Subaru Crosstrek vs. Toyota RAV4: Which is Better?

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The Subaru Crosstrek may have a lower starting price than the Toyota RAV4, but their five-year ownership costs come out about the same. Once you dig in and compare each of these SUVs feature by feature, the final decision is left to taste and preference. 
Where the Crosstrek has a more powerful engine, the RAV4 has significantly more cargo space. The Crosstrek may have a more modern and functional interior, but the RAV4 has better fuel economy. These compact SUVs may look different in body shape and style, but both pack equal value. 
So how will you decide the outcome of the Toyota RAV4 vs. Subaru Crosstrek competition?
, the
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, has put together this in-depth comparison of the two models so you can find the right SUV for you. 

Crosstrek vs. RAV4: which is more expensive?

Looking at costs, the starting MSRP for a 2022 Subaru Crosstrek is $24,320—almost $4,000 less than the RAV4’s starting price of $28,310!
With the trim-by-trim comparison, you’ll see there’s a consistent winner in terms of affordability:
Starting MSRP
Starting MSRP
Crosstrek Base
Crosstrek Premium
Crosstrek Sport
RAV4 XLE Premium
Crosstrek Limited
RAV4 Adventure
Crosstrek Hybrid
RAV4 Limited
RAV4 TRD Off Road
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Ownership costs

There’s more to a vehicle’s cost than just the initial MSRP price. A car’s true cost to own tells you the estimated five-year cost of owning a particular vehicle
According to Edmunds, the true five-year ownership costs for a 2022 Subaru Crosstrek are approximately $33,490. That’s about $10,000 above the initial MSRP. In contrast, Edmunds estimates the five-year ownership costs for a 2022 Toyota RAV4 at $33,900. 
When considering the cost to own, the initial $4,000 gap between the Crosstrek and RAV4 MSRP narrows to only $410. This is primarily due to the difference in depreciation in the RAV4 vs. Crosstrek—where the RAV4 depreciates $7,523 in five years, the Crosstrek depreciates $10,055. The Toyota RAV4 also has cheaper maintenance and repair costs
While the Crosstrek seems more affordable at first glance, when taking ownership costs into account, the Crosstrek and RAV4 have similar five-year costs

Insurance costs

In general, annual
Toyota RAV4 insurance costs
are cheaper than
Subaru Crosstrek insurance costs
. The average insurance costs for a RAV4 are about $2,209 each year, whereas the average Crosstrek insurance costs are $2,634 per year

Crosstrek vs. RAV4: which is the most affordable? 

While the Subaru Crosstrek initially comes out more affordable than the Toyota RAV4, the price difference narrows significantly when taking ownership costs into account. What starts as a $4,000 difference in starting price cuts back to only a $400 difference in five-year ownership costs. 
Because the RAV4’s insurance costs are about $400 cheaper than the Crosstrek, you could almost call it a wash

Subaru Crosstrek vs. Toyota RAV4: in-depth comparison

The Crosstrek and RAV4 come out almost equal in affordability—but how do they measure up in other areas? Let’s dig into some other key specs and see how they add up! 

Body style and size

Because the Crosstrek and RAV4 are two different types of SUVs, there is a significant difference in their body style and size. Where the Crosstrek is a compact two-row, five-door
SUV, the RAV4 is a compact two-row SUV. 
The Crosstrek’s sloping hatchback roof gives it 55.3 cubic feet of space if you fold down the rear seats. The RAV4 is boxier, has a larger body, and has an impressive 73.4 cubic feet of cargo space, making it one of the most spacious cars in the compact SUV class. Because the hybrid Crosstrek must accommodate a battery pack, the floor is higher, leading to even less cargo space.
2022 Subaru Crosstrek
2022 Toyota RAV4
104.9 inches
105.9 inches
Passenger volume
100.9 cubic feet
98.9 cubic feet
Headroom (front/rear)
39.8/38 inches
39.5/39.5 inches
Legroom (front/rear)
43.1/365 inches
41/37.8 inches
Cargo volume w/seats up
20.8 cubic feet
37.6 cubic feet
Cargo volume w/seats down
55.3 cubic feet
69.8 cubic feet
Ground clearance
8.7 inches
8.4 inches
Base curb weight
3188 lbs
3380 lbs
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Engine and performance

