Honda CR-V EX or Subaru Forester XS Special?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Denward, Jun 16, 2002.

  1. Denward

    Denward Supporting Actor

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    [edit]That should be XS Premium, not XS Special[edit]
    Anyone have experience with these vehicles? I'm looking at the '02 Cr-v and the '03 Forrester (the latest models). It will be used for urban commuting and kiddie chauffering. Off-roading and high performance are not high on the priority list, although I would like to cruise at 75-80 mph on long trips. My main decision points are very non-sexy (reliability, safety, utility, comfort).

    I'm looking at automatic transmission. The main differences between the two:

    Pro-Honda: The rear seat is elevated thus giving significantly more rear leg room. Of course, this is mainly important for the comfort of my passengers, not me. This deep rear seat footwell also allows the back to seat to tumble forward as well as fold down so that it offers more cargo space. MSRP is $2500 cheaper.

    Pro-Subaru: It surprised me to find that this has more luxurious trim level available. It has automatic climate control and heated front seats, two features I've grown to love on my current car. If these two features were available on the CR-V, I don't think I would be starting this thread.

    Safety wise, the '01 Honda scored 5 out of 5 stars across the board on the nhtsa.gov test (full frontal impact). On the iihs.org test (front offset impact), it scored Marginal on a scale of Good, Acceptable, Marginal, Poor. The '02 Subaru scored all 4 stars, except one 5 star on NHTSA and Good on IIHS. The '02 Honda and '03 Subaru are slight redesigns, but the changes are significant enough that the testing organizations say the prior crash tests aren't applicable to the new models.

    Any discussion would be appreciated, particularly with respect to ergonomics. Thanks.
     
  2. AviTevet

    AviTevet Stunt Coordinator

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    In those cars, the engines and transmissions will be bulletproof. The Subaru has a pretty smart AWD system, don't know about the Honda. I'm sure you'd be happy with either. Car and Driver has a writeup on the Forester XS this month, you might want to go check it out. If it were me, I'd be kind to my fellow drivers and get the shorty Subaru. [​IMG]
     
  3. Denward

    Denward Supporting Actor

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    Thanks, Avi. I'll definitely check out C&D.
     
  4. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Nobody except maybe Audi makes a better AWD car than Subaru. Its' been their stock in trade for decades. Honda is a Johnny-come-lateley.

    I'd buy the Scoobie personally. Heck, I personally wouldn't even consider the Honda.
     
  5. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    I'd heard nothing but good things about the Forrester, when I went to VT, every other car is a Suburu (and when it wasn't a Suburu it was either a Volvo or a Saab), so I guess they must be doing something right. The B&B we stayed in Bridport gave us a ride to the local diner in a Forrester (don't know what model but it had cloth seats) and it was quiet (not much road noise), comfy, and nice. Not to be mistaken for a WRX or anything but had a nice road feel to it in the short ride we were in.

    Jay
     
  6. Jim_F

    Jim_F Screenwriter

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    I've had my '01 Forester L for a little less than 2 years and it's been great. It's a particularly good Michigan car, as it shrugs off bad cold patch and most potholes and it seems to like playing in the snow. It works best as a 1 or 2 passenger vehicle, as the rear seats are snug at best. Rather than compare it to SUVs, I think of it as a very good small station wagon (or an enormous hatchback)

    After my previous 3 cars, I never thought I'd want a brand other than Toyota, but compared to the RAV 4, the Subie is a superior machine. Acceleration is quite good (all things considered) and it seems to be able to cruise without straining at 80 MPH (though I rarely exceed 75)

    I'm not at all familiar with the CRV. I don't like the way it looks, and recent models were sorely lacking in HP and torque when compared the the Subaru boxer engine. Add in the reputation of Subaru's AWD, and it was a pretty easy choice in my situation.
     
  7. Trace Downing

    Trace Downing Supporting Actor

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    I've read up about the Forrester, it seems pretty nice. I've only test drove a Outback Sport with a stick, so I can't really comment on you're choice, but I thought the little Subaru was a very sprightly little runabout.[​IMG]
    However, with the Honda CRV-EX, you're getting the worlds first SUV named after a female body part.[​IMG]
     
  8. Denward

    Denward Supporting Actor

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    [​IMG] That's great Trace. Would that be Mulva??? I wonder if I should mention that to my wife? She's leaning toward the Honda while I'm leaning toward the Subaru.
     
  9. Trace Downing

    Trace Downing Supporting Actor

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    Thank you, but I can't take credit for that. I saw it on a website that makes fun of SUV owners who just go to Sam's Club.
     
  10. Denward

    Denward Supporting Actor

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    Jim_F,
    I just read the C&D review that Avi mentioned. Overall, they liked it, although it didn't excite them. A couple of little nits they had was that the radio doesn't have a 'seek' mode, and the rear headrests have to be removed to flip down the rear seat. Do you find these to be significant annoyances? Thanks.
     
  11. Jim_F

    Jim_F Screenwriter

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    Denward,
    The seek function must be invaluable to those who travel a lot and are accustomed to having it. I had thought my unit had it, but I'd never attempted to use it.

    My headrests don't have to be removed in order to fold down the seats. If I folded down my rear seat frequently enough, I'm sure I'd end up taking them off and leaving them off, since the back seat is of so little use for passengers (or in my case, hasn't yet been used for passengers)
     
  12. Denward

    Denward Supporting Actor

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    Well I just went and took closer look at the Forester during lunch today. The rear seat folds down with no problem, even with the headrests in place. While the radio does not have a seek function, it does have a scan function.

    Any happy CRV owners out there??
     
  13. CharlesD

    CharlesD Screenwriter

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    I have a Subaru (WRX) the radio does have a scan button, to stop on a station you just push the button again, so its a maunal seek button as opposed to an automatic seek [​IMG]
     
  14. Kelley_B

    Kelley_B Cinematographer

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    Get the Subaru! If you are hauling kiddies around might as have a car that has a 5 Star all around crash rating.
     
  15. Denward

    Denward Supporting Actor

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    Actually Kelley, it's the Honda that has the 5 star ratings all-around on the NHTSA test. The Subaru has all 4 star ratings except for one 5 star rating.

    On the IIHS test, the Subaru got a 'Good' rating while Honda got a 'Marginal'. Their scale is Good, Acceptable, Marginal, Poor.

    But these ratings apply to the '01 Honda and the '02 Subaru. The '02 Honda and '03 Subaru are minor redesigns and the old results don't directly apply.

    I wish the new test results were published.

    [edit] The NHTSA ratings apply to '02 models. The IIHS ratings apply to '01 Honda and '02 Subaru.[edit]
     
  16. Greg_R

    Greg_R Screenwriter

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    You're going to be in trouble in either vehicle if you're hit by a truck. Get the car that will help you avoid crashes... the Subaru has better AWD and braking.
     
  17. Kelley_B

    Kelley_B Cinematographer

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    Ok you are right I was wrong...I was thinking of the Impreza which scored a Best Pick Overall rating and all G's.

    I plan on getting a Impreza WRX sometime after the 2003's come out.
     

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