Subaru Forester Break-in drive – how important it is?

Do you really need to do the break-in driving for the modern gasoline vehicle? Short answer is yes, you do need to do that. It ensures the long life for the motor and e.g. it does not overly consume oil later.

User manual says that break-in period is 1600 km (1000 miles) and has following instructions:

8-1. New vehicle break-in driving – the first 1,000 miles (1,600 km)
The performance and long life of your vehicle are dependent on how you handle and care for your vehicle while it is new.
Follow these instructions during the first 1,000 miles (1,600 km):

1) Do not race the engine or allow engine speed to exceed 4,000 rpm except in an emergency.
2) Do not drive at one constant engine or vehicle speed, either fast or slow.
3) Avoid starting suddenly and rapid acceleration, except in an emergency.
4) Avoid hard braking, except in an emergency.

Tip #1 Do not exceed 4,000 rpm

That should be easy to follow. Do not overtake if not necessary. Merge to highways with ease. Use “Intelligent” mode instead of “Sport” mode. With these instructions your CVT gearbox ensures that your well below 4 000 rpm mark.

Tip #2 Do not drive constant speed

Sounds ease but what if you need to pick up your brand new car from longer distance? E.g. in my case car was almost 500 km away from home. This tip actually means what it says, avoid constant speed. So in normal traffic it is not constant speed. There will be different speeds limits, other traffic, fuel stops, coffee pauses etc. Avoid using cruise control during the break-in period.

Tip #3 Avoid rapid accelerations

Rapid acceleration with 11.8 seconds 0-100km/h. Yeah right 🙂 One may think how it is even possible to do rapid accelerations with that slow zero to hundred km/h. Well, this means that do not push your new car too hard e.g. from the red lights. Accelerate with ease. This saves some fuel too, if adopted after break-in period.

Tip #4 Avoid hard braking

This is important instruction for your brakes, to get it’s full performance after break-in period. Sure, you’ll need to brake if there is an emergency situation. Foreseeing traffic situations is a very good skill to have in everyday driving anyways. This saves you’re fuel too, since there will be acceleration after braking anyways. So if you can avoid braking (coast instead), it is better. Sure you can use your brake normally even the break-in period. Just avoid to use it on the limits.


Consult your user manual, what Subaru says there is important. However tips are not that difficult to follow and normal driving will do the trick for you. No need to pay special attention. Just remember not to race, accelerate or brake too hard and your Subaru will be just fine.


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