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January 12, 2024

Sixth-Generation Subaru Forester Expected To Arrive In PH By End 2024; To Be Assembled In Thailand


When Motor Image said that the upcoming “WOW GT Edition” or “Wilderness” version of the current-generation Subaru Forester will serve as an appetizer for the all-new, sixth-generation model, we didn’t have any idea how soon next-generation model will arrive for our market. Now, we do.

To recall, Tan Chong (the parent company of Subaru distributor Motor Image) Deputy Chairman and Managing Director Glenn Tan said he is coming up with an off-road-centric version of the compact SUV in a response to the strong demand for outdoorsy lifestyle-centric SUVs in the region. It will also serve to whet the appetite for the upcoming all-new Forester which will take on a more rugged look.

The WOW GT Edition will take a page off the North American Forester Wilderness in that it will get upgrades such as chunkier, all-terrain tires and other upgrades (he confirmed that the ride height will not be changed though). This is on top of the other existing GT Edition upgrades.

With that, it puts to question just how soon the region can expect the all-new Forester—codenamed SL. Well, in a separate interview, Tan has confirmed that they will roll out the completely redesigned Forester by the latter half of 2024, perhaps as early as the third quarter.

In addition, the Philippines will no longer import the all-new Forester from Subaru’s Gunma, Japan assembly plant. They will be manufactured at Tan Chong’s Thailand assembly plant, instead. Tan said that assembly of the current-generation Forester will wind down and will be retooled to assemble the all-new Forester.

The decision, according to Tan, was spurred by several factors. 

First, is that assembly in Thailand will make the model more immune to potential parts shortages; something Subaru faced in the previous years. The Tan Chong plant is capable of assembling both left- and right-hand drive vehicles. The Philippines will be the lead left-hand drive market with other markets including Vietnam and Cambodia as well.

Second, Motor Image will be able to closely monitor the quality of the model destined for the ASEAN market. Now, that’s not to say that they consider Japan’s build quality to be interior (or theirs to be more superior), but it’s more of that they can immediately respond to any issue. It also allows them a bit more in terms of flexibility in terms of specifications. Tan even says that they can fly in factory people from Thailand to the Philippines at the sign of any problem.

The all-new Forester made its global debut last November. The “SL” Forester is longer and wider than the current model with a design that takes on a “classic and rugged” approach. Inside, it gets technology seen in other Subaru models such as the 11.6-inch tablet-style infotainment screen, and of course, further enhancements to the award-winning Subaru EyeSight 4.0 driver assist technology.

In terms of powertrain, the all-new Forester uses a carryover FB25 (2.5-liter boxer engine). However, Subaru has mentioned that they will use a hybrid powertrain sourced from Toyota starting in 2025.

16 comments:

  1. It should be cheaper then right?? RIGHT???!!!

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  2. OMG! Why will the Forester not be sourced from Japan anymore?

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  3. it could be more affordable na

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  4. Motor Image's plant in Thailand is under utilized.
    Manufacturing the LHD New Forester would keep the costs down

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  5. Is this the start of more affordable Subarus in the country?

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  7. Imho The only reason why most people buy subarus or mazdas is because they were made in japan. Kahit overpriced, buyers pay premium for japan made products.

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    Replies
    1. Made in Japan is made in Japan. Quality is top notch.

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  8. If the CRV already broke the 2M price barrier, it wont be long until this Forester do the same.....

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    1. Without discounts, it already has with this generation.

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    2. Subarus are high maintenance cars. The pms alone is worth an arm and leg.. let alone the cost of parts to replace.
      If you get only one busted tire, you need to replace all 4 tires at the same time coz of the 4wd system..

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    3. Really? Do you have a subaru?

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    4. Yes i use to have a 2014 forester.. replacing the sparkplugs alone would entail removing the 2 front wheels on a lifter.
      The service manual even states na baba makina to have better access to the plugs. Labor and parts are so darned expensive. My 80k pms cost me almost 63k for a major service.

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    5. That's BS. Hindi kailangan ibaba ang makina. Casa quoted me only 5k for labor sa spark plug replacement. And how frequent do you even replace spark plugs for it to be an issue? 10 years na yung spark plug nung akin, ok pa. Nung ika 12 years pa pinalitan.

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  9. Not Japan CBU anymore, forget it. The quality has deteriorated over the years then you move it out of Japan; it's a recipe for disaster.

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  10. IMO, you buy Subarus not for the price, you buy them knowing it's made in Japan

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