The updated version of Subaru’s do-it-all midsize SUV will launch in Australia ahead of the Christmas holidays – and we’ve got the full specifications
The arrival of the facelifted 2022 Subaru Forester midsize SUV has been pushed back by one month to November amid a wider industry struggle to secure critical parts.
Demonstrator models are arriving in dealerships now and Subaru Australia promises there will be a healthy supply of all Forester grades once it goes on sale in two months’ time.
While the official on-sale date has been delayed, the full list of inclusions on each grade has been released. Prices have risen by $700-$900 depending on the grade and the entry-point now sits at $35,990 before on-road costs.
Subaru continues to offer the Forester in a total of seven grades, known as the 2.5i, 2.5i-L, 2.5i Premium, 2.5i Sport and 2.5i-S, along with the Hybrid L and S grades.
The 2022 Forester sports a new appearance with a revised headlight and grille design along with more safety and updated technology fitted as standard.
At the front, Subaru has fitted its self-levelling and steering responsive LED headlights fitted as standard. Fog lights are also a standard but use halogen globes on the base 2.5i, 2.5i-L and 2.5i Premium grades.
Subaru has replaced the 6.5-inch touchscreen with a larger 8.0-inch unit, paired with DAB digital radio and even a CD player on all grades.
With in-built wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto buyers can play music through the standard six-speaker audio system, while the more expensive 2.5i-S and Hybrid S receive an eight-speaker Harman Kardon system.
Subaru has retained the somewhat unique additional 6.3-inch display further up the dash, which displays vehicle functions and works in conjunction with an additional 4.2-inch display fitted between the two analogue gauges in the instrument cluster.
The Forester features a leather steering wheel and gear shifter as standard, while the entry-level grades include cloth seats or a ‘Premium cloth’ material on the 2.5i Premium grade.
As the more adventure-focused Forester of the lot, the 2.5i Sport opts for a water repellent seat material and only the top-spec 2.5i-S and Hybrid S have seats trimmed partly in leather.
Subaru includes heated seats in the front row on all but the base model, while 2.5i Premium, Sport, S and Hybrid S models all receive eight-way power-adjustability for the driver and front passenger.
An electric sunroof is also offered, but only on the top-spec 2.5i Sport, S and Hybrid S grades.
Country buyers will welcome the decision to retain a full-size spare wheel, though hybrid buyers continue to miss out on any kind of spare wheel and have to make do with a puncture repair kit.
Subaru has elected to enhance its EyeSight safety package which now has a wider field of view that enhances the capability of features such as forwards autonomous emergency braking (AEB).
The package now includes lane keep assist, lane departure prevention and autonomous emergency steering as standard, along with existing features such as blind-spot monitoring and rear-cross traffic alert.
Standard on all bar the Forester base model is a front and side view monitoring along with the rear-AEB, the latter of which is standard on the larger Subaru Outback.
Under the bonnet sits the same naturally aspirated 2.5-litre, four-cylinder boxer petrol engine developing an unchanged 136kW of power and 239Nm of torque.
The Forester hybrid features the smaller 2.0-litre engine of the same type, developing less grunt at 110kW/196Nm though it gains an extra 12.3kW/66Nm from the electric motors.
Both engine options are considerably down on power and torque when compared to rivals such as the Volkswagen Tiguan and Ford Escape.
A more powerful turbocharged 1.8-litre engine is sold in Japan, making 130kW/300Nm, though it remains absent from all Australian Subaru models.
All engine options are paired to a CVT automatic transmission which feeds grunt through to the standard all wheel drive system.
The off road-focused ‘X-Mode’ has been refined for 2022, with engineers tweaking the hill descent control function to kick in automatically once drivers drop below 35km/h.
Changes have also been made to enhance the driveability of the Forester, with steering feel said to be improved and the ride more comfortable after some suspension tweaks, though in our review of the pre-facelifted model we didn’t identify any major issues.
Subaru says noise and vibration levels are also down in the Forester, which should make long country drives a bit more peaceful but we’ll put all these claims to the test in an upcoming review.
The facelifted 2022 Subaru Forester officially goes on sale in November this year.
All prices listed are before on-road costs.
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