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 Harrisonburg, VA

If you are in the market for a practical vehicle that lives up to your high expectations for premium performance and modern features, your attention is understandably focused on the Subaru line. The Outback wagon and the Forester crossover SUV are both popular options that have been satisfying drivers’ expectations for several decades. After you dig deeper to uncover their differences, you can more confidently make your selection.


The 2021 Subaru Outback is the smaller model, and it is offered with two powertrains across seven trim levels. The first four trim levels are equipped with a 2.5-liter Boxer engine that produces 182 horsepower. The other trim levels for 2021 come with a 2.4-liter turbocharged Boxer engine that delivers 260 horsepower. In comparison, the Forester has five trim levels. Its only powertrain is the 2.5-liter Boxer engine that is in the Outback’s lower trim levels. These engines are all paired with a Lineartronic continuously variable transmission.


As close siblings in the current Subaru lineup, you will find several shared design elements between the 2021 Outback and the 2021 Forester. The sporty Outback wagon sits closer to the ground. It has a lower roofline that is both long and tapered. The Forester SUV is a taller model that comes with a bolder nose. Across both models, some or all trims have LED lights, a hands-free liftgate and raised roof rails.


All of the 2021 Subaru models are well-equipped with the features that today’s drivers want, so you may not be surprised to learn that many of the features found across the Outback’s trim levels are also offered in some or all Forester trim levels. The shared features include a panoramic sunroof, a navigation system, a Harman Kardon sound system, a navigation system, StarLink, EyeSight assist technologies and leather upholstery.

At our Subaru auto dealership, we want you to feel confident about your next purchase. Our sales reps will happily support you as you get to know more about the Outback and the Forester through a few test drives. Contact the sales office today to arrange for your behind-the-wheel experiences with these models.

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