Check Out A Couple Of Our Favorite Crosstrek Builds From Real People:
These Crosstreks were built using some of the exact same parts mentioned in this article. See how they turned out.
Crosstreks are great cars, and you’re either already enjoying yours or you are planning to purchase one in the future. However, many Crosstrek owners want a little more off-road capability. Installing a lift kit on a Subaru can provide extra ground clearance and the ability to fit a larger tire on the vehicle. In this article we’re going to cover the basics of lifting a Crosstrek and then discuss some of the best lift kit options.
Whether you’re searching for a lift kit to install on a 1st gen Crosstrek XV (2014-2017) a 2nd gen (2018-2023) or even the new 3rd gen 2024 Crosstrek, there are some great options available for you. There are lift kits from one to two, and even three inches available and each of the ones in this article include many of the parts to retain factory suspension geometry. We’re going to look at seven great lift kits from Primitive Racing, Anderson Design and Fabrication, LP Aventure, RalliTek, ReadyLift, Rough Country, and Subtle Solutions that I think are some of the best available.
There are a few ways to lift a Crosstrek. Some are simple, and some are a little more involved. But here’s the 3 most common ways to do it:
Getting bigger all-terrain tires is the most basic and simple way to add an aggressive look and some additional clearance. This isn’t technically a “lift” but when trying to achieve more off-road capability, bigger tires will certainly get your vehicle higher off the ground. However, there’s a limit to how big of a tire you can install without doing more work to your Crosstrek. Going any bigger than about half an inch bigger than the stock tire without a lift usually isn’t recommended.
You might also consider lift springs to lift your car. Typically, a set of lift springs will give the vehicle an extra inch in ground clearance. Lift springs give the driver an option to select custom spring rates for different applications. For example, if a person is planning to carry heavy equipment in their Subaru, a set of King overload lift springs will keep the suspension from sagging. This is also beneficial for anyone planning to use their Crosstrek for any towing. In order to go bigger than just an inch, a person would want to add spacers to their suspension along with the lift springs.
In my opinion, a lift kit that incorporates an aftermarket spring usually provides the best ride quality experience. Discussing your needs and driving habits with the manufacturer of your desired lift kit prior to purchase is the best way to ensure that you get the right spring rate for a great driving experience. By letting them know they amount of cargo you plan to carry and the type of terrain you plan to adventure on, they can make a tailored recommendation before purchase.
If you want something a bit more simple, strut top spacers are a fantastic option. They are simply mounted on top of the strut or shock in order to give the desired amount of lift. Spacers are most often sold in sizes between 1-2 inches. Some companies may offer lift spacers taller than 2 inches but they require far more work and are usually a custom order. Professional installation of a lift kit bigger than two inches is usually recommended as it involves extending the steering shaft, radiator hoses, brake lines, and subframe. Lifting a Crosstrek more than 2 inches without a subframe drop will push the axles past their articulation abilities and damage them immediately.
Spacer lift kits are typically the most affordable and simple way to lift a Crosstrek. They create more ground clearance, don’t have any moving parts, and are very durable when purchased from a reputable manufacturer.
One additional way that people are beginning to lift Subarus is by using long travel coilovers. These are entirely new and aftermarket style suspension assemblies that replace the stock struts and springs. This is usually the most expensive way to lift your car but allows for a wide range of customization. If you’d like to learn more about suspension lifts for Subarus, check out this article: Are Suspension Lifts Overkill?
This article focuses on strut spacers and spring lifts. For more info on the different ways to lift your car, check out this guide to choosing the best option for your needs.
When looking at spacer lifts above 1 inch, I always select an option with built in camber correction. This will ensure that the car can be properly aligned after installation. Camber correction on strut spacers usually looks like a slight angle or an offset of the top plate of the spacer. If you look at this 1.5 inch ADF spacer, you can see that the plate isn’t just flat on top but is actually offset from the bottom plate. Typically, when using a spacer that is 1 inch or less, the correct camber can be achieved using the stock camber bolts.
You’ll also want to make sure that the lift kit is powder coated and uses good quality hardware. Most reputable brands use grade 8.8-10.9 for their kits. If the spacers or the hardware rusts it can cause serious damage to your vehicle. This has happened to me personally on a vehicle that I used to own.
Before buying a spring lift, selecting an option that is the correct spring rate is a must. This is a foreign concept to many of us, but a simple phone call or email to the company of your choice should be all you need to select the best spring rate for your needs. I also like to look for something that is coated well and won’t rust easily.
Fortunately, there are not a large number of low quality spring lifts which makes it much easier to find a great product. I personally purchased a set of King Springs from Primitive Racing. The fit and finish is fantastic and they make the car handle so much better despite having a heavy front bumper and no sway bars.
Let’s jump in and take a look at seven of the best lift kits you can buy for your Crosstrek. Please note that these are not listed in order from “best to worst.” Each one is great in its own way and there is no bad choice here. We have only listed kits that we would put on our own vehicles.
