Another possible model for the Geneva unveiling can be the Crosstrek’s hybrid version, branded XV for the European market. The hybrid Crosstrek is Subaru’s first PHEV model, and it uses Toyota’s 8.8-kWh battery pack mated to a 2.0-liter boxer engine.
Subaru is relatively late to the hybrid game, as some competing Japanese carmakers have had hybrid cars on the market for a long time already, and only in recent years has Subaru put hybrid models for sale outside Japan. But by being able to mate electric power with its trademark boxer engine powertrain, Subaru can remain “on-brand” while still utilizing hybrid technology, instead of going with a regular four cylinder inline engine as is popular with hybrid powertrains.
Still, the Japanese market Forester STI e-Boxer only produces a combined 156 horsepower and 187 lb-ft of torque, figures that seem modest compared to a 2.0-liter turbodiesel engine, for example. But with Subaru’s diesel exercise just a decade-long, select-market enterprise, and with diesel on the outs these days, hybrid seems a better bet, especially in the North American market.