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Crosstrek vs Outback

2021 Subaru Crosstrek vs. 2021 Subaru Outback:
What’s the Difference?

When life is calling, your Subaru is ready to take you where you want to go. And for 2021, both the Subaru Crosstrek SUV and Subaru Outback wagon are up for adventure for you and four of your family members or friends. Learn about the differences to determine which Subaru works best for you, then search the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek for sale or 2021 Subaru Outback for sale at Subaru of Rochester in Rochester, MN.

How about a test drive? Experience the Crosstrek or Outback behind the wheel by calling us at (507) 285-4777 or sending us a quick text or chat.

Power & Handling Crosstrek vs Outback

Experience dependability and a fun ride when you’re behind the wheel of the 2021 Crosstrek SUV or 2021 Outback wagon. Each offers you choice in performance levels, as outlined in the accompanying table.


Engine Options & Performance Specs

2021 Subaru Crosstrek

2.0L SUBARU BOXER® four-cylinder

  • Six-speed manual or Lineartronic® CVT
  • Symmetrical AWD
  • 152 HP
  • 145 lb.-ft. of torque
  • 28 city/33 hwy MPG
  • 1,500 lbs. of max. towing capacity
  • Base, Premium trims

2.5L SUBARU BOXER direct injection four-cylinder

  • Lineartronic CVT
  • Symmetrical AWD
  • 182 HP
  • 176 lb.-ft. of torque
  • 27 city/34 hwy MPG
  • 1,500 lbs. of max. towing capacity
  • Sport, Limited trims

2021 Subaru Outback

2.0L SUBARU BOXER® four-cylinder

  • Lineartronic CVT
  • Symmetrical AWD
  • 182 HP
  • 176 lb.-ft. of torque
  • 26 city/33 hwy MPG
  • 2,700 lbs. of max. towing capacity
  • Outback, Premium, Limited, Touring trims

2.4L SUBARU BOXER turbocharged four-cylinder

  • Enhanced Lineartronic CVT with adaptive control and eight-speed manual mode
  • Symmetrical AWD with X-MODE®
  • 260 HP
  • 277 lb.-ft. of torque
  • 3,500 lbs. of max. towing capacity
  • Onyx Edition XT, Limited XT, Touring XT trims

Dimensions Crosstrek vs Outback

When you need to carry a bulky item or more-than-usual gear or luggage ― or maybe you have a family pet who loves to go wherever you go ― both the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek and 2021 Subaru Outback offer versatility inside the cabin.

The Crosstrek features 55.3 cubic feet of cargo space when the rear seats are folded down and 20.8 cubic feet when the rear seats are upright. In contrast, the 2021 Outback features 75.7 cubic feet of cargo space when rear seats are folded down and 32.5 cubic feet when the rear seats are upright.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek


2021 Subaru Outback


Seating Capacity


176.5 in.


191.3 in.

71 in.


73 in.

63.6 in.


66.1 in.

39.8 in.

First Row Headroom

40.1 in.


First Row Legroom

42.8 in.

38 in.

Second Row Headroom

39.1 in.

36.5 in.

Second Row Legroom

39.5 in.

Subaru Interior Seating

Interior Crosstrek vs Outback

A comfortable in-cabin experience awaits you in the Crosstrek and Outback. Both offer heated front seats and a heated steering wheel, with the Outback wagon also offering heated rear passenger seats.

Personalize your seating comfort with a ten-way power driver’s seat with power lumbar on the Outback, or a six-way power driver’s seat on the Crosstrek. Front passengers are taken care of, too, with an eight-way power front passenger’s seat on the Outback and a four-way manual front passenger’s seat on the Crosstrek. If you tend to drive long distances or live in warm weather climates, ventilated seats are offered on the 2021 Subaru Outback.

Safety Crosstrek vs Outback

Feel supported and more confident behind the wheel with Subaru’s EyeSight® driver assist technology. This suite of advanced safety features comes standard on all Outback trims and is available on all Crosstrek trims. Included in the Outback suite is lane keep assist; the Crosstrek features pre-collision throttle management.

Exterior Crosstrek vs Outback

Built to last and designed for adventurous living, the exterior styling on both the Crosstrek and Outback is quintessentially Subaru. The smaller, sporty Crosstrek brings stylish fun to urban streets or remote callings, while the Outback ― which experienced a redesign in 2020 ― delivers a modern-looking yet classic wagon style that conveys it’s ready to go where you love to be.

An exterior update you’ll find on the 2021 Outback is adaptive headlamps, while the 2021 Crosstrek adds a few more rugged details, like a new front grille and available 18-inch machine-finished wheels, to elevate its sporty appeal.

Subaru vehicle driving down a forest road
Subaru Interior Seating

Technology Crosstrek vs Outback

It's all about high-tech and helping you stay connected when you’re away from home. When it comes to infotainment systems, the 2021 Crosstrek puts important things within reach in an eight-inch STARLINK® multimedia touchscreen, while the 2021 Outback provides a larger 11.6-inch STARLINK multimedia touchscreen. Both vehicles give you access to these great features:

  • Voice activated multi-touch navigation system
  • Bluetooth®
  • SiriusXM® Satellite Radio
  • SiriusXM Traffic and Travel link®
  • Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ integration
  • AM/FM stereo
  • HD Radio®
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