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Toyota Harrier vs Subaru Forester: SUV Comparison

The Toyota Harrier and Subaru Forester are top choices for budget-friendly, fuel-efficient SUVs. Both handle challenging driving situations well with their  4WD/AWD models excelling in off-road conditions. Their ground clearance allows for versatile driving.

In urban traffic, both models offer excellent steering, making them suitable for daily use by drivers of all ages. Whether you’re seeking a Toyota Harrier or a Subaru Forester for sale, this comparison will help you make an informed decision.

Car models :

  • 2nd Generation ACU30W Toyota Harrier (2003 – 2013)
  • 3rd Generation SHJ Subaru Forester (2007 – 2012)

Difference Between the Toyota Harrier and Subaru Forester

The Toyota Harrier and Subaru Forester have different needs. The Harrier boasts a luxurious style, ideal for those seeking a premium driving experience, while the Forester offers practicality and value for money.

The Harrier, with its higher price tag, suits drivers who prioritize luxury and comfort. In contrast, the Forester, being more affordable, is perfect for those looking for a practical, cost-effective SUV.

Here’s a review of both models :

Toyota Harrier ACU30W : The Ultimate Family SUV


  • Comfort and Luxury: The Harrier is known for its comfortable ride and luxurious interior. It often includes features such as leather seats, premium audio systems, and advanced climate control.
  • Reliability: Toyota is renowned for its reliability, and the Harrier is no exception. It typically requires less frequent repairs and has a long lifespan.
  • Resale Value: Toyota vehicles generally hold their value well

The Toyota Harrier is a premium 5-seater SUV, perfect for families with its spacious interior, ample trunk space, and generous legroom. It offers a smooth, enjoyable driving experience thanks to its excellent ground clearance, balanced weight distribution, and 17-inch tires, making it easy to handle in both urban and rural settings.

Fuel-efficient at 11 km/l, the Harrier is ideal for city driving, with an automatic transmission that enhances ease of handling. Safety features like multiple airbags, ABS, fog lights, and impact bars provide extra protection, ensuring peace of mind for your family.

Blending luxury, comfort, and safety, the Toyota Harrier is the perfect family car.

Subaru Forester SHJ : The Versatile SUV


  • All-Wheel Drive: Standard AWD provides excellent traction and stability, particularly in adverse weather conditions.
  • Performance: The turbocharged variant offers strong performance. The boxer engine also provides a lower center of gravity, enhancing handling.
  • Safety: Subaru is known for its safety features, and the Forester often includes advanced safety tech.

The Subaru Forester is a powerhouse SUV with a 2000cc petrol engine and manual transmission, offering excellent performance at a low cost. Its spacious interior and top-notch build quality make it a reliable daily driver. The AWD option provides superior off-road capabilities compared to the Harrier.

More fuel-efficient than the Harrier ACU30W, the Forester achieves 15 km/l, thanks to its lightweight design (1440 kg). This five-door, five-seat SUV is perfect for families, featuring a spacious, modern cabin with leather upholstery and power seats in premium models.

Safety features include standard driver, sub-driver, and side airbags, fog lights, and ABS for safe driving in adverse weather. With 17-inch wheels and good ground clearance, the Forester easily navigates rugged terrain, making it a versatile family car.

Performance and Engine specifications

Here’s a tabular comparison of the Toyota Harrier and Subaru Forester in terms of Performance.

FeatureToyota Harrier ACU30WSubaru Forester SHJ
Fuel TypePetrolPetrol
Engine Size2400 cc2,000 cc
Dimensions (meters)4.73 × 1.84 × 1.684.56 × 1.78 × 1.67
Fuel Economy11.0km/l15.2 km/l
Engine Type4-cylinder4-cylinder
Maximum Power118kw109kw
Maximum Torque2210nm1960nm
Compression ratio9.610.5
Toyota Harrier ACU30 vs Subaru Forester SHJ

Toyota Harrier

The Toyota Harrier ACU30W features a 2400cc 4-cylinder engine and is a 2WD SUV. Its off-road capabilities are limited, but it offers acceptable fuel consumption considering its massive size (11.0 km/l). Known for its power, the Harrier can sustain heavy loads with ease.

Subaru Forester

The Subaru Forester comes with a 2000cc 4-cylinder engine and manual transmission. It’s smaller than the Harrier but offers five seats and doors, making it a practical family car. The Forester excels in urban handling due to its lighter weight and 1960 nm torque. With a fuel efficiency of 15 km/l, it’s an ideal daily driver.

Popular Use

The differences between the Toyota Harrier and Subaru Forester give them different use cases. Here’s how these crossover SUVs compare to some popular use cases.

  • City Driving—Urban settings are characterized mainly by congested passageways and tight parking spaces. The Subaru Forester’s smaller size makes getting in and out of tiny spaces convenient.

Harrier’s wider body will make navigating tight alleys and parking challenging for beginners.

  • Family Transportation—Both vehicles have five seats, qualifying them as excellent family cars. However, the Harrier’s slightly larger design provides more space and comfort.

If you’re looking for a budget family car and can sacrifice the luxury, the Subaru Forester is where to look!

  • All-Terrain Driving – The Toyota Harrier’s huge weight gives it more balance when riding rugged terrain. However, the Subaru Forester claims all offroading rights simply because it has 4WD enabled for tricky situations.

However, both vehicles’ performance is acceptable in the typical African terrain.


The Toyota Harrier offers elegance and style with its sophisticated interior and superior ride quality. Though pricier than the Subaru Forester, it’s easy handling and automatic transmission make it ideal for beginner drivers. The Subaru Forester is a versatile vehicle that adapts to various driving styles and environments. Its 4WD option provides better control in diverse driving situations. 

Looking for a Toyota Harrier or Subaru Forester for sale ? 

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