brand in the U.S. to make All-Wheel Drive standard on all models.

Article Last Updated: July 29, 2013.

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