Your sedan just isn't big enough for your growing family any more. It happens to everyone who has kids. If you're tired of managing car seats or want room to grow into, it's time to get a new SUV. The new Subaru Forester and new Toyota Highlander have the size and capability your family needs, but which model truly stands out when they're compared side-by-side? Find out which new SUV has more to offer below!

For the purpose of our analysis, the new Subaru Forester 2.5i Premium will be compared to the new Toyota Highlander LE.

Have you already decided that the new Subaru Forester is right for you? Contact the team at Grand Subaru near Chicago by phone at (888) 840-3934 to schedule a test drive.

2018 Subaru Forester vs. 2017 Toyota Highlander Banner

New Subaru Forester vs. New Toyota Highlander: Interior & Exterior Design

2018 Subaru Forester Dashboard The new Toyota Highlander has a larger cargo area than the new Subaru Forester. However, the Forester has more usable storage with all seats in place, greater ground clearance, and an emphasis on functional design elements. Unique interior and exterior design features for the new Forester are as follows:

  • The new Forester has 8.7-in. of ground clearance, while the Highlander offers 8.0-in. of clearance.
  • Enjoy 31.5 cu. ft. of cargo capacity with all seats in place in the new Forester. The Highlander only has 13.8 cu. ft. of usable space with all seats in place.
  • A roof rack comes standard on the Forester, but it's only an option for the Highlander.
  • A panoramic power moonroof is a standard feature with the new Forester, but not available with the Highlander.
  • Underfloor cargo storage is included with the Forester, but not with the Highlander.

New Subaru Forester vs. New Toyota Highlander: Safety & Technology

2018 Subaru Forester Interior When it comes to safety and connected technology, the new Subaru Forester leaves the Toyota Highlander behind. Developed with adaptive driver aids and an advanced multimedia system, the new Forester is great for road trips or your daily commute. Important differences in safety and technology between the Highlander and Forester include:

  • A Rear-Vision Camera, Brake Assist, and Vehicle Dynamics Control are standard with the Forester, but not offered together with the Highlander.
  • STARLINK Safety and Security connected services are only available with the Forester.
  • Driver's knee airbag, advanced frontal airbag system, seat-mounted front side-impact airbags, side-curtain airbags and a rollover sensor are included with the new Forester.

New Subaru Forester vs. New Toyota Highlander: Engine & Performance

While both new SUVs come standard with a four-cylinder engine, there are several differences in performance and efficiency. Most importantly, the new Subaru Forester comes standard with symmetrical all-wheel drive to provide the necessary traction when you need it most. In addition to the greater capability, the new Forester is also more efficient than the Toyota Highlander. Key engine specs are as follows:

Subaru Forester


Toyota Highlander

2.5L H4


2.7L I4

22 MPG city
28 MPG highway

Fuel Efficiency

20 MPG city
24 MPG highway

Lineartronic 6-speed CVT


6-speed shiftable automatic




Test-Drive a New Forester at Grand Subaru!

Upgrade your daily adventures with a new Forester SUV from Grand Subaru near Chicago. Our dealership maintains a select inventory of the absolute best in all-wheel drive capable SUVs. Discover yours and have the capability that your active lifestyle demands. Get in touch a Subaru product specialist by calling (888) 840-3934 or through our test drive form to get in the driver's seat today!

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