Our New Love Interest: The 2024 Subaru Crosstrek

Photos by Randy Stern
Photos by Randy Stern

This issue is all about love. If there’s something we associate with love is our favorite brand of automobile – Subaru.

The purveyor of all-wheel drive, go anywhere vehicles relied on our hard-earned and loyal LGBTQ+ consumer base to own a vast number of Outbacks and Foresters. These two stalwarts of the lineup served us well by giving us the space to roam, to haul, to deliver, and to everything else our lives have given us. 

Any discussion of Subaru cannot be complete without mentioning the smaller Crosstrek. This compact crossover – born from the Impreza – has been one of the fastest growing models in the lineup. As for this writing, it is the second-best selling model in the Subaru lineup for 2023. 

For 2024, Subaru updated its up-and-coming Crosstrek to help it grow some more. By the end of the year, the Crosstrek will have five choices that will fit perfectly with your life.

Compared to the 2023 model, the updated Crosstrek gets a new front end with a larger grille opening and improved headlamps. The rear end receives Subaru’s new signature “claw” taillights and a few changes to the liftgate and bumper. Overall, the Crosstrek’s structure is now 10-percent rigid to handle more of what you will serve it. 

Inside, the 2024 Crosstrek gets Subaru’s new 11.6-inch portrait-oriented touchscreen driven by the Starlink infotainment system. Seen on a few of the larger Subaru models, this screen is a huge upgrade to help elevate this compact crossover towards attracting more owners to its charms. 

There are two versions of the Boxer four-cylinder engine available on the 2024 Crosstrek – both carryovers from 2023. Base and Premium models get the 152-horsepower 2.0-liter version of this engine, while Sport and Limited are powered by the upgraded 182-horsepower 2.5-liter unit. 

For the most part, the Crosstrek is unchanged. Just a few updates in standard equipment and options. That includes offering the EyeSight driver assistance suite of features on all Crosstrek models. 

Later this year, Subaru will offer a Crosstrek Wilderness. With a higher ground clearance, all-terrain tires, specific grille and trim, the 2.5-liter Boxer engine, and an enhanced X-Mode terrain management system, this ultimate Crosstrek will take you further off-road towards the ultimate adventure. 

As much as we want to tell you that we drove the Wilderness, took it off road, and had a ball doing so, Subaru provided us with what we would consider the best value among all Crosstrek trim levels – the Premium. 

The 2024 Crosstrek Premium offers you a mix of upgraded equipment, nicer finishes, and a fun-to-push 2.0-liter Boxer engine. It retains the 8.7-inch ground clearance that we love from our Subarus. The benefit of a higher ground clearance is to manage rougher road surfaces. Your definition of a road will vary. 

Even though it feels upgraded and nicer, the seats on the Crosstrek Premium wear a durable cloth upholstery. That makes things more comfortable, compared to faux leather. In fact, the Crosstrek is a comfortable place to be – in both front and back seats. There is space for four adults or an LGBTQ+ family of five. 

Speaking of space, you can pack quite a bit in the cargo hold of a Crosstrek. With the rear seats up, there is 19.9 cubic feet of space that fills up nicely. The rear seatbacks fold down flat in a 60/40 split, expanding cargo volume to 54.7 cubic feet. You might say there is quite a bit of room for activities.

Every Subaru Crosstrek gets the Lineartronic continuously variable transmission with the Symmetrical all-wheel drive system. Our Premium tester gets an upgraded manual gear change through the paddle shifters in the back of the steering wheel, as well as sliding the gear selector over to the M position. Sadly, a manual gearbox is no longer available on the 2024 Crosstrek, which had a few enthusiasts disappointed. 

However, the driveline on our Crosstrek Premium tester was suitably fine for the job it had to do – such as doing work for this magazine. Transmission behavior has improved over the years, including actual shifting of ratios on the highway. There is an X-Mode on this tester, which is controlled through the big touchscreen. It is simply and on-off switch, which works in most situations.

The driving experience in the Crosstrek starts with a soft, but solid ride. The suspension is not overly dampened, yet it will absorb potholed streets and rutted tracks without any feedback into the cabin. Handling is controlled with a tad of softness.  It does react well to evasive maneuvers quite well. 

One advantage to the Crosstrek over the Outback and Forester is its smaller size. That translates into a tighter turning radius. Steering feel is solid with great lane control. You will also the brake pedal to be the right feel for strong braking. We experienced good stops in normal and panic situations. 

If you want another reason to consider the updated 2024 Subaru Crosstrek, look no further than the sticker on each vehicle. Pricing starts from $24,995 for the base model. Our Premium tester came with a sticker price of $29,685. 

You can see why the Subaru Crosstrek is growing in popularity. Its smaller size won’t cramp your style and will still deliver everything you want – and love – in your Subaru. If your life needs a bit of love as you downsize your life, the 2024 Subaru Crosstrek is the right vehicle for you. 

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