The 2013 Subaru Forester 2.5XT Premium Crossover SUV gets the same great 2.5-liter “boxer” four-cylinder engine as the rest of the line, only this one happens to be turbocharged for even better performance. It is paired up with a four-speed automatic transmission. Some people may snicker about the four-cylinder engine, but this vehicle is far from slow, like you probably might expect. In fact, the 2.5XT Premium only takes 6.8 quick seconds to accelerate zero to 60 mph, making it one of the fastest vehicles in the small crossover segment. For 2013, all Subaru Foresters receive standard all-wheel drive. Unfortunately, the four-speed automatic transmission is not without its flaws. This outdated gearbox returns poor fuel economy at 19 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway.
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• Audio - The standard four-speaker sound system will satisfy very few drivers, but there is a six-speaker option with touchscreen interface available. Both systems include an in-dash CD player, iPod/USB port and audio connectivity.
• Navigation - The optional GPS system works through a portable TomTom® touchscreen. It will help you with maps, turn-by-turn directions and more.
• Bluetooth - Never miss a call while you are driving and never take your eyes off the road to make a call with Bluetooth hands-free phone and audio connectivity.
• Steering Wheel Controls - Audio and cruise controls are placed thoughtfully on the steering wheel, so they are always at your fingertips.
Like the rest of the Forester line, the 2.5XT Premium is rated “Good” in front, side and roof protection crash tests by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Also, despite the fact that the brakes feel a little soft, braking distances are average, taking 122 feet to stop from 60 mph. The airbag system includes rollover sensors and a ring-shaped reinforced frame shields the passenger cabin in a collision. Other safety features include:
• Remote antitheft system
• Security system shock sensor
• Tire pressure monitoring
• Whiplash protection system in head restraints
• Traction control
• Front seatbelt pretensioners
• Engine immobilizer
• Rear door safety locks
• Child seat anchors
• Reverse assist sensors
• Emergency brakeforce distribution
• Stability control
Some may look at the 2.5XT Premium and find it a little dull, but others will find it to be just right. It certainly is not overdone, but it is also far from boring. Privacy glass, roof rails, a power glass sunroof, rear spoiler and 17-inch alloy wheels help to keep it interesting.
The cabin is nothing to get overly excited about, but it is comfortable and thoughtfully designed. Controls are straightforward and easy to access, and an optional TomTom® navigation system can be integrated into the flow with a touchscreen interface. Black or grey cloth are your only options for the seats, which could leave a few people disappointed. The front seats are comfortable and the driver is awarded great visibility of the road, however the rear seat is a little awkward. It is really high, so you are practically looking into the laps of those in the front. There is plenty of legroom though, and optional reclining seat backs are available.
Cargo space is pretty impressive in the 2.5XT Premium. Behind the rear seat, you have a generous 33.5 cubic feet, with an overall figure of 68.3 cubes behind the front seat. Plus, the boxy styling makes it easy to load bulky objects.