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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So, I'm debating about what to do...
I have a 2016 STi for the past almost 3 years, 20K miles. I love it sometimes, I hate it others. Its fun, fast and handles great when you have the ability to push it. Its cranky, jerky, rough, for the rest of the time. Its also a bit small.

I'm considering getting rid of it for something with an automatic, more comfortable suspension, a bit more room.

I have 2 kids, 1 in a booster, 1 in a rear facing car seat. It would be nice to have a bit more room, although I don't think that is the real motivator here for me. Its the ride and the short geared manual that are driving things.

I've considered (I want to but really don't have much room at home) getting 2 cars. something comfortable and practical, and something fun like an MR2 or miata, or wrangler. Wife is against this, I had 2 cars before and complained about the no room, always having a car out in front of my house getting crapped on by birds etc. I'd have to redo the driveway to really make room for this.

With that long introduction, I was considering the Forester XT, probably 2018. It seems to check a lot of boxes for me both from sportiness and practicality. I need to get out to test drive one, however they aren't as plentiful as plain jane foresters. Anyone have one and like it? any real thoughts on what it drives like and is to live with on a daily?

I have driven a normal forester a year or so ago and was surprisingly happy with it. It felt really planted, seemed at home cruising the highway. Power wasn't huge, but it seemed to go OK. Was kind of thinking the XT, would correct its shortcomings

Couple of things I want to get out of the way. I know its not a tall STI. I'm kidding myself here. I am looking for something with personality that can put a smile on my face when I want to, but fills the practical and comfortable need.

I've also considered things like a Mazda 6, CX-5, Taurus SHO.

Something with power that can handle (a bit) I know SUV ugh
 

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I Drink & I Know Things
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We have a ‘15 XT and love it. It goes like stink. It’s been on plenty of comfortable road trips. My wife is a lead foot and it satisfies her. There are a lot of improvements for the ‘18. Last year for the turbo. Jump while you can.


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The foresters are good driving vehicles. I’ve never been in one that had that boat feeling of some of the American suvs. The xt will have more go but it’s going to be similar to the arc where the pull from a roll isn’t as strong as a naturally aspirated larger displacement engine. It takes a second for boost to build and the fire to be lit.

Another legitimate option is the legacy 3.6r it’s larger than the sti, has sportier road manners than the forester and when you tromp on it, it scoots along happily. I drove a 2015 when I bought my wrx and really considered getting it but opted for the wrx.

Before you decide I strongly recommend test driving a v6 accord, Camry, and 3.6 legacy. They are all super solid and great vehicles. I would avoid Jeep completely as the newer transmissions are somehow worse than anything they have ever made in the past and that’s no small feat.


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The Foresters are nice and highly rated. 0-60 in 6 seconds is nothing to sneeze at.

And I have a soft spot for the Outback. We may be getting a 3.6R this year (fiancee's car).

At that price, though, consider a BMW X1 or an X3. Yes I know the options build the price up quickly but you could buy a low-mileage vehicle used and get a great deal. I got my X3 3.5i for $30K a few years ago. Very linear power band and will haul butt--0-60 in the low 5's. I guarantee it will beat any Subaru 60-100 mph, which is important for highway driving.
 

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Doctor Jeff has it nailed. That 60-100 is where BMW really shines. Those i6 engines they use are probably among the best made engines on the planet.
 

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Ford Edge ST?
 

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Mazda6 with the 6M/T is a solid vehicle. I've driven them multiple times, and the only reason there isn't one in my fleet is I chose to add a pickup to the fleet (so I no longer had to borrow one).

I haven't driven one in automatic fashion (I wasn't interested in a slushbox), but the vehicle itself checks a lot of the boxes. Significantly more room than an STI (I have an 05), much nicer ride. The manual transmission is great, and isn't obtrusive in daily driving; despite being only 185hp, it is nice to wind out in the back roads.

I think the Mazda6 6M/T is a perfect balance between practicality and fun, if you're looking to ditch the Subaru.
 

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We have a 15 Premium Forester. As everyone else said, it is a great car. It is the "go-to" car for anything where more than two of us go.

