2014 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid and XV Crosstrek
Denis Flierl's picture

Will 2014 XV Crosstrek Hybrid keep Subaru momentum going?

Subaru has launched the all-new 2014 XV Crosstrek hybrid. Will it be enough to keep the Subaru momentum going for six straight record years?

Subaru has achieved an all-time annual sales record for the 5th consecutive year and is the only manufacturer in the U.S. to post sales increases for six consecutive years. Subaru is definitely on a roll and is hoping the all-new XV Crosstrek Hybrid will keep the momentum going into 2014. Will Subaru’s first ever hybrid be enough to to keep it going for year six?

The XV Crosstrek hybrid will appeal to Subaru’s current demographic which is the outdoorsy sports enthusiast who are concerned about the environment. It is the ideal vehicle for taking trips to the mountains and beach on the weekends.

The 2014 XV Crosstrek hybrid starts at $25,995 which is $4,000 more than the standard XV. Subaru sales numbers for December, the first full month for the hybrid, show an increase of 62 percent over the previous years sales. Subaru doesn’t break out the hybrid sales, but no other Subaru model had a bigger increase. It looks like the new hybrid is having a big impact already.

Just before the launch here in the U.S. in November, the new hybrid has already exceeded expectations in Japan. According to Edmunds, the initial sales target of 550 units was blown away by the 5,850 orders they received within two weeks of the Crosstrek Hybrid's unveiling in Japan.

And the new Subaru XV hybrid won’t have much competition. The all-wheel-drive hybrid segment is extremely small with Toyota bringing the only hybrid all-wheel-drive variant in the Highlander. The Toyota model is much bigger and also has a heftier price tag of $40,170. The XV Crosstrek hybrid is a great value for sport-minded consumers and gets 31 combined mpg. The new hybrid technology helps the crossover achieve the lowest emission of any all-wheel-drive hybrid in America.

Subaru is attracting new buyers to the brand like never before and the XV Hybrid will likely bring new green customers into Subaru showrooms who have never purchased a Subaru vehicle before. This segment is wide open and Subaru will have a corner on the market until other automakers bring out new all-wheel-drive hybrid models.

The new 2014 Subaru XV Crosstrek is selling well in all of Subaru’s major overseas markets in the U.S., Canada and Australia. XV Crosstrek is only second to the newly-designed 2014 Forester in sales in 2013. Can the all-new 2014 Subaru XV Crosstrek hybrid keep the momentum going? It’s off to a great start and it will likely help Subaru reach six straight years of record sales.


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Comments

Test drove and comparison shopped all 3 models (5-sp, CVT, hybrid) of the VX Crosstrek over the last week. Pulled trigger on the 5 speed manual. I am also coming from a lease return on a 2011 Prius. And I live in a mountain state, going skiing this weekend. Nary I say I'm the target demo. Couple thoughts on Subaru's strategy: I don't think the "green-image-conscientious-Prius-owner" phenomenon has carry over to other car brands in terms of hybrid buying behavior. I'd love to see data if adding a "hybrid option" to an existing model line has ever paid for itself from the perspective of the auto company. I'd bet lots of money it hasn't, and the main reason is that when a hybrid is added to a existing model line, in the consumer's eye, the benefits vs extra cost is just not worth it, and the buyers don't get enough "green cred" because it's not prius-looking. Points: - Hybrid Crosstrek received 4 MPG better in city, but no improvement on the highway. - Hybrid costs ~$6K more than the version I bought. - Hybrid had 50 miles less range per tank. - Hybrid weights 300 much more. - Hybrid is no faster. Conclusion: The 3MPG improvement will never justify the hybrid cost, and the rest of the points are negatives. This leaves only one purchasing criteria left - buying hybrid for the sake of the hybrid badge. But based off my earlier point, I think "hybrid-buyers" are only buying Prius or other visually obvious "green" cars, largely an image thing. I'd wager the hybrid Crosstrek has 2 year life before canned.
My daily drive 1998 Jeep Grand AWD 8 cyl. 15miles/G 2004 Forester AWD 4/cyl 17miles/G 2012 Lexus RX450H AWD 6 cyl 23 miles/G 2013 Prius FWD 45 miles/G 2014 hybrid Crosstrek AWD ??? on paper 29 miles/G, my guess is the same as RX450H.