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Old 10-30-2001, 01:52 PM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 11755
Join Date: Oct 2001
Question Newbie Questions on buying a used Forester

Howdy folks, I'm looking to buy the wifey a used Forester for when the baby comes in the springtime. Could someone let me know what I should pay, what to look for, what to stay away from, desirables, less desirables, etc...

So basically, if you were buying a used Forester, what would you buy?

Thanks folks!

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Old 10-30-2001, 06:21 PM   #2
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 11767
Join Date: Oct 2001
2001 Forester

Post What year?

Please let us know how used you are talking about? 1990's? 2000+'s?


Last edited by Ag NSX; 10-30-2001 at 06:26 PM.
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Old 10-30-2001, 06:27 PM   #3
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Member#: 11755
Join Date: Oct 2001
Default Good Question, don't know I suppose...

Since I don't know anything about them, are the 2000's better than the 1900's?

I'd like to ideally spend about 15k or less, but I don't know if that's realistic. Lemme know what you think.

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Old 10-31-2001, 07:29 AM   #4
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Member#: 8167
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Guernsey, British Channel Islands
2001 ForesterS-Turbo
Premium Silver

Default before or after facelift?

I had a 1999 forester GLS AWP(pre facelift) and now have a new S-turbo (after facelift). Both those are UK models, but that doesn't matter in this case. Apart from the engine these are the differences from my old car:-
New ones have more sculpted bumpers and lower half of doors.
The grille on the new ones is different (and looks worse I think!)
The new ones have fake lights on the hatch to make it look more like a car.
The alloys on the S models are different I think.
The new ones have adjustable intermittent wiper timing.
The new ones have a dual front cupholder.
The old ones have reclining rear seats, the new ones don't.
The new ones have a rear centre belt that comes out the roof, the old ones have a lap belt.
The new ones have a light in the glovebox, the old ones don't.
The new ones have a courtesy light that stays on for a bit after you shut the doors, the old one goes off straight away.
The new ones have increased rear track with more negative camber.
Those are the differences I have been able to detect which I think will apply to all models, ie. they aren't specific to the S-turbo model. My S-turbo also has dual trip meters, an outside temp gauge, and CD player, but that may not be on a normal GLS. I also think the oldest ones might not have the internal radio antennain the back window. The clutches on the old ones are also suspect (chatter), but they either do it or they don't (mine did). Allegedly they've fixed it with a different friction compound.

Look through the posts in this forum to see what people think and about the problems they've had. Also go to www.suv.com and look at the forester forums there (loads of info, mainly on problems people have had).
If it's an option go for the AWP (all weather pack) which gives you :-
huge moonroof
heated seats
heated mirrors
heated wipers
The aircon is great for demisting and cooling in summer (the big windows do a really good greenhouse impression!). If you put a bike on the roof often get the side steps if you're short. If you do a lot of outdoor pursuits which involve getting dirty boots then get the rubber trunk protector. If you get one with painted bumpers get the resin or stainless bumper guard so you can stand on the back bumper without getting it trashed.
Look at the pictures of my cars in the members profile or my threads with the pictures.
I can recommend the forester, I did 15k miles in my old one 4k of which were on a road trip round europe and it performed faultlessly, although I don't know what out of warranty service/repair costs will be like.
PS. the original tyres wear out really fast, mine went on the outer shoulders so if the car you look at is wearing tyres unevenly it may be worth getting an alignment check.
PPS. don't leave the aircon on without the engine, you'll flatten the battery in no time!
Any more questions, just ask!
PPS. allegedly the forester is the 2nd place lesbian car! search under 'ultimate gay and lesbian cars' to find the link.
PPPS. there are many old ones around due to import restrictions (in the uk at least) so residuals are good.
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Old 10-31-2001, 03:42 PM   #5
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Member#: 11767
Join Date: Oct 2001
2001 Forester


Well I have a 2001 and don't know too much about the late 90's models. But I believe that for $15k you might be able to get a 2001 Forester L with miles. FYI, the invoice on a 2002 L 5spd is $19k.

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Old 10-31-2001, 05:12 PM   #6
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Member#: 11808
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Cape Coral,FL

It may also be of interest to know that the 2000 and later 2.5 L engine is a SOHC engine vs a DOHC. The timing belt change interval increases from 60,000mi to 105,000 miles.
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Old 11-02-2001, 11:54 AM   #7
Member#: 470
Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: South East
Location: Riverview, Florida - U.S.A.
2016 Legacy 3.6R
'18 FXT, '16 XV, '13 BRZ


Actually the '99 and later Forrester's have the SOHC motor. My mom picked up a '99 Forrester L last night w/23,000 miles for $16,900. Including the following options: Keyless entry, cross-bar kit (roof Rack), rear comparment tray, rear compartment cargo cover, fog lights and floor mats, the dealer even threw in window tinting on it!

We had looked at several over the past few weeks,and some of them had a better "feel" than the others. I would take a long look at the body, look for any signs of body work, check the undercarriage for signs of heavy off-road use. Pull the maintenance records (contact the previous owner if possible). Take a decent test drive, through some city streets with some stop & go, and on the intersate at speed. If you take you time there are some great deals to be found out there.

Good luck in your search!
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Old 11-02-2001, 01:19 PM   #8
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Member#: 10831
Join Date: Oct 2001
Chapter/Region: TXIC
Location: Boise, ID
1995 Firehawk #456
2009 FXT VF52/E85


They are selling new MY02 automatic Forester L's here in Houston for under $20K.

For the extra $3K (based on the above example for a used 99), I would go new.
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