Not to harp here, but if you set your adaptive cruise control to the maximum following distance, you will not get hit by flying debris as often. Using your adaptive cruise will teach you that you are probably following too closely when you drive “manually” instead of allowing the car to maintain spacing.
Even though you mentioned it may not be his/her fault, there have been incidences where the windshield cracked by possibly just a change in temperature and it seems SOA admitted to some in a rather cagey manner that it was the supplier’s fault. Hence, they replaced it for some of the people for free for those who willing to put up a fight with SOA and/or windshield cracked but there were no windshields available in the market for replacement.
A comment about going over the shoulder line, esp if that side is rough, the wheel bearings on our vehicles are one of the worst. Ideally, it should not matter going over the rough side of the road but needing wheel bearing replacement is remarkably common in Subarus. That will set you back $550 at least because getting the old wheel bearings off is a royal PITA job. The labor itself is at least 2 hours. I had to replace one at just 30K and I avoid every pothole out there on the road.
Another vehicle of mine is 13 year old Sentra that has never seen a wheel bearing replacement.
In my personal experience, Adaptive Cruise Control to avoid debris seems more like a fallacy. I use Adaptive Cruise Control a LOT, with max speed between me and the next vehicle but those who want to go in and out of the lanes find that much space enough to get in and that results in my Forester hard braking and as soon as they are out, really high revs (more than 3500 rpm) just to get to the speed set. It is remarkably annoying. This is the reason my wife doesn’t use it at all. Plus, those going in and out of the lanes perfectly make sure to make the debris fly off when they change the lanes.
I prefer to use it esp when there is not much traffic on the road, early morning because I get best mileage between 60-65mph.
Overall, Forester is a great vehicle, at the same time, you need to make some driving adjustments to get you most of it with least amount of money to maintain it.
Around these parts, the expressways have two to four lanes. A rock can be thrown up by a vehicle in any lane, including one next to you or even two over. Most of my broken windshields were from deteriorating surfaces (MA likes to experiment with asphalt formulations) and faster vehicles on my left, passing me. I had one stone come from a truck two lanes over. We were about the only two vehicles in the area and sure enough, whack! Following too close is probably a leading cause but surely not the only one…
It sounds like Subaru implemented their adaptive cruise control to be very annoying. My Mazda will not brake hard because someone jumps in front of me. It just eases back to maintain safe distance. And, unless I am in “sport” mode (which I never am), my cruise control never revs hard to “gun it” and get up to speed. Once again, Mazda implemented their cruise control to be comfortable. While I use it primarily on the open road, I have used it in heavy traffic in New York City and Washington DC. All I can say is that it is AMAZING in heavy traffic.
I have heard many complaints about safety features being annoying and heavy handed, but I never find that in my Mazda. I wonder if driving a car built for drivers instead of built for “consumers” makes a difference? Mazda gets kind of preachy about the whole driver experience (remember “Zoom Zoom”?) but I’m starting to think they are onto something. All I can say is that my driving experience is enhanced by the features that Mazda has added, and it doesn’t seem like all of you folks driving other brands feel that way about your cars.