The subcompact crossover is arguably Canada’s quickest growing vehicle segment – it’s exploded overnight to include new vehicles like the Mazda CX-3, Honda HR-V, and Jeep Renegade/Fiat 500X twins. Subaru’s response? An updated version of its Impreza-based Crosstrek.
You might have noticed that the Crosstrek no longer has its XV moniker – it’s been dropped as a part of a mid-cycle refresh for 2016. A new front bumper with vertical chrome strakes, revised headlamps (standard HIDs, other than the base trim), and a new grille provide a cleaner appearance, though the model looks very similar to its pre-facelift form. Really, the easiest way to pick out the new model on your local Subaru dealer’s lot is to check for the wheels – the standard 17-inch units look similar, but have angled spokes. Gone, though, is the vibrant orange paint, though it’s been replaced by an equally bright Hyper Blue.
The interior of the Crosstrek is more or less identical to the standard Impreza, meaning supportive seats, simple controls, and a good level of interior space. New for this year, the Crosstrek gains orange contrast stitching on the seats, shift knob, and steering wheel, revised steering wheel controls, plus different interior trim (soft touch plastics, silver and gloss black accent trims). A wide and expansive cargo bay offers 636 litres of cargo capacity, which can be expanded to 1,470 with the rear seats folded down.
Subaru’s EyeSight stereoscopic camera-based active safety system is available on Sport and Limited trims with the Technology Package. It includes radar cruise control, emergency autonomous braking, lane-keeping assist, plus steering responsive fog lights, and proximity key with push-button start.
At the heart of all Crosstreks is a 2.0-litre horizontally opposed four-cylinder engine that’s good for 148 hp and 145 lb-ft of torque, which is comparable to its main rivals. A five-speed manual is standard, with Subaru’s Lineartronic CVT available as an optional extra with paddles for manual shifting. With the CVT selected, the Crosstrek is one of the most fuel-frugal crossovers around, with a city rating of 9.1 L/100 km city, and 7.0 L/100 km highway.
Though it may be based on a traditional road-going car, the Crosstrek’s 75 mm raised ride height offers more standard ground clearance (220 mm) than its rival trucklets, allowing its owners to make good use of its standard all-wheel drive, and black plastic fender and rocker panel cladding.
All Crosstreks come with PZEV (Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle) certification. Those wishing for something even greener may wish to consider the Crosstrek Hybrid, which is covered in a separate report.
Pricing for the Crosstrek starts at $24,995, with the Limited with Technology Package Option selling for $31,895.