The "X" variants come with a naturally-aspirated, 2.5L 4-cylinder horizontally-opposed "boxer" engine, which makes 170 horsepower and 170 pound-feet of torque. The "XT" trims get a standard turbocharged 2.5L 4-cylinder powerplant, making 224 horsepower and 226 pound-feet of torque. The 2.5 X and 2.5 X Premium get a 5-speed manual transmission with Incline Start Assist, while the 2.5 X Limited, the 2.5 XT Premium and the 2.5 XT Limited are available only with a 4-speed automatic transmission. The 4-speed automatic is optional for the 2.5 X and 2.5 X Premium. As with every Subaru, every Forester utilizes all-wheel drive.
The base 2.5 X trim comes standard with cloth upholstery, power doors, locks and windows, tilt steering wheel, cruise control, air conditioning, 12-volt outlets, 6-way manually adjustable driver's seat, keyless entry, an anti-theft system and a 4-speaker CD stereo.
The 2.5 X Premium trim adds a panoramic power tilt moonroof, retractable rear tray, 17-inch alloy wheels, steering wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls, reclining rear seats, rear privacy glass, performance tires and a power driver's seat.
The 2.5 X Limited adds a premium 6-disc CD stereo, MP3 player, automatic climate control, leather heated front seats that adjust 10-ways on the driver's side, fog lights, wiper de-icer, heated mirrors and leather wrapped steering wheel. The All Weather package, which includes heated mirrors, heated front seats and windshield wiper de-icer, is available on all Limited trims.
The 2.5 X Premium has almost the exact same standard equipment as the 2.5 XT Premium, without some of the heated or power accessories. Standard equipment for both the 2.5 X Limited and the 2.5 XT Limited is almost identical.
Standard safety equipment on all Foresters includes 4-wheel antilock disc brakes with brake assist, daytime running lights, tire-pressure monitoring, Vehicle Dynamics Control for stability, traction control, active front head restraints, child safety locks and a full array of vehicle airbags, to include front passenger airbags and side-curtain airbags with rollover sensor. In government crash tests, the Forester gets five stars in all front- and side-impact categories. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety also gave the Forester its best rating of "Good" in its frontal-offset and side-impact crash tests.
Options available on the Premium trims include satellite radio, luggage rack, electrochromic rearview mirror, universal garage door opener, auxiliary audio input jack and sunroof wind deflector. On the Limited trims, a touchscreen navigation system and rear parking aid are available. Remote engine start is available on the XT and Limited trims.