Safety & Reliability

In crash tests from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the Forester earned the top score, Good, in front and side impacts. The SUV was awarded an IIHS Top Safety Pick designation. Because it was redesigned this year, reliability scores for the Forester are unavailable. The previous-generation Forester got top marks in this area: Consumer Reports awarded it good or excellent reliability ratings for six years running. While history among brands and models is often informative, cautious buyers will wait for results. Every car is different.

Standard safety equipment includes six airbags, with side-impact airbags for the front seats and side curtain airbags for both rows. The curtain airbags have tip sensors to deploy during a rollover. Active head restraints, four-wheel-disc antilock brakes, traction control and an electronic stability system are also standard. All five seats have adequately high head restraints. Parents with young children should check out the child-seat provisions in the photos above.

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    If no steam is coming from the engine compartment
    NOTE For details about how to check the coolant level or how to add coolant, refer to Engine coolant F11-17. 1. Keep the engine running at idling speed. 2. Open the hood to ventilate the engine ...

    Seatbelt maintenance
    To clean the seatbelts, use a mild soap and lukewarm water. Never bleach or dye the belts because this could seriously affect their strength. Inspect the seatbelts and attachments including the webbi ...

    R (Reverse)
    This position is for backing the vehicle. To shift from the N to R position, stop the vehicle completely then move the lever to the R position. When the ignition switch has been turned t ...