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Subaru Crosstrek Desert Khaki Returns But You Have To Pay More To Get It

The 2023 Subaru Crosstrek brings back the subcompact's most popular color. Desert Khaki exterior paint returns on 2023 models, but you have to pay more to get it.


Why did Subaru discontinue the Desert Khaki exterior color on the Subaru Crosstrek? The "overland-inspired" Desert Khaki was the most popular color ever and was discontinued starting with the second-generation 2018 model change. Subaru offered the paint on the all-new Crosstrek for five years, and we aren't sure why the automaker dropped the popular color.

But it’s back on the 2023 Crosstrek subcompact SUV. Subaru of America brings back Desert Khaki even though there are no other changes on the small SUV. Subaru chose to continue with the second-generation Crosstrek model with no changes or upgrades, except Subaru of America gets a new Crosstrek Special Edition (SE) model that comes standard in Desert Khaki.

2023 Subaru Crosstrek specs, features, pricing

Can other Crosstrek trim levels be ordered with the color?

Subaru of America says they will make Desert Khaki exterior paint available on any trim level, but you have to order it with a special package (option #15) that includes the 8.0-inch Starlink Multimedia Plus system, and it costs an extra $600.

The Desert Khaki exterior paint already comes on the new Crosstrek Special Edition (SE) trim level with an MSRP of $27,970. The Crosstrek Base trim (6-speed manual transmission) ordered with Desert Khaki costs $25,470. Premium trim (6-speed manual transmission) $26,620, Sport trim $29,820, and Limited trim $31,320.

2023 Subaru Crosstrek specs, features, pricing

If you order the 2023 Crosstrek Base or Premium trim levels with Desert Khaki exterior paint and a Lineartronic continuously variable transmission) CVT automatic with EyeSight, they cost an extra $1,350 or $26,820 and $27,970 respectively.

Crosstrek SE vs Crosstrek Premium

Subaru priced the new 2023 Crosstrek Special Edition trim level the same as the Crosstrek Premium trim ordered with the Desert Khaki exterior paint. But with the Special Edition, you get added upgrades.

The Crosstrek SE gets black and red upholstery with red contrast stitching throughout the cabin, including the front and rear cloth seats, door armrests, leather-wrapped steering wheel, shifter boot, and combination meter visor, dash panel, and center console.

The SE also comes with 17-inch aluminum wheels in a Dark Gray finish, side mirrors, front grille bar, antenna, door handles in Crystal Black Silica, and low luster black exterior badges.

Subaru of America brings back the popular Desert Khaki exterior paint, but you'll pay more to get it. We would choose the 2023 Subaru Crosstrek Sport trim with the "overland-inspired" exterior color. It makes the small SUV look more rugged and ready for the trail.

You Might Also Like: 2023 Subaru Crosstrek Pricing And Model Guide - Next-Gen Models Delayed

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