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What you see here is not a Legacy Outback mule, but rather a heavily disguised Subaru Forester mule that reveals some interesting tidbits about the next generation of Subaru's boxy wagon. Brenda Priddy's super sleuthing spies have seen this development mule out and about for a while, but only recently realized that it was indeed the next gen Forester. The reason is that the car's dimensions aren't close to those of the current Forester. In fact, this car's 99.4-inch estimated wheelbase is within a half-inch of the much larger Tribeca's, and its 108.5-inch length is over three inches longer than the Legacy Outback. Priddy's inside contacts, however, confirm that despite the size discrepancy, this is indeed the next Forester. In addition to being longer, it's also estimated the next Forester will be two inches wider than the current Outback, which itself is already wider than the current Forester. What does this mean for the Forester? Without seeing the design, it's hard to speculate, but the growth in all areas of size implies that the Forester may be able to seat seven, becoming a somewhat larger CUV-type vehicle than the current model.
[Source: Winding Road]


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  • 18 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      OK! Boys. Be careful!

      You know, Ford made some thing called the Freestyle. It was a big non-SUV wagon thing that was DOA, BIG TIME.

      My friends at Subaru, let us PLEASE not make the same miscalculations that lead Ford to build the Freestyle.

      The Forester needs to be no larger than RAV4/ CR-V.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Bryan,

        I have owned both Tauri and Subaru.

        All I can tell you is that the Taurus was boatloads ahead in American FWD car driving dynamics when it was introduced...in the 1980's

        Ford isn't event in the same league as Subaru in terms of driving dynamics, dependability and longevity. In fact other than the diesel Mercedes from the 1980's I don't know of cars with longer lives than Subaru.

        If you are on a Taurus-sized budget but wouldn't mind carving it up with the BMWs you buy a Subaru Legacy GT.
        Bryan
        • 7 Years Ago
        Actually Richard they must have caught on because I see tons of Freestyles in Houston. In fact, I have seen more new Taurus x's than new tauruses! I saw a Taurus x in silver with chrome factory rims and it looked pretty nice.

        As for Subaru. Who cares? They are either boring or ugly. Nothing to see, move on.
        • 7 Years Ago
        The Rav4 has a 104.7" wheelbase, 181" overall length, and available seating for 7 now. Not exactly a compact little CUV anymore.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I don't believe it for a second, why would Fuji even leave the possibility of the cheaper Forester eating into the Tribeca sales? We haven't seen the next gen Legacy/Outback yet, could this be it?
      • 7 Years Ago
      SWEEEEEET
      • 7 Years Ago
      99.4-inch estimated wheelbase and 108.5-inch length? Wow, those are some short overhangs!

      Actually, the Winding Road article states that the CURRENT Forester has a 99.4-inch wheelbase, and the mule was measured at a 108.5-inch wheelbase. That's about the same as an 80's Chevy Monte Carlo.
      • 7 Years Ago
      To my un-trained eye, it looks entirely like a legacy/outback without any upsizing or anything. Keeping in mind that the Legacy, Forester and previous Impreza (don't know about the new one) all used pretty much the same mechanicals, it would be presumtuous to say that this is specifically a Forester mule. Cheers
      • 7 Years Ago
      Another 4 door station wagon from Subaru; who would have seen that coming!? The fact is, Subaru has become irrelevant by refusing to cater to more youthful buyers with 2 door hatches and 2 door coupes. Their obsession with making everything so practical looking has made their various model line up indistinguishable. At least the old forester had more upright SUVish proportions. Unfortunately, it had no backseat legroom. No doubt the new vehicle will have a 3rd row backseat squeezed in with even less legroom all around.

      When will manufacturers learn that not everyone needs a vehicle that is the industry standard 189" long and that accommodates 5 or 7 people?

      If Subaru would simply make a 2 door coupe version of the Legacy or shortened Outlook, they'd have a winner. But I doubt they could make a 2 door without doing something stupid funky like their specialty coupes of the past.

      • 7 Years Ago
      Wow!

      That's one well disguised mule.

      Better then when GM was using Camaro bodies to test out the mechanicals for the C5 Corvettes!
      • 7 Years Ago
      Bah. This thing just looks like an oversized Outback. As a Forester owner, it's completely turned me off from the model. Hell, the new Impreza doesn't seem so hard to swallow now in comparison to this. Dammit, Subaru!
        • 7 Years Ago
        Well. I suppose that's what I get for just looking at the pretty pictures.

        *knocks head on desk*
      • 7 Years Ago
      Another Subie bites the dust in the rush to be like everybody else.

      Lame.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Someone's leg is getting pulled really hard! The idea that the Forest would jump over the Outback in size is ludicrous - although Subaru has made some really dumb decisions lately. Look closely and one can see this is not the usualy camo trick-out but metal and glass. Seems more likely it's an upsized Outback. IMHO.
        • 7 Years Ago
        imho big part of forester's success was it's compact size. i see no point in making it so big, an inch or two won't hurt (especially in rear legroom), but 10" bigger wheelbase? what for?
      • 7 Years Ago
      I really HOPE they won't do a 2 door coupe - hard
      access to the rear seats, no real trunk at the back. It's a pointless configuration except for hotheads who think it makes them look cool. I also don't understand the NA fascination with sedans, if I am paying forthe extra metal in the back, why not make it a wagon so I can really use all of it.

      Subaru is know for their practicality, so making a coupe would be against their philosophy. Besides, the new Impreza is a 5 doorhatchback not a wagon anymore.
      • 7 Years Ago
      That can't be the new Forrester. What? is Subaru going to make the Forrester look exactly like the Outback? Not likely. It's probably the next gen Outback.
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