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2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Review

The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid has great fuel economy ratings, a refined interior, and solid off-road capability. However, it finishes in the bottom half of our hybrid and electric SUV rankings in part because of its limited cargo room.

Pros & Cons

  • High-quality cabin materials
  • Plenty of standard features
  • Great fuel economy
  • Light off-road ability
  • Limited cargo space

New for 2020

  • Rear-seat reminder and automatic door locks now standard
  • Two extra USB ports now standard

7.6

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 7.9
Performance: 7.0
Interior: 6.0
Safety: 10.0
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Is the Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid a Good SUV?   

The Crosstrek Hybrid is a decent pick in the hybrid and electric SUV class. This plug-in hybrid delivers great fuel economy figures and comes loaded with safety tech. It also features premium materials inside its modern-looking cabin. That said, its base price is high for a subcompact SUV, rear-seat space is barely suitable for adult passengers, and it's not as enjoyable to drive as several rivals.

Should I Buy the Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid?

If you're looking for a subcompact plug-in hybrid SUV, the Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid is a solid pick. There are other vehicles worth looking at, though, including some in the subcompact SUV class. You’ll pay less to get a more well-rounded classmate like the Kia Niro, which offers better fuel economy and a higher predicted reliability rating. The nonhybrid Subaru Crosstrek is less fuel-efficient than its hybrid counterpart, but it’s far less expensive, and it has more cargo space.

Compare the Crosstrek Hybrid, Niro, and Crosstrek »

Should I Buy a New or Used Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid?

For 2020, Subaru adds a rear-seat reminder, automatic door locks, and two additional USB ports to the Crosstrek Hybrid's standard features list. We recommend looking for a 2019 model, which is otherwise identical to a new Crosstrek Hybrid but likely less expensive.

There was a previous Crosstrek Hybrid generation that spanned the 2014 through 2016 model years, but these SUVs are vastly different from the vehicles in the current generation, which launched for 2019.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2016 Crosstrek Hybrid and 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid reviews to help make your decision. Also check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts you can find on used vehicles.

Compare the 2016, 2019, and 2020 Crosstrek Hybrid »

We Did the Research for You: 16 Reviews Analyzed

We’ve analyzed 16 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid reviews, as well as performance specs, interior dimensions, fuel economy ratings, and more, to give you all the information you need to make a smart car-buying decision.

This 2020 Crosstrek Hybrid review incorporates applicable research for all models in this generation, which launched for 2019 model year.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been reviewing cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined automotive industry experience. To remain impartial, we do not accept extravagant gifts from automakers, and an outside source handles our advertising.

How Much Does the Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Cost?

The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid starts at $35,145, which is high for a subcompact SUV but about average for the hybrid and electric SUV class.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Subaru dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Subaru deals page.

Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid or Subaru Crosstrek?

Both the Subaru Crosstrek and the Crosstrek Hybrid offer a composed ride, a similar amount of passenger space, and premium cabin materials. However, the base model of the gas-only Crosstrek costs about $13,000 less than the Crosstrek Hybrid, and though it comes with less standard features, it provides more cargo room. Even the top-level nonhybrid Crosstrek, which is comparably equipped to the plug-in hybrid version, costs about $7,750 less than its sibling. The Crosstrek Hybrid, on the other hand, is more efficient than the gas-only model. If you're willing to foot the much higher bill for improved efficiency, go for the Crosstrek Hybrid. Otherwise, stick with the nonhybrid Crosstrek.

Which Is Better: Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid or Kia Niro?

The Kia Niro comes in traditional hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and all-electric variants, all of which provide superb efficiency. The plug-in hybrid Niro is the most comparable to the Crosstrek Hybrid, and it has 9 more miles of all-electric range than the Subaru. And while the plug-in hybrid Niro doesn't have as many active safety features as the Crosstrek Hybrid, it does have a lower base price.

Compare the Crosstrek Hybrid, Crosstrek, and Niro »

Crosstrek Hybrid Interior

How Many People Does the Crosstrek Hybrid Seat?

Up to five people can fit inside the Crosstrek Hybrid. The comfortable and supportive front seats have ample space, but adults won’t want to sit in the back seat for anything longer than a short trip. This Subaru comes standard with a power-adjustable driver's seat, but lumbar adjustments aren't available.

Crosstrek Hybrid and Child Car Seats

There are two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats, and its middle seat has an upper tether and the ability to borrow lower anchors from the adjoining seats. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave this LATCH system the highest rating of Good+ for its ease of use.

Crosstrek Hybrid Interior Quality

The Crosstrek Hybrid features premium interior materials, including standard leather upholstery. Heated front seats are also standard.

Crosstrek Hybrid Cargo Space

There's 15.9 cubic feet of cargo room behind the rear seats and 43.1 cubic feet with the rear seats folded down. These numbers are low compared to rivals, and the Crosstrek Hybrid's raised cargo floor makes it difficult to load heavy cargo.

Crosstrek Hybrid Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The Crosstrek Hybrid is packed with infotainment technology. Its standard Starlink infotainment system features an 8-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, six speakers, Bluetooth, four USB ports (two in the front and two in the rear), satellite radio, and HD Radio. Navigation, as well as a Rockford Fosgate or Harman Kardon premium audio system are optional.

