The sixth-generation Subaru Forester is set to go on sale in the US this season, but we’ll be waiting a while for it in Australia.

    Subaru Australia has confirmed the next-generation mid-sized SUV isn’t coming here until 2025, and wouldn’t be drawn on just when during that 12-month period it’ll launch.

    It’s launching between March and June in the US market.

    Subaru Australia has confirmed, however, it will offer the next-generation e-Boxer “strong hybrid” system.

    Subaru has yet to release specifications for the new-generation hybrid, but Subaru of America chief operating officer Jeff Walters told Automotive News in November it will feature one of the brand’s trademark Boxer engines mated with a Toyota-sourced battery and electrical components.

    That should hopefully see an improvement in fuel economy compared with the outgoing Forester Hybrid, which has never been offered in the US market.

    It features a 2.0-litre Boxer four with 100kW of power and 196Nm of torque mated with a 12kW/66Nm electric motor and a battery pack, but its combined cycle fuel economy of 6.7L/100km is shaded by rivals like the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid AWD, which manages 4.8L/100km.

    The Japanese carmaker claims the Subaru Global Platform that underpins the sixth-generation Forester has been “enhanced”, with torsional rigidity improved by 10 per cent.

    Subaru promises the stiffer chassis has resulted in more dynamic performance, as well as a smoother ride and a quieter cabin.

    The sixth-generation Forester also picks up a version of the WRX’s dual-pinion electronic steering rack which is claimed to provide a “more direct and natural steering feel with greater responsiveness”.

    All US-specification versions of the new Forester will be powered by a carryover version of the 2.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder Boxer engine producing 134kW of power and 241Nm of torque.

    This engine is mated to a continuously variable transmission (CVT) with drive sent through an all-wheel drive system that has active torque vectoring.

    The new Subaru Forester measures in at 4656mm long, 1829mm wide, and 1730mm tall, with a 2670mm wheelbase. This is virtually identical to the outgoing model.

    Inside, there’s a 11.6-inch portrait-oriented infotainment touchscreen on up-spec models, or dual 7.0-inch touchscreens on lower-end models.

    Subaru claims the cabin of the Forester has been enhanced to focus on passengers. The front seats have a “more supportive” design, while the shoulder area has been slimmed down for better visibility and rear-seat access.

    Standard equipment across the entire range includes steering responsive LED headlights with automatic high-beam, as well as keyless entry and tyre pressure monitoring.

    The new Forester receives a steeper rear glass area which is claimed to offer more cargo capacity. With the rear seats upright there’s 838 litres of boot capacity, which expands to 2106 litres with them folded.

    There’s also a new hands-free power tailgate available on the Forester, as well as heavy-duty hooks throughout the boot.

    Despite its age, the outgoing fifth-generation Forester had its best sales year ever in 2023.

    Subaru sold 16,381 examples, beating the previous record for the nameplate –15,069 sales – set in 2019.

    That saw it outsold by only the Hyundai Tucson (21,224 sales), Mazda CX-5 (23,083), Mitsubishi Outlander (24,263) and Toyota RAV4 (29,627) within its segment.

    MORE: Everything Subaru Forester

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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