Because Subaru continues to offer top-rated vehicles, it can be challenging to choose a Subaru that fits your needs. Two models that customers often compare are the Subaru Outback and Crosstrek. The 2019 Crosstrek is in the 2nd year of its 2nd generation, while the Outback is in the last year of a five-year model cycle, but has been upgraded for the model year 2019. Both the Subaru Outback and the Crosstrek offer advanced safety technology, award-winning durability, and comfortable rides. Symmetrical All-Wheel drive is standard on both models providing all-terrain toughness and safety in poor weather conditions. The Outback and the Crosstrek offer excellent driver visibility and fuel economy. The Subaru EyeSight® suite of driver assist systems comes standard with the Outback. It can brake automatically or correct your steering during lane drifting. The Outback is further equipped with blind-spot detection, rear cross-traffic alert, and parking assist sensors. Subaru EyeSight® is an available upgrade for all Crosstrek models (including base). The Outback and the Crosstrek both come with a 3 year/36,000 mile comprehensive warranty and a 5 year/60,000 mile powertrain warranty. SUBARU STARLINK™ Multimedia with Apple CarPlay™ and Android™ Auto is also standard in both models.

The Outback is a midsize crossover, similar to a wagon, and has a longer wheelbase. This results in a smoother ride than the Crosstrek. The Crosstrek is a subcompact SUV, like a small car, and appeals to urban drivers. The Outback has more overall interior space for passengers and cargo. The Crosstrek has standard tinted glass, while the Outback does not. Here's a closer look at some key features an option.


  • Passenger Space: The Outback and the Crosstrek both accommodate five passengers. The Outback offers more passenger space at 108.1 cubic feet versus the Crosstrek's 100.9 cubic feet. The Crosstrek provides a bit more front leg room (43.1 inches to Outback's 42.9 inches). The Outback has more rear leg room (38.1 inches to the Crosstrek's 36.5 inches).
  • Cargo Space: The Outback has substantially more cargo space than the Crosstrek. With the seats folded, the Outback has 73.3 cubic feet and the Crosstrek has 55.3 cubic feet. The Outback has 35.5 cubic feet versus the Crosstrek's 20.8 cubic feet with the seats up. 
  • Fuel Economy: The Crosstrek has a slightly better fuel economy, city, and highway. The Outback's fuel tank holds 18.5 gallons (591 miles) versus the Crosstrek's 16.6 gallons (547 miles). The Outback gets 25 MPG city and 32 MPG Highway, while the Crosstrek gets 27 MPG city and 33 MPG Highway. The six-speed manual Crosstrek gets 23 MPG city and 29 MPG highway.
  • Towing Capacity: The Outback offers greater towing capacity at 2700 pounds, whereas the Crosstrek's capacity is 1500 pounds. 
  • Engine: Both models come with a flat BOXER® engine. The Outback's standard engine is a bit more powerful at 2.5L/175 horsepower compared to the Crosstrek's 2.0L/152 horsepower engine. A six-cylinder upgrade with 256 horsepower is available for the Outback only.
  • Roof: Roof rails come standard on both models. Crossbars are standard on the Outback but are optional on the Crosstrek.
  • Ground Clearance: The ground clearance is generous at 8.7 inches for both the Outback and the Crosstrek.
  • Airbags: Both the Crosstrek and Outback come standard with dual front and side airbags for the front passengers and curtain airbags for both rows. Crosstrek offers a driver knee airbag. Outback gives both front seaters a cushion airbag in the flat part of the seats to hold you in place. The Outback has eight airbags, and the Crosstrek has seven airbags.
  • Size: The Outback is a longer vehicle at 189.9 inches versus the Crosstrek's 175.8 inches. The standard Crosstrek is 63.6 inches high and the Outback is 66.1 inches high. The Outback is slightly wider (72.4 inches) than the Crosstrek (71 inches).
  • Price: The Outback starts at about $4,000 more than a comparably equipped Crosstrek. See more information on Outback pricing, leasing, and deals from Rafferty Subaru.

Both the Outback and the Crosstrek provide similar rides, fuel economy, advanced safety, and technology. Subaru is well known for its safety features. The Outback and Crosstrek earned a five-star rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Both vehicles have standard brake assist, electronic stability control, and daytime running lights. The 2019 Subaru Outback has a standard lane departure warning feature. This same feature is optional on the 2019 Subaru Crosstrek. The Outback comes standard with X-MODE® traction optimization and Hill Descent Control providing the best traction and grip in difficult conditions. These options are premium upgrades for the Crosstrek. 
​Although they share many similarities, the two vehicles are quite different when it comes to overall space and options. The interior of the Outback is noticeably bigger and offers more passenger and cargo space. If you plan to do a lot of hauling and towing and require more power from your vehicle, the Outback is a good choice. The Crosstrek is available with a manual transmission, while the Outback is only automatic. City drivers may find the Crosstrek more appealing due to its small size and affordability. The 2019 Crosstrek has a limited-availability plug-in Hybrid model available that offers up to 17 miles of electric-only driving before the gasoline engine starts. Choosing between the Outback and the Crosstrek depends on what kind of driving you're going to do and what features you require. At Rafferty Subaru, we'll help you find the Subaru that fits your needs and lifestyle. Contact us at 888-491-8404 or stop in for a test drive today.

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Rafferty Subaru

4700 West Chester Pike
Directions Newtown Square, PA 19073

  • Sales: 484-588-6229
  • Service: 855-588-0452
  • Parts: (610)353-6900


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