Subaru XV 2020 review: Hybrid

The idea of a hybrid version of Subaru’s small XV SUV seems to make complete sense – this is a car that probably spends most of the time in traffic but is owned by people who might like to head down a dirt track occasionally and if it’s green, too, then what more could you want?

That’s what Richard Berry us here to answer, because after real-world testing the XV Hybrid he found out.

Yes, in many ways it had everything and in others he was left wanting.

On one hand the XV Hybrid is excellent and on the other it’s… not. It’s great to drive on and off the road, the fit and finish of the cabin is superb and the safety tech is outstanding. On the other, the value for money isn’t good when you consider that it’s almost the most expensive XV, but still doesn’t have sat nav, nor dual-zone climate control, nor the larger display. And then there’s the fuel economy. Even if we had have matched the 6.5L/100km Subaru says we should get the saving is a mere 500ml for every 100km compared to a straight-petrol XV. The plug-in hybrid version of the XV as sold in the United States can get about 2.6L/100km. Now that type hybrid XV makes far more sense.

Read Richard’s full review:

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  1. 3:46 – it has a boxer, indeed, it should handle well – the big question is about the battery, which sits higher than in an auris hybrid, because of the rear diff. how does that feel compared to the standard xv?

  2. So, real world fuel economy isn't as good as claimed bench test cycles? Shock.
    Manufacturer claims belong in the bin. Fuel is comparatively cheap; fill up, move on, worry about other things like driveaway price, practicality, reliability, servicing costs, customer support – all Subaru strengths.

  3. So weird seeing the steering wheel on the other side. I had the much less hybrid 2016 hybrid and I agree the mileage difference is nearly nil. Our 2016 was 28.9mpg our new 2020 non hybrid is 27.4. On the power, it's not a sports car, so the power it has is sufficient. Want more? Buy a wrx.

  4. Hybrid only works if it is a plug-in hybrid as you just don't make enough power from regenerative breaking alone which is why the fuel savings are so woeful. Even when it is properly implemented I still don't see the reason for it. Take the new RAV4 for instance, the difference in cost between the normal drivetrain and the hybrid is around $6K and the difference in fuel economy is impressive at 1.8L/100K but still, that is only going to save you a few hundred dollars a year in petrol so I just don't see the point.

  5. Hello ,we have a current model XV. Great car. However,reported issue with info display from DAB radio,only partial displayed with limited text.Appears Subaru does not want to know. Frustrated

  6. Fantastic review!
    You have earned a lot of respect by clearly pointing out the faults of the car and not excusing them.
    The points rating is far too high though, it doesn't match all of the valid criticisms from your review.

  7. Subaru are just missing a trick here. Great looking car, besides this colour. Give ti some oomph and a real gearbox and they'll triple their sales. An Hybrid in this – waste.

  8. This is like watching a parallel universe.
    We're all pretty much in Corona lockdown, the economy has fallen off the cliff.
    I doubt very few vehicles will be sold in the next 6-12 months.
    Anyone doubt that then free free to screen shot my comment and harass me later.

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