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The 2024 Subaru Crosstrek Trim U.S. Customers Don’t Want And Won’t Buy

Subaru Corporation announced the trim levels and pricing for the 2024 Crosstrek, and changes are coming that customers in the U.S. don't want and won't buy. Check out the latest details here.


Three significant changes are coming to the next-generation 2024 Subaru Crosstrek that customers in the U.S. won't like. Subaru Corporation announced pricing and the trim levels on the new Japanese specification next-generation 2024 Subaru Crosstrek. As Torque News reported last week, Subaru confirmed the all-new Crosstrek subcompact SUV will now come with a front-wheel-drive (FWD) trim level.

Subaru Corporation announced two new 2024 Crosstrek trim levels for Japanese customers. The all-new Crosstrek will be offered in Touring and Limited trims. Both models will come in front-drive and all-wheel-drive configurations. That's the first, but not the only significant change.

2024 Subaru Crosstrek

Will U.S. customers buy a front-drive Crosstrek?

Subaru is trying to appeal to a broader audience of Japanese urban dwellers who use the vehicle for commuting and won't take the Crosstrek on a steep mountain trail. The Crosstrek with FWD will get better fuel mileage than the all-wheel-drive trim level. It gives buyers an option according to their lifestyle. Like, Impreza, the FWD Crosstrek will likely only be offered in Japan.

By offering a front-wheel-drive Crosstrek in Japan, the subcompact SUV will appeal to those with active lifestyles who will use the subcompact SUV for a commuter during the week and occasional "soft-road" (unpaved roads that are not challenging) excursions on the weekend.

2024 Subaru Crosstrek

The front-drive Crosstrek would not sell in the U.S. market. Crosstrek's appeal in the U.S. is its "go-anywhere" attitude. North American buyers want the Crosstrek for its utility as a commuter during the week and an off-road capable small SUV on the weekends. Customers use the Crosstrek to get away from the city and off the grid.

Subaru of America has to know the FWD models would not sell in North America. Look for Subaru to stay with the all-wheel-drive configuration and not offer a front-wheel-drive trim level to its U.S. customers.

2024 Subaru Crosstrek

The new Crosstrek comes with less ground clearance

Another significant change for the next-generation Crosstrek is the redesigned model will now have only 7.9 inches of ground clearance. The previous generation Crosstrek had an 8.7-inch of clearance.

Subaru took away nearly one inch of ground clearance on the new model. The new Crosstrek will be more aerodynamic, and the FWD trim level will get improved fuel mileage even though it's heavier than the outgoing model.

In the new era of electric and hybrid vehicles, Subaru had to improve the fuel mileage in the new Crosstrek, which is one way to improve efficiency. But Subaru sacrificed extra ground clearance in the redesigned Crosstrek to reach the goal.

Subaru will drop the manual transmission

The third significant change is Subaru will drop the manual transmission in the new Crosstrek. The Japanese specification Touring and Limited 2024 Crosstrek trim levels will come with a Lineartronic Continually Variable automatic Transmission (CVT). Subaru will drop the fully synchronized 6-speed manual gearbox in the next-generation model.

Why did Subaru drop the 6-speed manual?

Subaru aims to have zero fatal accidents by 2030, and they want every model and trim level in the lineup to be equipped with EyeSight safety technology. EyeSight is not offered on any Subaru model with a manual gearbox because it's incompatible with the safety system.

The new 2024 Crosstrek will now come with the latest generation EyeSight driver assist technology and Driver Monitoring System called Driver Focus to offer another level of safety and help reduce the chance of accidents.

So far, Subaru has yet to be willing to invest the resources needed to make its EyeSight driver assist safety technology compatible with a manual transmission.

Subaru wants the Crosstrek to earn the IIHS Top Safety Pick+ award across the entire lineup. Currently, the Crosstrek without EyeSight doesn't get the highest scores and can't be included with the Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) automatic models.

