2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid Review


2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid Review Subaru often accomplishes amazing items by playing mix-and-match using the restricted range of platforms and hardware at its disposal. When this technique operates, we get enduring hits just like the Outback and WRX. When it does not, the six-star badge travels dead-end roads-see the BRAT, the SVX, or even the XT. The 2014 XV Crosstrek hybrid can be one among the latter, playing the niche card to an excessive that might satisfy a handful of brand loyalists but with deficits that can make for a short life cycle.

2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid Review

Consider a handful of numbers in context. In our hands, this hybrid acquired 26 mpg. Most individuals purchasing for a hybrid assume far more. It is a fantastic amount, even though, for an all-wheel-drive crossover and best-in-class when you make ample allowances to admit the Crosstrek towards the Mazda CX-5/Honda CR-V/Ford Escape group. We really do not. Raising an Impreza five-door on its suspension to get eight.7 inches of ground clearance doesn’t genuinely make it a crossover together with the utility of, say, the greater, roomier, quieter Subaru Forester around the exact same platform. (We are going to say the XV hybrid is far quieter and feels more strong compared to the common model, owing to its added sound-deadening measures.)

2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid Review

Subaru could possibly anticipate loyal consumers to overlook this reality while embracing the brand's 1st hybrid, but the $30,120 value tag on our test example may bring about a shopper to no less than glance throughout the showroom. We acquired 19 mpg when we final examined a four-cylinder Forester (it’s not offered as a hybrid), so some might imagine seven mpg is worth several modest compromises.

Compromise goes deeper, even though. That Forester received to 60 mph in eight.6 seconds with our test gear aboard; the Crosstrek hybrid took ten.1, a full two seconds slower compared to the five-speed manual-transmission XV Crosstrek tested last yr. The electric motor adds 13 horsepower towards the two.0-liter flat-four’s 148-hp rating, as well as the 0.6-kWh nickel-metal hydride battery pack accounts for many from the 415 additional pounds of mass the hybrid totes all-around (3488 pounds versus the nonhybrid XV’s 3073). The efficiency decline is typically attributable towards the CVT. The hybrid’s electrical motor is mounted inside of it, so there is no substitute to this gadget, which embodies every one of the weaknesses we abhor most in CVTs. It offers you sound without having fury, and our performance-testing crew mentioned it had been profoundly unhappy in extended high-speed operation.

2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid Review Interior

Slowness alone isn’t a terminal ailment, nonetheless. We enthused in excess of the two.0-liter CX-5, in spite of modest acceleration, despite the fact that we just like the two.5-liter model a lot more. But whereas the Mazda’s managing and refinement manufactured up for its power deficit, the Crosstrek hybrid stays a laggard. On a scale from crude to refined, it is number-two fuel oil. Think about its clunky hybrid procedure. When introducing the automobile in Iceland, Subaru took pains to create us recognize that its strategic partner, Toyota, manufactured no contribution to this growth. Also negative. Toyota’s skills could have assisted a good deal.

2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid Review

Like other hybrids, Subaru’s shuts off the engine at a prevent. Creep away at an extremely slow tempo (encouraged only at a prevent signal without having targeted visitors close to, unless you definitely such as the sound of angry horn blasts), and it stays all-electric up to a claimed 25 mph. Additional generally, though, the engine restarts inside a way that sends a jolt as a result of the auto. A few occasions, it had been so severe we imagined a car behind us had tapped the rear bumper in the Crosstrek. First-gen hybrids from Toyota and Honda did this, as well, but significantly less considerably, and that was numerous many years in the past. There’s no excusing it in 2014, flat-engine layout or no.

Like the nonhybrid Crosstrek, this model suffers from an electric-assist steering technique that lacks not just really feel but additionally consistency. There was some disagreement amid our staff as to the high quality in the brake pedal, so we’ll just call it okay. But okay doesn’t offset the weight attain, so the car took 181 feet to stop from 70 mph, which was 7 feet longer than the nonhybrid model. On the skidpad, the hybrid cornered at 0.78 g, the nonhybrid at 0.81; each cars had been riding around the very same dimension Yokohama Geolanders.

2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid Review Features

These certainly are a large amount of sacrifices to make on top on the $3000 further base selling price of the hybrid model. The sticker says the EPA estimates the fuel saving will be-aha!-$3000 above 5 many years. Our example was in Touring trim, which asks one more $3300 for leather, a sunroof, a six-speaker audio procedure, and an infotainment setup with navigation, Bluetooth connectivity, and satellite radio.

2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid Review

Subaru’s loyal fan base may embrace this vehicle-we see the nonhybrid all over cities like Chicago-and it’s not hard to obtain advocates on the market who nonetheless like the BRAT as well as XT. Other hybrid automobiles with all-wheel drive are extra pricey designs from luxury manufacturers, so you might forgive this Crosstrek’s rough edges when you simply should have a major battery pack and torque to all four corners.

We can’t support recalling, however, that Subaru when allow us drive the diesel Crosstrek it features in Europe. It was far more attractive than this car-actually, it had been far more attractive compared to the gasoline Crosstrek. Company cases be damned, the last merchandise says that whatever the organization spent creating a hybrid model for North America would are improved invested in certifying the oil burner for this market. “Diesel all-wheel-drive hatchback” looks like a niche worth filling.

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