GMC Terrain Vs. Subaru Forester: A User’s Guide

When you’re in the market for a new SUV, two names often pop up in conversations: the GMC Terrain and the Subaru Forester. Both are popular choices, offering a blend of performance, convenience, and style. 

But how do they stack up against each other? Let’s dive deep, compare these two vehicles, and help you make an informed decision.

A Brief Comparison Table

FeatureGMC TerrainSubaru Forester
Base EngineTurbocharged four-cylinderFour-cylinder Boxer
DrivetrainFWD (Standard), AWD (Available)AWD (Standard)
Exterior StyleBold, urban-orientedConservative, rugged
Interior AmenitiesUpscale in higher trimsPractical, spacious
Safety FeaturesForward collision warning, lane departure warningAdaptive cruise control, pre-collision braking
Starting PriceGenerally higherMore affordable
Fuel EfficiencyVaries based on engine/drivetrain choiceConsistently efficient

GMC Terrain: The Pros

GMC Terrain
GMC Terrain
  • Elegant Design: 

If you’re all about style, the GMC Terrain won’t disappoint. It boasts a sophisticated exterior design that exudes luxury.

  • Interior Comfort: 

With a plush interior and ergonomic seat design, the Terrain provides a comfortable ride for both the driver and passengers.

  • Advanced Infotainment System: 

Tech-savvy individuals will appreciate the Terrain’s modern infotainment system, which offers seamless integration with smartphones.

Subaru Forester: The Pros

  • All-Wheel Drive: 

The Forester comes standard with all-wheel drive, which is a big plus for those living in areas with unpredictable weather conditions.

  • Spacious Interior: 

The Forester offers a roomy interior, making it great for families and those who often haul large items.

  • Safety Features:

Subaru has a reputation for emphasizing safety, and the Forester is no exception with its suite of driver-assist technologies.

Also Read: Differences Between Diesel Pro And Stealth Modules.

GMC Terrain: The Cons

  • Fuel Efficiency: 

While not a gas guzzler, the Terrain’s fuel efficiency may not be as impressive as some of its competitors.

  • Price: 

Higher trims of the Terrain can get pricey, potentially putting it out of reach for some budget-conscious buyers.

Subaru Forester: The Cons

Subaru Forester
Subaru Forester
  • Conservative Design: 

For those who crave a more adventurous look, the Forester’s design may seem a bit muted.

  • Infotainment Lag: 

Some users have noted that the Forester’s infotainment system can sometimes lag, which might be a little frustrating.

Key Differences Between GMC Terrain and Subaru Forester

In the realm of SUVs, the GMC Terrain and Subaru Forester are two contenders that pack a punch. While they share similarities as compact SUVs, they have distinct differences that cater to various user preferences. Let’s dive deeper into their key differences to help prospective buyers make an informed choice.

  1. Performance and Drivetrain

GMC Terrain:

  • The Terrain typically offers multiple engine choices, including a turbocharged four-cylinder and a diesel option in some years.
  • It comes standard with a front-wheel-drive (FWD) system, but all-wheel drive (AWD) is available for those who require more traction.

Subaru Forester:

  • The Forester generally provides a single engine option: a naturally aspirated four-cylinder Boxer engine.
  • Subaru’s symmetrical all-wheel drive comes standard, making it a popular choice for those living in colder climates or terrains that require consistent traction.
  1. Exterior Styling

GMC Terrain:

  • The Terrain boasts a bold design with sharp angles and a distinctive front grille, giving it a more luxurious and urban appeal.
  • LED headlights and taillights, as well as larger alloy wheels, are features found in higher trims.

Subaru Forester:

  • The Forester has a more conservative, yet rugged design. It leans more towards functionality, with its tall windows ensuring better visibility.
  • Its design makes it easier for loading roof racks, a nod to Subaru’s outdoorsy clientele.
  1. Interior and Comfort

GMC Terrain:

  • Terrain’s cabin feels upscale, especially in higher trims with features like leather upholstery and a Bose audio system.
  • Offers features like an 8-inch touchscreen, multiple USB ports, and a Wi-Fi hotspot.

Subaru Forester:

  • The Forester’s interior emphasizes space and practicality. Materials used might be more on the utilitarian side but are built to last.
  • It provides a more expansive cargo space compared to the Terrain.
  • A panoramic sunroof is standard in most Forester trims.
  1. Safety Features

GMC Terrain:

  • GMC offers a suite of safety features, including forward collision warning, lane departure warning, and a rearview camera. Advanced features like adaptive cruise control might be available in higher trims.

Subaru Forester:

  • Subaru’s EyeSight suite of driver-assist features is standard in many models. This includes adaptive cruise control, pre-collision braking, and lane departure warning.
  • Subaru’s safety emphasis has earned the Forester top safety pick awards in various years.
  1. Price and Affordability

GMC Terrain:

  • Starting price for the Terrain is generally higher compared to the Forester.
  • Higher-end trims of the Terrain can get relatively pricey, but they offer a plethora of luxurious features.

Subaru Forester:

  • The Forester offers excellent value for its price, especially considering the standard all-wheel-drive system.
  • Even higher trims of the Forester tend to be more affordable compared to equivalent trims of the Terrain.
  1. Fuel Efficiency

GMC Terrain:

  • Offers decent fuel efficiency, especially for its class. However, real-world fuel economy can vary based on the choice of engine and drivetrain.

Subaru Forester:

  • The Forester consistently offers good fuel economy numbers, thanks to its efficient Boxer engine and CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission).

Also Read: Should You Get Falken Wildpeak AT Trail Or AT3W Tire?

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is the GMC Terrain a good choice?

Absolutely. The GMC Terrain is known for its luxurious feel, comfortable interiors, and advanced tech features. If these aspects align with your priorities, it’s a solid pick.

What SUV is bigger than a GMC Terrain?

The GMC Acadia and Yukon are both larger SUVs within the GMC lineup. There are other brands too, like the Ford Explorer or the Toyota Highlander, that are larger in size.

Are GMC Terrains good SUVs?

Yes. The Terrain has received positive reviews for its blend of style and functionality. Its high-quality interior and advanced tech features are often highlighted.

How does the Subaru Forester rank as an SUV?

The Subaru Forester consistently ranks high in the compact SUV segment. Its focus on safety, combined with its standard all-wheel drive and spacious interior, makes it a favorite among many consumers.

Is the GMC Terrain a luxury car?

While the GMC Terrain offers many luxury features, especially in the higher trims, it is typically classified as a compact SUV. However, its premium touches and finishes can give it a luxury feel.

Is the GMC Terrain fuel efficient?

The GMC Terrain offers decent fuel efficiency, especially for its class. However, compared to some other compact SUVs, it might lag slightly in terms of miles per gallon.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, while both the GMC Terrain and Subaru Forester offer compelling features and performance, your choice will boil down to what you prioritize more: the luxurious appeal and feature-packed nature of the Terrain or the rugged, value-packed practicality of the Forester.

Whether you lean towards the sophisticated elegance of the GMC Terrain or the robust functionality of the Subaru Forester, both vehicles offer a lot to love. Your decision will come down to personal preferences and priorities. Remember to test drive both to get a genuine feel for each vehicle, and happy car hunting!

Clayton S. Johnson

Well, I am Clayton who writes, manages, and does overall stuff for this website. I live somewhere in Stone Mountain, Georgia, and used to have a full-time job. But the pandemic taught me to do more do with my life. So, I quit my job and travel a lot! Since I have tons of time now, I write about all the stuff I have done, used, and have first-hand experiences.

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