The 2023 Subaru Crosstrek is the top-rated subcompact SUV tested by Consumer Reports. Crosstrek scores number one with 86 points outscoring the Nissan Rogue Sport (77 points), Chevrolet TrailBlazer (76), Mazda CX-30 (70), Toyota Corolla Cross (68), Hyundai Kona (66), and Honda HR-V (62). But which Crosstrek trim should you buy?
We compare the 2023 Crosstrek Sport versus the 2023 Crosstrek Limited. Both models come with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine upgrade that's more powerful than the Base, Premium, and Special Edition trims 2.0-liter engine. It's also fuel efficient.
The 2022 Crosstrek Sport and Limited's 2.5-liter four-cylinder Boxer engine produces 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft of torque coupled with a Lineartronic CVT automatic transmission. The 2.5-liter Boxer engine achieves an EPA-estimated fuel economy of 27/34 city/highway and 29 combined mpg.
2023 Crosstrek Sport
The 2023 Crosstrek Sport ($29,220) trim offers a more rugged appearance with wider wheel arch moldings, 17-inch alloy wheels with a dark gray finish, and a gunmetal finish for the front grille, side mirrors, and badges. The Sport interior adds water-repellant StarTex upholstery with yellow stitching to the seating.
Also, yellow stitching has been added to the simulated leather door armrests, leather-wrapped steering wheel, shift boot, multifunction display visor, and center console lid. The carpeted floor mats feature the Sport logo and yellow stitching.
The Sport also has gunmetal simulated carbon-fiber interior trim accents, a high-grade gauge cluster with color LCD and yellow metallic finish trim rings, and a high-power LED rear gate light.
2023 Crosstrek Limited
The top-of-the-lineup Limited trim ($30,720) adds LED steering responsive headlights with automatic height adjustment control and LED daytime running and fog lights. The Limited also has 18-inch alloy wheels, a black machine finish, and body-color exterior mirrors with integrated turn signals.
Limited comes upgraded with high beam assist, reverse automatic braking, and blind-spot detection with lane change assist and rear cross-traffic alert.
Other Limited features include a 6-way power driver's seat, leather-wrapped steering wheel, shift lever handle, keyless access with push-button start, Starlink 8.0-inch multimedia, and multifunction display with color LCD.
We would pick the Crosstrek Sport over the Limited trim
The Limited trim is missing one essential upgrade. The 2023 Crosstrek Sport is the only Crosstrek trim that gets suspension upgrades with dual-function X-Mode. You can dial up Snow/Dirt and Deep Snow/Mud settings to optimize all-wheel-drive performance for more extreme weather and road conditions. The Crosstrek Limited trim level is equipped with the CVT automatic transmission and comes with the standard X-Mode with hill descent control.
In the past few years, REI has seen more people turn to their vehicles as a preferred way to get off the grid using their car, visit new places, and try multi-sport adventures in new outdoor destinations.
Melissa Paul, REI senior merchandising manager for REI, says, "This camper is a bit more spontaneous, is interested in being more self-sustained, and goes out a bit further off the grid to camp."
The 2023 Subaru Crosstrek Sport is the clear winner over the 2023 Crosstrek Limited. With dual-function X-Mode, the 2023 Crosstrek Sport trim level will get you further away from the crowd if you are camping and want to get off the grid using the all-wheel-drive Crosstrek.
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Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a consulting role working with every major car brand. He is an accredited member of the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press. Check out Subaru Report where he covers all of the Japanese automaker's models. More stories can be found on the Torque News Subaru page. Follow Denis on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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