Ok, I’m back. Now coming to you from the southern hemisphere, here are more projects and random thoughts. A while ago I mentioned that we were going to need a car with the steering wheel on the other side. Well, we now have one.
This is a 1999 Subaru Forester Limited. The first generation Forester, which this is, has always been my favorite. It is not the mini-SUV that the later generations became, but it is larger inside than the Impreza wagon on which it is based.
As an Australian model, this Forester has a 2.0L with 92kW of power and 184Nm of torque (123hp and 135ft/lbs) and a four speed automatic tranny. While the choice of transmission isn’t my favorite, it does have something the manual lacks: the ‘Power’ button. It is much more impressive if I don’t describe what it actually does, so we will just leave it at that.
Aside from the button, the Australian and Saudi Arabian model Foresters received auto-leveling suspension that sits a full 10mm higher than the Foresters found in the rest of the world. This 10mm, or slightly less that 3/4 of an inch, will surely transform an otherwise pedestrian car into a rock-crawling monster.
Anyway, this particular Forester has only 73,000 km (45,000 miles), and is nearly spotless inside and out. Not bad for a 10 year old car. The only non-stock equipment are the alloy wheels, which found there way off of a turbo Forester GT and on to our lowly non-turbo. The 16″ alloys not only look good, but they also have the added benefit of (probably) increasing rotating mass and emphasizing the distinct lack of power produced by the 2.0L motor. Not that this is bad, I’m quite fond of slow, boxy cars. The Forester fits in nicely with several of my past cars like the ’87 Vanagon, ’83.5 Subaru-powered Vanagon and the ’61 bus. While the Forester is slow, I’m pretty sure it could take all but the ’83.5 Vanagon with it’s comparatively massive 2.2L Subaru motor.
Did you notice that blue and silver basket on the seat? That would be a gift basket from the dealer, Eblens Subaru in Glenelg, SA. This is the first time I’ve received wine with a used car. So far we have been very happy with the car and the wine.