Primitive Racing kits has designed a fantastic lift kit for both 1st gen and 2nd gen Subaru Crosstreks. Rather than just a simple strut spacer, the crew over at Primitive has built one of the most functional collections of hardware for taking a Crosstrek off-road.
It’s not uncommon for us to hear “I installed a lift kit but now the rear of my car sags when I load it with my camping gear” or even “I lifted my car, but now it handles horribly.” The lift kits from Primitive Racing are designed to eliminate these issues and to set your Subaru up for the best possible performance without having to continuously add and replace parts. The owner of Primitive Racing, Blake Lind, explains “I don’t like to sell people problems. I don’t like to have people come back and say ‘I was at the alignment shop and they can’t get it (within spec.) I want to have people come back and say ‘I really liked that setup on my old car. What do you have for my new car?'” This is one of the many reasons I always feel confident when I make a purchase with Primitive. Their entire business revolves around building performance parts for Subarus that will last and perform well.
They have multiple lift kit options available, but most will arrive with brake line extensions, subframe spacers, and even sway bar link spacers. Their kits are designed to help reduce the accelerated wear that comes with lifting Subarus improperly. If you want your car to be more capable, but still have the same on-road manners as it did in stock form, this is a great option! The Primitive Racing kits can give additional ground clearance while maintaining a fantastic ride quality.
Primitive Racing offers lift kits for the 2013-2017 Crosstrek XV, 2018-2023 Crosstreks, and have recently released a 2024 Crosstrek lift kit! Check out their site and begin building your kit today.
Get Primitive Racing lift kits here:
(We currently run Primitive skidplates from front to back. This should be one of your very first mods if you plan to off-road your Subaru.)
Anderson Design makes four different lift kit options for Crosstreks. These kits are available for each generation with the exception of the 2 inch option. That kit is only offered for the first generation (2013-2017) Crosstrek.
ADF is a leader in the off-road Subaru industry. They have a reputation for designing and building some of the best lift kits in the market. When a new model is introduced, or a new need develops among off-road drivers, Anderson Design is usually the first to produce a solution. Their kits are known for being built with the best materials and have excellent workmanship.
I have personally called ADF when I’ve had a question. Patrick, the owner, will likely answer and is always helpful. They truly love what they do, and love the Subaru community.
Check out this first gen Crosstrek with the two inch ADF lift kit. The owner, @pnwcurrycrosstrek on Instagram, has done some impressive trails with the car.
LP Aventure offers a great 1.5″ Strut spacer lift kit with multi link spacers. Available for both generations. Check out the LP Aventure Site to see each size option and additional info.
LP Aventure is a company out of Canada that has years of authority in the off-road and over-landing industry. They pride themselves on NHTSA and FMVSS126 motor vehicle safety standards, meaning that their kits allow your Crosstrek to retain full factory safety features while providing extra all terrain capabilities.
Their extensive R&D means your Crosstrek will handle as closely to stock as possible!
The LP Aventure lift kits also fit the new 2024 Subaru Crosstrek! Check out this build they’ve created. We’re excited to see this platform grow as people begin to modify them.
Photo credit: LP Aventure
TIP: at the time of writing this guide, we found that Tire Rack had the best prices on this kit. We find that you can typically get the best deals with them or on LP Aventure’s website. We suggest checking both stores before making your final decision. Tire Rack also has on-staff customer service that can help guide you and answer specific questions. We also have an affiliate arrangement with them that allows us to earn a small commission any time you click one of our links and purchase an item. This allows us to keep the site running and bringing new content to you!
If you own a second gen Crosstrek, there is finally a great 3 inch lift kit option for you! The folks over at RalliTek now offer a full 3 inch kit that includes everything needed to protect the axles with a lift kit that will give you as much clearance as possible.
This all-inclusive kit provides a substantial lift to your vehicle, granting an estimated +3” lift. Designed for those who want everyday comfort and rugged off-road performance, RalliTEK’s 3 inch lift kit includes camber/caster-corrected top hat spacers, lift springs, and a range of suspension components to maintain an OEM alignment at an unmatched ride height.
Designed and built in my hometown of Portland, Oregon, RalliTEK’s lift kit boasts chrome silicon spring steel springs that excel in high-stress conditions and varying climates. This means enhanced performance, improved stability, and a more predictable driving experience. The lift spacers, constructed from 3/16″ MIG-welded steel, come with front alignment correction, preserving your vehicle’s alignment while lifting it. Fine-tune your rear camber with RalliTEK’s control arms, featuring a RockJock Johnny Joint (yes the same ones you’ll find in Jeep rock crawler steering and suspension systems) for optimal suspension articulation.
RalliTEK’s 3″ lift kit & suspension components are the key to conquering new terrains, from snowy mountain trails to summer adventures on old logging roads. Whether you’re taking your vehicle through the harshest conditions or simply looking for a more capable driving experience, RalliTEK delivers durability, precision, and quality.
ReadyLift offers the 2″ SST 2018-2021 Crosstrek lift kit with offset spacers to help with camber/caster results. Check out Chad’s Crosstrek lift build to see how it looks after installation.
