Subaru's latest butched-up Crosstrek compact crossover, unveiled at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show earlier today, represents the model's first redesign since it made its debut in 2012 as a 2013 model.
Based on the same platform as the Subaru Impreza, the original Subaru Crosstrek – it was called the XV Crosstrek back then – featured a cladded-up body, roof spoiler, 17-inch alloy wheels, and 8.7 inches of ground clearance. Its 2.0-liter flat four produced 148 horsepower, a 4-speed manual transmission was standard, while the optional CVT offered a manual mode with steering wheel paddle shifters controlling six pre-set ratios.
We now fast forward to this year's Geneva Motor Show, where Subaru just unveiled the second-generation model.
2018 Subaru Crosstrek
Like the latest Impreza, the 2018 Crosstrek is based on the brand's new Subaru Global Platform. Torsional body rigidity is up by over 70 percent. The new architecture features a lower center of gravity, although it's slightly offset by the fact that the Crosstrek retains its 8.7 inches of ground clearance. Meanwhile, the double-wishbone rear suspension now has a stabilizer bar that's mounted directly to the body, helping to reduce body roll by 50 percent.
Under the hood, eighty percent of Subaru's FB 2.0-liter 4-cylinder flat-four engine has been revised, including new direct injection and, at least in Europe, a horsepower boost from 148 to 154. The CVT now features a 7-speed manual mode and the all-wheel-drive system now features X-mode, which controls a number of functions on slippery surfaces including the engine, AWD system, and braking.
For 2018, optional safety features include Subaru's EyeSight suite of advanced active safety features that includes adaptive cruise control, lake keep assist, pre-collision braking, and pre-collision throttle management. Other safety-related options include automatic high beam headlights, adaptive headlights, and a rear/side detection system that includes blind spot detection, lane change assist, and rear cross-traffic alert.
Outside, the Crosstrek retains its butched-up look with more aggressive matte black fender flares and lower side sill cladding, while the re-worked front fascia gets a more upright grille and Subaru's signature "hawk eye" headlights.
Inside, cabin materials have been upgraded, the seats, steering wheel, and trim feature orange contrast stitching, and there's a new 8-inch infotainment touchscreen along with a new steering wheel.
The North American version of the 2018 Crosstrek will make its debut during media days at the 2017 New York International Auto Show in April.
images courtesy of Subaru