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3 Reasons Why New Subaru Crosstrek Gets The Best Road Test Scores Of Any Small SUV

What is the best small SUV? According to Consumer Reports, the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek is best overall and number one in its road test scores.

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What is the best subcompact SUV for overall road-test scores, reliability, and fuel mileage? Consumer Reports (by subscription) ranks all small SUVs, and the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek scores number one of fifteen subcompact SUVs.

The 2020 Crosstrek gets the best overall score of any subcompact SUV with a score of 85 and ranks highest in road test scores (87) ahead of the Nissan Rogue Sport (72), Hyundai Kona (71), Honda HR-V (66), Mazda CX-3 (64), Ford Eco Sport (61), Jeep Renegade (56), and Chevrolet Trax (55).

2021 Subaru Crosstrek Sport

Consumer Reports ranked the Crosstrek at the top of the subcompact SUV standings for its comfortable and controlled ride. It’s also rated number one on its excellent fuel mileage, easy-to-use controls, and roomy rear seat. We will focus on ride quality and fuel economy in this report.

Three reasons why the Subaru Crosstrek gets the best road test scores

First, the second-generation Subaru Crosstrek, 2018-2021 model years, rides on the new Subaru Global Platform (SGP), two, it uses a unique Boxer engine design. Three, it has a lower center of gravity, giving the small SUV improved balance.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek Sport

The new Subaru Global Platform upgrades the architecture (suspension) of the small SUV. It now has improved driving dynamics, a quieter cabin, and smoother ride quality. Consumer Reports says the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek is ranked number one for its smooth ride “that stands head and shoulders above the competition.” You can read more about the new SGP here.

Why does the Subaru Crosstrek excel in the road test scores?

The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek uses a Boxer engine, bringing a unique quality called balance that sets the subcompact SUV apart from all others. Scientifically, balance is the body’s ability to maintain its center of gravity above its support base.

No other automaker offers the Crosstrek’s flat-four Boxer engine. The horizontally-opposed design allows the engine to sit low in the chassis lowering the center of gravity, giving the SUV optimal balance and the best driving dynamics.

Even though the Crosstrek has 8.7-inches of ground clearance, higher than any small SUV, its body doesn’t lean and roll in the corners. It’s also more stable off-road when navigating a steep mountain trail.

Does the Crosstrek have good fuel mileage?

The Crosstrek is also ranked number one on its excellent fuel mileage. Even with standard all-wheel-drive, the 2020 Crosstrek with the 2.0-liter engine gets, and EPA estimated 28/33 city/highway mpg and 30 combined mpg. Consumer Reports says they measured 29 mpg overall in its tests, “which is commendable for an all-wheel-drive vehicle.”

Does the Crosstrek have enough power?

The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek only scored 3/5 in acceleration, which has been the main criticism for the small SUV. But Subaru fixed it in the new 2021 Subaru Crosstrek Sport and Limited trims that now come with a new 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with 30 more horsepower. We drove the new Crosstrek Sport at altitude in Colorado. You can read our full report here.

How fuel-efficient is the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek?

The 2021 Crosstrek with the 2.5-liter Boxer engine gets an EPA estimated 27/34 city/highway mpg and 29 combined mpg. A one mpg improvement on the highway, even with the larger engine.

The 2021 Subaru Crosstrek will score higher with the new 2.5-liter engine, and it also comes with the new dual-function X-Mode for improved all-weather performance. Check it out in the report below.

You Might Also Like: The New 2021 Crosstrek Sport Excels With Dual-Function X-Mode

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 USA

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Jeffry Holt (not verified)    October 11, 2020 - 10:26PM

I bought a new 2020 Crosstrek in February of this year. Now I find out I could have waited and got a 2.5L engine in 2021. :(