2020 Subaru Crosstrek vs 2020 Subaru Forester
2020 Subaru Crosstrek 2020 Subaru Forester


2.0L 4-Cyl 2.5L 4-Cyl


152 182

  MPG (City/Highway)

22/29 * 26/33 *

2020 Subaru Crosstrek vs 2020 Subaru Forester

Serving New Bern, NC

When our customers stop by Riverside Subaru to view our impressive array of functional, stylish vehicles, they often inquire about the differences between the Forester and the Crosstrek. The Forester has passed through five generations since it was initially released in 1997. Like the Forester, the Crosstrek is a compact crossover SUV. Its only generational update followed its debut in 2012 in 2018. While these popular models are in the same SUV class, their differences are noticeable across all surfaces and under the hood.


The Crosstrek is slightly more affordable than the Forester at the base MSRP. Across its three gas-powered trims, the Crosstrek receives 152 horsepower from a 2.0-liter engine. The first two trim options pair this engine with a manual transmission as standard equipment, and the highest trim option has a Lineartronic continuously variable transmission. The Crosstrek is also available with a hybrid powertrain that provides you with 148 total horsepower. In comparison, the 2020 Subaru Forester comes with the same 2.5-liter, 182-horsepower, and CVT across all six of its trims. Active torque vectoring, intelligent all-wheel drive, traction control, and vehicle dynamics control are standard for all trims across both models. X-Mode and hill descent control are standard in the Forester and are optional in some of the Crosstrek’s trim options.


Significant differences continue to be found across the exterior design of these compact crossover SUVs. The 2020 Crosstrek and the Forester sit 8.7 inches above the ground, but the Forester is the taller of the two vehicles. The Crosstrek shows off its aerodynamic profile with a sharper angle across the front windshield and smooth surfaces on the hood and sides. It also has a chrome bar running through the recognizable Subaru grille, lengthened LED headlights, raised roof rails and up to 18-inch alloy wheels. The 2020 Subaru Forester stands tall and expresses its confidence with modest angles across the hood and roof. The black grille has a chrome bar at the top, and the LED headlights flow upward toward the front fenders to a sharp point. The Forester’s sides have powerful contouring, and up to 18-inch wheels are offered in several styles and finishes.


While these two vehicles have comparable features, the Forester has a few more standard and optional features than the Crosstrek has on a trim-by-trim base. Equipment that you could enjoy in select or all trims for these two crossover SUVs is a Harman Kardon sound system, a wireless internet connection, and an 8-inch multimedia screen with a navigation system, an automatic climate control system and more. The Forester adds a dual-zone auto climate control system, a power liftgate, and a few other desirable extras.

Riverside Subaru always carries an impressive variety of models and trims, and we are your top source for a closer look at the Forester and the Crosstrek. Because of performance and feature differences, we encourage you to stop by Riverside Subaru soon for a test drive comparison as a next step.

* EPA-estimated fuel economy. Actual mileage may vary.