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by Jay Traugott
The all-new Forester not only brings improved styling but also a turbocharged version of the BRZ's engine. Now we're talking.
Only a few weeks before its official unveiling at the LA Auto Show, Subaru has revealed the first details and a handful of photos of its all-new 2014 Forester. The winning formula of the outgoing model was clearly not something the automaker wanted to mess with too much, but with a continuous assault from newer competitors like the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4, the stout crossover was in need of a refresh.
The fourth-gen Forester will be available with two engines. One is the outgoing model's 2.5-liter naturally-aspirated boxer four with 170 horsepower and 174 lb-ft of torque. But the real fun will be with the optional 2.0-liter direct-injection four - a turbocharged version of the same engine that powers the BRZ, only now it produces 250 hp and 258 lb-ft. Subaru has, however, already confirmed to Car and Driver that this configuration won't be used for the upcoming BRZ STI, but will power the next WRX. Both engines come mated to either a continuously variable transmission with 6- and 8-speed manual modes or a new 6-speed manual gearbox.
As far as styling goes, the new Forester is less boxy than before but it's hardly the most stylish crossover out there. The hood scoop from past turbocharged models has been ditched; in its place is a unique front fascia. Interior volume has also improved with increased rear legroom and cargo space. Subaru has pointed out that its second best-selling model will now have a more refined suspension system for improved ride quality as well as a generous 8.7 inches of ground clearance. More details and pricing will be announced later this month.