1997 Subaru Forester Turbo
Available for: $12,995
When it comes to versatility, the Subaru Forester is in a class of its own, meshing everything you want in a car with everything you need in an SUV. Compared to others in its segment, it offers superior drivability thanks to the powerful turbo boxer engine, symmetrical all-wheel drive, and some surprisingly agile handling. This 1997 SF5 is offered with only 124k verified and documented miles, and is finished in Subaru’s classy Light Silver Metallic (406). The body and paint show well with only the expected scuffs and dings associated with daily use. Devoid of any exterior modifications, this Forester does have quite a few tasteful factory styling options including one-piece rainvisors, a factory rear spoiler, and an optional rear bumper guard. Ensuring you're never confused with your average USDM counterparts, the JDM models also received a fender-mounted mirror, fender-mounted turn signals, and a massive factory hood scoop. This Subaru’s looks are stellar overall, and notable repairs in Japan include a new right front door. Suited for daily driving, weekend trips, or the occasional Cars & Coffee, this wonderful crossover is turn-key and ready for its next chapter here stateside. For those looking for a powerful, spacious, and easily serviceable vehicle, this recently serviced Forester is sure to fit the bill.
Once inside the spacious cabin, you’ll find Subaru prioritized utility and convenience, while also incorporating a bit of luxury into the mix. The seats are trimmed in upscale gray cloth upholstery and show no notable rips, stains, or tears. The driver can find their ideal driving position with the six-way manually adjustable driver's seat and factory tilt adjustable steering column. The rear passengers will also benefit from the tilt reclining rear seats keeping everyone comfortable on long trips. While hauling large items the rear seats can also be folded completely flat adding plenty of extra cargo space and the low loading floor and rear bumper design make easy cargo loading. The dashboard and door cards are in great shape and lack any cracks or UV distortion common in other vehicles of its age, but we would like to note light scuffs to the left rear door panel. Faux wood trim adds a more luxurious feel while the leather-wrapped shifter and MOMO steering wheel are a nod to Subaru's sporty heritage. The automatic climate control, which works as it should, blows hot heat and cold A/C and a fully functioning Kenwood headunit supplies the tunes through the cabin while you make the daily commute. Electric options surround the driver, including power folding mirrors, power locks, and power windows making daily use enjoyable. The carpets and headliner have also held up well over the years showing minimal staining. Overall, this Forester was well cared for in a prior life even retaining its original carpeted floormats, cargo divider, and rear cargo cover.
The turbocharged EJ20G boxster engine can be found under the hood and is the same legendary powerplant found in the GC8 WRX. This flat four fires up promptly and idles smooth thanks to a new 12V battery. This horizontally opposed four banger is fresh off a recent oil and filter service and pulls surprisingly hard all the way to redline. Power is delivered to all four wheels through a precise shifting automatic transmission and acceleration is quite impressive considering the 3,000-pound curb weight. While behind the wheel the steering is communicative and under hard braking, the pedal feels firm thanks to the new front brake pads and rotors. Ride quality is above average, but there is a good reason for that. Four new struts and new front control arm bushings replace the worn-out stock units and now this SF5 delivers a very predictable feel overall. To complete the reconditioning, we installed brand new Falken tires on all four corners. The new rubber substantially reduces road noise but more importantly will last for tens of thousands of worry-free miles to come.
*California Residents: In order to register a Grey Market vehicle in the state of California then it will have to be made CARB compliant first. CARB certifications will have to be performed within the state. Depending on the vehicle and any existing modifications will affect the pricing. Typically CARB compliance will range between 5-10K. Additional information can be found on the California Air Resources Board website.