Thursday, April 26, 2012

Lift it, lower it, or leave it: Suspension planning for our Forester

Subaru Forester Mountain Rescue Vehicle
Subaru Mountain Rescue vehicle at the SEMA Show. Photo via
As you may have seen, we traded in our Suzuki SX4 AWD for a slightly larger Subaru Forester. Being the people we are, we simply can't just leave the car alone. We've got plans to add OEM fog lights, some Rally Armor mud flaps, clear paint protection film, and likely some 17-inch wheels and tires. Then comes the next question: Suspension.

I like the idea of more ground clearance, but this isn't going to a off-highway regular. Rather, more for snow, gravel roads, etc. But a slight lift would be functional, and could give the car a bit more of a rugged rally-car-esque look. I've got the Sidekick for the rougher stuff.

I've seen plenty of sweet slammed Foresters, too. I love the way the look, for sure. Better handling is always fun, and it looks great, too. Then again, our lowered Yaris is really our car for the corners.

Like our SX4, we bought the Forester to be our "in between" car. That means, it's in between our lowered Toyota Yaris, and our lifted Suzuki Sidekick. So, perhaps we just leave the ride height where it is, or simply throw on a rear sway bar for more control. We'll see.

Subaru Forester XTI at the SEMA Show.
Subaru Forester XTI at the SEMA Show. Photo via


Dextervw said...

What about some type of coil over? Up when you want up.. down when down... get some fancy ones with dampening control as well and you could play endlessly... posh dinner down the Gorge... lowered... photo shoot in the middle of no where... up up and away!!

rubicon4wheeler said...

I would definitely lift the Forester. It doesn't take much to do it, and you can't fit a much-larger-than-stock tire on there even with a lift, but the additional ground clearance will be useful in snow country and on longer backcountry trips where you may want to take the Subaru instead of the Sidekick. This is probably the one I'd go with:

nlpnt said...

I like Dextervw's idea. Sort of an update of how Subaru used to have manually adjustable ride height, by means of the bolts holding the shocks into place under the hood and the rear load floor mat.

Duke said...

I'd leave the Forester as it is. It manages to be comfortable and absorb potholes without having much body roll. Getting a vehicle like the Forester and lowering it kind of defeats the point of buying a vehicle like the Forester to begin with. You might as well have bought a station wagon (not that there's anything wrong with that). Subaru does factory suspensions right. I don't see why so many people are so eager to replace something that works exceptionally well. WRX owners are particularly bad about this...