2001 Subaru Forester L 2.5 from Japan


A car that's okay to own while it's under warranty.


Rear wheel bearings failed at 16,000 miles, 25,000 miles and 41,000 miles. No evidence of factory recall that I can find.

Interior has held up poorly. Seat covers pilled and looked worn after a few thousand miles. Carpets of poor quality.

Clutch "acts up", in hot weather, occasionally not engaging at all.

General Comments:

Best car I have ever driven in ice and snow (I am VT native who now lives in MT).

Decent gas mileage.

Back seat is very flat and rather uncomfortable.

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

Review Date: 30th November, 2003

2001 Subaru Forester L 2.5 from North America


Be very carefull during oil changes.


Transmission differential failed due to an improper oil change.

The gear oil was drained from the differential by mistake by White Glove Car Wash and Lube.

General Comments:

The drain plug for the oil pan is VERY close to the drain plug for the differential due to the boxer engine design.

The drain plugs look identical to each other. Subaru did not mark the difference between the 2 drain plugs.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 25th November, 2003

24th Dec 2003, 11:57

I am a firm believer in getting vehicles serviced at a dealership for the reasons stated above. Nobody knows your particular vehicle better. In addition, they are usually among the first to know about recalls, available modifications, and service bulletins.

27th Jan 2004, 14:52

The comment about franchised dealers is absolutely correct in theory, but sadly isn't always the case.

I don't know about the US, but here in the UK franchised dealers are known to be among the worst when it comes to carrying out maintenance correctly and more importantly, as they have billed for. Dealers don't need to try hard - people will use them for no other reason than they have to in order to preserve warranties, but the little guy in the backstreet workshop needs to try that bit harder, and usually does just that. There are good dealers and bad backstreet places of course, but many so-called "expert" dealers in the UK charge extortionate labour rates, and their work is appalling.

2001 Subaru Forester L - Blue Ridge 2.5 from North America


Poor buy, not up to the reliability claims


Clutch chatter when cold at 50000 km.

Head Gaskets (both) at 89000 km.

Ignition coil at 89000 km.

What's next?

General Comments:

This is my wife's car and she loves it, I on the other hand find it handles pretty poorly (rolls too much in the corners), doesn't have very much rear passenger room. It is hard on gas and rather gutless on hills. The best feature is the AWD which I bought it for. With winter tires (Blizzak's) the car is great in our Canadian winters.

I am now starting to experience the poor reliability and service of Subaru. I have maintained this car on a regular basis and it is 90% highway driven. The original tires are beat, only used in the summer. They lasted about 50000K. I have experienced the dreaded clutch chatter. I found out the dealer will quietly replace these under special customer care on low mileage cars. There is a special kit to supposedly fix this problem. I am trying to get them to give me one under this care warranty when the head gaskets are replaced (tomorrow). I have also just replaced an ignition coil which is 300.00 CDN installed.

Overall, I will not be keeping this car past the 100000 km.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 17th November, 2003

26th Dec 2008, 04:13

I have owned 2001 Subaru Forester L (manual) 65K kms. Known problems are:

1) Big dealerships usually does not have best mechanics.

2) Cold clutch issue. This is known problem with this vehicle. It is actually very annoying the way how Subaru has handled this. Instead of recall, they have replaced clutch to customers who complain the most. Even with clutch replaced don't expect this vehicle to shift like a Toyota or Honda (you cannot shift gears with just one finger click-click), but cold clutch issue will be gone.

3) I had engine check light on. Catalytic sensor need to be replaced which is expensive to be done in service.

4) Fuel consumption in the city is not that good at all for manual transmission. About 11.5-12.5 l/100kms. You can try to buy after market air filter, race type. That should reduce fuel consumption by approx 5%.

5) Original tires are bad. They don't last long. I can recommend Goodyear triple tread (or something like that).

Overall I think that this is a good vehicle, but 1980s and early 1990s models have better quality. Automatic transmission is better choice for this 2001 model year.