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2016 Subaru Crosstrek Review

The 2016 Subaru Crosstrek has two rows of roomy seats and offers lots of easy-to-use technology. However, it sits in the bottom third of our rankings because it has an underpowered engine and less cargo space than rivals.

Pros & Cons

  • Excellent fuel economy
  • Spacious seating
  • Nimble handling
  • Weak engine
  • Small cargo area

New for 2016

  • Blind spot monitoring and rear cross traffic alert available
  • Updated front styling

Rankings & Research

The 2016 Subaru Crosstrek's #9 ranking is based on its score within the 2016 Affordable Subcompact SUVs category. Currently the Subaru Crosstrek has a score of 7.7 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 35 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.




Critics' Rating: 7.7
Performance: 7.3
Interior: 7.6
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.0
Safety: 9.3
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2016 Subaru Crosstrek Overview

Is the 2016 Subaru Crosstrek a Good Used SUV?

The 2016 Subaru Crosstrek is an OK vehicle. If you’re looking for a practical and safe SUV that gets good fuel economy, this all-wheel-drive subcompact SUV may suit you. It’s just not a vehicle that stands out from the competition.

Why You Can Trust Us

We do not base our used car rankings and reviews on our personal opinions. Instead, we collect information like safety and reliability reports, total cost of ownership estimates, and the views of the automotive press. We analyzed 35 professional evaluations for this 2016 Subaru Crosstrek review to help you make an informed buying decision.

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking vehicles since 2007, and our Best Cars team has more than 75 years of combined experience in the automotive industry. To ensure our impartiality, we don’t accept expensive gifts or trips from carmakers or dealers, and an outside team handles our site’s advertising.

How Much Is the 2016 Subaru Crosstrek?

Based on the more than 450 listings on our site for a used 2016 Subaru Crosstrek, you can expect to pay between $18,400 and $25,000. The average list price is $22,000. Prices vary depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2016 Subaru Crosstrek Cost to Own?

Buying a car is just the beginning of your expenses. Five-year costs for gas, insurance, maintenance, and repairs for the 2016 Crosstrek are estimated to be $22,400. That’s about average for the class. The more efficient 2016 Mazda CX-3 costs just $20,600. The 2016 Mini Countryman, however, soars to $25,100.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New Crosstrek?

There’s very little difference in price between the used Crosstrek and the new 2018 model, and there’s no reason to choose the used model. The 2016 ranks near the bottom of the class. The new 2018 is fully redesigned and has more passenger room, more cargo space, and more rear legroom. It also ranks near the top of its class.

Read about the new Subaru Crosstrek »

A number of other 2018 subcompact SUVs actually cost less than the average price of the used Crosstrek. One example is the 2018 Mazda CX-3, which offers an excellent combination of athletic performance, interior refinement, and good safety scores. The 2018 Honda HR-V also costs less, and it has a versatile cargo hold, a roomy second row, and sturdy build quality for a small SUV. Either of the newer models would be a better choice than the used Crosstrek. The only downside is that neither comes with all-wheel drive like the Subaru.

See the Best New Car Deals »

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How Reliable Is the 2016 Subaru Crosstrek?

The 2016 Subaru Crosstrek has a reliability rating of three out of five from J.D. Power. This score is average for the industry.

Read more about Crosstrek reliability »

2016 Subaru Crosstrek Recalls

As of this writing, there are no recalls on the 2016 Crosstrek.

See more information on Subaru Crosstrek safety recalls »

Which Model Year of the Subaru Crosstrek Is Best?

The 2016 Subaru Crosstrek is part of a generation that began with the 2013 model year and ended with the 2017 model year. None of these models is highly ranked, but if you’re going to shop used, buy the 2015 model. Aside from some differences in standard active safety features (2013 and 2014 models have none; 2015 models and later have a rearview camera), there’s little to distinguish these vehicles. It will also save you some money compared to the 2016 model. Of course, if you can swing it, it’s better to buy the new 2018 model over any used Crosstrek.

Compare the 2014, 2015, and 2016 Crosstrek »

Which Used Subaru Crosstrek Model Is Right for Me?

The Subaru Crosstrek comes in three trims: base, Premium, and Limited. The Limited has the most standard features, including standard leather seats, automatic climate control, and blind spot detection. You won’t get these three features in the Premium trim, but you will get almost everything else the Limited trim offers. Avoid the base trim; go with the upper trim that best suits your needs.

See 2016 Subaru Crosstrek trims and specs »

What Does Subaru's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Subaru offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 80,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Subaru extends the original new-car powertrain warranty to seven years from the original sale date or 100,000 miles. Subaru provides no additional coverage for CPO vehicles, so buyers receive the remainder of the original three-year/36,000-mile new-car warranty. However, buyers can purchase additional coverage. Every CPO Subaru must pass a 152-point inspection. Additional benefits like owner loyalty discounts, a one-year Starlink Safety Plus trial subscription, towing, and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Subaru warranty page carefully.

