2019 Toyota Rav4 vs. 2019 Subaru Crosstrek

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The Rav4 Limited offers an optional Bird’s Eye View Camera to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Crosstrek only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the Rav4 and the Crosstrek have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Rav4 for 2 years and 25,000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Subaru doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Crosstrek.

There are almost 2 times as many Toyota dealers as there are Subaru dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Rav4’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are better in initial quality than Subaru vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota 17th in initial quality. With 19 more problems per 100 vehicles, Subaru is ranked 28th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Subaru vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 40 more problems per 100 vehicles, Subaru is ranked 24th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Subaru vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Subaru is ranked fourth.

Engine

The Rav4’s 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 51 more horsepower (203 vs. 152) and 39 lbs.-ft. more torque (184 vs. 145) than the Crosstrek’s 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Toyota Rav4 is faster than the Subaru Crosstrek (automatics tested):

 

Rav4

Crosstrek

Zero to 60 MPH

8.2 sec

9 sec

Quarter Mile

16.4 sec

16.9 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

87 MPH

80.8 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Rav4 gets better fuel mileage than the Crosstrek:

 

 

 

MPG

Rav4

FWD

Auto

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

26 city/35 hwy

AWD

Auto

LE 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

27 city/34 hwy

 

 

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

25 city/33 hwy

Crosstrek

AWD

Manual

2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

23 city/29 hwy

 

Auto

2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

27 city/33 hwy

Transmission

The Toyota Rav4 comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Crosstrek.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Rav4’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Crosstrek:

 

Rav4

Crosstrek

Front Rotors

12 inches

11.6 inches

Rear Rotors

11.1 inches

10.8 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Crosstrek (235/55R19 vs. 225/60R17).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Rav4 XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited has standard 19-inch wheels. The Crosstrek’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

Suspension and Handling

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Rav4 is 1.7 inches wider in the front and 2.2 inches wider in the rear than the track on the Crosstrek.

Chassis

The front grille of the Rav4 Adventure/Limited uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The Rav4 has 1.1 inches more front shoulder room, 1.5 inches more rear headroom, 1.3 inches more rear legroom and .8 inches more rear shoulder room than the Crosstrek.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Rav4’s rear seats recline. The Crosstrek’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The Rav4 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Crosstrek with its rear seat up (37.6 vs. 20.8 cubic feet). The Rav4 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Crosstrek with its rear seat folded (69.8 vs. 55.3 cubic feet).

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Rav4 (except LE) offers an optional power cargo door, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button or, optionally on the Rav4 Limited, by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer a power liftgate.

Towing

Maximum trailer towing in the Subaru Crosstrek is limited to 1500 pounds. The Rav4 Adventure offers up to a 3500 lbs. towing capacity.

Ergonomics

When different drivers share the Rav4 (except LE/XLE/Adventure), the optional memory seats make it convenient. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer memory seats.

The Rav4’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Crosstrek’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

The Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield. The Crosstrek’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Both the Rav4 and the Crosstrek offer available heated front seats. The Rav4 Limited also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Crosstrek.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Rav4 Adventure/Limited keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Rav4 XLE AWD/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

Both the Rav4 and the Crosstrek offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Rav4 XLE/XLE Premium/Adventure/Limited has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

The Rav4 Adventure has a 115-volt a/c outlet, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Model Availability

The Rav4 is available in both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Crosstrek doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Recommendations

The Toyota Rav4 outsold the Subaru Crosstrek by almost three to one during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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