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2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek

Overview
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2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 7.0

In the automotive world, downsizing has long been synonymous with downgrading. While this notion is often far from true , most of today's compact SUVs have swollen to near mid-size proportions, which in turn spawned a new series of small SUVs that actually live up to their namesake. The all-new 2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek is among this new breed of right-sized SUVs, offering a wealth of upscale features, nimble handling and ample cargo space at an affordable price. Rivals such as the Nissan Juke and Mini Countryman deliver engaging on-road performance and laudable fuel economy, but the new XV Crosstrek supplements its solid road manners with a surprising level of off-road proficiency and the best fuel economy of any all-wheel-drive (AWD) SUV on the market.

You'll Like This Car If...

Today's small-SUV shopper faces no shortage of choices, but if all-terrain capability and distinctive exterior styling are prerequisites for your next compact SUV, the 2013 XV Crosstrek should make your decision much easier.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you need a vehicle with a great deal of cargo space and an affordable sticker price, the larger Toyota RAV4 or the Honda CR-V is worth a closer look. Subaru fans who love the rugged capability of the XV Crosstrek, but require slightly more interior volume should consider its bigger brother, the Subaru Outback.

What's New for 2013

The 2013 XV Crosstrek is a brand-new nameplate in the Subaru lineup and looks to make a name for itself in the small-SUV segment by way of impressive fuel economy, stylish sheetmetal and go-anywhere capability.

Driving the XV Crosstrek

Driving Impressions Though it is largely based on Subaru's latest small-car platform, the XV Crosstrek feels exceptionally stable and secure on the open road. Road imperfections and undulations are well absorbed, and...

the up-sized brakes provide plenty of stopping power for the relatively light XV Crosstrek. The electric-assisted power steering lacks feedback, but the light effort makes low-speed parking maneuvers a cinch. The 148-horsepower engine, however, has a difficult time hauling more than two passengers, and the continuously variable transmission (CVT) exacerbates engine noise under hard acceleration. To that end, drivers looking to haul more than a few hundred pounds should search for a more powerful alternative. Still, the prevailing impression is one of suitable refinement and comfort.

STANDARD SYMMETRICAL ALL-WHEEL DRIVE
Unlike most competitor all-wheel-drive systems, Subaru's trademark symmetrical AWD continuously sends power to all four wheels to help prevent a loss of traction before it happens. Additionally, Subaru symmetrical AWD incorporates a compact design to optimize both fuel economy and handling performance.

PARTIAL ZERO EMISSIONS
Until recently, hybrid and alternative-fuel vehicles were the sole recipients of the EPA's Partial Zero Emission Vehicle (PZEV) rating. The Subaru XV Crosstrek achieves PZEV status without the need for costly alternative-fuel technology.

2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek Details
2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek photo Interior

Barring a few minor details, the XV Crosstrek and the Subaru Impreza share the same interior layout. While material quality is below average for the segment, panel gaps are narrow and consistent throughout the cabin. The rear seats offer sufficient legroom for average-sized adults and fold flat to yield 51.9 cubic feet of cargo space – considerably more than the Nissan Juke. The dashboard's center stack is home to user-friendly controls and a handy lower storage compartment for mobile phones and other small items. If possible, we recommend avoiding the optional navigation system, as the outdated interface can be extremely frustrating to operate.

Exterior
2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek photo

The 2013 XV Crosstrek shuns the utilitarian look of many "compact" SUVs in favor of a more aggressive, dynamic design. The look is spearheaded by Subaru's signature hexagonal grille and hawk-eye headlights, while prominent over-fenders and unique starfish alloy wheels combine to project an athletic stance. With 8.7 inches of ground clearance and fairly steep approach/departure angles, the Subaru XV Crosstrek is well-equipped for travel in unforgiving terrain. Moreover, the lower body panels are wrapped in rugged plastic cladding for additional protection against various obstacles encountered on unpaved roads.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek is offered in two trim levels: Premium and Limited. Premium models include roof rails, heated front seats, a multi-information display and a 6-speaker sound system with Bluetooth and a USB port for portable MP3 players. Stepping up to the Limited trim adds dual-zone climate control, leather, rearview camera, auto-on/off headlights and Subaru's new 4.3-inch touch-screen audio system with HD Radio. Despite the $25,000 price tag, Limited models do not offer power-adjustable front seats. Occupant protection comes in the form of seven airbags, rollover mitigation control and sure-footed traction of symmetrical all-wheel drive.

Optional Equipment

Since the majority of features are tied to trim level, the XV Crosstrek's short list of options includes a power moonroof, touch-screen navigation with a 6.1-inch display and host of stand-alone accessories. Given the substandard sound quality produced by the standard audio system, we highly recommend upgrading to the dealer-installed speakers from Kicker.

Under the Hood

The lone engine choice for the 2013 XV Crosstrek is a 2.0-liter, horizontally opposed "boxer" 4-cylinder engine that churns out 148 horsepower and 145 lb-ft of torque. The XV Crosstrek sends power to all four wheels via a standard 5-speed manual or an available continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). Premium models equipped with a manual gearbox feature an AWD system with a 50/50 front/rear power distribution, while automatic transmissions are coupled to an adaptive system that automatically proportions power to the wheels with the most grip.