Subaru’s CPO program isn’t particularly robust, according to our analysis. Among affordable automakers, Toyota, Mazda, Honda, and many others have better programs.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the Crosstrek?

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the Subaru Crosstrek a 2016 Top Safety Pick+. The Crosstrek received four out of five stars from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for its rollover and frontal crash tests, as well as five stars for the side crash test.

The Crosstrek’s only standard active safety feature is a rearview camera, but blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and Subaru's EyeSight system are available. The EyeSight system comes with adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and pre-collision braking.

See Crosstrek safety scores »

2016 Subaru Crosstrek Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2016 Subaru Crosstrek or 2016 Mazda CX-3?

The 2016 Mazda CX-3 is a smart choice for those who want a fun driving experience. It has capable steering and handles well in turns. All-wheel drive is available. The Mazda’s class-leading fuel economy means you’ll spend more time on those twisty roads and less time at the pump. The CX-3’s interior is more upscale than the Crosstrek's, and it features a long list of standard features. These include Bluetooth, an infotainment system, and a rearview camera. The CX-3 also costs slightly less than the Crosstrek to own. Between these two, the CX-3 is the better choice.

Which Is Better: 2016 Subaru Crosstrek or 2016 Subaru Forester?

The 2016 Subaru Forester is a compact SUV that has much more cargo space and a more powerful engine than the Crosstrek. The Forester also has composed, carlike handling, and both rows of seats are roomy and comfortable. It’s a bit more expensive than the Crosstrek, but most buyers will probably prefer the Forester.

Compare the Crosstrek, CX-3, and Forester »

2016 Crosstrek Performance

How Does the 2016 Subaru Crosstrek Drive?

All 2016 Subaru Crosstreks come with a 148-horsepower four-cylinder engine. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, and a continuously variable automatic transmission is available. The Crosstrek’s engine lacks power and provides sluggish acceleration.

Thanks in part to its low center of gravity and standard all-wheel drive, the Crosstrek drives with control and precision. It handles tricky road conditions with ease and feels nimble during regular driving. The Crosstrek has a high ground clearance, which helps when driving off road. However, that height leads to some body lean when cornering on pavement.

Does the 2016 Subaru Crosstrek Get Good Gas Mileage?

The Crosstrek gets an EPA-estimated 26 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway when equipped with the CVT. That is very good for the class, especially considering the model has all-wheel drive. The Crosstrek with a manual transmission has a rating of 23/30 mpg city/highway. The 2016 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid does a bit better, earning 29/33 mpg city/highway.

2016 Subaru Crosstrek Towing Capacity

The 2016 Crosstrek has a towing capacity of 1,500 pounds.

Read more about Crosstrek performance »

2016 Crosstrek Interior

How Many People Does the 2016 Crosstrek Seat?

The Subaru Crosstrek seats five and comes standard with cloth upholstery. Available features include leather upholstery and heated front seats. The Crosstrek has spacious seating in the front and rear. A 6-footer can sit behind another 6-footer, without compromising anyone’s head- or legroom.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2016 Subaru Crosstrek?

The Crosstrek has two complete sets of LATCH child-seat connectors in the rear outboard seats, as well as a middle-seat tether anchor. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Crosstrek’s system the second-lowest score of Marginal for ease of use, noting the lower anchors are buried too deep in the seats for easy access. The IIHS also stated that maneuvering around the anchors is difficult.

2016 Subaru Crosstrek Features

The 2016 Subaru Crosstrek comes standard with a four-speaker audio system and Subaru's Starlink infotainment system with a 6.2-inch touch-screen display, Bluetooth, HD Radio, smartphone app integration, and a USB port. The Crosstrek is available with an upgraded Starlink system (with a 7-inch touch screen), voice-activated navigation, push-button start, hands-free text messaging, two USB ports, automatic climate control, and satellite radio.

The Crosstrek’s infotainment system is easy to use. Its audio and climate controls are well-positioned on the center stack, but the audio system’s sound quality is poor. There are no available audio system upgrades, which many competitors offer.

See 2016 Subaru Crosstrek specs »

Read more about Crosstrek interior »

2016 Subaru Crosstrek Dimensions

Subaru Crosstrek Cargo Space

The 2016 Crosstrek has 22.3 cubic feet of cargo space with all the seats in place, and 51.9 cubic feet with the rear seats folded. These figures are both low compared to class rivals. Split-folding rear seats are standard and easy to maneuver.

2016 Crosstrek Length and Weight

The 2016 Crosstrek is 14.6 feet long. Its curb weight ranges from 3,109 pounds with the Premium trim and five-speed manual transmission, up to 3,208 pounds with the Limited trim and CVT.

Where Was the 2016 Subaru Crosstrek Built?

The 2016 Subaru Crosstrek was built in Japan.

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