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Old 02-08-2019, 08:41 AM   #1
chipmunk
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2019 Crosstrek CVT first-hand review

BRZ is in the shop for some warranty work (again). For a loaner they gave a Crosstrek instead of the usual Forester. So I have first hand experience with a CVT 2019 Crosstrek on the new Global Platform.

● Power is plenty for the vehicle. Have only driven so far with 2 lightweight adults, so can't say about fully loaded 4 heavyweight adults

● CVT is actually pretty good! No jerks, no hesitation, no annoying low frequency hums

● Oil warmup (blue light) took a while. But we're talking 20 degree Michigan winter here

● No road noise (a lot better than the BRZ, that doesn't say much though!)

● Driving was pretty smooth even on SE Michigan roads

Anything else you wanna know, feel free to ask.
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Old 02-09-2019, 12:58 AM   #2
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How was the tech in it? User friendly? Outward visibility?. My wife has been wanting a crosstrek for a few years now.
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Old 02-09-2019, 01:43 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipmunk View Post
BRZ is in the shop for some warranty work (again). For a loaner they gave a Crosstrek instead of the usual Forester. So I have first hand experience with a CVT 2019 Crosstrek on the new Global Platform.

● Power is plenty for the vehicle. Have only driven so far with 2 lightweight adults, so can't say about fully loaded 4 heavyweight adults

● CVT is actually pretty good! No jerks, no hesitation, no annoying low frequency hums

● Oil warmup (blue light) took a while. But we're talking 20 degree Michigan winter here

● No road noise (a lot better than the BRZ, that doesn't say much though!)

● Driving was pretty smooth even on SE Michigan roads

Anything else you wanna know, feel free to ask.
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How was the tech in it? User friendly? Outward visibility?. My wife has been wanting a crosstrek for a few years now.
Funny story... I actually traded in my STI for one back in December. Didn't do any track time last year, wasn't planning on any this year. That paired with the fact that I'm driving more every day for work made it hard to justify keeping the STI considering the piss poor fuel economy and having a MT in traffic with a less than perfect left knee just made it seem like the obvious, smart choice to go for something less expensive.

I drove it back to back with a 2019 Impreza sport hatchback with the 5MT. In short, the Impreza was disappointing; the crosstrek was surprising. I think most of it is because of the transmission (since they're basically the same car). The impreza felt like a turd everywhere. No grunt, anywhere. Transmission felt sloppy. Gas pedal felt dead until about 50%. I considered it because it was the same price as the Crosstrek but came with push button start and the nicer infotainment. I wanted to like it, but it was god awful to drive with that transmission. Maybe if they had a CVT sport, but nobody in the area did.

The Crosstrek seemed much more eager down low, which is perfect for traffic. In manual mode, the upshifts are fairly quick. Downshifts are a bit slow/dimwitted, but it rev matches fairly well. I've driven with 4 people in the car and it's definitely on the sluggish side, but it's not exactly a ludicrous speed type of vehicle.

Road noise is much less than the FRS was or the STI was. Obviously much more comfortable. Fuel economy is pretty good too. I went from spending $45 for like 14 gallons and 270 miles range to like $35 for 14 gallons and over 400 miles range.

Steering feels pretty good, considering they're using the same ratio as the 86/BRZ. So its pretty quick, just not the most communicative in the world (tires are probably a major factor there). Interior MUCH nicer than the previous gen Subarus as well.

All in all, I think it's a solid every day car if you're just trying to keep it simple. I miss the STI but I'm just not doing anything car related right now, so it didn't make sense to spend STI money every month on the payment, insurance, and gas to just drive from A to B in traffic every day. I'm happy with it though. It works well for DD use. It allows me to go on the back trails to the mountains when I go shooting (which is pretty often) and there's plenty of space/capability to go up north in the winter to go snowboarding.

