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If you’re in the market for a subcompact SUV that’s offers the utmost in versatility, the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek and the 2021 Jeep Renegade both make for decent options. Both are capable of taking on a variety of conditions, and have plenty to offer in the way of features. But when it comes to things how reliable these subcompact SUVs are, or what it’s like to drive them, it becomes abundantly clear that the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek makes for the much better option. Of course, don’t just take our word for it. 

2021 Subaru Crosstrek off-roading
2021 Subaru Crosstrek | Subaru

The 2021 Subaru Crosstrek is standard with all-wheel drive

While both of these SUVs can hit the trails, only one of them comes standard with all-wheel drive. If you guessed that it’s the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek that comes standard with it, then you would be correct. Unfortunately for Jeep shoppers, while all-wheel drive is available, the 2021 Jeep Renegade comes standardly equipped with front-wheel drive.

The 2021 Subaru Crosstrek boasts plenty of ground clearance in comparison to the Renegade too. With 8.7-inches of ground clearance, this year’s Crosstrek is always at the ready when it comes to conquering uneven terrain. The 2021 Jeep Renegade, on the other hand, requires that you opt for the Renegade Trailhawk if you’re after a similar ground clearance.

The 2021 Jeep Renegade isn’t as enjoyable to drive

When it comes to driving these two vehicles, there is a difference. According to Consumer Reports, the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek offers “a comfortable and controlled ride that stands head and shoulders above the competition.” Its assessment seems to pretty spot on too. In its road tests, Car and Driver found that the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek delivers a “decidedly carlike driving experience.”

Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for the 2021 Jeep Renegade. Consumer Reports found that this year’s model doesn’t handle very well. The ride is also choppy, the view out of the vehicle is pretty restricted, and its front seats aren’t very comfortable. Car and Driver added that there’s no polish to the Renegade’s standard engine, making for a fairly lackluster driving experience. 

The 2021 Subaru Crosstrek makes for the more reliable option

The 2021 Jeep Renegade isn’t expected to be all that reliable either. According to Consumer Reports, this year’s model earned a one out of five predicated reliability rating. As for the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek? Consumer Reports gave this year’s model a four out of five predicted reliability rating. While that’s certainly not a perfect score, it’s significantly better than the score given to the 2021 Jeep Renegade.

This year’s Renegade also struggles when it comes to owner satisfaction. While the Subaru Crosstrek earned a four out of five predicted owner satisfaction rating, the Renegade was only able to manae a one out of five rating. According to Consumer Reports, owners of the 2021 Jeep Renegade may take issue with its driving experience, comfort levels, and overall value. Consumer Reports predicts that owners of the 2021 model will also be less than impressed with its exterior and interior styling, though that is pretty subjective. 

Which of these SUVs comes out on top?

In the end, it’s hard deny that the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek makes for a worth adversary to this year’s Jeep Renegade. Unlike the Renegade, it comes standard with all-wheel drive and boasts more ground clearance. It’s also more enjoyable to drive, and is pretty reliable on top of it. But when it comes to choosing which of these vehicles is the best for your daily driving needs? We suggest getting behind the wheel for a test drive.


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