New Model News

2021 Subaru Crosstrek gets more powerful engine option, new grade, enhanced safety tech

The Subaru Crosstrek has been significantly refreshed for 2021.

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America, Inc.

According to the commercials, love is what makes a Subaru a Subaru and there's no doubt that brand enthusiasts love the Crosstrek. Prior to the onset of the coronavirus, the Crosstrek was setting sales records with buyers opting for the subcompact SUV that's big on cargo space and comes standard with all wheel drive.

However, there are two things missing from that equation. The Crosstrek wasn't offered with a strong enough engine to make it truly playful and it didn't come with the latest safety tech - something the rest of the Subaru SUV lineup delivers. For 2021 that's all changed.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek Subaru has integrated the fog lights into the front bumper. Here, the Crosstrek Sport wears unique wheel arch moldings.Photo courtesy of Subaru of America, Inc.

The 2021 Subaru Crosstrek features a fresh front end with a new bumper that includes fog lamp insert covers or fog light covers (depending on trim level chosen), plus trim level-specific design details. It will continue to ride on standard 17-inch alloy wheels in black with machine finish and have roof rails, black side cladding, and a gloss black rear roof spoiler. Buyers can get 18-inch alloys.

Buyers can choose the standard 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that delivers 152 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque or a new 2.5-liter four-cylinder that is shared with the Forester and gets 182 horsepower and 176 pound-feet of torque.

Both engines are paired with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) in most trim levels. The standard six-speed manual transmission in the Base and Premium grades is paired with the smaller engine. Models equipped with the CVT get Intelligent and Sport drive modes.

The larger engine gets 27 mpg in the city, 34 mpg on the highway, and 29 mpg combined. The smaller engine, mated with the CVT, achieves 28 mpg in the city, 33 mpg on the highway, and 30 mpg combined. With the manual, the Crosstrek gets just 22/29/25 mpg city/highway/combined.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek The car is mostly unchanged at the rear and still just as capable.Photo courtesy of Subaru of America, Inc.

All models will continue to be sold with standard all-wheel drive with active torque vectoring technology. Base models get a Low Shift Mode for descending hills.

Subaru is adding a Sport grade to the Crosstrek lineup for 2021. It, along with the Limited trim level, comes standard with the larger engine. The Crosstrek Sport gets dual-function X-Mode, which debuted on the 2020 Outback and includes hill descent control with snow/dirt and deep snow/mud selectable settings.

The Crosstrek Sport also gets many elements clearly inspired by the Outback Onyx Edition including specific wheel arch moldings; dark gray 17-inch alloy wheels; StarTex upholstery with yellow stitching; gunmetal and simulated carbon fiber interior trim accents; a high-grade combination meter with color LCD and yellow metallic finish trim rings; LED rear gate light; gunmetal colored grille, side mirrors, and badges; and the door trim panels, armrests, leather wrapped steering wheel, shift boot, driver information screen visor, and center console box lid all are also adorned with yellow stitching. The new model is available in seven exterior colors including new Plasma Yellow Pearl and Horizon Blue Pearl.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek The car has new front fascia that brings its looks more into line with the 2020 Outback.Photo courtesy of Subaru of America, Inc.

Subaru offers the Crosstrek with a standard 6.5-inch infotainment touch screen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, power windows with auto up/down, 60/40 split-folding rear seats, tilt and telescoping steering column keyless entry, carpeted floor mats, and more.

Available upgrades include dual USB ports, automatic headlights, power moonroof, blind spot detection with lane change assist, rear cross traffic alert, push-button start, fog lights, steering responsive headlights, an 8.0-inch infotainment touch screen, navigation, Wi-Fi hot spot, CD player, satellite radio, and a Harman Kardon sound system.

The All-Weather Package, which includes heated front seats, windshield, and exterior mirrors is available.

2021 Subaru Crosstrek The interior of the Crosstrek Limited grade serves as the base of the Sport trim level.Photo courtesy of Subaru of America, Inc.

Models with the CVT come standard with a suite of Subaru EyeSight Driver Assist Technology. That suite now includes adaptive cruise control with lane centering (debuted on the Outback) in addition to automatic pre-collision braking, pre-collision throttle management, lane departure prevention, lead vehicle start alert, automatic start-stop, rear seat reminder, and SI-Drive.

The 2021 Crosstrek will arrive into retailers late summer. Base model pricing is expected to stay similar to the 2020 model, with the Sport model and larger engine models being sold at a premium.

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New luxury car

BMW sends its V12 engine off in style

BMW will build its final V12 engine this June.

