Edmunds editors Travis Langness and Calvin Kim take the new Subaru Forester and Toyota 4Runner on a trip to the local mountains to showcase each vehicle's strengths and weaknesses on and off the road. It's all to answer the pressing question: Does the car industry's near ideal crossover have what it takes to challenge Toyota's very definition of an SUV? How do these two fare on the roads that real people drive every day? How are they when asphalt turns to dirt? Find out as we answer these questions!

Q: How much power do the 2019 Subaru Forester Touring and the 2019 Toyota 4Runner TRD Off-Road make?
A: The Forester is available with a 2.5-liter flat-four that makes 182 horsepower and 176 pound-feet of torque. The 4Runner comes with a 4.0-liter V6 that produces 270 hp and 278 lb-ft of torque.

Q: How do these cars work?
A: The Forester is equipped with a continuously variable automatic transmission, while the 4Runner uses a five-speed automatic. While both drive all four wheels, they do it very differently. The Forester uses a variable clutch system to engage and disengage the rear wheels as traction is needed in conjunction with active brake control to limit wheelspin. The 4Runner can send its power to just the rear wheels for routine street driving or engage H4 to mechanically connect the front wheels to the rest of the drivetrain. For more torque, shift further to the low range, L4. The Toyota's system is mechanical and requires a firm hand on the transfer case shift lever for actuation. Other 4Runner models are equipped with a variable system that's easier to operate at the expense of outright mechanical connectivity.

Q: How much do these things cost?
A: As equipped, our 2019 Subaru Forester Touring totaled $35,270, while our 2019 Toyota 4Runner TRD Off-Road rang in at $40,820. Both prices include destination and handling charges.

Read our review of the 2019 Toyota 4Runner here: www.edmunds.com/toyota/4runner/2019/
Read our review of the 2019 Subaru Forester here: www.edmunds.com/subaru/forester/2019/

Subscribe to Edmunds to get all of the latest car reviews, automotive news, car comparisons and shopping advice.

Edmunds – we help you find your perfect car with unbiased and useful reviews, advice, pricing and tools. Visit us at www.edmunds.com/.


    • Keith Baughman
      Keith Baughman

      It’s like this. I have a winch on my jeep that I’ll use once in a blue moon. If I’m gonna be in the mountains in the middle of nowhere it’s better to be prepared. Trees down? Rock slides? I’d rather have a more capable vehicle in the backcountry. Be prepared.

      about 1 day ago
    • Aashish Bharadwaj
      Aashish Bharadwaj

      The Forester competes with the RAV4. The Subaru doesn't have an equivalent to the 4RUNNER. This comparison isn't relevant.

      about 3 days ago
    • Blue Patch1413
      Blue Patch1413

      ONE IS FOR BETA, you do the math

      about 7 days ago
    • tubqhe

      I like both Toyotas and Subarus. Great cars. Have 4runner, sequoia, and subie wagon (selling it though). Just recently I've learned from "Scotty Kilmer" that subaru's transmission wasn't from subaru but from nissan. That's why their automatic trannys suck!

      about 9 days ago
    • bonyerng o-007
      bonyerng o-007

      Got it. You guys want to show the differences between these two Vehicles what each can do in it's designed and built for its Unique performances and Capabilities. Very good 👌😃

      about 10 days ago
    • Erich schultz
      Erich schultz

      I traded my 2017 Subaru Forester XT in on a 2018 4Runner TRD Off-Road, BIG mistake! My Forester was like a sports car, where the 4Runner is like driving a boat. Nearly a year later, I am still bummed out about it.

      about 11 days ago
    • Umbra says
      Umbra says

      Am i the only person in this comment section who never had any problems with his Subaru and doesnt hate it.
      I cant think of any other car which can get me up a lvl 4 jeep trail and in the same time easily achive 200km/h on the highway with 10-12l/100(27-30mpg). Not to mention the unbelievable confidence while turning.
      I am not a die hard offroader so id go for the Forester any day.
      My dad have driven a 1999 Foz for 10 years and now drives a 2007 one. I see why he does!

      about 16 days ago
    • cobrasvt347

      Rocks mougles and sand. What the hell is a mougle.

      about 16 days ago
    • Jeffrey Pillow
      Jeffrey Pillow

      I’ve compared the cargo space of my 2009 Toyota Camry to my wife’s 2009 Honda Odyssey on my channel for anyone interested.

