A Guide to Hybrid Cars & SUVs

Hybrid and electric vehicles have gained a lot of attention in recent years as more drivers look to reduce their carbon footprint. Hybrid vehicles offer drivers more options, with both a fuel-efficient electric engine and a gasoline-powered engine that recharges the vehicle’s battery and adds extra power to the driving experience. 

Learn more about the benefits and technology behind hybrid vehicles and take a look at the history – and future – of Subaru hybrid vehicles.

The History and Future of Subaru Hybrid Vehicles

Subaru has a long reputation for rugged performance and unwavering safety, but you can also trace a continued commitment to conserving the Earth throughout our history

From the beloved Crosstrek Hybrid that first launched in 2014 and was discontinued in 2023 to the upcoming Forester Hybrid, Subaru hybrid vehicles embody our devotion to sustainable driving without compromise. As a result, you can rely on all the power, all the safety, and all the adventure you’ve come to know and love in a Subaru—with a little more love for the planet built in. 

Let’s take a closer look at Subaru models that represent the past and the future of our mark on the hybrid vehicle market.

The Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid

The popular Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid was a mainstay in our vehicle lineup for nearly a decade, having been discontinued after the 2023 model year. Despite its hybrid version being phased out in 2023, the Subaru Crosstrek remains one of our most popular models thanks to its practicality, comfort, and capability. 

The Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid offers eco-conscious drivers an opportunity to experience Subaru hybrid technology in a compact, versatile package. Although discontinued, you may be able to find a pre-owned Crosstrek Hybrid at your local Subaru retailer or dealership.

Contact your local Subaru retailer.

The Subaru Forester Hybrid

The upcoming 2025 Forester Hybrid will represent our return to the hybrid crossover SUV space and combines the latest in hybrid technology with all the versatility, reliability, and rugged performance of its gasoline-powered counterpart. 

The 2025 Subaru Forester Hybrid begins an exciting new era for the beloved compact crossover SUV. Blending the signature Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system with eco-conscious engineering and design, the new edition promises to deliver an impressive combination of efficiency and capability, giving drivers considering a new Forester Hybrid a lot to look forward to.

Benefits of Choosing a Hybrid Vehicle

Compared to traditional gasoline-powered vehicles, hybrid vehicles reduce impact on the environment. Hybrids across the auto industry have long been lauded for their reduced reliance on gasoline, and plug-in models incorporate electric power, resulting in fewer emissions. Acknowledging the growing need for sustainable transportation solutions, eco-conscious drivers who choose a hybrid can feel good about contributing fewer pollutants to the atmosphere without having to sacrifice safety, performance, and versatility. 

Thanks to lower fuel consumption and a streamlined drivetrain design, hybrid owners may notice long-term savings on both gasoline and maintenance. Additionally, financial incentives such as tax credits or rebates may be available to those purchasing a new or used Subaru hybrid, offering further savings.

Understanding Hybrid Vehicle Technology

The principle of any hybrid system is seamless integration of electric power and a gasoline engine to deliver optimized performance and efficiency. But it’s how systems harness and utilize these power sources that’s evolved as technologies advance. 

Looking at the Subaru approach to hybrid vehicles, the experience combines the best of both worlds: our powerful SUBARU BOXER® engine and an electric motor to offer a more responsive, fuel-efficient approach to driving. 

When driving, the BOXER engine can either power your vehicle directly or charge the battery, depending on driving conditions. In EV mode, a Subaru hybrid operates solely on electric power at lower speeds – ideal for city driving or in situations where traffic flow stops and starts, which can be less fuel-efficient in traditional gasoline-fueled vehicles. 

When traveling at low speeds, recharging comes from engine power, while a process called regeneration (or regenerative braking) allows hybrid batteries to recapture kinetic energy produced during deceleration or coasting. This helps offer extended driving range in EV mode.

Hybrid Features and Technology


Previous and future Subaru hybrid models include a robust suite of advanced features and technologies that enhance safety, connectivity, and comfort. Both the now-retired Crosstrek Hybrid and the 2025 Subaru Forester are also equipped with features that can deliver enhanced traction, stability, and handling to conquer challenging weather and road conditions with ease.

Additionally, the 2023 Crosstrek Hybrid included SUBARU STARLINK® In-Vehicle Technology, an intuitive connectivity system that delivers multimedia content, smartphone access, turn-by-turn navigation, and enhanced safety directly to your vehicle’s infotainment screen. Features are divided into two categories: STARLINK Multimedia, which refers to all smartphone integration and entertainment components, including onboard Wi-Fi; and STARLINK Safety and Security, which refers to components that offer access to key emergency, safety, and convenience services like roadside assistance, maintenance and diagnostic alerts, and remote engine start.

The Environmental Impact of Hybrid Vehicles

Switching to a hybrid vehicle can help you leave a lighter carbon footprint. Hybrid vehicles produce fewer greenhouse gas emissions than traditional gasoline-powered vehicles, contributing less to air pollution and helping mitigate climate change—a driving principle of the Subaru Love Promise and a commitment to a more sustainable future. Hybrid vehicles also offer greater fuel economy, which translates to less reliance on fossil fuels and less consumption of non-renewable energy sources. It’s a win for your wallet and a win for the planet!


Want to Keep Up with Subaru Hybrids?

Whether you’re a former or current Crosstrek Hybrid owner looking for your next vehicle, anticipating the arrival of the eco-conscious Forester Hybrid, or anyone interested in the newest Subaru innovations, join us on this exciting endeavor!

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Frequently Asked Questions about Hybrid Vehicles

What is a hybrid vehicle?

A hybrid vehicle uses both an internal combustion (gas) engine and one or more electric motors operating together to deliver optimized efficiency while producing minimal emissions and air pollutants.

How do hybrid batteries charge?

The gas engine in a hybrid vehicle charges the battery by delivering power when the charge level is depleted. Hybrid batteries also charge using regenerative braking power, which harnesses the kinetic energy created during coasting and deceleration. Regeneration occurs seamlessly during the natural course of driving a hybrid car. Some hybrid vehicles also have plug-in capability, meaning they can replenish their batteries using a properly-equipped 120V or 240V outlet.

Do hybrid cars actually save money?

Many hybrid owners enjoy long-term cost savings by naturally using less gasoline and filling up less frequently than they would with a traditional combustion engine-powered vehicle. Hybrids that feature a functional EV mode and can travel short to moderate distances without using gasoline may see more significant savings.

What is the difference between a hybrid and a fully electric vehicle?

Hybrid vehicles contain both an internal combustion engine and an electric power source, while fully electric vehicles contain only an electric power source. Hybrids can function on gasoline alone, while EVs use no gasoline and can only operate with a fully or partially charged battery pack.

Imagery shown is the 2023 Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid.