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I wonder why they don't just use the base impreza. The Crosstrek is just a tarted-up impreza with more plastic body cladding.
OTOH maybe they're saving the base impreza for their diesel engine, which they plan on bringing here.
(hatchback)...that's what I have. I'm happy with it. Put Thule crossbars on with universal mounts and stackers for more than 2 kayaks. I've carried 3 at one time so far. It is low to the ground and twice that has bothered me, but I do like the gas mileage.
Depending on conditions (wind, load, speed, etc) mileage ranges 25-33 with boats up top. Have seen 38 on a long highway drive with no boats. I have read the similar Crosstrek is not worth the extra $$, though the new hybrid may be a different story.
If I'm by myself I can load my Romany using the old bathmat method, sliding it up onto the rack from the back--works great for me.