      about 17 days ago
    • Juan Baez
      Juan Baez


      about 18 days ago
    • Roman Golovko
      Roman Golovko

      Appreciate the video!

      about 19 days ago
    • Dan Mc
      Dan Mc

      Subaru needs to put the manual transmission back in the Forester.

      about 19 days ago
    • Matt Rothrock
      Matt Rothrock

      Basic Forester = 24,000 Hwy mpg 30-32, Basic 4runner = 38,000 Hwy hwy mpg 20. Do the math on the gas cost over the lifetime ownership of the vehicle and tell me if that necessitates being able to articulate over slightly worse roads than the Forester? For that cost you could bring a dirt bike or... walk.. not like roads that bad tend to go anywhere useful anyways.

      about 19 days ago
    • Karl Madsen
      Karl Madsen

      I loved my Subaru....but...4Runner!

      about 20 days ago
    • Carlos auditts
      Carlos auditts

      4 runner Toyota interior is ugly and boring. Toyota is falling behind. Subaru is doing pretty good.

      about 20 days ago
    • PartyUpLive

      I know the 4Runner is considered outdated by many because it does have a lot of tech features, like radar or blind spot etc... But that's why I'm thinking of checking it out. I tend to keep my cars forever and reliability is more important to me and I have never been a fan of adding a lot of things that will break and cost a lot of money to fix years after the warranty has expired.

      I am currently about to get rid of my 20 years old car because it's not worth fixing it but I took care of it and got a good couple of decades out of it without any major issues for most of that time.

      about 24 days ago
    • tillallareoneluv
      tillallareoneluv In reply to PartyUpLive

      Versatility. The 4runner looks just as good at a wedding, steak house, date, ball game, camping, anywhere. It just always feels right. I know it may sound stupid to some people, but i sometimes felt "out of place" when I would take my dodge Dakota to a job interview (corporate) or to a wedding (though i did get women with it), or anything fancy.

      about 21 day ago
    • en3rgy187

      Spoiler alert: Subaru wins

      about 24 days ago
    • Andreas Müller
      Andreas Müller

      This was not a fair test ride because the Toyota had 88 HP more, lots of torque to, a 4liter V6 engine, higher clearance of the body, the wheel size, tyers, profile, wheelbase, weight, body size, prize should be compare to the Subaru Forester, then this has only a 2.5 l Engine with 182 hp, less torque and lots more different. I'm Please next time do a test with nearly the same size, Horsepower ........also about the price. 😎🕵👍Thanks 👍
      What about in the real winter in the snow in the mountains or spring season by raining condition in the back country side or at farm on bad gravel roads.🕵😎

      about 25 days ago
    • Eleven

      I prefer the feeling of driving a big duarable suv, also to be fair the seat plays a big role too.

      about 26 days ago
    • Albert Head
      Albert Head

      5:34 So, basically, the Subaru is built for retards. End of chat!

      about 26 days ago
    • Albert Head
      Albert Head

      Ha-ha. Just for the record, those are NOT mountaisn. They are little hills. Different things altogether!

      about 26 days ago
    • Albert Head
      Albert Head

      This is a JOKE, right? There is no comparrison. You might as well compare the 4Runner with a bicycle! Most Subarus use Nissan transmissions which have had significant problems.

      about 26 days ago
    • Imran Abbasi
      Imran Abbasi

      Toyota 4 runner

      about 27 days ago

      Not even near to be compare with 4runer
      4runer is very popular great Car

      about 27 days ago
    • areolaman

      4runner has heated seats and the tires do not howl

      about 27 days ago
    • Lon Giancola
      Lon Giancola

      4Runner vs Discovery Sport would be a more realistic comparison

      about 28 days ago
    • Camaro Pusher
      Camaro Pusher

      Subarus are geeky and rather ugly! They poke along in traffic.

      about 28 days ago
    • bill crawshaw
      bill crawshaw

      TRy comparing like vehicles

      about 29 days ago
    • Strike Taing
      Strike Taing

      4runner all day that for sure

      about 1 month ago
    • Wahlman Productions
      Wahlman Productions

      I won't deny the 4Runner to be a 'better' choice for off-roading, but to clarify, I've done that trail that they were on in Big Bear in my forester and completed all of it successfully, even that section Calvin said he couldn't make up. Part of this is driver knowledge and skill, but also the forester had stock tires while the 4Runner comes with AT tires. Most people may not want or be able to do that trail, but my point is, the Forester is actually capable of it.

      about 1 month ago