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Put New Subaru Crosstrek On Your Shortlist, You Should Steer Clear Of The Toyota C-HR

Shoppers have lots of choices, but which Subcompact SUV is the best? The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek should be on your shortlist, the 2020 Toyota C-HR is one you might want to avoid.


In the Subcompact SUV segment, shoppers have many options like the 2020 Toyota C-HR, Chevrolet Trax, Mazda CX-3, Jeep Renegade, and 2020 Subaru Crosstrek. With so many choices, consumers can do their homework and come up with a shortlist of models that will fit their needs. This comparison should give you some insights into two popular models you should and shouldn’t have on your list.

We’ll first look at a report from Consumer Reports (by subscription) rating the 10 least satisfying cars in America. This report comes from owners rating their new vehicles and measures the current state of owner satisfaction. Surprisingly, there are four Subcompact models that make the list. They are the 2020 Toyota C-HR (61% overall rating), 2020 Chevrolet Trax (53%), 2020 Mazda CX-3 (73%), and 2020 Jeep Renegade (48%).

2020 Subaru Crosstrek vs 2020 Toyota C-HRThe 2020 Toyota C-HR is also on the 10 cars to avoid list

Another list we can check out is Consumer Reports Popular Cars to Avoid report. The 2020 Toyota C-HR also shows up on this list of what vehicles you should steer clear of. Aren’t all Toyota models good?

CR says, “The C-HR is an underwhelming small crossover with shortcomings. It’s incredibly slow, it’s only offered in front-drive configuration, the cabin is snug, particularly the rear seat, the oddly placed rear door handles make it hard to get in, and side and rear visibility are horrendous.” They do say it has “decent” fuel economy and safety technology.

2020 Subaru Crosstrek vs 2020 Toyota C-HRWhy should I check out the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek?

There are a number of reasons why the 2020 Subaru Crosstrek could be the best choice in the Subcompact SUV segment. CR gives the Crosstrek an overall score of 85, the highest of any Subcompact SUV. The Hyundai Kona and Nissan Rogue Sport, also good choices and vehicles you should check out, are next and tie for second with a score of 78 points.

All 2020 Crosstrek trim levels come standard with all-wheel-drive for all-weather capability. Even if you don’t live in a cold climate, all-wheel-drive adds extra safety in all conditions. Crosstrek also comes with 8.7-inches of ground clearance which no competitor exceeds. Another thing the competition does not offer is anything like Crosstrek's X-Mode for more severe winter driving and off-road excursions.

What if you don’t ever take your vehicle off-pavement? The Subaru X-Mode feature in the new 2020 Crosstrek is not just for extreme off-road adventures. See how to get the best use from it every day by using this Subaru X-Mode guide from Torque News.

Which model offers the lowest cost of ownership?

According to Vincentric’s 2019 Best Value in America Awards, Crosstrek scores best-in-class with the lowest insurance costs, lowest ownership, low fuel costs, and low depreciation costs. Having the highest resale value and lowest depreciation rate in its class contributed to the win.

In Kelly Blue Book’s 2020 Best Resale Value Awards, Subaru Crosstrek scores the best Subcompact SUV. Crosstrek is projected to retain its value better than all other Subcompact SUVs through the initial five-year ownership period. This can make the biggest difference if you lease or plan to trade in your vehicle after 3-5 years. The new Crosstrek also gets picked for an individual segment award in ALG’s Residual Value Awards.

More reasons why the Crosstrek should be on your shortlist

The new-generation EyeSight safety system is now offered as standard equipment on the new Crosstrek when equipped with a CVT automatic transmission. The 2020 Subaru Crosstrek earns the highest Top Safety Pick+ award from the IIHS and the top five-star safety rating from the NHTSA. Do your homework, check out all the Subcompact SUVs, and see what you think.

You Might Also Like: New Mazda CX-30 Vs The Segment Leader Subaru Crosstrek, Which Subcompact Is Best For You?

Denis Flierl has invested over 30 years in the automotive industry in a variety of roles. All of his reports are archived on our Subaru page. Follow Denis on FacebookTwitterInstagramSubaru Report. Check back tomorrow for more Subaru news and updates at Torque News!

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Photo credit: Subaru USA, Toyota, Timmons Subaru


JsAllen (not verified)    January 30, 2020 - 3:04PM

It's interesting to see the door handles mentioned on the CHR.
I find similar issues with the RAV4. Specifically the trunk gate handle is in a weird spot and I always felt like it was trying to take my hand away with it

John Swenson (not verified)    January 31, 2020 - 8:05AM

Love my C-HR for the same reasons others hated. I guess that's because I also drove a PT cruiser for 240000 miles. I find the car to be very nimble in with 3 settings sport normal and economy you can get this car to jump into traffic sometimes too much. I am always in econo mode because the other modes will spin the tires too easily. At 5' 10", 240 lb , I find car to be surprisingly roomy for a smaller car. For those who can't adjust to change I can see where you'd have a problem adjusting to the high door handles on the rear. Love the style and I always open the doors for the kids not a problem at all it's called proper parenting. It would be cool to have all wheel drive but the front wheel drive gets me around town just fine. Front wheel drive was fine for 18 years with the PT cruiser it would probably be fine for 18 years with the C-HR

Todd Thornhill (not verified)    January 31, 2020 - 3:21PM

In reply to by Fred3 (not verified)

They are pretty prompt with resolving the issue immediately, and what many people don't know is that they are under the same ownership as Toyota (Fuji Heavy Industries). Just Toyota owns a larger market share than Subaru and Subaru has stayed true to its roots (4WD) which makes their customers stay loyal to them. Just like the editor said do your research before buying a car and don't wait until the last minute.

I own a 2015 Subaru Crosstrek and had the brake light recall on it. I purchased it lightly used from another dealership and as soon as I took it in for service at Subaru they checked for recalls on it and fixed it right away. Another piece of advice I could give you is you shouldn't buy a car brand new it takes about 5 years for the company to work out the kinks, even though the Crosstrek is just a lifted Impreza it still has kinks to work out.

Michael Leist (not verified)    January 31, 2020 - 2:41PM

My girlfriends 2019 crosstrek had the paint start coming off at 3000 miles. The dealership said it's some kind of caustic chemical. Its steadily getting worse even though its parked next to my 2015 chevrolet with no apparent issues. This is a known issue with subarus and it's a shame they dont stand behind their products.