2017 Kia Niro vs Subaru Crosstrek

For now, the Kia Niro is the only solely hybrid crossover SUV available. Subaru used to claim the title of the unique crossover manufacturer, but that's obviously no longer the case. Let's see how two of the most unique crossovers on the market--the 2017 Kia Niro and the Subaru Crosstrek--compare.

2017 Kia Niro vs Subaru Crosstrek


It's probably fair to say the Kia Niro doesn't have the most jaw-dropping styling in its class, but it's not going to stop anyone from buying one either. Kia has been seriously bold with the powertrain of the Niro, so it's probably to be expected that the exterior is on the conservative side. The Niro looks more like a tall wagon than a full-blown SUV, but that's certainly not an unattractive look.

Subaru has never gone out of its way to make its vehicles devastatingly attractive, and sometimes it's looked like they were trying to make them unattractive on purpose. The Crosstrek isn't an ugly vehicle, but it does look like a Frankenstein crossover, a collection of parts borrowed from other models. The Crosstrek offers a fairly plain and straightforward look, but pretty dull and a little dated next to the more attractive Kia.

Power & Performance

The Kia Niro's hybrid engine contains a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine, which works in conjunction with a 32 kW electric motor and a 1.6 kWh lithium-ion battery. A six-speed dual-clutch transmission sends the power to the front wheels. All of that gives you 139 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. of torque, which is enough power for basically anyone who is worried more about a daily commute than a tow capacity.

The Subaru name is associated with fast, nimble, powerful vehicles that win rallies around the world, but the Crosstrek isn't a model representative of that reputation. A single 2.0-liter flat-four powers all versions of the Subaru, which only develops a relatively mundane 148 horsepower through either an aging five-speed manual or a CVT transmission. All-wheel drive is standard though, and it's not available on the Niro at all.


Even though the Niro isn't as tall as some of its rivals, buyers will find a good amount of room inside for up to five people to travel in comfort. The quality of the materials is good without being luxury, and getting in and out of the Kia is a breeze thanks to some very long doors. For the money Kia asks for it, the interior of the Niro more than delivers.

The Crosstrek has an almost identical amount of passenger volume as the Niro, but it's not as well designed in the Subaru as in the Kia. The Subaru has a little more leg room in the front, but the Kia has the edge in the back seat where it really matters most. The interior is definitely more utilitarian, and not as plush as the Kia, so this round has to go to the Niro.

Fuel Economy

If you want a new crossover and fuel economy is a big deal for you, look no further than the Kia Niro. The best EPA ratings are 52 mpg in the city, 49 mpg on the highway and 50 mpg combined. You'll be hard pressed to even come close to these numbers with any other crossover.

With no hybrid version of the Subaru in production anymore, the best fuel economy figures the Crosstrek offers are 26 mpg in the city, 33 mpg on the highway and 29 mpg combined. That's not bad at all, but it's no match for the Niro.

Learn More about the Kia Niro

The Subaru Crosstrek has an all-wheel drive off-road capability that the front-drive 2017 Kia Niro can't really compete with, but in just about every other way the Kia is the better buy. The Niro is a more attractive design, the interior has a more modern and spacious feel, and the fuel economy figures speak for themselves.

Current Inventory

There are currently no 2018 Kia Niro EX 4dr Crossover for Sale in inventory


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