2019 Subaru Crosstrek

Starting Price: $22,870 | Price yours

Above Average: Great driving position and visibility, AWD, reliability, good fuel economy, good for carrying passengers or cargo, capable off-road, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto is standard on entry trim

Below Average: Smallish interior, less sporty than some of the competition, engine leaves something to be desired

Consensus: The sub-compact SUV from Subaru has a ton of capability for a competitive price.

2019 Kia Sportage

Starting Price: $24,745 | Price yours

Above Average: Sporty good looks, powerful engine, lots of high tech including Apple CarPlay/Android Auto on higher trims, incredible 10-year/100,000-mile warranty

Below Average: Driver assistance systems are optional, not very off-road capable, polarizing headlight placement

Consensus: High end features with an optional turbo engine and an affordable price makes the Kia Sportage a good buy.

Subaru is known for making some of the most reliable AWD crossovers around and the Crosstrek hits on all those notes. It’s comfortable, controlled, quiet, and relatively easy to shepherd through rush hour traffic or up a mountain road. While the engine is somewhat underpowered and the CVT leaves something to be desired, particularly in overtaking situations, the Crosstrek gets 25 MPG combined. New for 2019, the Crosstrek gets four additional inches of width to the rear hatch door so that owners can load more stuff in the back. The Kia Sportage may be less off-road capable than the Crosstrek but it offers up a bevy of luxury options like heated and cooled seats, heated steering wheel and panoramic sunroof if you want to upgrade without spending an arm and a leg. The interior features knobs for climate and audio controls (rather than touchpads or sliders) and while some of the exterior features (those high headlights) leave some folks turned off, you can’t beat Kia’s 10 year/100,000-mile warranty.


Fuel efficiency, cargo space, and functionality

 Subaru Crosstrek Advantages

Apple CarPlay/Android Auto comes standard, sporty driving dynamics, available suite of safety features, configurable digital dashboard

Kia Sportage Advantages

Reliability, ample interior space for passengers and cargo, comfortable ride, one of the most powerful turbocharged engines in the compact-crossover space, reclining rear seats, amazing warranty.

Final Recommendation

The Crosstrek takes the top spot in this comparison for its flexibility whether your transporting people or cargo, for its standard AWD system and its resale. You have to step up to the LX, EX or SX to get the AWD feature on the Sportage and resale isn’t nearly as good as the Subaru. 

  2019 Subaru Crosstrek 2019 Kia Sportage
Popular Powertrains    
Engine 2.0-liter Flat 4 2.4-liter I4
Horsepower 152 @ 6000 RPM 181 @ 6000 RPM
Torque 145 @ 4000 RPM 175 @ 4000 RPM
Transmission 6-speed manual 6-speed automatic 
Fuel Economy 25 mpg (23 city/29 hwy) 25 mpg (22 city/29 hwy)
Also Available n/a 2.0-liter turbo I4
Warranty 3-yr/36,000 miles 10-yr/100,000 miles
NHTSA Overall Safety Rating 5 stars 5 stars
Max Seating Capacity 5 5
Wheelbase 104.9 inches 105.1 inches
Overall Length 175.8 inches 176.4 inches
Width 79.0 inches 73.0 inches
Height 63.6 inches 64.4 inches
Turning Diameter 35.4 feet 34.8 feet
Headroom, Front 39.8 inches 39.3 inches
Headroom, Rear 38.0 inches 39.1 inches
Legroom, Front 43.1 inches 41.5 inches
Shoulder Room, Front 56.7 inches 57.1 inches
Shoulder Room, Rear 55.6  inches 55.1 inches
EPA Passenger Volume 100.9 cu. ft. 12.9.3 cu. ft.
Cargo Volume behind 2nd row 20.8 cu. ft.  30.7 cu. ft. 
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