Husky Express (Subaru Forester)

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Of the thousands of Foresters that ply our roads (and those which caught our eyes), this one stands above the rest. Literally.

Nevermind the paintwork which had seen better days, this car was build to bash through the forest and go “mudding”. But as far as we know, Subaru probably didn’t expect people to go hardcore offroading with the Forester, but there is nothing to stop them from doing it. Powerful engine and the beauty of all-wheel drive, as they say…

The choice of car was simply to serve as a spacious husky carrier, but after getting to know the local Forester Offroading group, the owner of this forester began to have second thoughts, and put it into action.

While lowering a Forester is a relatively simple job, as it turns out, lifting it is not as easy as it seems, with plenty of suspension rework to be done. The quest for lifting is simple, the more height a car has, the more suspension travel will be available to flex over obstacles.

While the community of lifted cars in Singapore may be small, there is a huge market outside the confines of this little island, such as Foztrek. We learnt that the first step in getting more suspension travel is to get stiffer springs, which lift the car due to the heavier load rating. This modification also gives the car extra load carrying capacity, especially recovery gear which can weigh a hefty lot.

Next, would be to ensure that the shocks do operate within the intended range of travel, this called for a Strut lift kit which are spacers slid between the shock top hats and the chassis. An issue with cars like the Forester which have trailing beams in the rear suspension, is that the rear wheel will “tuck under” the chassis as it extends. A custom-made beam spacer was fabricated to match the new suspension travel and ensure that the wheel path is as vertical as possible.

 

As further proof that this Forester was meant to be a road-hugger is the HKS muffler at the back, which is a very odd choice if one needs to go offroading – but as the owner says, it just blows bigger (and louder) bubbles when submerged! We’re no strangers to aftermarket air intake kits, but this Safari air intake is a visual representation of thinking outside the box. Mounted to the A-pillars, it was customized to fit into the stock air box inlet on the Forester. Cold air intake? Done.

Peering into the caked engine bay, we were curious to know how the engine stood up to off road punishment, as it seemed that little was done to waterproof the electrical stuff such as alternators and spark plug cables. But as the owner puts it, it has survived many trips underwater, which did surprise him as well. Now, other than the higher seating position, we were curious to know what it was like to live with a lifted Forester. Nevermind that multi-storey and basement carparks were tough to squeeze through, this car does like to chew through the Constant Velocity (CV) joints, drive shaft and bearings.

But as the owner puts it, it would had been a waste to leave it stock and not unlock the true potential of the Forester! Brave choices were made since that fateful day…

Subaru Forester

Engine:
HKS Silent Hi Power Exhaust
Bonnet Lift Struts
Custom Safari Snorkel
Alloy sump guard

Undercarriage:
Ironman 4×4 Heavy Duty Lift Springs
Strut Lift Kit
Chassis protection/skid plate
Trailing arm Spacer
Revo 16” Wheels With 215/75R16 Tyres

Interior:
Custom Waterproof Seat Cover

Exterior:
Custom winch mount
Ironman winch battery
IPF Lights
Roof Basket & parallel bars

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About Author

Always finding ways to keep his hands full, Krado loves to tinker with his car whenever he has the free time. Usually ends in tears or a multiple fluid facial.

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