What engine will be offered for U.S. customers?

A report from Planet Subaru says they expect Subaru of America to drop the smaller 2.0-liter engine (with 152 horsepower), and it will "ride off into the sunset." They say all next-generation Crosstrek trim levels will get the 2.5-liter engine now offered in the Sport and Limited trims.

The report says most Crosstrek buyers find the power from the smaller engine sufficient. Still, the larger engine satisfies those who want the extra power, including customers who tow or live in mountainous terrain.

Giving all trim levels a 2.5-liter Boxer would make sense because the current generation Crosstrek Sport and Limited trim levels come with a 2.5-liter engine. The models are a big hit with North American customers who want more power.

The 2.5-liter Crosstrek is fuel efficient

Subaru gave the 2.5-liter engine 30 more horsepower than the 2.0-liter engine without sacrificing fuel mileage. The EPA estimated fuel mileage for the 2.5-liter Crosstrek Sport is 27/34 city/highway mpg and 29 combined mpg. The Crosstrek with the 2.0-liter four-cylinder Boxer engine gets an EPA-estimated 28/33 mpg and 30 combined mpg. The 2.5-liter engine receives a one mpg improvement highway over the 2.0-liter engine.

Will the U.S. specification next-generation 2024 Subaru Crosstrek be offered with a front-drive trim level? Will it still come with a 6-speed manual transmission? Subaru of America will announce the all-new Crosstrek soon, and we'll find out. Stay tuned.

Do you like the changes coming to the all-new third-generation Crosstrek? Give Subaru your feedback in the comments below.

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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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Photo credit: Subaru


bob E (not verified)    December 1, 2022 - 1:02PM

But, will the 2024 Crosstrek pass IIHS's new side test? Torque News reported on 10-nov that the 2023 Crosstrek failed the new side test miserably.

Jeff (not verified)    December 1, 2022 - 6:11PM

I knew someone who had a FWD Subaru two door sedan back in the late 70s when I was in high school. They existed here at one time.

Marjorie Falter (not verified)    December 1, 2022 - 7:18PM

I am on my second crosstreck and do not like the idea of losing ground clearance. Will be taking this into consideration upon buying my next vehicle.

Patrick Hoovet (not verified)    December 1, 2022 - 7:19PM

I have been wanting a FWD Subaru since I sold my old fwd 95 Legacy sedan. My fwd Impezza got 40 mpg.

Jace (not verified)    December 2, 2022 - 12:48AM

You're wrong about the ground clearance. I've been able to independently confirm this won't change for the US market Crosstrek via a GM at a local dealership who spoke with his contact at Subaru.

Mario (not verified)    December 2, 2022 - 3:34AM

I don't want to lose ground clearance in my next Crosstrek. I currently open a 2021 Crosstrek Sport and I love everything in it except for the Eye Sight system that keeps shutting off i on the highway at 75 or more miles per hour

Geneva Smith (not verified)    December 2, 2022 - 10:36AM

Bought my 2023 Crosstrek because of the ground clearance, I don't go off roading however I do live outside of city limits.

C'est Moi (not verified)    December 2, 2022 - 3:12PM

Why are you reporting on the Japanese-market-only models that can't be bought in the US, as being a model US buyers won't buy? Thanks, Capt Obvious!

Your assertion that US consumers _wouldn't_ buy a FWD Crosstrek with 0.8" less clearance, CVT/eyesight and better fuel economy, is bonkers. That's' a great urban/suburban option for those who rarely see over 4 inches of snow where they live and have never even seen jeep trail, let alone need to drive up one.

US consumers are currently happy to buy compact SUVs with FWD, less than 8" clearance and better mpg... from Honda, Toyota, Mazda, Ford, etc.

So why wouldn't those consumers consider a similar option from Subaru?

