Subaru Crosstrek VS Toyota RAV4 – Which One is Best for You in 2024!

Subaru Crosstrek VS Toyota RAV4

When it comes to Subaru Crosstrek vs Toyota RAV4, picking one of these could be a bit tricky and exhausting.

We live in a world where technology is constantly evolving, and when it comes to modern vehicles, the options are overwhelming.

However, no matter the popular trend, you must decide based on your requirements; the routes you usually commute through, the kind of interior you like, or the fuel efficiency you are looking for.

To make the right purchase decision, you need to dive deep into this matter and get the lay of the land.

History of Subaru Crosstrek

2013 was the year when this subcompact, field-efficient SUV first made an appearance in the US markets.

Although there have been no drastic changes, we have seen in the first-ever 2011 model and the latest one.

But certain noticeable upgrades are worth mentioning, such as alloy wheels with silver spokes and comparatively lighter tone interior in leather fabric.

As far as the navigation and dash installation is concerned, stereo camera and LCD monitor driving assist came with certain upgrades over the period of years.

Subaru Crosstrek Generations

Subaru Crosstrek Generations

There have been two generations of Subaru Crosstrek, and both were jam-packed with practical features and unmatched comfort.

It has been known for being the all-wheel-drive vehicle with a competitive presence in the market.

Over the past nine years, the makers have upgraded the entertainer and some of the safety features. The 2013 model came with an update of the rear cross-traffic alert.

Finally, 2018 was a total redesign, followed by a sport trim and stronger engine in 2024.

Generation 1: Subaru Crosstrek 2013-2017

Initial models came with a 2-liter four-cylinder engine that offered 148 horsepower along with 145 pound-feet of torque. The five-speed manual gearbox made the ride real smooth and exciting.

Most of the engine power was sent down to the front wheels because of an AWD system. The fuel economy with the manual gearbox in the city is estimated at 23 mpg and 31 mpg on the highway.

Generation 2: Subaru Crosstrek 2018-Present

With some updates, the six-speed unit replaced the five-speed manual transmission. The engine contained the same four cylinders to produces 152 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque.

The fuel efficiency remained almost the same, with 23 miles per gallon, 29 highway, and 25 mpg combined. However, the towing capacity went up to 1,500 pounds and 20.8 cubic feet of cargo volume.

History of Toyota RAV4

Unlike Subaru, Toyota has seen many ups and downs since the beginning.

Back in 1994, when people demanded a compact yet spacious mode of transportation, fuel efficiency, and better visibility, the Toyota RAV4’s first-ever model  XA10 series surfaced.

Starting in 1989 on a twisty road, only within the next 8 years, it was named vehicle of the year in 1997.

Since then, there has been no turning back, and the Toyota RAV4 has continued to come up with better and more efficient features.

Toyota RAV4 Generations

Toyota RAV4 Generations

The current model in the market of RAV4 is the 5th generation and is not drastically different from its previous versions. However, there have been some noticeable upgrades that we must talk about.

After selling the standard version from 2007-12, they made Bluetooth and infotainment systems available in the new model. 2013 was the year of a full redesign, followed by some updates in the interior and an SE trim in 2016.

Four years after that, RAV4 came with satellite radio, hotspot options, and an off-road model.

Generation 1: Toyota RAV4 1995-2000

The first-generation offered several models within a few years. Some of the specs included full-time all-wheel drive and fuel consumption of 9.9 in the city and 7.3 on the Highway.

Apart from that, the engine came with 2.0L L4 DOHC 16 valves. The Power produced from this engine was up to 127 hp @ 5400 rpm. 4-speed automatic transmission was introduced in the first few models.

Generation 2: Toyota RAV4 2001-2005

The second generation was known as the XA20 series that came in three and five-door configurations. 2.0-liter inline-four engine produced 110 kW.

Some of the RAV4 models from this generation came with the anti-lock braking system, adjustable driver’s seat, cruise control, and power windows. In the later models, Toyota upgraded the RAV4’s 2.0-liter engine to a 2.4-liter engine.

Generation 3: Toyota RAV4 2006-2012

The 2.4-liter engine continued in the third generation as well alongside 166-horsepower, four-cylinder engine.

The full-time four-wheel-drive remained the same with some safety updates, i.e., dual-stage frontal airbags LATCH, child safety seat anchors, antilock brakes with brake assist, electronic stability control, and traction control.

