By Bruce Caldwell
Model Tested: 2013 Subaru Xv Crosstrek 4-Door Sedan
Engine: 2.0-liter 4-cylinder (boxer configuration), 148 hp, 145 lb/ft
EPA Ratings: 23-mpg city/30-mpg highway
Base Price: $21,995
As Tested: $22,790
Performance: Very good fuel economy(our best was 33.6 mpg). Reasonably peppy if manual trans is used effectively. Engine is a little buzzy at high rpms. Extra ground clearance for rugged roads. Nimble and fun to drive
Comfort: Very good front row leg and headroom. Comfortable seats, soft headrests. Rear seats easily accommodate large adult.
Utility: Impressive cargo capacity
Flat cargo floor
Flat folding rear seats
Wide hatchback opening
Ample interior storage for small items
WOW Factors: Impressive fuel economy, especially for an AWD. Handy Incline Assist prevents rollback when starting on hills
Whines: Odd name; just Crosstrek would be preferable. A sixth gear would be nice for sustained freeway driving
Bottom Line: Subarus have always been popular with Pacific Northwest consumers. The new 2013 XV Crosstrek easily adds to that well-deserved reputation. A roomy interior, excellent fuel economy, attractive styling, good versatility, confidence-inspiring AWD and a budget-friendly price make the XV Crosstrek a top choice for anyone seeking a compact sport utility vehicle.