2024 Subaru Crosstrek Limited - A very good car regardless where you live.


I drove a second Subaru in short succession, first the Impreza and now a Crosstrek. They are basically the same vehicle with some important differences. Exterior dimensions are within an inch here or there with the Crosstrek being slightly longer at 176.4" versus 176.2" for the Impreza. Height and ground clearance is the major difference for the Crosstrek. It has over three more inches of ground clearance; all the better for driving through snowdrifts. A bonus for the extra height is, at least for me, it is easier to get in and out of the Crosstrek.

Internal storage dimensions are just about the same as the Impreza - 20 cu. ft. with the rear seat up, and 54.9 with the rear seat down for the Crosstrek as opposed to 20.4/56.0 for the Impreza.

One difference I can't explain is that the Crosstrek Limited is rated to tow up to 3,500 lbs. whereas I couldn't find a rating for the Impreza RS. They both use the same 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder boxer engine rated at 182 hp and 178 lb-ft. They both use what appears to be the same Continuously Variable Transmission, and the same final drive ratio. Whatever the reason the towing is a bonus.

The Crosstrek fuel economy is rated at 26-mpg city and 33-mpg highway. 

Inside is the same sensible, comfortable interior as the Impreza with the exception of the 11.6" SUBARU STARLINK® Multimedia system screen. I found the screen crowded with icons, overly busy, and difficult to use. Other than the dials for the sound system (volume and tuner) almost everything had to be accessed through the screen meaning I had to take my eyes off the road. 

Once upon a time a TV screen within the driver's field of vision was strictly verboten. When touch screens came on the scene they were not considered TV screens because they took the place of tactile switches, slides, and buttons. In theory they did not distract the driver. But they do, and as more and more controls were added to the screen they ended up looking like a big smart phone screen and at least for this old guy they are just as difficult to operate. Especially while the vehicle is in motion. 

For a relatively small car the interior is spacious; four adults will find it very comfy, two adults (mom and dad) and three little ones will be just fine. 

Performance minded drivers will lament that the Crosstrek doesn't have a high horsepower engine like the past WRX STi. Get over it, this is a family vehicle but it does just fine in the real world. 

There are five Crosstrek levels. The Base and Premium models have a 152 hp, 2.0-liter engine and start at $25,195, or $26,345 respectively. The Sport starts at $29,195, the Limited at $31,095, and the Wilderness at $32,195. The Crosstrek Limited I drove added Option package 33 ($2,445) that included a power moonroof, a really nice Harmon Kardon speaker system, and the dreaded 11.6" screen. Check prices at https://www.subaru.com/index.html as they may change.

I have no hesitation recommending any Subaru, they have a long-standing reputation for reliability. A friend had a Legacy wagon and at around 250,000 miles he had to replace the alternator, the first "major" repair. 

Give a Subie a look-see.  You don't have to live in snow country to own a Subaru.


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