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The 2019 Crosstrek Hybrid is Subaru's first plug-in model.
The standard Crosstrek's friendly proportions are left intact.
This model comes with special Hybrid-only blue paint and unique wheels.
It feels odd that Subaru just calls this model the Crosstrek hybrid, when in fact it's a more sophisticated plug-in hybrid, but it's probably for ease of marketing.
Open the cargo hatch for the Crosstrek Hybrid's biggest compromise.
The Crosstrek Hybrid builds on the standard gas car's top Limited spec, which brings with it dynamic LED headlamps, standard Eyesight advanced driver assist tech and other amenities.
The Crosstrek's ergonomically friendly interior feels like a fair shake until you start getting into the model's costlier trims, when it can start to feel underwhelming.
Two-tone leather seats are all-day comfy.
Note how the battery pack raises the cargo floor greatly, creating an awkwardly lumpy floor when the rear seats are folded.
Gas Crosstrek cargo areas drop down below the lip height. The Hybrid's battery actually raises the floor awkwardly, creating a shallow cargo hold.
Plus, there's no place for the included charge cable bag.
This is where you feed the 8.8-KwH battery electrons.
It only takes about two hours to charge the modestly sized battery, but you only get around 17 miles of electric-only range in optimal conditions.
Subaru's well-regarded 2.0-liter flat-four returns, paired here to a two-motor plug-in hybrid architecture sourced from partner Toyota.
Combined system output is listed at 148 horsepower, slightly less than the gas-only model.
500 pounds of capacity gets sliced off the Hybrid's tow rating, but it was only 1,500 pounds to begin with, so not many people will tow with any Crosstrek anyhow.
Note the PHEV-specific gauge cluster.
Subaru's Starlink infotainment has vastly improved over the years, and is now quite simple and friendly to use.
I only achieved 29.4 miles per gallon in mostly highway driving, but that was with a long list of caveats, including cold weather, a heavy right foot and the inability to charge every day.
In other words, your mileage may vary -- likely upwards.
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