Three Compact SUVs Go Head-to-Head in an All-Wheel-Drive Showdown: Comparing the 2016 Subaru Forester, Honda CR-V, and Toyota RAV4

Billings, MT based drivers looking for an automobile that helps them maintain calm, composed, and in control behind the wheel, even when the weather or driving conditions turn south, will likely be drawn to the compact SUV segment of vehicles. Designed to offer an attractive balance of daily drivability and off-road finesse, crossover SUVs such as the Subaru Forester, Honda CR-V, and Toyota RAV4 are considered by many to be both capable and convenient.

New Forester Inventory

And while, when car shoppers see the words "all-wheel-drive", they tend to believe this to a blanket term that translates to superlative aptitude when the going gets rough, it's important to know that not all all-wheel drive systems are created equally, nor do they perform with the same efficacy. While AWD technology like that which is available on models such as the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4 is slip-activated--that is to say, when slipping is detected, more power is directed to the other axle to compensate--Subaru's standard symmetrical all-wheel drive continuously keeps power being routed to all four wheels, at all times, so you get optimized traction and continuous stability control.

Interested in learning more about the differences between three of the compact SUV segment's most popular contenders? Take a look at our comparison below, then be sure to visit our team here at Rimrock Subaru to take a closer look at all of our currently available new Subaru models.

Subaru Forester vs. Toyota RAV4

  • Again, the Forester emerges as the more practically priced option, with a substantially lower MSRP than a comparably equipped Toyota RAV4; and, as is the case with the Honda CR-V, drivers interested in all-wheel drive will be required to pay even more out of pocket, while this system comes standard on every Subaru Forester.

  • Compact SUVs are ideal vehicles for Billings, MT drivers who love to get outside and explore; that being said, you'll need to have space to haul any and all necessary gear. The Forester offers more flexibility with 108.3 cubic feet of interior volume, while the RAV4 falls short with only 101.9 cubic feet available. 

  • In the NHTSA Front Crash Test Rating for the driver side of the vehicle, the Forester earned the highest possible score of five-stars; in the same test, the RAV4 earned only four-stars.

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Subaru Forester vs. Honda CR-V

  • The Subaru Forester will set you back a few thousand dollars fewer than a comparably equipped Honda CR-V. Further, while all-wheel-drive comes standard on every Subaru, regardless of trim, with Honda's compact SUV variant, you'll have to pay up for AWD capabilities.

  • When it comes to maneuverability, we have to give praise to the Forester. Thanks to its tighter curb to curb turning circle, navigating your way throughout tight parking garages and crowed lots will be notably easier than it would be in the CR-V.

  • Don't let its classification as a "compact SUV" fool you: the Subaru Forester is plenty spacious, with a total interior volume of 108.3 cubic feet.. The Honda CR-V falls short in comparison, with only 104.1 cubic feet on board.

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