The Ultimate Guide to the Hyundai vs. Subaru Reliability Face-Off

Hyundai vs Subaru Reliability

Whether you're shopping for a sedan, SUV, coupe, sports car, electric, or hybrid vehicle, choosing between Hyundai’s vs. Subaru’s reliability can feel like a tough choice. I mean, how do you know which brand is the best for you? How do you figure out which is more reliable than the other?

Well‌, that’s where our expert editors step in and do the heavy lifting for you. We’ve found that Hyundai is more reliable than Subaru.

Here's all you need to know about the Hyundai vs. Subaru reliability and how to choose the best one for you.

Hyundai vs. Subaru Reliability: A Detailed Comparison

Sensuous Sportiness, structure, style, and technology
Adaptation, innovation, dynamic performance, safety, and efficiency. 
Gas Mileage
Engine and Performance
High Safety Ratings
Higher Safety Ratings
Hyundai cars last up to 200,000 to 250,000 miles, with an average lifespan of 15-20 years.
Subaru cars have an estimated lifespan of 13-17 years and 150,000 - 200,000 years.
Repair and Maintenance Cost

Hyundai Pros and Cons


  • Diverse SUV Lineup: Hyundai offers a broad range of SUVs, including eco-friendly options​​.
  • Superior Warranty: Leading warranty coverage with a 5-year/60,000-mile new vehicle and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty​​.
  • Award-Winning Models: Recognized for quality and innovation, with awards from Autotrader and J.D. Power​​.


  • Fuel Economy: Some models may lag in fuel efficiency.
  • Driving Dynamics: May not match Subaru's driving engagement or off-road capabilities.
  • Brand Perception: Still improving in terms of prestige and durability against competitors like Subaru.

Subaru Pros and Cons


  • Standard All-Wheel Drive: Enhances traction and performance across nearly all models​​.
  • Safety Focus: High safety ratings and a reputation for reliability​​.
  • Resale Value: Notable for high resale value and multiple Kelley Blue Book awards​​.


  • SUV Variety: Fewer SUV models than Hyundai​​.
  • Complimentary Maintenance: Limited availability compared to Hyundai's standard offering​​.
  • Performance Options: Some models may lack the performance features found in Hyundai's lineup.

Hyundai and Subaru Reliability: Which Is Better?

There are a lot of enticing offers that will make you want to purchase a model from Hyundai or Subaru.

Subaru takes pride in its boxer engines, eyesight technology that offers superior safety, and amazing all-wheel-drive systems. For Hyundai, you are getting a 10-year warranty coverage, one of the best coverages in the auto industry. This includes a wider variety of cars to choose from.

However, in a close comparison between Hyundai and Subaru, we believe Hyundai is better. Reliability ratings are tricky for both brands as different surveys and reports have different opinions about both brands.

According to RepairPal, Hyundai has a reliability rating of 4.0/5.0, ranking 4th out of 32 car brands. This is unlike Subaru, which takes the 13th position with a 3.5 rating.

The 2022 Consumer Reports reliability rating favors Subaru more than Hyundai, as Subaru ranks 7th, with Hyundai struggling with the 13th position.

On the 2022 JD Power Dependability survey, Hyundai is the third most dependable car brand, while Subaru falls five places below the industry average.

Although the overall rating is in Hyundai's favor, your judgment of reliable cars should exceed ratings.

Subaru beats Hyundai with higher safety ratings, long-lasting engines, and improved traction, all thanks to its AWD and engine design. But, you are getting cheaper repair and maintenance costs.

To get a detailed understanding of the reliability of Hyundai and Subaru, we must compare their features alongside different models from both car brands.

Warranty Comparison

New Vehicle Limited Warranty
5 years / 60,000 miles
3 years / 36,000 miles
Powertrain Limited Warranty
10 years / 100,000 miles
5 years / 60,000 miles
Roadside Assistance
5 years / Unlimited miles
3 years / 36,000 miles
Complimentary Maintenance
3 years / 36,000 miles
Varies by region

Hyundai and Subaru Reliability: Design

Hyundai and Subaru have a reputation for producing well-designed vehicles that are stylish and practical. However, both brands adopt different philosophies and have different approaches to design.

