2018 Subaru Crosstrek vs 2018 Honda HR-V Comparison

2018 Subaru Crosstrek vs 2018 Honda HR-V Comparison

Specs at a Glance

2018 Subaru Crosstrek

2018 Subaru Crosstrek


  152 hp


  145 ft-lbs

2018 Honda HR-V

2018 Subaru Crosstrek vs 2018 Honda HR-V

Serving Columbus, Grove City, and Westerville, OH

A subcompact vehicle is an excellent and an increasingly popular choice for many drivers, thanks to their maneuverability, style and good gas mileage, not to mention their lower price point. However, a subcompact passenger car can often fall short for many drivers when it comes to utility and versatility. Enter the subcompact SUV. While it is a new segment on the market, there are already many excellent subcompact SUVs available to choose from that provide the great benefits of both an SUV and a subcompact car. Two of the most popular are the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek and the 2018 Honda HR-V. Both are quick and nimble, as well as offering a large amount of passenger and cargo space for maximum versatility. Down to their striking modern looks, the two vehicles seem very similar in both design and performance, making it difficult to choose between them. In order to help you pick the best subcompact passenger car, we’ve checked how the two cars compare against each other in their performance, technology and safety.


Both the Subaru Crosstrek and the Honda HR-V are very similar when it comes to their powertrain configurations. Under the hood, both use four-cylinder engines linked to either a six-speed manual transmission or a continuously variable automatic transmission. The HR-V has the smaller engine, at 1.8 liters of displacement and 141 horsepower, while the Crosstrek is a little quicker with its 152 horsepower and 2.0 liters of engine. However, the biggest difference between the performance of the two cars comes in their handling. While the 2018 HR-V offers a very calm ride, its relaxed steering gives away some of the maneuverability advantage that a subcompact vehicle offers. Its CVT is also less responsive than the carefully-calibrated version used by the Subaru, which also comes standard with all-wheel drive, which is only optional on the Honda. This makes the 2018 Crosstrek the better choice when it comes to both driving feel and the ability to tackle tougher terrain or weather.


As modern vehicles oriented towards younger drivers, subcompact SUVs tend to punch well above their price range when it comes to technology and infotainment features. Both the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek and the 2018 Honda HR-V come equipped with touchscreens, Bluetooth, USB ports and other technologies. While Honda’s base infotainment system, which uses a smaller touchscreen and physical buttons for controls, is a fan favorite, it is only available on the base model. The upgraded infotainment, which dispenses with the buttons in favor of a larger touchscreen, has been criticized as being difficult to learn and unintuitive to use. The Crosstrek uses only one infotainment system that is both easy to use and has a few features missing from the HR-V, such as built-in support for Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. There are a few other optional tech upgrades available on the Subaru that you won’t find on the Honda, such as premium Harman Kardon audio.


One of the major reservations that subcompact SUV shoppers is concerned with how safe such small cars can really be. Both the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek and the 2018 Honda HR-V do quite well when it comes to safety tests, though the Crosstrek comes with a slightly better report card and more advanced safety features. Both cars score a five out of five on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration crashworthiness tests. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety likewise scores both cars well. The 2018 Crosstrek is a Top Safety Pick with ‘Good’ scores across the board, while the 2018 HR-V falls only slightly behind with a single ‘Acceptable’ score on the small overlap front crash test. The bigger difference comes in terms of crash prevention equipment. The IIHS rates the active safety of the Crosstrek as ‘Superior’, thanks to its EyeSight system that incorporates dynamic cruise control, emergency automated braking, lane keep assistance and other modern safety technologies. The Honda HR-V, on the other hand, offers no smart safety technologies, with only a rearview and a sideview camera to help drivers avoid accidents.

As manufacturers are developing new cars to fill the consumer demand for smaller and more versatile vehicles, the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek still remains one of the top vehicles in the competitive subcompact crossover SUV class. Thanks to its excellent driving dynamics and a focus on both safety and infotainment technologies, it does exactly what you want a subcompact crossover to do with excellence and panache. Visit our Subaru dealership and try out this unique and popular vehicle to see why it remains among the most popular subcompact crossovers available today.

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