Subaru Outback vs. Forester

 dirty Blue suabru wilderness outback parked on rocky terrain
 Blue suabru wilderness forester driving through heavy forestry

Subaru Outback vs. Forester | Comparing Subaru SUVs

Drivers searching for a capable Subaru SUV in the Oklahoma area often narrow their search to two models: the Subaru Outback and Forester. Both offer safe, capable, and reliable performances that make it last. The Outback and Forester share common features that make all Subaru’s great while featuring their own unique features that make them standout. The most noticeable difference between the Outback and Forester are their body shapes, dimensions, and capability. For a closer look at each, stop by Bob Moore Subaru today.


2024 Subaru outback rear seats down and trunk, large camping equipment being stored.
 the entire rear seat down in the 2024 Subaru forester demonstrating its large space

Dimensions & Interior Space: Subaru Outback vs. Forester

The main difference between the Outback and Forester from Subaru is the size. The Outback classifies as a mid-size and the Forester falls into the compact SUV class. The Forester stands taller with a boxier shape while the Outback features a lower profile with a wider stance. This creates unique interior spaces in both Subaru SUVs that can be tailored to your lifestyle. The Outback offers slightly less overall passenger cargo space of  109 cu-ft, but makes up for it with 75.6 cu-ft of rear cargo space. The Outback’s wider stance is a better fit for traveling with larger, oddly shaped items like bikes, canoes, or skis. The Forester stands slightly taller than the Outback creating a slight advantage in maximum passenger volume of 111.6 cu-ft. For overall cargo capacity, the Forester offers slightly less than the Outback at 74.2 cu-ft. Here’s how the Subaru Outback and Forester compare in dimensions and overall interior volume:

2024 Subaru Outback

Length: Up to 191.9 inches

Width: Up to 74.6 inches

Height: Up to 66.9 inches

Wheelbase: 108.1 inches

Base Curb Weight: 3,641 – 3,946 pounds

Passenger Capacity: 109 cu-ft

Cargo Capacity: 75.6 cu-ft

2024 Subaru Forester

Length: 182.7 inches 

Width: Up to 72.2 inches

Height: Up to 68.9 inches

Wheelbase: Up to 105.1 inches

Base Curb Weight: 3,454 – 3,620 pounds

Passenger Capacity: 111.6 cu-ft.

Cargo Capacity: 74.2 cu-ft


 White 2024 Subaru outback towing a camper and two large bikes on the bike rack
 Silver 2024 Subaru forester transporting two large bikes on the bike rack

Engine & Towing Capacity: Outback vs. Forester

Both the Subaru Forester and Outback are built standard with a 2.5-liter SUBARU BOXER engine. This returns the same 182 hp at 5,800 rpm in both Subaru SUVs. The 2024 Subaru Outback edges out the Forester with it’s second engine option, a 2.4-liter Turbocharged SUBARU BOXER engine. This turbocharged engine is available on the Outback Wilderness & XT trims. 


This engine also gives the Outback the overall edge in towing capacity over the Forester, offering a max towing capacity of 3,500 lbs. The 2.4-liter engine Outback models have a max towing capacity of 3,500 lbs. The Forester returns a max towing capacity of 3,000 lbs in the Wilderness trim, while all other trims offer 1,500 lbs of towing.


Blue 2024 Subaru wilderness outback rock climbing in heavy rocky terrain.
 2024 Blue Subaru wilderness forester off-roading in heavy forest terrain

Ground Clearance & Off-Road Capabilities: Outback vs. Forester

Both Subaru SUVs are built for the adventure, loaded with on and off-road technology and capability. Traveling across uneven terrains is possible with vehicles offering 8.7-inches of ground clearance. For added clearance, both models increase in their Wilderness trim levels. The Outback Wilderness with 9.5-inches and the Forester Wilderness at 9.2-inches. 


The Outback and Forester features the same standard performance features including Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, Traction Control System (TCS), Active Torque Vectoring, Trailer Stability Assist (TSA), and Vehicle Dynamics Control (VDC). The only difference is the 2024 Subaru Outback offers X-MODE and Hill Descent Control standard on every trim. 


Compare the Outback & Forester at Bob Moore Subaru

If you still can’t decide between the Outback and Forester, stop by our Subaru dealership near Edmond, Oklahoma City, and Norman for an in person tour and test of each model. Our team can help you find the perfect fit for your budget, driving style, and future adventures. For any questions about a specific model from our inventory, contact our team today.

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