Still in Love (With My Car)

Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2, 1/18 sec, ISO3200
“Crosstreks” Austin, 2020

I’ve loved the design of the Subaru XV Crosstrek ever since I first saw it years ago, and since I’ve bought one, I love it even more. It seems I’m not the only one who does, as there are plenty of Crosstreks on the road here in Austin.

This photo was taken in the parking lot at BookPeople/REI (my Crosstrek is the blue one in the background). After dropping off Koa at rehearsal, I’ll often browse the camping gear and then read while sipping a coffee at the bookstore. Always a relaxing evening. 😊

Cat and Car

"Sphinx" Cedar Park, 2018
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/2.5, 1/110 sec, ISO6400
“Sphinx” Cedar Park, 2018

こんばんは。How’s it going?

Today’s weather was a huge change from yesterday – a 40° F drop from 84° to the 40s! How crazy is that? So, we spent most of the day indoors staying warm. As you can see from the first photo, Yuzu is keeping me company on my desk as I blog away. 😺

However, I did make a short trip to the store to buy some margarita fixings. Tequila, Cointreau, and limes were in order, and I also picked up some whiskey. Gotta stock up just in case, right? On the way back home I filled up the tank and was pleasantly surprised that I set a record for my fuel efficiency:

My Subaru Crosstrek has about 5,500 miles on it and the MPG is getting a little better after its break-in period. The car has a built-in fuel calculator, but it’s usually about 3 MPG on the optimistic side, which is normal across most cars, so to get an accurate measurement, I’ve been using Fuelly to keep track of how much gas I put into the car and the mileage. I also enter in how much the cost is per gallon so I can get the total amount I’ve spent on fuel over the life of the car. It’s very interesting (to me) and it makes me more mindful of trying to drive more efficiently. The Crosstrek has a real-time gauge to show the efficiency so I can kind of adjust how heavy my foot is on the gas pedal as I drive. 😄 My Subaru isn’t nearly as efficient as our Prius, but the ~30 MPG average is much better than the 19 MPG I was getting with the Honda Odyssey. I’m happy about that!


Sticker Up

"Sticker Up!" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: Motorola Moto G (4), 3.64mm, f/2, 1/40 sec, ISO64
“Sticker Up!” Cedar Park, 2017

I added some stickers to my Crosstrek the other day. I am kind of nuts for the game Splatoon, and I love the fake brands they have in the game, so I added the “Zink” logo to the bumper. And of course, I had to represent my Dodgers! FYI, I bought the stickers from RedBubble, then trimmed them a bit with scissors, and put clear plastic over the top for a little more protection from the elements.

I really love my new car. It’s kind of fun and unique, so why not have even more fun with it? 😝


Rooftop Cargo Basket for the Crosstrek

"Cargo Basket" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/5, 1/200 sec, ISO200
“Cargo Basket” Cedar Park, 2017

こんばんは。How’s it going?

As you can see from the photos, I’ve mounted the rooftop cargo basket onto our 2018 Subaru Crosstrek. As expected, it was an easy one-person job to get it onto the crossbars, position, and secure. Obviously, it would have been faster with two people, but it’s certainly not necessary. The basket is light enough that I could lift it safely and place it on the crossbars, then slide it across to center it. I made sure to measure and match the distance between the crossbars with the mounting points on the basket beforehand.

It’s so nice that the Crosstrek is not as tall as a regular SUV or minivan, especially since I am only 5′ 5″ tall. That being said, I did use a footstool to get up higher to the tighten the clamps. It’s just more comfortable to turn the wingnut-type screws without angling your wrist awkwardly.

"Cargo Basket" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/5, 1/220 sec, ISO200
“Cargo Basket” Cedar Park, 2017

In addition to the stock basket hardware, I added some washers to make the tightening surface a little more beefy, and then bought some some rubber end-caps for the bolt-ends since they stick up a bit into the basket. Apart from that, it’s a nice basket, at a good price! (~$75 US)

"Caps and Washers" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/5, 1/25 sec, ISO6400
“Caps and Washers” Cedar Park, 2017

I also unpacked the waterproof cargo bag which we’ll put our gear into, and put it in the basket to make sure the size was ok. The footstool was a big help with this part and so for our camping trip, I ordered a portable version. It seems like it’s a decent item to have around, and it folds down flat. It arrives on Friday so we’ll see if it will really do the job.

Driving with the cargo basket up top feels the same as without, but the wind noise is noticeable from about 50 MPH on up. I’m sure the mileage also takes a hit with the basket on, but I’ll update this post later on when I get more drive time data. I’m not planning on keeping the crossbars and basket on the Crosstrek full-time, however. It’s pretty much just for camping. I think it looks pretty cool, though!

FYI, here are the items mentioned in this post:

I’m really enjoying the new Crosstrek!


New 🚙

"New" Cedar Park, 2017
Photo info: Motorola Moto G (4), 3.64mm, f/2, 1/120 sec, ISO100
“New” Cedar Park, 2017

こんばんは。How’s it going?

Today I picked up my new car, a Subaru Crosstrek. I love it! The weather forecast was for a cold, rainy day, so I was worried that the test drive and inspection would be a messy affair, but as it turned out, there was only a light drizzle. But it was actually appropriate, because the Crosstrek is perfect for this kind of weather. It’s got all-wheel-drive for safety, and heated seats for comfort. 😆

I love just about everything about the car. Here are the stand-outs for me:

  • Fuel economy – 30 MPG combined
  • Color – I love the “Cool Gray Khaki”
  • Android Auto / Apple CarPlay – Access to Google Maps, Music, apps in a nice car-based interface on the center console
  • Smaller than the Odyssey – Easier to park and fit in the garage
  • High ground clearance – 8.7 inches will be better for those dirt roads in Big Bend!
  • Heated seats – Nice and toasty for the morning drive

And then here are a few things that I am not fond of:

  • Doors don’t automatically unlock when using the inside handle
  • Minimal cargo space – Will have to use the roof rack when we go camping
  • Minimal storage in the front – Where can I put my sunglasses?

Also, it’s fun that Subaru has a kind of cult following. There’s a lot of active Subaru forums out there, plus a bunch of community features on the Subaru website. And because this is a car that I have been wanting for a few years, I have a closer fondness for it than any of my previous cars. I hope to be driving my Subaru Crosstrek for many years to come.

I hope you had a nice Wednesday!