Which Car is Better: 2021 Subaru Forester or 2021 Toyota RAV4?

2021 Subaru Forester vs. 2021 Toyota RAV4
2021 Subaru Forester


2021 Toyota RAV4
$24,795 MSRP

Starting Price

$26,050 MSRP
EyeSight® Driver Assist

Safety Suite

Toyota Safety Sense™
Up to 1,500 pounds

Max Towing

Up to 3,500 pounds
182 hp


203 hp
Harman Kardon premium audio system


JBL audio system
2.5L SUBARU BOXER® 4-Cylinder

Base Engine

2.5-Liter Dynamic Force 4-Cylinder

If you’ve been on the hunt for high-performance crossover SUVs, you’ve probably narrowed down your choices to the Subaru Forester vs. Toyota RAV4. While both the 2021 Toyota RAV4 and the 2021 Subaru Forester are popular options amongst Louisville drivers, there’s only one that can come out on top. When it comes down to standard safety technology, interior features, and spacious dimensions, the new Toyota RAV4 has the edge. Learn more about these two SUVs in this Subaru Forester vs. Toyota RAV4 comparison.

Subaru Forester vs. Toyota RAV4: Safety Features

When New Albany commuters compare the Subaru Forester to Toyota RAV4, they’ll find that both SUVs offer a number of safety features that’ll give them peace of mind while on the road. There are safety technologies such as Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, which notifies the driver if the vehicle is drifting into another lane, a Pre-Collision System, which monitors the road for obstacles, and Active Cruise Control, which, when activated, will match the speed of the vehicle ahead of you on the highway.

However, the RAV4 comes standard with automatic high beams that improve illumination on Elizabethtown roads. Here’s what each model offers differently:

  • RAV4: Toyota Safety Sense™ 2.0 (TSS 2.0), Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, Road Sign Assist, Front and Rear Parking Assist with Automated Braking, and more!
  • Forester: EyeSight® Driver Assist Technology, Subaru DriverFocus® Distraction Mitigation System, All-Around Awareness, and SUBARU STARLINK® Safety and Security.

Subaru Forester vs. Toyota RAV4: Performance Highlights

When deciding which car is better, the Subaru Forester or Toyota RAV4, when it comes to performance, the RAV4 and Forester are a close matchup:

  • When properly equipped, the 2021 Toyota RAV4 can tow up to 3,500 pounds, while the 2021 Forester only has a towing capacity of 1,500 pounds.
  • The RAV4 is equipped with a 2.5L four-cylinder engine on the base trim that achieves 203 hp. The Forester returns 182 hp with its 2.5L four-cylinder engine.
  • While the Forester costs a bit more for standard all-wheel drive, the RAV4 provides drivers with the options of choosing between all-wheel drive and front-wheel drive.
  • The RAV4 comes standard with a Direct Shift 8-speed automatic transmission, while the Forester has a continuously variable transmission. Neither model comes with a manual transmission.

Subaru Forester vs. Toyota RAV4: Interior Features

If you want a vehicle that’s comfortable and well-equipped with entertainment and comfort features, the 2021 RAV4 is the better option. It offers exclusive features that set it apart from the 2021 Subaru Forester with features including:

  • Entune 3.0 Audio
  • Max cargo capacity: 69.8 cubic feet
  • Available 120V Rear Cargo Power Outlet

Compare the RAV4 vs. Forester at Toyota of Louisville

Have you decided on which car is better: the Subaru Forester or Toyota RAV4? Contact Toyota of Louisville to schedule a test drive and experience the RAV4 firsthand. Or, you can learn more about how the RAV4 stands up against other competing vehicles such as the Honda CR-V and the Nissan Rogue. Also, don’t forget to check our rotating new vehicle specials and find out how you can save on a new RAV4.

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