The Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid Crawls Out of Its Grave Next Year

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
the subaru crosstrek hybrid crawls out of its grave next year

While a lot of average folks like Subaru, the brand has long been popular with the hippie-dippy demographic. Frankly, it seemed like the company missed a golden opportunity to further solidify its standing with the granola crowd by being a little late on the hybrid front.

However, maybe we’ve categorized the automaker’s consumer base incorrectly — or at least their taste in powertrains. After all, the Crosstrek Hybrid wasn’t an overwhelming success. The model only lasted three years until Subaru decided to kill it off in 2016. But it’s coming back from the dead for 2019, this time as a plug-in — making it Subaru’s very first PHEV.

Considering how poorly the last model performed, choosing to bring back the Crosstrek Hybrid may sound like a fool’s errand. However, Subaru is being smart by building 2019 model with a power port. Plug-ins are gaining in popularity, though a lot of that stems from consumers being more willing to adopt battery-only vehicles. PHEV sales are more of a mixed bag and both still represent a minuscule portion of the total market.

We’re not sure how well the updated Crosstrek Hybrid will sell. But dealers will be able to boast that the model can be driven as a normal hybrid, using both gas and electric power to eliminate range anxiety, or solely under electric power for shorter commutes. That ought to interest those hunting for a versatile family hauler who are keen to keep fuel costs down but don’t want to go fully electric.

The 2019 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid keeps its four-cylinder Boxer engine and symmetrical all-wheel drive, but adds a new transmission and a hybrid system on loan from Toyota. It’s also supposed to get some unique styling cues to differentiate itself from the gas-powered alternative.

While the automaker didn’t give much in the way of details, it’s safe to expect the same 2.0-liter from the standard car with added oomph coming from the electric motors. Subaru hasn’t released pricing yet, but it’ll definitely surpass the Limited trim’s $26,295 MSRP. Subaru says the model should begin appearing on dealer lots before the end of the year.

[Image: Subaru]

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  • Stuntmonkey Stuntmonkey on May 15, 2018

    It probably will end up the same if it is using the 2L FB20d. The savings in a hybrid comes from the fuel efficiency of a small engine, the hybrid hardware is basically there to make it more livable. If you use the same size engine, the savings are nominal. That said, and I've said before, the click-bait Subaru articles on TTAC are a bad bellwether of this site, it's the same principle (but in less extreme) that BS used to do during his tenure. "What do you think of this provocative ting...now have it" does not an informed reader make. How about actually providing context and information, so that the point of clicking on an article is to actually learn something? (Birkenstocks and dogs hurr durr durr! ... how original...)

    • Wheatridger Wheatridger on May 15, 2018

      Maybe it gets boring writing about cars every day? They're all pretty good. So you start writing about people- not people you know, just classes of people. It's easy to do. Mostly you're just quoting reliable old slurs and aspersions from past articles. It's in keeping with the lousy temper of the times, I guess. Personally, I was one of those "Hybrid? Never," folks, until I was helping a family member shop for a car. I found a rather unusual plug-in hybrid that does have power, handling and comfort- but I would have spent the seat time to discover that until I stepped outside my personal peeves and prejudices. It's great when that happens; it expands your world.

  • Zipster Zipster on May 15, 2018

    Over its lifetime, a Prius will use 2,000 to 3,000 gallons less fuel. Are you saying that the energy expenditure to make the batteries exceeds that? You are off by more than an order of magnitude. If making batteries cost that much in energy expenditure, it would be reflected in all of the batteries that you buy. One believes what one wants to believe.

  • MaintenanceCosts At least on the US West Coast, Waze is perfectly happy to send cut-through drivers down residential streets or to disregard peak-hour turn or travel restrictions. I hope if it's going to be standard equipment the company starts taking a more responsible approach.
  • MaintenanceCosts I'm more curious about the effect (if any) on battery lifetime than range. Drawing current faster creates more heat and if that heat is not promptly drawn away it could affect life of the cells.I agree this sort of thing can make sense as a one-time option but is consumer-hostile as a subscription.
  • Ajla "The upgrade is permanent" 🤔Journos really should be calling out the automakers like Mercedes that are attempting to make this sort of thing subscription only because it obviously doesn't need to be."with a one-time price tag of $1,195"This also shows the poor consumer "value" of Mercedes wanting $1200 per year for a 60hp jump on the EQE350.
  • Dukeisduke Will the next owner have to pay up, too, like with Tesla? What's the starting price of the Polestar 2? I saw a clean used one listed locally the other day, and it was under $50k. I wasn't sure if that was a deal or not.
  • Buickman what about EMFs from riding on a giant battery?is there a vax for that?
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