Subaru's design usually takes the rugged and adventurous form, while Hyundai settles for sleek and modern cars. Irrespective of Hyundai being a Japanese car brand and Subaru being a Korean brand, their engineering principles go beyond their country of origin.

Subaru's design philosophy emphasizes the need to produce cars that can easily adapt to environmental changes. This includes implementing measures that drive dynamic performance and efficiency and achieves high safety levels, ensuring that functionality is not breached at any point.

To balance dynamism and functionality, Subaru's design philosophy cuts across its exteriors, interiors, and build quality. From the delivery of power, sturdy build, radiation of the feeling of strength that gives their cars a dynamic look, there are a lot of reasons to love Subarus.

It is important to mention that Subaru remains the only car brand that continues using boxer engines for its cars. This ensures perfect balance and power in its cars.

The standard AWD systems on all Subaru cars sustain traction, enhance fuel efficiency, and achieve quick response even in slippery conditions.

Hyundai adopts a design philosophy known as “Sensuous Sportiness.” This is achieved by harmonizing structure, styling, and technology. The Hyundai brand aims to build cars that are appealing to customers.

Hyundai emphasizes the need for functionality without neglecting style.

With Hyundai vehicles, you are assured of aerodynamics, a sense of motion, and a distinctively sporty look, a blend of luxury that makes a statement on the road.

One of the major differences between Hyundai and Subaru design is that you are getting a wider variety of cars with Hyundai than on Subaru.

Subaru doesn't employ versatility, so there aren't many cars for you to choose from. However, you can consider the build quality of Subaru cars, but this will come at the expense of the luxury that Hyundai offers. The choice between Hyundai and Subaru design depends on your needs and preferences.

Winner: Both

Hyundai and Subaru Reliability: Gas Mileage Comparison

Hyundai and Subaru are great options, especially regarding fuel efficiency. Although Hyundai has no defined fuel system like Subaru, they have amazing gas mileage.

It is easier to assume that Subaru has better gas mileage than Hyundai. Although sometimes, the reverse is the case. The fuel economy of Hyundai and Subaru is relative. The gas mileage you get depends on the model that you choose.

For instance, The Subaru Ascent returns better gas mileage than Hyundai Palisade. You are getting just 19 MPG on city rides and 26 MPG for highway on Hyundai Palisade, while Subaru Ascent gets 21/27 MPG on city and highway, respectively.

The Hyundai Ioniq, a hybrid model, gets an impressive 58 miles per gallon in the city and 60 MPG on the highway. However, Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid returns only 35 MPG in hybrid mode.

It's also a win for Hyundai with the Kona vs. Crosstrek gas mileage. With Hyundai Kona, you get 30/35 MPG, and Subaru Crosstrek returns 27/34 MPG.

It can be quite confusing that Hyundai returns better gas mileage than Subaru. Subaru's Lineartronic CVT, boxer engine, AWD system, and StarDrive Technology are features that contribute to Subaru's amazing fuel economy.

On the other hand, Hyundai models are also equipped with turbocharged engines and CCVD technology that improves fuel efficiency. While it is true that there are more defined fuel-saving technologies on Subaru vehicles, there are more Hyundai vehicles that return a better fuel economy.

Winner: Hyundai

Hyundai and Subaru Reliability: Safety and Technology Comparison

Hyundai and Subaru strongly emphasize safety and technology, ensuring maximum passenger protection on their vehicles. However, Subaru beats Hyundai with higher safety ratings.

Nine Hyundai cars are earning the 2022 IIHS Top Safety Pick (+). This is lower than Subaru, which has 11 cars earning the IIHS Top Safety Pick (+) award.