Generation 4: Toyota RAV4 2013-2018

It was a complete resignation time for RAV4, and the new look was totally breathtaking.

A 5-liter Atkinson cycle gasoline engine came with a powerful electric motor, power control unit, and a power split device that produces 110 kW (148 hp; 150 PS).

In the later year models from the same generation, facelift versions were introduced in 2016.

Generation 5: Toyota RAV4 2019-Present

With no major changes, the current and latest generation models continued with 4-cylinder gasoline-powered and gasoline-electric hybrid.

The different variants from this generation came in 6-speed manual and 8-speed AWF8F35 Direct Shift automatic transmissions with 2.0 L M20A-FKS I4 and 2.5 L A25A-FKS I4 engines.

When comparing the features and specifications of these two models, it’s important to also consider how Toyota RAV4 stack up against similar models like the XLE Trim.

The Common Differences Between Subaru Crosstrek and Toyota RAV4

Common Differences Between Subaru Crosstrek and Toyota RAV4

Both models are from different brands; hence there are many differences when it comes to the appearance, features, performance, and reliability;

01. Power

Toyota is a famous car with a bigger market and larger targeted audience, but when it comes to features and specs, Subaru is no less than RAV4.

Take power, for example; Subaru is way ahead of Toyota with its 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. It is enough power for everyday use, and if you’re in a mood for some cruising on the highway, Subaru offers a great quick pickup as well.

The bottom line is that they both have the same engine; the only difference is the horsepower.

02. Performance

Toyota RAV4 or Subaru Crosstrek - Performance

Performance might be the most important factor for some people when they consider making a vehicle investment. Reaching a conclusion based on these elements could be confusing because both these SUVs have their own highs.

While RAV4 leads with 203 hp @ 6600 rpm, Crosstreck won curb weight and towing capacity. It all comes down to which factors do you want to base your purchase on.

03. Drive

Subaru comes in both automatic and manual transmissions with an all-wheel-drive system. However, RAV4 only offers an automatic transmission with no power shifters on the steering wheel.

To make the drive easier, RAV4 comes with a 360 camera with a bird’s eye view, and you can adjust the knee bolsters from the side of the seat, which you don’t find in Subaru.

If we talk about long drives, RAV4 could be a bit uncomfortable for the taller drivers as the seat is a lot higher than Subaru, which is closer to the base of the vehicle.

04. Safety

With all the innovations that the two vehicles come with, auto-lock is one of our favorite. In RAV4, although there is a keyhole, the convenience of auto lock is something amazing.

Subaru has an anti-theft security system alongside an additional feature called an engine immobilizer that will prevent your vehicle from tampering. The anti-theft system ensures safety as well.

Common Differences Between Subaru Crosstrek and Toyota RAV4 - Safety

05. Value

Both vehicles offer good value for money. RAV4 being the bigger one, is slightly expensive as compared to Subaru. But if you look at the overall performance, reliability, features, and performance, the higher price is justified.

If you’re running $10k short, we’d recommend that you go with Subaru because it offers the same comfort and luxury in a slightly smaller size.

06. Reliability

Out of all the SUVs the world has access to in today’s date, RAV4 stands 3rd when it comes to reliability. It’s a sensible investment that will not make you regret your decision because the annual repairing cost is nearly next to nothing, i.e., $420.

However, if we talk about Subaru Crosstrek, you’d be surprised to learn that it’s at number 1 in the list of all compact SUV vehicles. The rating is whooping 4.5/5.

The frequency of repair requirements is hardly 0.13 annually, so the ownership of this compact yet stunning vehicle is going to be a treat for you.

07. Space

Common Differences Between Subaru Crosstrek and Toyota RAV4 - Space

As far as the space is concerned, RAV4 is a bigger vehicle; hence it offers a more spacious passenger area. However, Subaru’s interior is stunning but not as roomy as its competitor.

The same is the case when it comes to cargo space. RAV4 being the bigger one, offers more space at the back for you to carry your essentials alongside a Stepney tire and a jack.

Subaru is slightly compact, but that doesn’t mean that a person feels suffocated or uncomfortable in the back seat. The legroom is enough for a person as tall as 6 feet.

08. Features

Both SUVs come with modern and advanced features, but we would say that RAV4 is the winner here.

The power liftgate and cooling front seats do not many cars offer, but you get to experience this luxury in Toyota. Other than that, if we talk about the entertainer, RAV4 has a more advanced cluster.

