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The Subaru Forester and Crosstrek are very successful crossover SUVs. Both vehicles have strong points, including standard all-wheel drive. However, the 2023 Subaru Forester has one huge strength over the 2023 Subaru Crosstrek: a more spacious cabin. 

2023 Subaru Forester has a more spacious cabin than the 2023 Subaru Crosstrek

Front angle view of white 2023 Subaru Forester crossover SUV
2023 Subaru Forester | Subaru

A major attraction of SUVs is the spacious interiors — with the ability to comfortably haul people — whether it’s for short excursions around town or long road trips. And on this front, the 2023 Subaru Forester is the better choice. It’s larger than the 2023 Subaru Crosstrek. As a result, it has a more spacious cabin. 

Front angle view of blue 2023 Subaru Crosstrek crossover SUV
2023 Subaru Crosstrek | Subaru

Both vehicles can seat up to five people, but the Forester has more passenger space. It has a total passenger volume of 111.6 cu-ft, compared to 100.9 cu-ft for the Crosstrek. The extra passenger space makes the biggest difference for the rear seats. The Forester provides 39.4 inches of rear legroom, while the Crosstrek only has 36.5 inches.

Furthermore, the Forester offers more cargo space. It has 26.9 cu-ft of storage behind the rear seats — and 69.1 cu-ft of total storage space. In comparison, the Crosstrek has a rear cargo capacity of 20.8 cu-ft and a maximum cargo capacity of 55.3 cu-ft.

2023 Forester also has a more upscale interior than the 2023 Crosstrek

Brown seats in 2023 Subaru Forester
2023 Subaru Forester | Subaru

In addition to the cabin of the 2023 Subaru Forester being roomier than the one in the 2023 Subaru Crosstrek, it’s more upscale too. It has a more premium look and feel. With extra space to stretch out and a higher-quality design, occupants in the Forester can enjoy a more upscale ride. 

Additionally, the Forester offers many premium interior features that are not available for the Crosstrek. This includes a dual-zone automatic climate control system, heated rear seats, a panoramic power moonroof, and reclining rear seatbacks. Also, while the two crossover SUVs offer some of the same interior features, more of them are standard for the Forester. 

Other ways the Subaru Forester is better than the Crosstrek

There are some other ways that the 2023 Forester is better than the 2023 Crosstrek. Both crossover SUVs come standard with an all-wheel drive system, but the Forester has better off-road capabilities. It has a higher ground clearance than the Crosstrek for driving over rough terrain (up to 9.2 vs. 8.6 inches). Additionally, the Forester has an off-road model with the Wilderness trim. However, the Crosstrek doesn’t offer a model with an off-road focus.

Also, the Forester has greater towing capabilities. It can tow up to 3,000 pounds, compared to 1,500 pounds for the Crosstrek.

Furthermore, for the recently unveiled 2023 IIHS safety awards, the Forester earned the Top Safety Pick honor. The Crosstrek received the same award last year, but it didn’t make the cut in 2022. 

With its more spacious cabin, the 2023 Subaru Forester has a huge strength over the 2023 Subaru Crosstrek. While this doesn’t mean that the Forester is a superior crossover SUV, it’s a key factor to keep in mind when deciding between the two vehicles.


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