BMW

Most automakers are focused on building EVs and extracting the best fuel economy from gas engines possible, so it’s not surprising to hear that BMW is pulling the plug on one of its biggest and most iconic engines. In June 2022, BMW will build its very last V12 engine for use in a super-limited-production special edition 7 Series model. The ultra-rare cars will carry a starting price of $200,995.

BMW 760i xDrive The last V12 will power a very special (and very expensive) 7 Series car.BMW

Only twelve lucky customers will have the option to nab a V12-powered BMW, which will be called the M760i xDrive. Displacing 6.6 liters, the twin-turbocharged beast produces a massive 601 horsepower. An eight-speed sport automatic transmission and all-wheel drive are standard. BMW says the powertrain is strong enough to push the hefty 7 Series car to 60 mph from a standstill in just 3.6 seconds.

The final-run cars will feature little more than a special “V12” badge at the rear to differentiate them from standard 7 Series models. Inside, the car features a serialized plaque with the car’s production number out of the 12 units planned. The engine itself features a nameplate with “The Final V12.”

Beyond the badges, BMW’s 12-cylinder last-hurrah will come standard with 20-inch M double-spoke wheels, a choice of any available BMW full Merino leather color, M Sport brakes with black or blue calipers, a panoramic LED roof, remote control parking, a Bowers & Wilkins surround-sound system, and adaptive LED headlights.

BMW 760i xDrive Only 12 of the cars will be built, with a starting price of more than $200,000.BMW

Though it hasn’t been BMW’s most popular engine over the years, the V12 has been a part of the automaker’s catalog for 35 years. The first 12-cylinder engine showed up in 1987, producing 295 horsepower in the original 750iL sedan.

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What was your best car-related experience this year?

Chris Teague

This year has been a lot of things, but it hasn't been boring. Even if we focus only on the car world, there's plenty to talk about, from microchip-related new vehicle shortages to the wave of new electric vehicles hitting the market. That leaves us with a question for all of you: What was the best or most memorable car moment for you in 2021? I'll get the conversation started.

Porsche Cayenne GTS My SoCal Cayenne śaw snow for the first time in its nearly 200k-mile life last week.Chris Teague

I'd spent a good portion of 2021 wanting a new-old car to drive when I wasn't testing a new vehicle. That's harder than you'd think for someone who thinks, talks, and writes about cars all day, because there are so many interesting, risky, and downright funky options out there in every price range. The added headache for me was that I'd chosen to shop for a "fun" car in one of the most volatile car markets ever seen. Even the extremely high-mileage "untouchable" European cars I wanted to buy were commanding ridiculous prices.

After a solid few months of waffling between various rattletrap Mercedes-AMG, BMW M, and Audi S/RS cars, I landed on an option that had escaped me before: The Porsche Cayenne. First-generation Cayennes are a real bargain now, but the 955/957 (Porsche's internal code for the SUVs) can experience major problems that occur with or without regular maintenance and care. I was determined to buy one, and wasn't overly concerned about mileage, as long as I could count the number of owners on one hand. There was a beautiful 2009 Cayenne GTS with 90,000 miles but nine owners, a gorgeous 2004 Cayenne Turbo with a concerning engine tick, and many more just like them. Finally, I decided to risky-click a 196,000-mile Cayenne GTS in Southern California. It had one owner and one dealer-owner for a month or two prior to sale, its condition looked decent in photos, and I was able to negotiate a reasonable enough price that shipping it from San Diego to Maine wasn't a huge problem.

Porsche Cayenne GTS The pics look great, but hands-on tells another story.Chris Teague

I had two traveling Euro mechanics check the car out, and both confirmed that it was well-worn but mechanically sound, so I jumped. Ten days later, on a snowy, icy, dark Maine afternoon, the Cayenne arrived. Cosmetically, there were a few things the dealer and mechanics failed to mention, but overall, it looked good. The SUV passed Maine safety and emissions testing without problem, got a new set of Michelins, and I was on my way.

Porsche Cayenne GTS I'm in danger, but thankfully this should be a reasonable fix.Chris Teague

A few days of driving revealed what I was really in for. A check engine light revealed a camshaft position sensor error and the Cayenne displayed a nasty vibration at idle. A new sensor and motor mounts, and I'm on my way. I'll update you as more things break or miraculously work, but I want to hear your memories from 2021.

Email me at chris@automotivemap.com, and I will compile the best and most interesting stories for a story on New Year's Day. May you all have a wonderful 2022.

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