Skip to main content

Both the Honda CR-V and the Subaru Forester have much to offer for compact crossover SUV shoppers, with their good driving dynamics, high-level safety, comfortable ride, and useful features. However, there’s an important factor in the CR-V’s favor. The 2023 Honda CR-V has one big strength over the 2023 Subaru Forester: an outstanding redesign.

Unlike the 2023 Subaru Forester, the 2023 Honda CR-V has a redesign

Front angle view of blue 2023 Honda CR-V crossover SUV
2023 Honda CR-V | Honda

The compact crossover SUV segment is very competitive, with many models vying for the top spot. In recent years, the Honda CR-V was getting overshadowed by some of its rivals — and was starting to get outdated. However, Honda flipped the script for the 2023 model year and gave the CR-V a complete overhaul. 

If you aim to get the newest look for a crossover SUV, then the redesigned 2023 Honda CR-V could be a good choice for you. Conversely, the 2023 Subaru Forester is a carryover model with no significant changes. The Forester hasn’t had a full redesign in four years. 

The CR-V features exterior styling that has a nice blend of sophistication and ruggedness. Notable design features include a large upright grille, a sleek roofline, and a long hood. Also, the all-new crossover SUV has a strong horizontal beltline that flows along the side of the vehicle. Additionally, there are new door-mounted mirrors and repositioned roof pillars, which improve outward visibility. The attractive look is also complemented by the stylish new wheel designs.

2023 CR-V offers more powerful engines than the 2023 Forester

Front angle view of green 2023 Subaru Forester crossover SUV
2023 Subaru Forester | Subaru

Furthermore, the 2023 Honda CR-V offers more powerful engines than the 2023 Subaru Forester. The base-level engine for the CR-V is a turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder, which generates 190 horsepower and 179 lb-ft of torque. The crossover SUV also has a new 2.0-liter four-cylinder hybrid powertrain, which churns out 204 horsepower and 247 lb-ft of torque.

However, for the Forester, there’s only one engine option: a 2.5-liter flat-four. It has an output of just 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft of torque. 

Plus, with its more powerful engines, the CR-V delivers quicker acceleration. It completes the 0-60 mph sprint in as little as 7.5 seconds, compared to 8.5 seconds for the Forester. 

Additional strengths of the Honda CR-V over the Subaru Forester

In addition to its stylish new design and more powerful engines, the 2023 CR-V has some other strengths over the 2023 Forester. This includes higher gas mileage, especially for the hybrid model. The CR-V gets an estimated fuel economy of up to 43 city/36 highway mpg for the hybrid and 28 city/34 highway mpg for the fully gas-powered version. In comparison, the Forester has an estimated fuel economy of up to 26 city/33 highway mpg.

Also, the CR-V offers a new free maintenance plan, which is good for two years or 24,000 miles. This means not having to pay for oil changes, multipoint inspections, topping off the fluids, and tire rotations. However, the Forester doesn’t have a complimentary maintenance plan.

The outstanding redesign is a big strength that the 2023 Honda CR-V has over the 2023 Subaru Forester. In deciding between the two crossover SUVs, the redesign for the CR-V is something to keep in mind.


2023 Honda CR-V: Price, Specs, & Features — All-New Design!