Subaru XV Crosstrek 2013 – 2014

Subaru introduced the XV Crosstrek in with the 2013 model year.  There were many theories about what XV meant at the time.  Some speculated that is was the “15th” vehicle Subaru built on that platform.  What it turned out to be is that SV stood for “Crossover Vehicle”.  A crossover is basically an SUV on a car chassis vs. SUVs on a truck chassis like some of the giant SUVs of the 1990s.  If a Crosstrek is truly an SUV, it’s a compact SUV.  Let’s stick with Crossover.

One very eye-catching feature of the new Subaru Crosstreks compared to other Subaru models in 2013 was the rims.  Subaru SV Crosstreks had very unique rims for the brand.  Here’s what the 2013 and 2014 XV Crosstrek rims looked like.


The word most often used to describe the XV Crosstrek rims was “geometric”.  This was a big, expressive departure for Subaru.  The XV Crosstrek was designed for the younger buyer, say 25-34 years old, with a desire to pack the skis, bikes or just gear on top the car, put the dog in the back, and head off to the slopes, beach, mountains, or rugged trails of the Utah badlands.  The geometric design of the Crosstrek wheels and the rugged styling made the 2013 XV Crosstrek the first Subaru ever to cause people to drive in to our Subaru store in Fresno and say: “that car caught my eye”.


An interesting feature of the XV Crosstrek wheels of the 2013-2014 era is the way the silver designs of the spokes look like two concentric circles when the car is in motion.  On this picture, notice how the fenders seem to be way above the top of the tires.  While there is quite a bit of space, and Subaru’s classic 8.7 inches of ground clearance, it’s the black plastic molding over the wheel wells that give it the look of more space.  That’s part of the “rugged look” that has attracted so many to the Crosstrek.


Subaru Crosstrek 2015 – 2017

Subaru’s Crosstrek Sales have increased every year it’s been out.  The rim design of the Crosstrek has changed every few years.  Starting with the 2015 model year Crosstrek, Subaru dumped the “XV” from the name.  Nobody was calling it the XV.  Everyone was calling it the Crosstrek.  Jump forward to today and I am dealing with people all the time who come in to the showroom here in Fresno, call in or email to me as the internet sales manager, thinking the Crosstrek is just a small version of the Outback. The are really not related at all, but that’s a subject for a different post.  Now that I am posting agin, we’ll get that up here soon.

Back the Crosstrek wheels.  In 2015 the Crosstrek rims were changed slighty.

The Silver elements that make up the spokes had a kind of “lean” to them.  Still the same rugged, geometric look, but dare I say, “softened” a bit?  Still makes two concentric circles when the wheels are in motion.

By the way, notice the plastic cladding over the wheel well?  Beefy huh!?!

Also, 2015 saw the elimination of one of the two original Crosstrek Color.  Tangerine Orange went away and homage was paid to the original color by including “sporty” orange stitching in many Subaru Crosstrek models.

Notice the new Hyperblue Crosstrek color in this picture.  That color was introduced with the 2015 Subaru Crosstreks – without the XV.


Subaru Crosstrek 2018

As this post is written it is 2017, almost 2018.  After three years of the above wheels and basically the same car for 5 years (2013-2018) Subaru came out with the redesigned Crosstrek built on the Subaru’s new global platform and for the first time built at the zero landfill plant in Lafayette, Indiana.

Early in its evolution, the Subaru Crosstrek came only in the Premium and Limited trim levels.  There was no “base” model as there are with most Subarus.  As the model evolved, there was eventually a “base model”, which only came in manual transmission.  Now you can get a base (Crosstrek 2.oi), a Premium (Crosstrek 2.0i Premium), or a Limited (Crosstrek 2.0i Limited).  With Subarus you can usually add the most options to a Premium, the middle level, because the higher Limited Crosstrek will already include many of the features you would have to add in an option package to a Premium. An example in 2018 would be blind-spot detectors.

For the first time ever, 2018 Subaru Crosstreks came with two distinctly different wheel designs.  One for the Premium and one for the Limited.


These rims are what you’ll see on 2018 Subaru Crosstrek 20.i and and 2.0i Premium models.  They have the “spiderweb” look a term I coined when Subaru came out with similar looking wheels for the XT Turbo and Touring Forester models recently.

Of course, these wheels are more intricately styled, because what is a Crosstrek all about if it isn’t style?

With 150 lb capacity on the roof and 1,500 lb towing capacity, yes there is more than style to the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek.




Here you see the rims exclusively available on the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek 2.0i Limited.  Originally I thought of it as a Flinstone-looking geo pattern with the “teardrop” shapes going round and round, but after getting to know the new Crosstreks, I see I was actually looking at the space between the “spokes” which are in a way reminiscent of the original fat-spoke look of earlier Crosstrek models.  These have a sort of “Atlas foot” rolling forward look.  When I get footage of them in motion, I will post.

See the new color?  This is called “Cool Gray Khaki” and it replaced the other original Crosstrek color’ Desert Khaki” which lasted 5 years.  It was one of the original Crosstrek colors.

This new Khaki is frequently referred to as “blue” by customers and detailers alike.  While blue is not a color I would associate with the word “Khaki”, so far the best explanation I’ve received is that the Khaki word is meant to reference the “flat” nature of this color, meaning non-metallic flake.