1998 Subaru Forester RX Limited 2.0 from Australia and New Zealand


Subaru quality wins again


Car has been very reliable and dependable.

Electric Aerial died and was replaced by dealer under warranty.

Tyres wear very quickly. Original tyres (Bridgestone Duelers) were very weak and proved useless on the unsealed roads I live on.

Rear plastics in boot rattle terribly.

Rear struts needed replacement. Expensive as are self adjusting and only available as a genuine part.

General Comments:

Has been a fantastic car and has never let us down. It is used every day for a 65 km round trip to work and back and has been driven from Hobart, Tasmania all the way to Queensland & back without missing a beat.

Seats are quite comfortable and the middle armrests on the front seats are good on longer journeys.

Cruise control works well.

Steering is excellent, very responsive through corners, and light when parking. Handling is excellent for such a tall car.

Performance is average until you rev it above 3,000 rpm, but this is not good enough for daily driving. I will get the turbocharged version next time.

There is only one dealer in Hobart (Performance Automobiles) and they have been very disappointing. They are overpriced and the service they provide is not up to standard. I now take the car to my local petrol station for servicing and repairs, and it has been fine.

I would recommend the Forester to anyone.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th May, 2003

18th Mar 2006, 16:35

Have just sold the car in January after 265,000 km. Engine was starting to falter and had become even more underpowered. Had just replaced heavy duty clutch at a cost of over $600. Increases in fuel prices have also hit home with the forester only able to get around 450 km out of its 60 litre tank. Pretty pathetic for a 2.0 engine. Looked at replacing with a new Forester, but price increases of around $15000 since I bought mine new in 98 make it out of reach. Now proud owner of VW Golf Diesel!

1998 Subaru Forester GL 2 Litre petrol from UK and Ireland


Almost as good as the rave reviews


UK Subaru's have a very good reputation for reliability, and for the most part it is justified, but perhaps not quite as much as the adverts and reviews would make out.

Our car was an ex dealer demo model, bought with 1700 miles on the clock when a few weeks old. 2 Litre petrol, basic model with no air con, but a dealer fitted sunroof.

Basically nothing went wrong with it during the 5 years we had the car except at the 4 year service the dealer reported soft rear shock absorbers and a failing wheel bearing. From Internet searching these are known faults on the 1998 model. Although 4 years old the car had only done 28,000 miles. The dealer made an ex warranty claim and Subaru paid the parts, we paid the labour to fit them. This was excellent service from dealer and Subaru, but neither item should have failed in the first place.

General Comments:

A great car. A joy to drive, and comfortable - long journeys are a pleasure. We do not go off road, but the 4 wheel drive is very useful where we live in the Highlands of Scotland.

Standard radio is poor, minor switches layout is confusing, but these are minor gripes.

Fuel economy is good for a 4x4 - 30 miles per gallon provided the car is not thrashed. Routine service costs are high because this model has a service interval of 6months/7500 miles which has to be done to maintain the warranty. (New Foresters are a better 1 year/12000 mile interval)

We liked it so much that after 5 years we traded it in for the new Forester X.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th January, 2003

1998 Subaru Forester L 2.5L from North America


One lemon in a bushel basket of solid cars


I have mixed feelings about this car and feel that I must have acquired a "bad one".

I bought it in Feb 2000 and have had;

A) four complete brake jobs

B) to replace both front axles.

There has also been problems with the trim both interior and exterior...

The "shocks" holding up the rear hatch quit.

The interior plastic lining on the inside of the lower hatch door disintegrated.

One of the exterior side trim pieces between the rear door and the rear window (the largest one) flew off on the highway!

General Comments:

That said, the car has been very pleasant to drive in snow/mud/rain, both on the highway and off. It handles remarkable well in Colorado snow.

There is a little more engine noise on the highway than I would have expected from a car in its class, granted it isn't a Mercedes and I do also drive a Austin-Healey and that is loud.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 1st December, 2001

1998 Subaru Forester S 165hp 4 cylinder from North America


Go buy one you fool!


Nothing! It's a Subaru!!!

General Comments:

This is a great car. I have had no problems whatsoever with this vehicle thus far.

The AWD system is great in rain and I haven't found a "crack in its armor" yet.

It's a very sporty vehicle on the road. It drives like a convertible. This car is everything I could every want... (SUV capabilities with the intelligence of a car).

If you're considering a RAV4, Sportage, CR-V, Tracker, or Grand Vitara; reconsider. The Subaru Forester is all that and more.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th July, 2001

26th Nov 2006, 00:39

At 33,000km, how can anyone make an informed review?

16th Sep 2008, 11:24

This person only owned this car for 2,000.

Hardly enough time to make an informed review.

30th Sep 2008, 00:38


1998 Subaru Forester GLS 2.0 petrol from UK and Ireland


Good all rounder


Not a lot other than it seems to need rear wheel bearing replacement every 10,000 miles or so (3rd time the dealer has had to replace nearside rear bearings).

General Comments:

Good solid car - great on tyres, only needed to replace the first set at 40,000 miles!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 9th December, 2000

1998 Subaru Forester S Turbo 2.0 turbo from UK and Ireland


Engine fault warning light came on when there wasn't a problem - fixed by dealer.

General Comments:

Major problem is driving it slow enough ..... 130 mph on the autobahn in Germany.

Drove it through the Swiss Alps in the bad snow this winter - no problems, AWD is superb!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd May, 1999