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2021 Crosstrek Limited, Pure Red
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The author of the article below is a columnist for Outside Magazine, and he lives in my town, and we have mutual friends, and ... well, he's pretty much a total jerk. But this is an interesting article nonetheless, and it has a couple valid points in it.

 

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Vancouver, BC, CGK 2018 Ltd EyeSight
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Well, the K02s that I use in the summer on my Crosstrek are not for looks or over-kill for my off-roading. Our cabin road has sharp shale/rock gravel and is famous for cutting A/T tires. Tire shops love it. But we have a neighbour there that is a tire shop owner and he VERY strongly recommends K02s BECAUSE he says he has yet to have anyone come back to him with a cut tire on that road.
 

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Hey folks, we can call that guy a jerk all day long, but he is 100% accurate on what he said. I will never lift my crosstrek, and I have had two. There are several reasons why I will not. Many of the unsprung weight issues that he mentions are one of those reasons. The other reasons are that the transmission and axles were never built for heavy duty rock crawling, and if you lift the suspension, your suspension geometry goes to crap. Not to mention you have essentially turned your Subaru Crosstrek into the bro dozer version of a mall cruising Diesel truck that never sees off road. The crosstrek is a car, I repeat a car. If you want an off-road vehicle, go buy a jeep.
 

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I've always been curious about why people lift as it doesn't increase the ground clearance. Better approach angle, perhaps, or able to add bigger tires without rubbing.
 

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The author of the article below is a columnist for Outside Magazine, and he lives in my town, and we have mutual friends, and ... well, he's pretty much a total jerk. But this is an interesting article nonetheless, and it has a couple valid points in it.


some guys want "the look" and others want performance. often the guys who want "the look" sacrifice performance, gas mileage and longevity. imo
 

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2021 Crosstrek Limited, Pure Red
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Discussion Starter #10
Just to clarify, I didn't say the guy was a jerk because of what he said in the article ... I said he was a jerk because I know people who have had to work with him. (And I'm guessing he's the sort of guy who would consider that to be a compliment, anyway.)

But yeah, a lot of what he said there is pretty obviously true -- the super-heavy tires and a lot of the other typical off-road mods will not only make your car less pleasant to drive, but they'll wear it out faster. I definitely disagree with people who claim that Crosstreks don't have any off-road cred, though, and that's from experience. I'll never take a Crosstrek rock crawling with @Zap, but I'll unhesitatingly take it on 98% of the two-tracks in the West, and that's saying a lot. And I'll do it without K02s. :)
 

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Prefers non-orange cars
'18 and '19 Crosstrek Limiteds
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Well, to be fair ... if nobody had anything to complain about, this place would be pretty boring.
Yeah, imagine if Subaru only sold greyscale cars... 😸
 

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Can't comment on the author's personality other than his writing style seems a little aggressive. But I am going down a similar path. Living in the east there aren't a lot of rocky trails with precipitous drops or boulders to climb (in fact Trails Offroad lists no trails in my state and the four surrounding states). So no lift needed. Didn't need the expense nor the stress on the car's mechanicals.

But there are a lot of unpaved roads that run through the state and national parklands that I seek out. Because I am a solo traveler what I needed was protection for my 'Trek from hazards that might strand me a long and expensive tow back to populated areas.

So I've added skid plates from Primitive, .25" sport springs from RalliTEK all around (because I pull a 4x6' trailer and they help with the 'butt sag') and KYB struts to stabilize the ride. I also have put on the the Falken Wildpeak AT tires in the stock 17" size. Now I will carry a full sized spare on the roof when I set out to explore the forests, mostly because of the lightweight chuck box I have in the cargo space that I don't want to pullout to get to the spare donut tire. But that's only when I travel to camp and not for 1000's of miles.

303942


I am adding a winch using the Primitive Racing front winch mount but that total weight is under 45lbs. But with the spring and strut improvements over the stock I don't anticipate any handling problems. (I also have the STI Flex tower bar and the 20mm rear sway bar).

I am a little concerned about mounting the winch to the front in terms of crash protection but the risk/reward calculation I am making is one i can live with with a 7 year old car.

We'll see how it plays out once I get vaccinated and feel better about leaving the house. At least with the new tires I won't likely get stuck going to the grocery store at 6am in the snow with the other old codgers...
 

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After 45+ years of driving that article had absolutely nothing new in it. :rolleyes: I just went out and loaded our outback with 600lbs of wood pellets (crosstrek is to small for that load). Just driving it I can feel the complete difference in the drive and handling. If I had to do a long trip with that load I know the mileage would suck...each of these is a result of the other...starting with load. Like I said...anyone who has driven for any period of time Will not learn anything new from it. For a newbie however, great stuff.
 
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2018 Orange Subaru Crosstrek Limited
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Yes, gotta love the Ramen. I get to bragging about how good the Beef Ramen tastes but my wife usually points out that I'm actually eating the chicken. Nice. I understand your concern when traveling alone but I wish the winch was removable for the 360 other days that I know I wont need it. Which KYB shocks did you install?
 

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I like your kitchen set-up. Custom built? Sleeping platform on top?
Thanks. Yes, I threw that together using 1x2 pine and 1/4" plywood. Very light. The back tapers to fit against the seat backs. On the left is space for a 2 gal. water container. I have a small battery powered pump that sits on top. The stove will slide under the plastic shoe box drawers for storage.

No sleeping platform, I like hammocks.
 
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