Also, aside from wheels and all-terrain tires, I don't care to do anything to the car, which is another reason I bought it. I'm just going to chill and save some money on the side to buy another car to enjoy for track fun... and that's easy to do when you have a car that isn't always tempting you to spend money on it lol

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Old 02-10-2019, 08:33 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by e30kawi View Post
How was the tech in it? User friendly? Outward visibility?. My wife has been wanting a crosstrek for a few years now.
There was a learning curve for me. Took about 10 minutes just to figure out the design & layout. Most adjustments get disabled while driving, and only work while at 0mph. There are 3 interactive display screens (including the one behind the steering), so that gets a little busy. My eyes were constantly searching for the screens for information while driving. I guess it will be just a matter of time to get used to it?

I let my wife drive yesterday briefly. She likes it better than her current Ford Fusion, creature comforts, etc. It doesnt have a heated steering however. She didn't mess with the infotainment though.
I haven't tried the manual shifts yet. I have the car till Tuesday.

Last edited by chipmunk; 02-10-2019 at 09:35 AM. Reason: Spellings & grammar
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Old 02-10-2019, 09:39 AM   #5
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Regarding outward visibility....
When I look in the rearview mirror, I can still see the D pillars. However, to me, outward visibility depends a lot of how you set the mirrors. I didn't have any problems with looking over my shoulders to blind spots. Plus, being only 5'7", I move the seat forward. That helps remove the B pillars from my blindspot viewing periphery.
For my anthropometric proportions, I had no issues with outward visibility.
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Old 02-10-2019, 09:47 AM   #6
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The Crosstrek was one of the vehicles in my list. The only reason I bought the Forester was that I wanted more space. As others said much better than the BRZ or the STI as a daily driver.
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Old 02-10-2019, 09:57 AM   #7
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I had one of the first XV's, had to special order it to get it the way I wanted it, and really disliked it. It was sluggish and the drivers seat was terribly uncomfortable. The seat was actually the number one reason I traded it in. When I had the family (2 little kids) and 4 bikes it had a tough time keeping up with traffic on hilly interstates and the mpg's dropped to the high teens. I wanted to like it, still do, if they have changed the drivers seat to something more supportive and reprogrammed the tranny so it is more spirited off the bottom I'd consider it again but like our BRZ's it REALLY needs more torque.
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Old 02-10-2019, 02:23 PM   #8
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:31 PM   #9
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Update: last night we got 1-2" of snow. Low 20s in the morning, roads were pretty slippery. But even with all-seasons, there was almost zero wheel spin! I saw other vehicles sliding, losing traction, etc.... but this Crosstrek's AWD was invincible!
I'm sold! If I plan to buy an AWD for my next vehicle, I can't imagine anything coming close to this!

More snow to come tonight. I'm excited about bad snowy roads!
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:54 PM   #10
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I've been driving one too, while the BRZ is getting new valve springs Not sure if it's a 2018 or 2019, but my only complaint is with the pedal box, and the size/location of the dead pedal. I like to stretch my left leg out sometimes, and the only place for it to go, is under the brake pedal, and I'm not to keen on that.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:23 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipmunk View Post
Update: last night we got 1-2" of snow. Low 20s in the morning, roads were pretty slippery. But even with all-seasons, there was almost zero wheel spin! I saw other vehicles sliding, losing traction, etc.... but this Crosstrek's AWD was invincible!
I'm sold! If I plan to buy an AWD for my next vehicle, I can't imagine anything coming close to this!

More snow to come tonight. I'm excited about bad snowy roads!
Just remember that when those all seasons let go (and they will) they let go all the way.
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Old 02-11-2019, 08:22 PM   #12
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Get the manual in the crosstrek , wont feel so slow and coupled with an ebrake=awesome. Plus throw on a turbo



Only reason I have not pull the trigger on one yet for a daily is the seat. I have a bad back and the wife's legacy can be a little hard for me.



Ps- Yes I actually test drove the manual and was VERY VERY pleased with it. Clutch engagement was easy and right where it should be and the shifter was hitting the spot every gear. I loved the seats in the Mazda 6, but shifter wasn't as nice and clutch would engage to high.
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