According to the Ready Lift site, the 2 inch Crosstrek kit allows for 215/75/15 All-Terrain tires with zero rub, or 235/75/15 with slight plastic trimming. It also delivers 12 inches of ground clearance at the rocker panels.
Ready Lift has been making lift kits for trucks of all sorts for well over a decade, and now they are working to provide excellent options for SUV and crossover owners. Their kits are bolt-on and are extremely affordable for anyone looking to get that additional off-road capability without breaking the bank.
Check out this 2018 Crosstrek Premium using the ReadyLift SST lift sitting on 235/75R15 Falken tires.
ReadyLift stands behind their products with a power train warranty; stating that any engine or transmission damage caused by lifting the vehicle is covered. This means you can rest easy with the peace of mind that your lift kit won’t add unnecessary stress to the motor or drive line.
For the price, you can’t go wrong with this easy lift kit. Just keep in mind that there are other pieces that you may want to purchase to help return your Crosstrek’s suspension geometry to factory specs. You may want to consider purchasing multi-link spacers to readjust your rear suspension back to OEM standards.
Tim’s Crosstrek is lifted on a ReadyLift kit:
TIP: at the time of writing this guide, we found that Tire Rack had the best prices on these kits. We find that you can typically get the best deals with them or on Amazon. Check both stores before making your final decision. Tire Rack has on-staff customer service that can help guide you and answer specific questions. We can’t say enough good things about their level of service.
(Make sure you enter your year/make/model to see the current prices)
If you are on a tight budget and simply want to spend the least amount of money, the Rough Country kit might be the right way to go.
2 inches of lift for around $350 bucks? That’s almost unheard of. It’s perfect for anyone who wants to get a little extra clearance without spending a lot of money. But please keep in mind that your Crosstrek should be equipped with additional parts to help the suspension handle the way it was designed to. We suggest purchasing multi-link spacers (also called subframe spacers by some manufacturers.) These parts are included in most of the other lifts available on the market.
Rough Country produces off-road accessories geared mainly towards trucks and Jeeps. However, lucky for us Crosstrek owners, they have developed kits for both the 1st generation and 2nd gen suspensions. People have raised concerns with their quality control on some items. But we’ve also seen positive feedback about their lifts. We highly recommend checking them out if you are looking to get an affordable lift kit.
Again, Rough Country produces a kit for both 1st and 2nd gen. So whether you have a 2014-2017, or a 2018-2023, you should check out the Rough Country kits for a very budget-friendly option.
Get Them Here:
We found that the prices on Amazon are usually most competitive compared to everywhere else we looked. They do sell out quickly though. So if there is one in stock, grab it.
Subtle Solutions is a well known name in the Subaru industry, celebrated for its innovative and performance-enhancing solutions tailored specifically for motorsports enthusiasts. With a background in rally, Subtle Solutions has become synonymous with precision engineering and high-quality products.
Whether you’re an off-road enthusiast seeking to conquer rugged terrain or simply looking to add a touch of aggression to your Crosstrek’s appearance, Subtle Solutions has you covered. Their lift kits are designed well, ensuring a seamless fit, reliable performance, and uncompromised safety.
Subtle Solutions takes pride in its versatile selection of lift kits, offering various lift heights to accommodate different driving styles. They offer basic 1 inch lifts that provide a touch of ground clearance to more aggressive 2 inch lifts for those who need more off-road capability. Their kits are engineered to deliver the perfect balance of form and function. Moreover, these lift kits are crafted using high-strength materials (high quality aluminum and steel,) guaranteeing durability and longevity even in the most challenging environments.
Subtle Solutions offers parts for Crosstrek owners to help infuse their own personality into their vehicles. Whether you’re a seasoned off-road enthusiast or mainly a daily driver looking to improve your cars’ appearance, Subtle Solutions’ lift kits provide the means to take your driving experience up a notch.
Check Out A Couple Of Our Favorite Crosstrek Builds From Real People:
These Crosstreks were built using some of the exact same parts mentioned in this article. See how they turned out.
We called to multiple shops in various US cities and asked what they charge to install lift kits. We’ve also surveyed our friends who opted for professional installation. The average price that we found was $566 for labor. The cheapest price reported was $300 and the most expensive was right around $800.
There are a few things that will drastically affect the cost:
Safety And Performance Are #1
As with any modifications, we highly recommend lengthy research and consulting with a trusted professional prior to installing a lift kit. Never cut corners or install something that you aren’t comfortable with. Lifted Imports cannot be held liable for any negative outcomes that arise from modifying vehicles. The information on the site is strictly for educational purposes and not intended to take the place of advice from a professional.
In conclusion, there are a lot of great options when choosing to lift your Crosstrek but it’s important to make sure that you purchase something from a reputable brand with quality engineering. You might notice that this article doesn’t include everything currently on the market. We’ve only included kits that we have experience using and kits that are well respected in the Subaru community. We have avoided There are various cheap kits that are available on Ebay and other sites that lack build quality and some of the vital features needed to keep your Crosstrek’s alignment within spec. If you’re curious about a lift that’s not on this list, shoot us an email and we’ll be happy to look at it for you.
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