The reductive exsolution of metallic Ru from fluorite-type solid solutions Ln2Ru0.2Ce1.8O7 (Ln = Sm, Nd, La) leads to materials with metal-support interactions that influence the electronic state and the catalytic activity of Ru. In situ X-ray absorption spectroscopy at the Ru K-edge identified that with increasing temperature, the exsolution of Ru from Sm2Ru0.2Ce1.8O7 in a H2 atmosphere proceeds via an intermediate Ruδ+ state, that is, Ru4+→Ruδ+→Ru0. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) established that, in parallel (H2 atmosphere at ca. 500 °C), also Ce4+ ions reduce to Ce3+, which is accompanied by an electron transfer from the reduced host oxide to the exsolved Ru0 clusters, creating Ruδ- states. Low-temperature diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFTS) using CO as a probe molecule reveals a red shift of the CO adsorption bands by ca. 18 cm-1 when increasing the temperature during the H2 treatment from 300 to 500 °C, consistent with an increased π-backdonation from more electron-rich Ru species to CO. However, at a lower reduction temperature of ca. 100 °C, a blue-shifted CO band is observed that is explained by a Lewis-acidic Ruδ+-CO adduct. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) signal enhancement in parahydrogen-induced polarization experiments was used as a structure-sensitive probe and revealed a decreasing propene hydrogenation rate with increasing exsolution temperature, accompanied by a notable enhancement of propane hyperpolarization (ca. 3-fold higher at 500 °C than at 300 °C). These data suggest that the exsolved, subnanometer-sized Ru species are more active in propene hydrogenation but less selective for the pairwise addition of p-H2 to propene than Ruδ- sites engaged in a strong metal-support interaction.