The Starlink system is easy to operate, with well-arranged physical audio and climate controls as well as functional menus.

For more information, read What Is Apple CarPlay? and What Is Android Auto?

Read more about interior »

Crosstrek Hybrid Performance

Crosstrek Hybrid Engine: So-So

A four-cylinder boxer engine and two electric motors combine to make 148 horsepower in this Subaru. The only transmission available is a continuously variable automatic (CVT). The Crosstrek Hybrid offers pretty quick acceleration from a standstill, but it struggles to pass other cars at highway speeds. It can also get noisy at high speeds.

Crosstrek Hybrid Gas Mileage: High Efficiency

The Crosstrek Hybrid gets an EPA-estimated 90 MPGe combined city/highway, which is great for a plug-in hybrid SUV. (For more information, check out What Is MPGe?) It also has an all-electric range of 17 miles.

It takes roughly five hours to charge the plug-in Crosstrek Hybrid with a standard 120-volt household outlet and two hours with a 240-volt outlet.

Crosstrek Hybrid Ride and Handling: Composed and Comfortable

The Crosstrek Hybrid delivers a composed ride, and its suspension does a good job of mitigating road bumps. It has vague steering, however, and it isn’t as engaging to drive as some subcompact SUV rivals like the Hyundai Kona.

On the plus side, this Subaru's standard all-wheel drive, 8.7 inches of ground clearance, hill descent control, and X-Mode off-road driving system make it one of the most off-road capable vehicles in the class.

Read more about performance »

Crosstrek Hybrid Reliability

Is the Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Reliable?

The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid has a slightly above-average predicted reliability rating of 3.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Warranty

The Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid is covered by a three-year/36,000-mile basic warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty. The warranty coverage for hybrid-related components varies by state.

Read more about reliability »

Crosstrek Hybrid Safety

Crosstrek Hybrid Crash Test Results

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid the highest rating of Good in all crash test categories. It also earned the top rating of Superior for the effectiveness of its standard suite of front crash prevention features. Its headlights received a Good rating for how well they illuminate the road ahead.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not tested the 2020 Crosstrek Hybrid at the time of writing.

Crosstrek Hybrid Safety Features

The Crosstrek Hybrid has a generous list of standard active safety features by way of EyeSight, a suite of driver assistant technology. It includes forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and lane keep assist. This Subaru also comes with a rearview camera, adaptive headlights, automatic high-beam headlights, reverse automatic braking, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and pedestrian detection.

Read more about safety »

Crosstrek Hybrid Dimensions and Weight

The Crosstrek Hybrid is nearly 14.7 feet long. Its curb weight is 3,717 pounds.

Where Is the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Built?

Subaru builds the 2020 Crosstrek Hybrid in Japan.

Which Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Model Is Right for Me?

The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid comes in just one trim and carries a starting price of $35,145. (We review the nonhybrid Subaru Crosstrek separately.) It features a 2.0-liter four-cylinder boxer engine as well as two electric motors that combine to make 148 horsepower.

Its standard features list includes leather upholstery, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, a six-way power-adjustable driver's seat, heated front seats, push-button start, a proximity key, and automatic climate control.

It also comes with a Starlink infotainment system with an 8-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, six speakers, satellite radio, HD Radio, Bluetooth, and four USB ports (two in the front and two in the rear).

Several advanced safety features are also standard, including a rearview camera, adaptive headlights, automatic high-beam headlights, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, reverse automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, pedestrian detection, forward collision warning, and forward automatic emergency braking.

An optional package ($2,500) adds navigation, an eight-speaker Harman Kardon premium audio system, a moonroof, and a heated steering wheel. A Rockford Fosgate audio system is also optional for an additional $573.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Subaru dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Subaru deals page.

See 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid is a decent choice in the hybrid and electric SUV class. It offers ample standard technology, excellent fuel efficiency, and moderate off-road capability. However, its cargo area is small, and its rear seats aren't very adult friendly.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • If the thought of the occasional off-road adventure sounds fun but you don't have the budget for a traditional off-road-biased SUV, the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid might just be for you. ... But on the downside, the Hybrid costs a lot more than a regular Crosstrek when new, though tax incentives help defray the cost. Cargo space is also diminished because of the space taken up by the battery pack." -- Edmunds
  • The 2019 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid is the brand's second attempt at a hybrid crossover. The first iteration never sold particularly well, so Subaru took a different approach this time around, employing plug-in technology borrowed from Toyota. As a result, the new Hybrid model presents a compelling argument for the extra money it commands over the conventional Crosstrek." -- CNET (2019)
  • The Crosstrek hybrid is the one that's neither quick nor fun. This second-generation Crosstrek hybrid is the first Subaru plug-in. It's also one of the few hybrids equipped with all-wheel drive and enough ground clearance to handle light off-roading while retaining some dignity. Since it's a hybridized version of the popular Crosstrek, some of the compromises made during the transmogrification are apparent, but they're modest compromises to what is a modest vehicle." -- Car and Driver (2019)
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