You must understand that both brands offer a wide range of advanced safety features, such as lane departure warnings, blind spot monitoring, and automatic emergency braking, but Subaru tends to do it better.

Subaru's Eyesight safety technology is one of the best safety systems in the auto industry. It comes with a pre-collision braking system, advanced/adaptive cruise control, pre-collision throttle management, etc.

In terms of technology, you are getting amazing and easy-to-use infotainment systems on cars from both brands: android auto, Apple Car Play, touchscreen displays, navigation, and smartphone integration.

The provision of these technology packages varies according to the model and trim level of any vehicle you choose from both brands.

Winner: Subaru

Hyundai and Subaru Reliability: Engine and Performance

Subaru is known for its durable and reliable engines. This is all thanks to its asymmetrical boxer engines that adopt a horizontally-opposed construction.

Subaru's boxer engines, coupled with the AWD system, offer high standards of durability and longevity and provide great power and performance.

On the other hand, Hyundai uses different engines for different models. The engine types come in turbocharged, hybrid, and electric categories.

Although Hyundai offers better powertrain warranty coverage that can give you peace of mind, the performance you get from the engines of both brands depends on the model you choose.

For instance, the Subaru Crosstrek sport has better power than Hyundai Kona, but Hyundai Palisade has better power than Subaru Ascent.

To make better decisions on the engine variations of Subaru and Hyundai vehicles, you must compare the specific models you are interested in.

Winner: Both

Hyundai and Subaru Reliability: Repair and Maintenance Cost

It is cheaper to maintain and repair a Hyundai than a Subaru.

According to RepairPal, you get a $617 average annual repair cost on Subaru. This is compared to Hyundai, which has only $438.

With Subaru, you have a 13% probability of severe damage and a 0.3 chance of visiting the repair shop. Hyundai barely gets 0.3 and 10% probability. Subaru's all-wheel drive vehicles present a lot of maintenance needs compared to Hyundai's front-wheel drive vehicles.

Below, we’ve given you an idea of how much the average annual maintenance costs are for sedans and compact and midsize SUVs.

Vehicle Type
Hyundai Model
Average Annual Maintenance Cost
Subaru Model
Average Annual Maintenance Cost
Compact SUV
Midsize SUV
Santa Fe

Winner: Hyundai


Hyundai and Subaru have their strengths and weaknesses. While Hyundai leads with better gas mileage, warranty coverage, and repair cost, Subaru's safety is worth considering.

However, if you are considering buying a Subaru, you must understand that they have a limited lineup and you might not get exactly what you need.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which brand has better warranty coverage, Hyundai or Subaru?

Hyundai offers a 5-year/60,000-mile new vehicle limited warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain limited warranty, outpacing Subaru's 3-year/36,000-mile new vehicle limited warranty and 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain limited warranty.

Are Subaru vehicles more reliable than Hyundai in terms of all-wheel drive capabilities?

Subaru is celebrated for its standard all-wheel drive across the majority of its lineup, offering superior handling in diverse conditions, which may be considered more reliable for those needing off-road or all-weather capabilities compared to Hyundai's selective all-wheel drive options.

What are the average annual maintenance costs for Hyundai and Subaru vehicles?

Hyundai vehicles typically incur lower annual maintenance costs, with the Hyundai Elantra averaging $452, in contrast to the Subaru Impreza's $653. This suggests Hyundai may be more cost-effective in terms of maintenance.

How do safety ratings compare between Hyundai and Subaru vehicles?

Both brands achieve commendable safety ratings from the NHTSA and IIHS, with each brand prioritizing safety through advanced features and robust build quality. Specific ratings vary by model and year.

Are Subarus more reliable than Hyundai?

Reliability can depend on various factors, including maintenance, driving habits, and vehicle model. Historically, Subaru has a strong reputation for durability, especially with its AWD systems. Hyundai counters with excellent warranty coverage and has shown significant improvements in reliability ratings over the years. The choice between Subaru and Hyundai reliability often comes down to individual preferences and needs.