Crossover & Midsize

The 1 Subaru Forester Year You Should Avoid

Subarus are well-known for their reliability and longevity. In fact, a large number of older cars you see on the road are Subarus. The Subaru Forester has been one of the carmaker’s most popular vehicles since it was first introduced on the Impreza platform. Its robust performance, cargo space, and mechanical stability have made it a hit in both the U.S. and Europe.

The Forester is a solid member of the Subaru lineup; however, all carmakers have a bad year once in a while. Is there a model year you should avoid?

The success of the Subaru Forester

The Subaru Forester at the Brussels Motor Show
The Subaru Forester | Didier Messens/Getty Images

Most Subaru Forester years have been very successful. The Forester first came on the scene in 1997. Manufactured by Subaru, it was in demand thanks to its high stance, roomy interior, and all-wheel drive. The all-new 2020 Subaru Forester is an incredible combination of the hottest technology and everyday practicality. It has an extra-wide rear gate to load in all your cargo with ease, and the Forester continues the Subaru tradition of quality that lasts. 

Highlights of the latest model include the Subaru standard, symmetrical, full-time all-wheel drive. It also offers more room for passengers than any other vehicle in its class. Safety features include Standard EyeSight suite of driver-assist technology features, All-Around Awareness, and SUBARU STARLINK® Safety and Security. Leather-trimmed upholstery is standard on Limited and Touring models, and a panoramic moonroof is standard on Premium, Sport, Limited, and Touring models.

The 2014 Subaru Forester

In a poll of complaints about Subaru Forester, the 2014 model came up with 2 of the top 3 worst problems. What went wrong in 2014? There were a few issues that stood out and still plague drivers to this day.

The top problem with the 2014 model is high oil consumption. This known issue has even caused some owners to have to replace the entire engine. Although burning a quart of oil every thousand miles is technically within Subaru’s guidelines, it’s not something that drivers want to deal with on a regular basis.

2014 was also a year of broken coil spring in the Subaru Forester. At an average of 58,400 miles, the Forester’s coil springs and struts would need to be replaced in the front and rear.

Recalls for the 2014 Subaru Forester

Subaru did issue several recalls in 2014 on the Forester. These included:

  • A recall was issued for floor mats that may curl and interfere with the pedals. This was for 2014 models that were manufactured from January to March 2013 
  • Another recall was issued in February 2019 for 2014 through 2016 Foresters. The brake light switch could be damaged by contaminants, which prevented the brake lights from lighting up enough. 

Were these problems fixed in later models?

By 2015, Subaru Forester owners had no complaints about high oil consumption, which was the No. 1 complaint in 2014. The suspension problem and the tendency for the coil springs to break were also not reported in models built in 2015 and beyond. 2017 models had problems with their transmissions, but other than that, Subaru seems to have corrected the issues reported in 2014.

Normally, the Subaru Forester is one of the best cars on the road. 2014 however, was a year to avoid.