2.0-liter boxer-4
148 horsepower @ 6,200 rpm
145 lb-ft of torque @ 4,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 23/30 mpg (manual), 25/33 mpg (automatic)

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2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 72 Ratings for the 2013 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.5/10
    Quality
    8.8/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    8.2/10
  • Comfort
    8.2/10
    Styling
    8.6/10

Our 6th Subaru.

By on Thursday, June 18, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,700

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "High ground clearance. AWD. Driver leg room."

Cons: "Underpowered. CVT. Storage in back."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is our 6th Subaru. Love the high ground clearance. AWD is always great. Both will be helpful in heavy NE snows. Car is abysmally under-powered, has less power than our 2007 Impreza. CVT does NOT impress me; other than being lighter weight, don't understand the popularity. Back-up camera is great; has made me a back-up "expert". Gives me more leg room in front than our 2007 Impreza; more comfortable for me to drive. Has substantially less carrying capacity in back unless you put one or both of the rear seat backs down."

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

good suv

By on Friday, June 12, 2015

I don't own this car

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Good in winter and all conditions of weather"

Cons: "Wish had better gas mileage"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 7

"The crosstrex is very good and reliability is excellent speacially during winter months handles excellent. The only thing i wish it was good in is the gas mileage which is not good at all i only get 19 miles a gallon. overall this suv was worth it."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Love it

By on Wednesday, June 10, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 5,350

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "great gas mileage,comfort safety, design and price"

Cons: "Needs a little more engine power"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Bought new in August of 2014 along with a STI .....We get so many inquires and compliment's on our Subaru where as with other new vehicles in the past we have not. Love the ride safety and quality of our Subaru's and the company its self has much integrity."

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

Nice Little SUVish Car

By on Tuesday, June 09, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 2,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Purchased this vehicle to replace an aging 4Runner. We needed a smaller, reliable vehicle that would fit in our new much smaller garage. After looking at many options, we chose a Subaru Crosstrek Premium CVT with Eyesight. This also meant we got adaptive cruise control and the upgraded 7-inch infotainment system. Plus, the dealer installed after-market leather seats for free. Acceleration is not as bad as reviews would have led me to believe, but it certainly could be better. I wish Subaru would offer either a turbo or the same motor they have in the Forester, but i'm content with the little boxer they have in it. And I'm very happy with the gas mileage. I almost skipped testing the Crosstrek because reviews had been so negative about acceleration. I'm glad we gave it a shot. An odd thing is that no model comes with power seats. I wish Subaru would add power seats with better lumbar and thigh support. However, those two things (engine power and lack of power seats) are relatively minor gripes. The Crosstrek is fun to drive, looks great, and is pretty versatile. On top of that, it has better interior size than many larger vehicles. Our nearly 6'6" son has more room for his head, legs, and knees than even in my old 4Runner. And, of course, we wanted to be able to go anywhere. We did a lot of ski and camping trip with the 4Runner. The Crosstrek will handle anything we throw at it - and still get about double the gas mileage. Tow capacity is relatively weak, at only 1500 pounds. That's enough to pull a small trailer or a jet ski, but not much else. This is really the biggest trade-off from my 4Runner, which could tow 6000 pounds. The 7-inch infotainment system works well. Bluetooth was easy to set up (in fact, the dealer did it for my phone, then I added other phones from the family). I love the adaptive cruise control on trips. And it's nice that Subaru puts a backup camera on all Crosstrek models. Subaru's AWD is legendary and played a role in our decision to buy a Crosstrek. This is the little car that could, and we are very pleased with it thus far."

6 people out of 7 found this review helpful

way overpriced for what you are getting

By on Tuesday, June 02, 2015

I owned and sold this car
Reason: overpriced for model features

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
5/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "great fuel mileage, looks sporty"

Cons: "Way overpriced for the model, pansy powertrain"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"this vehicle is AWD gets great fuel mileage, it has a very small luggage compartment, the limited with leather seats has Sunroof, navigation but has manual seats not heated and has limited power. I have to admit it has a nice exterior and interior but is really lacking for the Overpriced MSRP , even the used 2013 is way overpriced, I will never pay this much for the limited features much less its pansy power again ! Go with the rav4 or Mazda SUV"

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Engine under powered with inconsistent response

By on Monday, June 01, 2015

I owned and sold this car
Reason: underpowered

10 4.0
overall rating 4 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
4/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
6/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "Symmetrical AWD is great."

Cons: "Engine is severely under powered."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 2

"At random times this car may decide to NOT accelerate when giving a lot of gas quickly. I saw a few other reviews that pointed this out and it's a shame that most people are missing this fact. It's mostly between the speeds of 10-40 when this occurs. When you couple this issue with the fact that you can literally floor this vehicle while still holding a cup of uncapped coffee in your hand, it's dreadfully under powered. The navigating system is the worse I have ever used. It's incredibly slow to respond to changes on the touch screen. The engine struggles at almost all speeds and is noisy with a loud growling sound. There is honestly nothing special about this vehicle outside of acquiring AWD in this price range but it comes with the cost of being severely under powered. Look at other reviews outside of KBB and you will clearly see that it's under powered."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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