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Skid plate choice 18-20 Crosstrek


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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey all,
Relatively new to backcountry driving but looking into setting up my 19 Crosstrek with front and transmission skid plates. Flexible budget.

Leaning toward RalliTEK due toward oil pan accessibility, weight, etc.
Others like LP Aventure or ADF are thicker, seem heavier, and it appears you must take them off to change oil.

Here are my 2 questions:
1) Overall, what are you all using out there? General suggestions and why?
2) RalliTEK owners and holders of knowledge.... how much clearance do I lose by adding the plate? I know LP is about 1.5 inches. I do currently have a 1.5 inch ADF lift.

Thank you in advanced!
Billy
 

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2020 Crosstrek Premium; 2010 LGT stage 2+
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I would rule out rallitek since they're 1/8". My 3/16" primitive plate dents plenty easily as is.
LP Aventure is stupid expensive in my opinion. They seem like good, quality parts, but oof that price. Also, those attachment points made the bumper guard a damage multiplier in an otherwise minor crash. It's so solid because it's mounted to the crash structure. I'd rather bend a plate or strip a weld nut than total my car.
Last time I looked ADF didn't offer a CVT skid plate, which I know payed for itself last time I was out. I had to take it off and flatten it out from a hard high center that seems like it would have punctured the CVT pan.
So that leaves primitive. They have a discount if you buy all three that makes them less than the LP Aventure small bumper protector thingy. The mounting points can definitely bend and/or strip, but I prefer that over damaging something else. And it's still a Crosstrek, leave the really nasty stuff to the jeeps. You can also leave the factory plastic front splash guard on with the primitive plate. It does also have an access hole for oil changes.
So I vote primitive.
They're not perfect: I would prefer a sturdier mounting solution in the rear, but then again I do more gnarly stuff that a lot of people do in their jeeps so maybe that's on me.
If you have any specific questions about the primitive triple armor, ask.
 

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You can also leave the factory plastic front splash guard on with the primitive plate. It does also have an access hole for oil changes.
This is interesting. I was looking at the mid-armor from Primitive for my 2013 and saw this in the install instructions: "Some cars have a plastic shield that will need to be removed and discarded in order to install the Skidplate, it is attached with several clips and a few 12mm headed bolts. "

Can you confirm (perhaps from personal experience) that the OEM splash shield can stay on with the mid-armor?

Cheers!
 

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I don't know about the 2013.
On my 2020, the mid plate replaced a couple of OEM metal braces.
The front plate fit with the OEM plastic splash guard, I just had to enlarge the driver's side front bolt hole a little. It did push the plastic up more than stock, so I was worried about the plastic melting due to proximity to the exhaust, but no issues so far.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Interesting. Thanks for the feedback so far everyone. I’m still torn, I am not currently doing much more than forrest and light primitive roads. The occasional large rocks, logs, etc come my way but nothing the size of boulders or anything like that... Yet! I also use this ride for ALL of my street driving.
Which makes me think Ralli could be “good enough” due to thinness compared to others, but I also don’t want to buy a thicker pair years down the road.

Now I am leaning towards ADF due to price, thickness, and accessibility. Oil pan looks accessible actually without taking off (I don’t have my own garage but do as much maintenance as I can). They offer front and transmission for 2018-20 models.
Hmmmmm....
 

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This is interesting. I was looking at the mid-armor from Primitive for my 2013 and saw this in the install instructions: "Some cars have a plastic shield that will need to be removed and discarded in order to install the Skidplate, it is attached with several clips and a few 12mm headed bolts. "

Can you confirm (perhaps from personal experience) that the OEM splash shield can stay on with the mid-armor?

Cheers!
I have all three Primitive plates on my 2016 (so same build as the 2013). You can keep the OEM splash guard on and install the skid plate with it. It takes a little more muscle to smush them all together, but if I remember correctly, I just drilled out a hole in the OEM splash guard big enough to accommodate the skid plate mounting hardware. I have had it on there for about 50k miles with no issues at all!
 

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I have the LP Aventure small bar guard, deflector plate, & skid plate and got it delivered to Australia. It cost me an arm, leg and left testicle to buy and fit. I also fitted the double row light bar at the same time. Quality is great but I expect that for what I paid. I dont have any regrets buying it but there is little in the way of choice for these cars down under.

IMG_20200618_161840 by S B, on Flickr
 

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ok now I’m curious.

what would be the advantage of leaving the plastic skid in place with a metal skid?

only thing I can think of is if the metal skid took a severe hit & wedged the plastic in between it & the undercarriage it could prevent a possible metal on metal situation. cause anything that is going to puncture the metal one is going right through the plastic one on its way.
 

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ok now I’m curious.

what would be the advantage of leaving the plastic skid in place with a metal skid?

only thing I can think of is if the metal skid took a severe hit & wedged the plastic in between it & the undercarriage it could prevent a possible metal on metal situation. cause anything that is going to puncture the metal one is going right through the plastic one on its way.
It better maintains the factory airflow characteristics in the engine bay. That plastic is partly to keep out debris, and partly to help create a low pressure area behind the radiator to draw air thru. The skid plate does have the same coverage as the plastic, so it is worse at both of those things. The decrease in turbulence with the plastic still on may also have a positive effect on highway MPGs, but that would be hard to measure.
But it's not like your car is going to break down without it. I was going to be OK with removing it for the skid plate, but I do prefer to leave it.
 

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For me it's a cost issue. I may not want to buy all three pieces at once. The plastic splash shield is better protection than nothing at all, so I figure it'd be the last plate I'd get. First one would be the mid-armor. But if I had to take off the plastic shield for that then I would be without protection at all. So it's good to know that can stay in place while still putting on the mid-armor (Thanks for the input, Pepper!).
 

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I personally went with Primitive.

DIY install video my buddy and I filmed in this thread:
 

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I have skidplate and rear diffplate from Subaru. Not sure if Subaru have a plate for the cvt too but i dont found one...
 
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