The vehicle is essentially the replacement for the Subaru Outback Sport and once again is based on the Impreza platform, albeit the latest 2012 model.
It blends versatility with fuel economy and comfort, and is ideal for anyone looking for the taller ride height and ruggedness of a crossover or SUV but don’t want the steep fuel bills and extra bulk.
The sole engine choice is a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder boxer with 148 horsepower. There are two gearbox options though; a five-speed manual with hill-holding Incline Start Assist and a Lineartronic CVT automatic. The latter comes with a pseudo manual mode with six simulated gears.
Subaru claims owners can expect a fuel economy of 25/33 mpg city/highway (EPA estimates are still pending), which isn’t that far off from the 27/36 mpg of the regular Impreza. Remember, all models come with all-wheel drive as standard, which is rare for a vehicle of this size.
Inside, owners benefit from plenty of storage compartments and a generous amount of rear seat legroom, which Subaru says rival some mid-size cars. With rear seats folded, the Crosstrek XV gives owners a flat load surface with some 52 cubic feet of storage space. A standard cargo cover keeps valuables out of sight with the back seat in place.
The 2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek hits dealers this fall but you can get a rundown of the all the facts and figures in our detailed preview.