How'd we come to this narrative, that to get out into the outdoors, we all need super capable AWD and over 8" clearance? Most of us are not hitting rugged jeep trails, when we're hitting the mountains to backpack/hike/camp.

I used to go backpacking/camping/fishing in a '73 VW Karmen Ghia. RWD, basic all-season tires, and roadster car clearance. Up to areas like Dolly Sods in the Monongahela Nat'l Forest in WV. Well before X-mode was a thing.

I know overlanding vehicles look bad-ass and any SUV with good clearance and AT rims/tires looks cool, as well. But the reality is most people don't actually _need_ one to get out into the mountains, to a river, or otherwise out into nature.

Stop pushing that false narrative.

Jim (not verified)    December 3, 2022 - 4:47PM

In reply to by C'est Moi (not verified)

I agree that not all buyers need AWD or the extra ride height; however, if you don’t require those features, shouldn’t you be looking at a Subaru Impreza, instead of a Crosstrek. Although I don’t go off-roading, when a plow fills all the parking spaces with piles of snow, the extra ground clearance is appreciated when you can just drive on top of the pile and use X-Mode to get out, without constantly digging out a spot each time you leave.

CT (not verified)    December 3, 2022 - 5:56AM

If I wanted less ground clearance I would have purchased the Impreza. Bad idea. I want to know when they will introduce a hybrid electric and gas vehicle. I use my car for longer trips (700+ miles) and don't care to constantly stop at charging stations.

JJ (not verified)    December 3, 2022 - 9:24PM

The main reason I bought my 2022 Crosstrek is the manual transmission - I wouldn’t have bought it if it were an automatic. I know 2 other owners who were disappointed they couldn’t find a manual. Guess it will be my only Subaru. Love it so far.

Caywood (not verified)    December 4, 2022 - 12:16AM

No manual transmissionn and less ground clearance, is the worst of both worlds. They have lost me as a customer.

Karl Schutte (not verified)    December 4, 2022 - 8:03AM

Like the 2.5 for North American Market. They should raise the ground clearance by 1/2 inch. NOT lowering it for North America. Like ALL safety features. In future designs they should ADD window visibility like in Forester. ALL people who get into a FORESTER for the 1st time, they first comment and appeal is on the all around windowVISIBILITY.. ADD the metallic orange to your color lineup same as AUDI. Other colors are Jaguar GREEN and NAVY with tan interiors. Get rid of battleship Grey, very depressing looking.

Carl S. (not verified)    December 4, 2022 - 4:25PM

Subaru of America still needs to make one of their SUV's with a turbocharged engine and and manual transmission. I would buy one tomorrow. I loved my 02 WRX and 07 Legacy GT, but I wanted something bigger that was still quick and a manual. I live in the mountains and love AWD for snow/gravel/mud. I've driven a crosstrek with the 2.5 and it lacks the power to pass on curvey 2 lane highways in the mountains.

Svt4cam (not verified)    December 4, 2022 - 9:09PM

Feeling pretty good right about now for snagging an 23 manual. Not having all the fidgety nanny overides is just a.bonus.

NMK (not verified)    December 9, 2022 - 2:27AM

If you dont need AWD there is no reason to buy anything subaru makes. There are far better FWD vehicles out there than those with oil guzzling boxer engines and built to fail CVTs.

James Cates (not verified)    December 14, 2022 - 6:47PM

I was thinking about buying a Crosstrek in 2025 but if they drop the standard transmission I won't buy one. I sure don't need a CVT transmission. I have a CVT transmission in my ATV and hate it.

Guy (not verified)    December 15, 2022 - 1:55PM

They may well lower the ground clearance on most of the new Crosstrek models but I bet they’ll come with a Wilderness version with even more than the current model.

Teresa (not verified)    January 16, 2023 - 11:04PM

I ordered a 23 crosstrek in a manual. 8 of my nine subarus were manual. Don't dump the manual! Add more trim packages.just because we want a manual doesn't mean we want the chintz entry car