Both vehicles offer apple car play and android auto. On the other hand, Subaru offers a second screen to display oil temperature and g-force in the vehicle.

It also shows outside temperature, so you can pack yourself up with an extra jacket layer before ending the ride and stepping out.

Comparative Difference Between Subaru Crosstrek and Toyota RAV4

Comparative Difference Between Subaru Crosstrek and Toyota Rav4

The year 2024 was when there used to be fewer cars on the road because of the pandemic; however, something that hasn’t changed over the past few years is that Subaru Crosstrek and Toyota RAV4 kept coming up with some practical technologies and features.

Even back in 2024, the RAV4 was more spacious and roomy than the other one, and the exterior was more solid. So if anyone wants to take their RAV4 2024 on a crazy off-road ride, go head!

Over the past years, there have been major similarities between the models of Subaru and Toyota RAV4. Let’s have a look at some of these:

01. Subaru Crosstrek vs Toyota RAV4

Something that hasn’t changed over the past few years is that Subaru Crosstrek and Toyota RAV4 kept coming up with some practical technologies and features.

Tires & Wheels

Both vehicles have aluminum front wheel and steel spare wheel material. However, when it comes to the size, RAV4 being the bigger one, has bigger tires with P235/55HR19. Bigger tires have been known to increase the amount of noise coming from the wheels while you’re driving, but recommends mitigating this issue by using a tire that has a tread pattern designed specifically for noise reduction.


How much fuel does a vehicle consumes can have a huge impact on your buying decision. For Subaru, the city fuel economy is 10.5 and 8.1 for highways. On the other hand, RAV4’s city drive fuel economy is 8.8 and 6.8 when it comes to highways.


The main difference between the two vehicles has been in size over the past years.

RAV4 is comparatively bigger as compared to Crosstrek. Both have similar towing capacity; however, when it comes to cargo space and legroom, RAV4 is way ahead.

02. 2024 Subaru Crosstrek vs 2024 Toyota RAV4

In 2024, Subaru launched four variations of their Crosstrek; premium, sport, limited, and hybrid.

Talking about the overwhelming options, Toyota went a few steps ahead and came up with 12 variations of RAV4 in 15 colors.

As far as the features are concerned, there have not been many differences between the two vehicles.


Although both cars have multiple variations and customization options, the difference between the two brands is not huge if you compare the ones with the lowest prices. It can hardly go up to $8k.


In 2024, Subaru came up with some new colors that were unique and very upbeat, such as turquoise blue.

However, RAV4 took one step ahead and came up with 15 color variations. Matte, glossy, single sades as well as two tones.


Both vehicles came up with automatic high beams for the headlights and lane departure warnings in all 2024 variations.

Crosstrek comes with a rear-vision camera, tire pressure monitoring system, along brake override system. However, RAV4 has a pre-collision system to detect pedestrians as well.

03. Subaru Crosstrek hybrid vs RAV4 hybrid

The few basic differences that the latest hybrid Subaru and RAV4 have produced include the security alarm. It could be the most important element for safety, and RAV4 is missing this one.

That’s not it, and fog lamps are another feature only Subaru offers in this hybrid version. Other than that, when it comes to space, dimensions, and size, RAV4 has a slightly upper edge.

These vehicles’ infotainments are poor; Subaru does not have an HD radio or wifi hotspot.

Subaru is also missing the onboard hands-free communication system, blindspot monitor, and cross-traffic alert as well. However, RAV4 is packed with these features.


Subaru has always offered limited color variations as compared to RAV4. Black color is only offered by Toyota, which could be a deal-breaker for those confused between the two vehicles.


When it comes to entertainers, Subaru does not have an HD radio or wifi hotspot.

Subaru is also missing the onboard hands-free communication system, blindspot monitor, and cross-traffic alert as well. However, RAV4 is packed with these features.


The hybrid versions, over the years, came with 2.0 L/122 displacement for Subaru and 2.5 L/152 for RAV4. Gas/Electric H-4 engine type in Subaru and Gas/Electric I-4 in RAV4 make them stand out from the other variations.

What is Subaru Crosstrek good at?

What is Subaru Crosstrek good at

If you’re someone who likes compact vehicles with all the modern technology and SUV design, Subaru Crosstrek should be your pick. With its all-wheel-drive system, this one is as good and as any other high-end sports car.

