By NITISH S. RELE – email@example.com
In 2022, Subaru sold a record 155,142 Crosstreks, making the compact SUV its fastest-selling vehicle in history since debuting over a decade ago. This year and beyond, we can bet more records will be broken by the totally redesigned ride.
Though it retains the engine, transmission and other mechanical components, the third-gen Crosstrek is like an almost-new SUV. Under the hood resides a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder BOXER engine developing 182 horsepower @ 5800 rpm and 178 pounds-feet of torque @ 3700 rpm. It is mated to a continuous variable transmission with 8-speed manual mode and option of steering-wheel paddle shifters. The four-wheel independent MacPherson-type strut front and a double wishbone rear suspension soak up bumps and maintain stability in the standard and revised symmetrical all-wheel-drive ride. Borrowed from the WRX, and understandably so, is the dual-pinion electric power-assist steering, which promptly responds at the slightest turn. The X-Mode with hill descent control allows the driver to pick snow, dirt, deep snow and mud modes for any untoward road/weather conditions. And yes, we will take the 8.7-inch ground clearance any day.
Our Sport trim screamed yellow inside and out! Up front, the new frameless hexagonal grille in black finish is flanked by LED steering-responsive headlights but easily noticeable are also yellow accents on front, sides and rear panels. Step into the sizeable cabin and your eyes quickly glance at yellow tones on the gray cloth seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, door armrests, center console storage lid, and shifter handle, and carbon fiber trim. Even the instrument cluster rings are illuminated in creamy metallic finish! Another welcome new addition is the huge 11.6-inch tablet-style touch screen (first for Crosstrek) to control navigation, audio and phone along with circular knobs. The 60/40-split rear-seat passengers have plenty of room to stretch their legs. Go for the optional $1,920 blind spot detection/rear cross traffic alert system, power moon roof and 10-way power driver seat. It is money well spent. Also standard are heated front seats, dual auto a/c, 4.2-inch instrument cluster, six speakers, retractable cargo cover, push-button start and a wireless phone charger.
Standard safety features are dual front and side airbags, side curtain airbag for both rows, driver knee airbag, four-wheel antilock brakes with electronic brake distribution and brake assist, vehicle dynamics control, stability and traction system, rearview camera, tire pressure monitoring system and daytime running lights. The updated Eyesight assist monitor, which features lane departure warning and keep assist, pre-collision brakes and active cruise control, ensures that the driver maintains a straight path.
Whether you are an off-roader or not, the revamped Crosstrek will serve the purpose. Plus, the drive off the fuel pump won’t be as painful (combined 29 mpg) and neither will the price tag in the early 30s. If in the market for a compact SUV that appears cool, attractive, nimble and sophisticated, grab any from a local dealer’s lot before it’s too late. This is one “ride” you don’t want to miss!
Wheelbase: 105.1 inches
Length: 176.4 inches
Width: 70.9 inches
Height: 63 inches
Weight: 3,332 pounds
Fuel capacity: 16.6 gallons
City: 26 mpg; highway, 33 mpg
Base price: $28,995
Price as tested: $32,210
Web site: www.subaru.com