As for an XT, if it had come in a manual shift version I'd have likely gotten that instead of my WRX. I just "had" to have a manual, but if you are ok with the CVT, I'd bet you'd be happy with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Thanks for the replies everyone.
To respond to a few of the comments. BMWs are a good suggestion, however, I'm a bit wary of both the maintenance and depreciation curves. The Edge is a good suggestion. I think if I were to do it, it would have to be a used Sport. The new Sports, never mind STs, are pricey, I'll have to think/look at them.
The Mazda 6 is a nice package. I sat in one of the NY Auto show. Its nice, not quite as roomy as I was picturing, but really nice design. I may price out a turbo lease on one of them. They do have bad resale value.

I was originally intending to put this off a year and look at a 2019 or 2020 Forester XT until Subaru took away the turbo, now I'm feeling like I should do something now. Although I really like the design of the 2019 Forester Sport, sharp looking car.

Only other piece of info to share, this isn't the only family car. We do have a Honda Odyssey. So although it will get the kids, it doesn't have to handle the main car pooling/vacationing duty.

2019_subaru_forester_sport_0.jpg
 

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Have you driven the new crosstrek? price point wise, its cheaper than the XTs(keep your STI) lol. my wife has the 17 premium crosstrek, its has enough room in the back for 2 kids.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Have you driven the new crosstrek? price point wise, its cheaper than the XTs(keep your STI) lol. my wife has the 17 premium crosstrek, its has enough room in the back for 2 kids.
I haven't driven the new crosstrek. Honestly, based upon every review I've read on it, its a fantastic car with a too small powerplant. Otherwise, it would work well for me, nice size, easily maneuverable, a bit of ride height, but still hunkered down, cool and different.

Give me a turbo in a Crosstrek in the cool Blue Gray Khaki color.
cq5dam.web.600.450.jpeg
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·

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I haven't driven the new crosstrek. Honestly, based upon every review I've read on it, its a fantastic car with a too small powerplant. Otherwise, it would work well for me, nice size, easily maneuverable, a bit of ride height, but still hunkered down, cool and different.

Give me a turbo in a Crosstrek in the cool Blue Gray Khaki color.
View attachment 309266
I have the 18 Crosstrek and it's a good car, but it could use more HP. I might put a supercharger on it some day.
 

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^Why? The car is build for practicality, not speed? It's your money, but that sounds like a waste to me. I think our decision to buy our limited Crosstrek was a win, but take away the hatch and the cabin space is identical. The ride is phenomenal, though. It's not fun at all for us to drive, but that's not what we bought it for. We've taken it on countless road trips and it has been very comfortable and the hatch/fold down seats have been very convenient for us.

As for the OP, feel it out before you do anything rash. I have had a love hate relationship with the quirks of the STI since 2015. I have gone through multiple "I want something more comfortable" phases and have been on the verge of pulling the trigger. I've waited out all of these decisions and after the bug for something else is gone I'm always happy I decided to give it some time. Also, the STI should be plenty practical for kids. It's a lot more roomy than other rice burners and it has four doors.

As for the SUV, people rave about the XT, but I just don't get it. If I want a SUV I'll buy something comfortable and practical. If I want a fast car I'll buy something fast and less comfortable. It's like having a runner's build, but trying to be a body builder... which I'm all too familiar with. Take it or leave it, but my advice is to have your wife buy a practical vehicle, if she doesn't already have one, and use it when necessary. If it's more convenient for her to take your car and you to take her car. You're gong to lose money buying a new vehicle and my personal financial sense I have says I'd rather toss those few thousand dollars into our market assets. Now, if you do decide to get a Forester I vote save the extra money and get a normal forester with the comfort options you want. I've had a couple as loaners and they are stiff enough to still be decently fun to drive. The power is not lacking for what it is and it handled better than any SUV I've driven.
 

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If I want a SUV I'll buy something comfortable and practical. If I want a fast car I'll buy something fast and less comfortable. It's like having a runner's build, but trying to be a body builder... which I'm all too familiar with.
Hmmm Zach...there are some performance SUV's out there.

The BMW X3 M40...355 HP, 0-60 in 4.6s. Tuned suspension. Not super cheap, but combines the best of both worlds. Of course the Porsche Macan, Alfa, Jaguar...but the BMW offers the most performance bang for the buck in that format IMO.
 
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