We find another difference between these two vehicles in the Crosstrek and RAV4’s standard engines and their performance.
The 2022 Crosstrek Base and Premium trims come standard with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder that generates 152 horsepower and 145 lb-ft of torque. The Sport and Limited trims offer a more powerful 182-hp 2.5-liter engine with 176 lb-ft of torque
All four Crosstrek trim levels come with standard all-wheel drive and have a maximum towing capacity of only 1,500 pounds. The Base and Premium trim levels have a six-speed manual transmission option, while the rest come with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT).
Unlike the Crosstrek, all six trims of the 2022 RAV4 come equipped with an inline four-cylinder engine with an eight-speed automatic transmission that generates 203 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. Front-wheel drive is standard on almost all the trim levels, with the option to upgrade to all-wheel drive. 
Both the RAV4 Adventure and TRD Off-Road trims have an upgraded all-wheel-drive system that enhances traction. Like the Crosstrek, the RAV4’s maximum towing capacity is only 1,500 pounds. 
Both the 2022 RAV4 and Crosstrek come with hybrid options. The Crosstrek Hybrid is a trim level equipped with a 2.0-liter engine with hybrid componentry that makes 148 hp while the RAV4 hybrid is a separate model with its own seven trim levels. All trims are powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine paired with an electric motor that makes 219 hp
Ultimately, the Crosstrek offers the more powerful engine option—unless you opt for a hybrid. The 2022 RAV4 Hybrid makes a significantly higher horsepower than the Crosstrek hybrid trim. 

Fuel economy

The 2022 Subaru Crosstrek’s fuel economy is among the best in the subcompact crossover class. It is rated for 28 mpg city and 33 mpg highway for the 2.0-liter engine with the CVT, with a drop to 22 and 29 mpg with the manual. The 2.5-liter engine with the CVT makes 27 mpg city and 34 mpg highway
The 2022 RAV4 manages to outshine the Crosstrek, with its front-wheel drive making about 35 mpg on the highway and 32 mpg for the all-wheel drive. 
The Crosstrek hybrid delivers an impressive 90 MPGe combined and 35 mpg on the highway—but the 2022 RAV4 Hybrid model still comes out on top, making 38 mpg on the highway and 40 mpg combined. The RAV4 Hybrid’s Prime trim earns top marks at 94 MPGe combined.   


Both the 2022 Crosstrek and 2022 RAV4 received excellent safety ratings. They both received 5-star overall
safety ratings from NHTSA
and were 2022 IIHS Top Safety Picks
Once you dig a little deeper, the 2022 RAV4 already has one recall and thirteen complaints registered with NHTSA. In contrast, the 2022 Crosstek has none. However, the RAV4 received higher marks on front passenger side crash ratings. 
Given their high overall safety ratings, both vehicles are good options if safety is a priority. 


Both the Crosstrek and RAV4 come equipped with a similar set of tech features, including standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration
The Crosstek’s center screen has a more modern design than the RAV4’s, complete with voice controls. The Limited Crosstrek trim has an eight-speaker Harman Kardon stereo for audiophiles looking to add some extra volume and audio quality. 
While the RAV4’s touchscreen may look dated, its standard driver aids include adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking, automatic high beams, drowsy driver detection, an active steering aid, and lane-keeping assist. 

Interior and comfort

Despite its lower starting price, the 2022 Crosstrek’s interior comes out slightly ahead of the 2022 RAV4. 
The Crosstrek’s high-resolution screens, simple menu layouts, and large fonts contribute to the Crosstrek’s functionality. The high ride height is well laid out, allowing for ease getting in and out—and great visibility for drivers. Both front and back seats offer plenty of space for passengers to stretch out and enjoy the ride!
In contrast, while the 2022 RAV4’s roominess and driving position are good, its front passenger seat is set high and can’t be adjusted unless you’re driving the Limited trim. The RAV4’s control layout is intuitive and easy to read but too far away from the driver. 

Which car is the best? 

Now that we’ve taken an in-depth look at the key specs of the 2022 Subaru Crosstrek and 2022 Toyota RAV4, the question is: which car is the best? 
The 2022 Subaru Crosstrek has a more powerful engine, sleeker infotainment design, slightly better safety ratings, and a more functional interior. It seems like quite the list, but what about the 2022 Toyota RAV4? The RAV4 excels in lower insurance costs, significantly more cargo space, a more powerful hybrid engine, and better fuel economy. 
When it comes to affordability (including ownership costs), tech features, towing capacity, and overall safety ratings, both vehicles come out about the same—so which one is better? 
It really depends on what you’re looking for. If you want a modern, powerful, functional compact SUV, consider the Crosstrek. If you’re looking for lots of cargo space, good fuel economy, and a powerful hybrid option, the RAV4 might be the car for you! 

How to save on SUV insurance costs

Toyota RAV4’s insurance costs
may be cheaper than the Subaru Crosstrek’s, but regardless of which vehicle you choose, there are more ways to save! Rather than spending hours sifting through insurance quotes online, download the
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