The hybrid version has made quite the stir, and not to forget, the leather interior takes the overall experience to a whole new level. Other than that, the smaller vehicle comes with many advantages, such as easier parking and fuel efficiency.

The exterior is built so that if you want to go off-road for adventure, do it because it can handle almost anything.

What is Toyota RAV4 good at?

Not only does it provide the comfort and luxury that people look for when buying an SUV but the overall look and drive are so exquisite that one may fall short of words.

However, some of the mention-worthy things that this vehicle specifically offers are the LED headlights to make your nighttime drive smooth and hassle-free.

It’s a modern world, and nobody likes to carry keys anymore, so RAV4 comes with a keyless entry. Apart from that, the multiple modes that you can pick from, i.e., normal, sports, and snow, are super unique and useful.

Toyota RAV4 comes with wireless charging to keep the inside of the car as tidy as possible. The power cruise control and collision warning make this vehicle safe and secure.

Toyota RAV4 comes with wireless charging to keep the inside of the car as tidy as possible. The power cruise control and collision warning make this vehicle safe and secure.

Talking about safety, the rearview mirror turns into a screen that you can zoom in and out for much better clarity.

If you’re considering purchasing a used SUV, it’s crucial to do your due diligence and research models to ensure you’re making an informed decision.

Which one to Choose? Toyota RAV4 or Subaru Crosstrek?

Toyota RAV4 or Subaru Crosstrek - Which one is the right one for you

As mentioned above, the final decision totally depends on your preferences and budget.

Still, to go for an environmentally friendly, compact, and modern SUV at a lower price, we recommend that you go for Hybrid Subaru Crosstreck.


Is RAV4 worth buying?

Yes, the Toyota RAV4 is generally considered to be a good vehicle and is worth buying for many people. It is a compact SUV that is known for its reliability, safety features, and versatility.

The RAV4 has received high ratings for reliability from organizations such as Consumer Reports and J.D. Power. It also has a reputation for being a safe vehicle, with high ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

Additionally, the RAV4 is a versatile vehicle that can be suitable for a variety of needs, such as daily commuting, family transportation, or off-road adventures. It comes with a range of features such as all-wheel drive, advanced safety technology, and a spacious interior.

Is Subaru Crosstrek a reliable car?

Yes, the Subaru Crosstrek is generally considered a reliable car. It has received high ratings from both Consumer Reports and J.D. Power for its reliability and durability. The Crosstrek has also received high safety ratings from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

Additionally, Subaru has a reputation for building long-lasting and reliable vehicles. However, like all cars, the reliability of the Crosstrek may vary depending on factors such as maintenance, driving habits, and environmental conditions.

Are Subaru Crosstrek expensive to maintain?

The cost of maintaining a Subaru Crosstrek can vary depending on several factors such as the age of the vehicle, mileage, and driving conditions. However, in general, the Crosstrek is considered to be an affordable vehicle to maintain.

According to Edmunds, the estimated annual maintenance cost for a Crosstrek is around $646, which is lower than the average cost for a compact SUV. The Crosstrek also has a reputation for being durable and reliable, which can help reduce maintenance costs in the long run.

What are common problems with Subaru?

While Subaru is generally considered a reliable brand, there are some common problems that have been reported by owners. Some of the most commonly reported problems with Subarus include:

  • Head gasket failure: This is a common issue with older Subarus, particularly those with the 2.5L engine. Symptoms of a failing head gasket may include overheating, oil leaks, or a sweet smell coming from the engine.
  • CVT transmission issues: Some Subaru models equipped with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) have experienced problems such as hesitation, shuddering, or stalling. These issues may be related to faulty sensors or software.
  • Electrical problems: Some Subaru models have experienced issues with electrical systems, such as the battery or alternator. These problems may cause issues such as difficulty starting the car or dimming headlights.
  • Suspension problems: Some Subaru models have experienced issues with the suspension, particularly the struts. Symptoms of a failing suspension may include a bumpy ride or excessive noise while driving.
  • Oil consumption: Some Subaru models have been known to consume excessive amounts of oil, which can lead to engine damage if not addressed.

Final Verdict

Both these vehicles are unique with separate targeted markets. They don’t cost the same, and they come with different technology.

While the comparison between these two might be a bit unfair, we believe that it could be super helpful for you to consider all the aforementioned elements to reach a final decision if you’re confused between the two.

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