2021 Subaru Outback vs 2021 Subaru Forester
2021 Subaru Outback 2021 Subaru Forester


2.5L 4-Cyl 2.5L 4-Cyl


182 182

  MPG (City/Highway)

26/33 * 26/33 *

  Max. Towing Capacity

2,700 lbs. ** 1,500 lbs. **

2021 Subaru Outback vs 2021 Subaru Forester

Serving Fairfax, VA

Are you debating between driving home in a new Outback or a new Forester? These two popular Subaru models have rightfully earned exceptional reputations over the years. Specifically, they are known for their reliability, capabilities, and impressive features. While they are comparable in many areas, identifying their differences will help you to decide if the 2021 Outback or the 2021 Forester is a better option for you.


The Outback wagon has seven trim levels, and the Forester crossover has five options. A 182-horsepower, Boxer 2.5-liter engine is standard across all trims of the Forester. This powertrain is also included in the first four Outback trim levels for the 2021 model year. The other powertrain that is standard in the Outback’s top trims is a turbo Boxer 2.4-liter, 260-horsepower engine. A Lineartronic continuously variable transmission is standard equipment across all trims for both models.


The 2021 Outback has the long roof that you would expect from a modern wagon. This is a lowered roof that combines with a tapered nose to create a sporty look. On the other hand, the Forester has the taller stance that you would expect from a compact crossover SUV. Some of their shared exterior features in some or all trim levels include LED lights, a hands-free liftgate, and raised roof rails.


Through a trim-by-trim comparison of the Outback and Forester for the 2021 model year, you will discover many shared features. These include StarLink, a Harman Kardon sound system, leather seats, EyeSight assistive tech, a panoramic powered moonroof, etc. With trim level differences, an in-person review is an essential step in your model comparison process.

The Farrish Subaru team is available to demonstrate features and abilities for the Outback and Forester upon request. Stop by at your convenience to get more familiar with these models and to check out current inventory.

* EPA-estimated fuel economy. Actual mileage may vary. For Crosstrek Hybrid, EPA-estimated MPG equivalent on a full battery charge. Actual mileage will vary.