PALM SPRINGS, Calif. – Subcompact SUVs are gaining in recognition and for good cause. They ship the elevated journey peak and cargo capability that so many SUV drivers want, together with the sort of maneuverability, gasoline effectivity and cheaper price anticipated of smaller sedans or hatchbacks. These pint-sized utes are an incredible various to bigger SUVs, however should you’re additionally occupied with straying off the pavement, top-of-the-line selections has been the Subaru Crosstrek. Now there’s a brand new one.
We had the chance to drive the redesigned 2024 Subaru Crosstrek by means of California’s low desert to see for ourselves how this new, third-generation mannequin performs as each a day by day commuter and a rugged journey car. The 2024 Crosstrek shares the identical platform because the second era, however this time round, the chassis advantages from a ten% enhance in structural rigidity, which improves security, dealing with, and luxury.
From the skin, the 2024 Crosstrek would not break new floor when it comes to styling (very similar to the associated 2024 Subaru Impreza). It retains the lifted stance, trapezoidal grille, and tapering roofline from earlier than however provides a bit extra rugged persona with chunkier black plastic components that flank the bigger and frameless grille. Exterior dimensions are virtually an identical to the final Crosstrek too, with solely a fraction of an inch distinction right here or there. On prime is a considerable roof rack that may carry as a lot as 176 kilos when in movement or as much as 700 lbs should you’re parked and need to arrange a roof-top tent.
When the 2023 Crosstrek goes on sale this spring, it will likely be provided within the Base trim for $26,290 (together with $1,295 in vacation spot charges) or Premium trim for $27,440. Each are powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 152 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque. Arriving in the summertime would be the Sport ($30,290) and Restricted ($32,190), that are upgraded to a 2.5-liter engine that is good for 182 hp and 178 lb-ft. Each of those engines are carryovers from the earlier era and are paired with a constantly variable transmission (CVT) and normal all-wheel-drive. Sorry, a handbook transmission is not provided and Subaru was tight-lipped when requested whether or not the plug-in hybrid Crosstrek would ultimately return.
Gas economic system takes a really slight hit for the 2024 fashions. The two.0-liter is estimated at 27 mpg metropolis, 34 mpg freeway and 29 mpg mixed, whereas the two.5-liter barely goes all the way down to 26/33/29 mpg. That is a drop of 1 mpg throughout the board in comparison with final yr. These are nonetheless first rate estimates for the category, particularly for a car with off-road capabilities. By comparability, the Ford Bronco Sport and Jeep Renegade are rated 26 mpg mixed or worse. Mixed with the Crosstrek’s 16.6-gallon gasoline tank, you must simply journey previous 500 miles on the freeway and have little worry of working out should you’re within the wilderness.
We drove the Premium trim with the smaller engine and located it not more than ample when in comparison with different SUVs within the class. Contemplating it is powered by the identical engine as final yr, we anticipate it to speed up to 60 mph within the 9 to 10-second vary, which is sluggish for nearly any SUV nowadays. If the earlier Crosstrek is any indication, the two.5-liter engine might shave virtually 2 seconds off that point.
Merging onto a freeway or passing slower visitors with the bottom engine requires persistence and planning. We floored the pedal to rise up to hurry and the CVT stored the engine from sounding overly taxed by simulating a couple of shifts. In any other case, there was sufficient energy for ascending reasonably steep grades and typical metropolis driving. Contemplating the Sport trim prices solely a bit extra and will get just about the identical gasoline economic system, we might counsel ready for summer season to get the extra highly effective 2.5-liter.
When letting off the accelerator, the Crosstrek tends to freewheel for some time with out decelerating a lot. The brake pedal has an acceptable quantity of effort to instill confidence and is straightforward to modulate for clean stops. Most customers would not anticipate sporty dealing with from a lifted SUV like this, however the Crosstrek ably carves by means of curves with solely somewhat physique roll. Trip consolation is helped by considerably gentle suspension tuning and 17-inch wheels with compliant tire sidewalls. Highway noise is properly silenced by added sound insulation, and wind noise is barely there at freeway speeds.
The snug journey is spectacular when you think about the Crosstrek’s off-road skills, as there’s normally a compromise required. With 8.7 inches of floor clearance, the Crosstrek can deal with way more than only a grime highway. We clambered up a steep rocky path with no drama as soon as we engaged the X-Mode drive setting that maximizes obtainable traction in any respect 4 corners. Dropping down the opposite facet, hill-descent management ably stored speeds manageable.
We had been involved once we discovered ourselves on gentle sand, however even with out X-Mode activated, the Crosstrek prevented digging down or getting beached. X-Mode operates at speeds as much as 22 mph, and in contrast to its predecessor, the system will re-engage should you exceed that velocity and sluggish again down. The Sport trim will add Snow/Dust and Deep Snow/Sand sub-settings for X-Mode, however once more, we didn’t get an opportunity to pattern that model.
Very like the outside, the Crosstrek’s inside follows a well-known theme laid down by its predecessor. Our Premium trim take a look at automotive comes with a portrait-oriented 11.6-inch infotainment touchscreen that gives a extra fashionable look than the earlier era in addition to the bottom mannequin’s uncommon twin 7-inch shows. Each setups are additionally provided within the Outback and 2024 Impreza. Most local weather controls have been moved to the touchscreen, however we’re happy that there are nonetheless bodily temperature buttons for the motive force and entrance passenger.
The infotainment system is pretty simple to make use of, with massive on-screen buttons and logical menus. There’s solely the slightest of delays in its response to instructions, and wi-fi variations of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are normal. A wi-fi charging pad is optionally available on the Base and Premium trims and normal on larger fashions. Navigation is an choice however solely on the highest Restricted trim. That is comprehensible, since most drivers (particularly within the youthful goal demographic) will doubtless desire their phone-based navigation.
The 2024 Crosstrek additionally features a few security characteristic enhancements, with a wider view for the EyeSight forward-looking cameras and the addition of automated emergency steering that would swerve inside its lane to keep away from obstructions. There’s additionally a brand new rear-seat reminder.
Outward visibility is noticeably higher than most different SUVs, due to its slender roof pillars. The fabric-upholstered seats stored us snug over hours of driving, with sufficient changes to please taller and smaller drivers alike. Entrance seat passengers have massive heart cupholders that may accommodate bigger 32-oz Nalgene bottles in addition to massive door pockets and a deep heart armrest bin. The rear seats can comfortably maintain grownup passengers, however taller occupants will stumble upon the headliner.
Behind these seats, the cargo area can carry as a lot as 19.9 cubic-feet of cargo. That is a cu-ft smaller than earlier than, however then the final era was in a position to maintain greater than you’d anticipate from its cargo quantity spec, so it is nonetheless a aggressive cargo space. Perhaps not as a lot as another SUVs within the class, although, so utilizing these roof rails for additional storage could also be essential should you’re planning any massive adventures, particularly with greater than two folks aboard. Both means, small households can be higher served by the bigger and equally succesful Forester.
Whereas this third-generation Crosstrek would not break a lot new floor, it retains its momentum with incremental evolutionary enhancements. Bringing again a brand new and improved hybrid powertrain and maybe including a extra off-road succesful Wilderness mannequin would definitely broaden its attraction, however Subaru would not touch upon the prospect of both of these potentialities. Even with out these variants, although, the 2024 Subaru Crosstrek is a wonderful alternative.