What is it?
The long-awaited diesel version of Subaru’s soft-roader, set to dramatically broaden its appeal.
Until now, the Forester’s considerable charms have always been tempered by its petrol-only choice of powerplants, but the arrival of Subaru’s flat-four turbodiesel should dramatically improve its appeal.
Despite using the same powerplant as the diesel Legacy, the diesel Forester is rated at 147bhp, 3bhp less than its bigger sister.
Apparently – and ironically – the Forester’s gaping bonnet scoop doesn’t let air flow as freely as the more subtle vent on the Legacy.
Underneath the Forester shares its platform and four-wheel drive system with the Impreza, which means struts at the front and a multi-link for the rear.
What’s it like?
Decent to drive, if a bit bland to look at. Critically, the diesel engine brings some much-needed zip to the Forester’s mid-range performance – and also adds a pleasing compression-ignition take on the familiar Boxer ‘thrum’.